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Canterbury and its Cathedral

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Presentation on theme: "Canterbury and its Cathedral"— Presentation transcript:

1 Canterbury and its Cathedral

2 The murder of Becket (1170)

3 The shrine of Becket in Canterbury

4 St. Thomas Becket shown in a stained-glass window in Canterbury Cathedral

5 A masterpiece of English Literature

6 The Father of English Poetry
G. Chaucer (1343 – 1400)

7 The Pilgrims on their way to Canterbury Cathedral

8 The Canterbury Tales, a collection of verse tales told by a group of pilgrim travelling to Canterbury

9 Pilgrims and medieval society
Ranking from Knight to Labourer of the fields they are a portrait of middle-class England in the late 14th Century.

10 Artisans, such as smiths, shoemakers, carpenters and butchers organized in guilds, laid the foundations of an urban bourgeoisie.

11 Pilgrimage as framework to the theme of life in medieval England
Realistic descriptions carried out with fine irony


13 The stories are told in the kind of English which later became MODERN STANDARD ENGLISH

14 The Canterbury Tales : Prologue
Here bygynneth the Book of the tales of Caunterbury Here begins the Book of the Tales of Canterbury

15 And going on… Whan that aprill with his shoures soote The droghte of march hath perced to the roote, And bathed every veyne in swich licour Of which vertu engendred is the flour; Whan zephirus eek with his sweete breeth

16 The modern version When April with his showers sweet with fruit The drought of March has pierced unto the root And bathed each vein with liquor that has power To generate therein and sire the flower; When Zephyr also has, with his sweet breath,

17 Boccaccio – Dante Chaucer
The device of the collection of tales and the idea of the frame where to insert them is very likely taken from Boccaccio The central idea of the pilgrimage might have come from Dante’s otherwordly pilgrimages

18 To Canterbury 30 pilgrims telling two verse tales each, on their way to and on their way back from Canterbury To the shrine of Thomas Becket,made martyr and saint by the Roman Church

19 The pilgrims enjoyng a meal at the Tabard Inn
There came at nightfall to that hostelry Some nine and twenty in a company Of sundry persons who had chanced to fall In fellowship, and pilgrims were they all That toward Canterbury town would ride.

20 Chaucer’s function in the story
But none the less, whilst I have time and space, Before yet farther in this tale I pace, It seems to me accordant with reason To inform you of the state of every one Of all of these, as it appeared to me, And who they were, and what was their degree, And even how arrayed there at the inn; And with a knight thus will I first begin.

21 A knight there was, and he a worthy man, Who, from the moment that he first began To ride about the world, loved chivalry, Truth, honour, freedom and all courtesy.

22 There was a housewife come from Bath, or near, Who- sad to say- was deaf in either ear. At making cloth she had so great a bent

23 With us there was a doctor of physic; In all this world was none like him to pick For talk of medicine and surgery;

24 There was a merchant with forked beard, and girt In motley gown, and high on horse he sat,


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