The Canterbury Tales 19: The Physician's Tale Summary and Analysis

Geoffrey Chaucer

19: The Physician's Tale Summary and Analysis

This is the only story which is not linked to the others by dialogue among the pilgrims.

Virginius, a noble knight of Old Rome, had the loveliest daughter anyone could imagine. She was Nature's perfect work; and Virginia's virtue was a thousand times greater than her beauty. She was particularly prudent with regard to preserving her chastity. To protect her purity, Virginia often pretended to be ill so that she wouldn't be vulnerable to the wantonness prevelant at dances, feasts, and revels.

One day, when Virginia goes to pray at the temple, a very famous judge called Appius observes the maiden and immediately determines to ravish her. Conspiring with a fellow called Claudius,...

(The entire section is 624 words.)