#1 - The Prologue
Canterbury Tales (Middle English)
Chaucer's famous and important work is predicated upon the premise that a group of Christian folks from various occupations, familiar in the Middle Ages and a goodly number of them in the Church, are on a pilgrimage to worship at the burial site of Thomas Becket in the Cathedral at Canterbury. The host suggests that to pass the time each traveler tell a tale. So, we are entertained by quite a variety of stories, almost all of which, though, have a moral purpose. Of course, Chaucer and his folk spoke an English that is between the Anglo-Saxon beginnings, which is totally foreign to us, and the Modern. This form of English, therefore, is called Middle English, which can sometimes sound somewhat familiar and at other times be absolutely incoherent to the modern ear. (Summary by Jim Locke)
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