The Canterbury Tales 2: The Knight's Tale Questions and Answers

Geoffrey Chaucer

2: The Knight's Tale Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Why is it appropriate that the Knight should tell the first story?

2. Which features of the romance are evident in this tale?

3. How do Arcite and Palamon come to be imprisoned?

4. How is each man released from prison?

5. Why is Arcrite not recognized when he is employed in Emily's household?

6. How is it decided who will marry Emily?

7. What happens to prevent the man who won Emily's hand from marrying her?

8. What characteristics of chivalry are evident in the story?

9. What is the theme of The Knight's Tale?

10. From what sources did Chaucer borrow material for this tale?

Answers
1. He is the highest ranking member of the group.

2. The romantic features of this tale are: noble characters;
ideal love; romantic past as setting; and trial by combat.

3. They are discovered, half-dead, on the battlefield at Thebes.

4. Arcite is freed by the intercession of a powerful friend. Palamon drugs the guard and escapes.

5. He has grown so thin and pale that he no longer looks like his former self.

6. The decision is made based on which knight's team wins the tournament staged by Theseus.

7. Arcite is thrown from his horse and mortally injured. He dies soon after.

8. The characteristics of chivalry in this tale include great
attention to honorable behavior and trial by combat.

9. The theme of this tale is ideal love and chivalrous conduct.

10. Chaucer borrowed from: Boccaccio's Teseide, Boethius' The Consolations of Philosophy, and ancient myths.