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Ch 8: The Canterbury Tales Analysis by Tale

About This Chapter

''The Canterbury Tales'' Analysis by Tale chapter of this ''The Canterbury Tales'' Study Guide course helps you understand how to analyze this collection of stories. Lessons are fun to review and feature short quizzes for self-assessment, enhancing your preparations for a quiz, test or assignment.

Who's It For?

Anyone who needs help learning or mastering the analysis of The Canterbury Tales by tale will benefit from the lessons in this chapter. There is no faster or easier way to learn how to analyze each of the tales in this collection. Among those who would benefit are:

  • Students who want to learn a broad topic in a short amount of time
  • Students who are looking for easy ways to identify the most important information on the topic
  • Students who have fallen behind in memorizing the various characters' stories in The Canterbury Tales
  • Students who prefer multiple ways of learning literature (visual or auditory)
  • Students who have missed class time and need to catch up
  • Students who have limited time to study for an upcoming exam

How It Works:

  • Complete each lesson in the chapter to review all key topics.
  • Refer to the lesson to reinforce your learning.
  • Test your understanding of each lesson with a short quiz.
  • Complete your review with The Canterbury Tales Analysis by Tale chapter exam.

Why It Works:

  • Study Efficiently: The lessons in this chapter cover only information you need to know.
  • Retain What You Learn: Engaging instruction and real-life examples make topics easy to grasp.
  • Be Ready on Test Day: Take The Canterbury Tales Analysis by Tale chapter exam to make sure you're prepared.
  • Get Extra Support: Ask our subject-matter experts any literature question. They're here to help!
  • Study With Flexibility: View lessons on any web-ready device.

Students Will Review:

This chapter summarizes the material students need to know about the analysis of each tale in The Canterbury Tales for a standard literature course. Topics covered include:

  • Themes and analyses of 'The Knight's Tale' and 'The Miller's Tale'
  • Analysis of 'The Reeve's Tale' and 'The Cooks Tale'
  • 'The Man of Law's Tale' theme and analysis
  • Themes of 'The Wife of Bath's Tale,' 'The Friar's Tale' and 'The Summoner's Tale'
  • Moral of 'The Clerk's Tale' and analysis of 'The Merchant's Tale'
  • Analyses and themes of 'The Squire's Tale' and 'The Franklin's Tale'
  • 'The Physician's Tale' and 'The Pardoner's Tale' themes and analyses
  • Themes and analyses of 'The Shipman's Tale' and 'The Prioress's Tale'
  • 'The Tale of Sir Thopas,' 'The Monk's Tale' and 'The Nun's Priest's Tale' analyses
  • Themes and analyses of 'The Second Nun's Tale' and 'Moral of 'The Yeoman's Tale'
  • 'The Manciple's Tale' analysis and theme
  • Analyses of 'The Parson's Tale' and 'The Plowman's Tale'

24 Lessons in Chapter 8: The Canterbury Tales Analysis by Tale
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Knight's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

1. The Knight's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

In this lesson, you'll get to know Chaucer's Knight. His romantic adventure relays a story about the Greek hero Theseus. You'll explore the themes of chivalry and honor and look at morals concerning reason and justice.

The Miller's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

2. The Miller's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

In this lesson, we will explore 'The Miller's Tale' from Chaucer's 'Canterbury Tales.' First, we will compare and contrast the Knight's Tale with the Miller's Tale. Then, we will look at how Chaucer uses the genre of the fabliau.

The Reeve's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

3. The Reeve's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

In this lesson, we will analyze 'The Reeve's Tale' from ''The Canterbury Tales''. We will look at the theme of quitting and the moral of the story and analyze these themes within the context of the story.

The Cook's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Moral Lesson & Analysis

4. The Cook's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Moral Lesson & Analysis

In this lesson, we will look at one of the stories in 'The Canterbury Tales', the Cook's Tale. This is only a partial story, but we will analyze this fragment and any moral lessons found in it.

The Man of Law's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

5. The Man of Law's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

In Chaucer's 'The Canterbury Tales', the Man of Law (lawyer) professes that he is a plain-spoken man who will not use rhyme. He then tells the tragic tale of the Lady Constance, who exemplifies the ideals of female humility and patience.

The Wife of Bath's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

6. The Wife of Bath's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

'The Canterbury Tales' is a classic of English literature, written by Geoffrey Chaucer over six hundred years ago. One of the most familiar and best loved tales is that of the Wife of Bath, discussed in this lesson.

The Friar's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

7. The Friar's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

In 'The Friar's Tale,' the Friar tells the the story of a Summoner and a Yeoman; the latter turns out to be the devil in human form, and ultimately takes the summoner with him to hell. This tale centers around a harsh critique of the profession of summoner and the wider theme of the importance of showing caution in trusting strangers.

The Summoner's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

8. The Summoner's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

'The Summoner's Tale' is about a friar who visits a sick man and tries to get him to donate money to the Church. The Summoner is responding to 'The Friar's Tale', in which summoners were portrayed badly, so he depicts friars in a negative light, too.

