OLD SAYING: IN SPRING, A YOUNG MAN’S FANCY TURNS TO THOUGHTS OF LOVE Explain what it means using your own words
1: Whan that aprill with his shoures soote 2: The droghte of march hath perced to the roote, 3: And bathed every veyne in swich licour 4: Of which vertu engendred is the flour; 5: Whan zephirus eek with his sweete breeth 6: Inspired hath in every holt and heeth 7: Tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne 8: Hath in the ram his halve cours yronne, 9: And smale foweles maken melodye, 10: That slepen al the nyght with open ye 11: (so priketh hem nature in hir corages); 12: Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages, 13: And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes, 14: To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes;
GENERAL PROLOGUE When in April the sweet showers fall And pierce the drought of March to the root, and all The veins are bathed in liquor of such power As brings about the engendering of the flower, What is the setting in time ? What is the natural element present here? What is its effect on nature? What is the connotation of spring?
When also Zephyrus with his sweet breath Exhales an air in every grove and heath Upon the tender shoots, What natural element is present here and what is its effect on nature?
… and the young sun His half-course in the sign of the Ram has run , Why is the sun young?
And the small fowl are making melody That sleep away the night with open eye (So nature pricks them and their hearts engages) What is “the small fowl”?
And to people? Remember the old saying? IN SPRING, A YOUNG MAN’S FANCY TURNS TO THOUGHTS OF LOVE Let’s see if it is true for Chaucer too
Then people long to go on pilgrimages And palmers long to seek the stranger strands Of far-off saints, hallowed in sundry lands, Palmer , A pilgrim who carried a palm leaf to signify the making of a pilgrimage to the Holy Land
And specially, from every shire’s end Of England, down to Canterbury they wend To seek the holy blissful martyr, quick To give his help to them when they were sick
So, what is the effect of spring on man, according to Chaucer? The same as in the old saying?
It happened in that season that one day In Southwark, at The Tabard , as I lay Ready to go on pilgrimage and start For Canterbury, most devout at heart, What season was it? Where is the poet? Why?
At night there came into that hostelry Some nine and twenty in a company Of sundry folk happening then to fall In fellowship, and they were pilgrims all That towards Canterbury meant to ride How many people arrived? What kind of people were they? What were they going to do?
The rooms and stables of the inn were wide; They made us easy, all was for the best. And, briefly, when the sun had gone to rest, I’d spoken to them all upon the trip And was soon one of them in fellowship, Pledged to rise early and to take the way To Canterbury, as you heard me say. Does the poet enjoy the inn? What is the relationship between poet and pilgrims?
But none the less, while I have time and space, Before my story takes a further pace, It seems a reasonable thing to say What their condition was, the full array Of each of them, as it appeared to me, According to profession and degree, And what apparel they were riding in; And at a Knight I therefore will begin What is the poet going to do now? How is he going to do it?
Now, let’s read about the knight in your textbook!!!
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