The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer

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What are some adjectives that best describe the Wife of Bath in the story The Canterbury Tales: The Prologue?

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David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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A great adjective to describe the Wife of Bath would be independent. As a wealthy widow, she enjoys the kind of independence that was very rare for a woman in those days. Her considerable wealth allows the Wife of Bath to pursue the life of a lady of leisure, using her spare time to travel the length and breadth of Christendom, visiting holy sites of pilgrimage.

But the Wife of Bath is no meek and humble ascetic. Despite her devout faith, she's also rather worldly. Due to her travels and to her many marriages, she's become incredibly wise in the ways of the world. This wisdom manifests itself in a practical, down-to-earth understanding of the world that comes through quite strongly in the elaborate tale she tells.

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cegauer eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In The Prologue, it is safe to say the Wife of Bath is depicted as a worldly and experienced woman who is in control of all aspects of her life. 

Several different details present the Wife of Bath as an older woman who has been able to travel and experience much of what life has...

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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