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Barron's Booknotes-The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer-Free Book Notes
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OTHER ELEMENTS

SETTING

Setting is more important in some tales than in others. We're told that the Miner's Tale takes place in Oxford, but it could just as well be New Jersey. It's the joke that counts. It's pretty much the same case in the Pardoner's Tale which, because there the moral is important, could take place in England just as easily as Flanders, where the tale is set.


But in the Knight's Tale, the Wife of Bath's Tale, and the Nun's Priest's Tale, settings make moral or ironic points. The Knight's Tale draws connections between the medieval chivalry of England and the society of ancient Greece; the Wife of Bath intentionally places her tale in the days of King Arthur (read her tale and see why); the Nun's Priest's Tale really takes place in a larger setting than a barnyard. You can decide for yourself which settings are important to a tale and why, based on what you think Chaucer is trying to say through the narrator's mouth.

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Barron's Booknotes-The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer-Free Book Notes
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