Monday, April 8, 2013

A-Z: "F" is for The Friar's Tale

Day 6 of the A-Z challenge and welcome to week 2 of the challenge.  Today my "F" is for The Friar's Tale in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.
In the prologue before The Friar's tale, he and The Summoner bicker--each one loathing the other's existence.  I found the the Friar egotistical and condescending at times but that only made him a more lively character.  When these two (Friar and Summoner) go at it, our Host came to the rescue, officiating over their arguing and efficiently officiating the telling of the tales.  Those three were highly entertaining, which just goes to show you how brilliant Chaucer was at character interactions.
The Friar tells a tale about you guessed it, a summoner; one who does the lowest of jobs, administering summons and questionable justice on behalf of an archdeacon.  He spares no expense and describing the summoners many sins, including extortion.  The summoner is on his way to collect money from old woman when he meets the devil disguised as a yeoman. The summoner befriends the devil and the summoner informs him of his next jaunt to meet the old widow.  When the summoner arrives and issues bogus charges to the widow, the old bag curses him, stating something like "may the devil take you."  And then the Devil did just that--took the Summoner straight to hell.  That's the short version of that tale.

Of course after that tale was told The Summoner threw a tizzy and that just gives you little insight in the classic character quarrels.  I'm sure there's more to the tale, but that was my brief take away.

Happy Monday.

Mina B.


9 comments:

Mary Aalgaard said...

Fun to read about the Friar. I read the Tales in college, and barely remember them. They are lively, however, and I enjoyed them. I wore a costume on Friday for a party that could have been for the Wife of Bath. It's on my G post today. G = guest.

Play off the Page

Laura said...

I've never read the Friars Tale, but it sounds really good. I'll have to read it :)

S. L. Hennessy said...

The Friar's Tale is one of my favorite ones. Couldn't say why, I just love it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Nothing like good character banter!

mshatch said...

I should really acquire this book again.

Nick Wilford said...

It all sounds very entertaining. Great to find out more about the Tales.

Michelle said...

I have a vague recollection of this one.
I'll have to re-visit Chaucer's tales. But with the TBR pile so high, I don't know where this will fit in!?

Mark Means said...

Sounds like the Summoner got what was coming to him :)

Left and Write

Gwen Gardner said...

Haha! And that's probably where we get the saying, "may the devil take you"! Loving your theme, Mina:)