Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer
“The Knight’s Tale” and “Miller Tale” are known as the two well-known Canterbury Tales written by Geoffrey Chaucer. These particular tales can be characterized as the classic examples of the pilgrim tales explain the journey of the Canterbury. The particular influence of the Chaucer can be a witness in case of both the stories. Both the tales have the similar feature of the particular conventions of the time which provides the specific form of connection to the reader. It is notable to mention that both the tales of “The Knight’s Tale” and “Miller Tale” come up with many similar elements. Here the focus is to provide the necessary evidence from both the tales to determine the comparison in case of courtly love.
The particular element of romance can be characterized as the mirror of both the tales. The author uses the particular aspects to focus the element of a pervert in the stories. Undoubtedly, tales are the specific representation of the undermining of the moral characteristics. The Miller’s role in the tale is the effective consideration of the different situations and sentiments in a detailed manner. On the other hand, “The Knight’s Tale” is the representation of the similar elements referring to the fact imitating. The specific genre of medieval romance is used by the Chaucer to explain the approach of romance in the tale. The similar feature which can be identified in both the tales is the facet of courtship romance.
The feature of medieval chivalry defines in the Knight’s tale with the consideration of the particular rule to follow. There is the indication of the moral foundations in case of courtly love or romance. This particular facet of love is defined in the story through the character of the Knight who has the feeling of love for a woman having a noble heritage. It explains the feature of the difference between the social class of the knight and the particular woman. The difference of the social class was considered as the effective form of ritualistic admiration for the particular woman who has the characteristic of the high birth. Mostly this specific feature has no concern with the features of marriage or sex. The aspect of love and romance in “The Knight Tale” can be explained with the help of following words: “Love is a greater law, aye by my pan, than man has ever given to earthly man. And therefore statute law and such decrees are broken daily and in all degree. A man must need love, maugre his head.” (Chaucer and Ruggiers, 1165). These particular lines of the tale explained the irony of the love when the two Knight’s struck into the romance and affection for the Emelye. It becomes the prospect of conflict which can be defined in case of three characters related to the courtly love. On the other hand, the feature of courtly love or romance in case of Miller’s Tale is described as the significant element of rejection. The feature of romance in the story of Miller’s Tale is used as the form of ridiculous reality which undermines the feature of the morality of love. The features of love, romance, and the marriage are described with the different moral upheavals. The wife of the carpenter is one of the exemplary characters in the tale which depicts the feature of unfaithfulness for her husband who is older than her. The described form of love in the Miller’s Tale is unfaithful, immoral, and forbid which can be easily assessed in case of carpenter’s wife. She uses different means to cheat on her husband and meet her lustful needs.
The prospect of love in case of “The Miller’s Tale” is described as the ridicule form which never meets the societal moral standards. The story negates the traditional form of love and describes it as the feature of lust and body needs. It is crucial to understand that Canterbury Tales are known as the depiction of the different forms of lover and lovers which appears with the standard of courtly love. The feature of courtly romance is presented by the facet of ancestors. The important aspect which contrasts the Knight’s Tale from the Miller’s Tale can be classified as the implementation of the courtly love. The specific form of courtly love which prevails in case of Miller’s Tale can be characterized as the Chaucer’s fabliaux work because it comes with the natural feature of love. People love each other just to fulfill their sexual body needs. The particular concept of courtly love in Miller’s Tale can be apprehended with the following words: “And eke morality and holiness. Blameth, not me if that you choose amiss.The Miller is a churl; you know well this. So were the Reeve eke and others mo’ and harlotry they told both two.” (Chaucer and Ruggiers, 3180).
Undoubtedly, the Miller’s tale is the representation of the lusty and immortal elements in the form of love and romance. These particular features are expressed in the story in the form of different characters. Different characters of this particular tale have more depth as compare to the presenting characters in the Knight’ Tale. Marriage is not considered as the necessary feature of placement in case of courtly love. The aspect of adultery is considered in the particular tale of Miller’s in the name of love and romance. Characters of the tale seem unable to place the courtly love beyond the sexual needs. The Miller’s tale apprehends the idea of the immoral sexual desires in case of characters who fall in love with the wife of the carpenter. Although it is the traditional facet of the courtly love, they adopt the feature of their sexual needs. They steal the attention of someone else’s wife also it is considered as immoral to getting involved with the married woman. While the Knight’s Tale expresses the aspect of courtly love in a different manner. Both the characters discuss the tale named as Arcite and Palamon have the noble status in the society. They are portrayed as the hero figure for their people. Author develop these characters to describe the feature of perfection in case of humans. They understand and value the actual facet of the Courtney Love. The character of Artice going through with the extreme level of emotional suffering due to his love for Emelye as he was unable to access her. This particular feature of sacrifice make him noble who fulfills the traditional role of the courtly love.
The Miller’s Tale also provides the necessary indications about the position of women in society. The immoral form of love or romance is also indicated the poor position of the women. The character of women is portrayed as just the object in the story. The woman is not described as the noble position in the society. This particular feature of ineffective and immoral woman position in the society is discussed by Gillman which apprehends the specific idea as: “I did write for a while in spite of them, but it DOES exhaust me a good deal-having to be so sly about it or else meet with heavy opposition.” (Gilman, 5). This particular feature provides the harsh realities related to the women’s role in the society and how they are just considered as the object to meet the sexual needs in the name of Courtney Love.
Chaucer, G., and P. G. Ruggiers. The Canterbury Tales: A Facsimile and Transcription of the Hengwrt Manuscript with Variants from the Ellesmere Manuscript. University of Oklahoma Press, 1979, https://books.google.com.pk/books?id=QiGazUrpnusC.
Gilman, C. P. The Yellow Wallpaper. Floating Press, 2009, https://books.google.com.pk/books?id=9fGSHyaWofsC.