The Clerk's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Morals & Analysis

9. The Clerk's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Morals & Analysis

The Clerk's Tale in 'The Canterbury Tales' details the tests that Patient Griselda must endure to exemplify the nature of a good wife. However, his perspective on Griselda's story presents the notion that loyalty should not undergo such extreme tests.

The Merchant's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

10. The Merchant's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

'The Merchant's Tale' in Chaucer's famous classic of a group's journey to Canterbury features a familiar story of marriage between an old man and a beautiful young girl. As usual, this arrangement has its problems.

The Squire's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

11. The Squire's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

Because 'The Squire's Tale' from Chaucer's 'The Canterbury Tales' is incomplete, the romantic idea of life and love are the prominent themes of the limited story. The interruption of the tale leads more to assumptions than accurate analysis.

The Franklin's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

12. The Franklin's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

This lesson introduces Chaucer's Franklin. We will explore the Franklin's role in ''The Canterbury Tales'' and the genre of the Breton Lay. Then, we will examine how the Franklin concludes the conversation about marriage, which the Wife of Bath began.

The Physician's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

13. The Physician's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

'The Physician's Tale' is about a young, virtuous girl who must choose between death and dishonor when an evil judge demands that she be handed over to him, where she would be forced to sin. This is a fairly standard moral allegory, where the onus of maintaining the family honor is entirely on the woman, and she ultimately chooses death rather than shame.

The Pardoner's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

14. The Pardoner's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

This lesson will analyze the Pardoner's Tale in relation to its characterization of the Pardoner, its genre, and its effectiveness as a piece of rhetoric. At the end of this lesson, students will be able to evaluate the tale from these three angles.

The Shipman's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

15. The Shipman's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

'The Shipman's Tale' is a story about a merchant, his beautiful wife, and their friend, a young monk. The merchant does not give his wife as much money as she would like, so she gets a loan from the monk in exchange for sex. This lesson explores various types of power in relationships, including social power, monetary power, and sexual power.

The Prioress's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

16. The Prioress's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

''The Prioress's Tale'' in ''The Canterbury Tales'' concerns a small boy who is killed, his grieving mother, and a miracle of the Virgin Mary that causes him to go on singing after he has died. This tale involves themes of motherhood, innocence, and antisemitism.

Analysis of the Tale of Sir Thopas in The Canterbury Tales

17. Analysis of the Tale of Sir Thopas in The Canterbury Tales

'The Tale of Sir Thopas' is a parody of the medieval romance, told by Chaucer as a character within ''The Canterbury Tales.' This comedic story covers the adventures of Sir Thopas, a slightly absurd version of a romantic knight.

The Monk's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

18. The Monk's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

In this lesson we will look at 'The Monk's Tale' from 'The Canterbury Tales'. We will explore the theme of tragedy in The Monk's Tale and analyze what this means in the story as a whole and for the characters.

The Nun's Priest's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

19. The Nun's Priest's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

''The Nun's Priest's Tale'' is one of the many stories told on the pilgrimage to Canterbury in ''The Canterbury Tales'' by Geoffrey Chaucer. This tale is told by the nun's priest in response to a request for a light-hearted story, and it is indeed one of the merrier tales in the book. The nun's priest's tale is a beast fable about a rooster and his encounter with a fox. In this lesson we will analyze and explore the literary devices in this tale.

The Second Nun's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

20. The Second Nun's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

'The Second Nun's Tale' tells the story of Saint Cecilia, including her life of purity and her eventual martyrdom. This lesson will look at various themes throughout the tale as well as analyze the specific writing style for saints.

The Yeoman's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Moral & Analysis

21. The Yeoman's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Moral & Analysis

'The Yeoman's Tale' covers two separate stories about alchemists, each of which drives home the point that alchemy does not actually work, and that people and things are not always what they appear to be.

The Manciple's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

22. The Manciple's Tale in The Canterbury Tales: Theme & Analysis

The Manciple's Tale is about the god Phoebus, his wife, and his white crow who lives with them and is punished for telling Phoebus about his wife's adultery. This lesson looks at the tendency to blame the messenger, the way social class dictates how people discuss adultery, and the occasionally destructive nature of poetry itself.

Analysis of The Parson's Tale in The Canterbury Tales

23. Analysis of The Parson's Tale in The Canterbury Tales

In this lesson, learn that 'The Parson's Tale' is the final story in ''The Canterbury Tales''; it is a three-part sermon that focuses on repentance, as well as the different kinds of sins and how to repent from each kind.

Analysis of The Plowman's Tale & The Canterbury Tales

24. Analysis of The Plowman's Tale & The Canterbury Tales

'The Ploughman's Tale' is a fairly simple tale that tells the life of a monk. As a result, an analysis of the tale considers its late inclusion to Chaucer's ''The Canterbury Tales'', as wells as the allegorical meaning in the work of the monk.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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