Marriage in "The Canterbury Tales" Analytical Essay by BrainC

Marriage in "The Canterbury Tales"
An examination of the significance of marriage in Geoffrey Chaucer's "The Canterbury Tales."
# 52820 | 1,452 words | 2 sources | MLA | 2004 | US
Published on Sep 22, 2004 in Literature (English) , English (Analysis) , Women Studies (Marriage)

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This paper looks at how, in Geoffrey Chaucer's "The Canterbury Tales", many of the stories seem to use the idea of marriage as a symbol of greater moral, as well as religious, themes. In particular, the individual stories of "The Miller's Tale", "The Wife of Bath's Prologue", and the "Franklin's Tale" give a fascinating glimpse into the world of marriage in Chaucer's day; an institution, the reader notes, that is not so different from today in many respects. It also shows that, in addition to the nature of marriage, which, admittedly ,is turned up to the point of parody, the reader also catches a glimpse into the social and religious world and its flaws.

From the Paper:

"In his essay, "Concepts of Marriage and Pilgrimage," Morton Andrew notes that the idea of marriage during the time of Chaucer closely mirrored the theological symbolism of the unbreakable "marriage" bond cemented between the Church and Christ (Andrew, 88). Not only was marriage considered holy, and closely tied to the teachings of English Christianity and moral society, but the varied transgressions possible within the institution were still regarded as spiritually, morally, and symbolically immoral. Although The Canterbury Tales often uses satire to make its point, the harsh immorality of adultery the ultimate dishonor of the symbol of Christ-centered union, is on full display."

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