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The Canterbury Tales: The Franklin's Prologue James Chen.

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Presentation on theme: "The Canterbury Tales: The Franklin's Prologue James Chen."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Canterbury Tales: The Franklin's Prologue James Chen

2 The Franklin ("Free Man") Landowner o Didn't serve a lord and not nobility either Optimistic and benign Lived for pleasure Connoisseur of food and wine o Table always ready for food

3 Franklin's Prologue Story originally told by Ancient Bretons Franklin issues disclaimer regarding his storytelling skills Calls self ignorant man Asks audience to excuse his vulgar speech Never studied rhetoric, speaks simply and plainly

4 Franklin's Tale Setting: Old Armorica (Now Brittany) Breton knight named Arviragus marries the beautiful Dorigen Unlike the conventional marriage, based on equality o Neither was a master or servant Franklin's Statement: o If mastery enters marriage, love will flap its wings & fly away

5 Franklin's Tale Arviragus and Dorigen lived blissfully until Arviragus is sent to Britain for two years for work Dorigen, deeply in love w/ Arviragus, becomes depressed Friends try to comfort her, took her on walks near sea Distressed by black rocks by shore that sunk ships

6 Franklin's Tale Friends take her to garden party/dance Handsome, dancing squire named Aurelius confesses love to Dorigen o Had been in love w/ her for 2 years Dorigen rejects Aurelius, "Never shall I become an untrue wife" But she jests by saying she will only love him if he removes all the rocks from the coast Aurelius depressed by the impossible task

7 Franklin's Tale Arviragus returns and Dorigen overjoyed Aurelius' brother refers Aurelius to a law student skilled in illusion and magic for help The law student agrees to do it for 1000 pounds and does it Dorigen is in a dilemma

8 Franklin's Tale Must forfeit either body or reputation Tells Aviragus, who is shocked and dejected Aviragus tells wife to fulfill her promise Aurelius learns of Aviragus' actions and frees Dorigen from her promise The law student learns of Aurelius' deed and frees him from his debt "Chain Reaction" Franklin ends with the question: Which was most generous, do you think, and how? How would you answer this question? Why do you think the Franklin told this kind of story?


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