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Introduction to Geoffrey Chaucer

Tison Pugh

Publication Year: 2013

Geoffrey Chaucer is widely considered the father of English literature. This introduction begins with a review of his life and the cultural milieu of fourteenth-century England and then expands into analyses of such major works as The Parliament of Fowls, Troilus and Criseyde, and, of course, the Canterbury Tales, examining them alongside a selection of lesser known verses.

Published by: University Press of Florida


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p. 1-1

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. 2-7


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pp. vii-8

List of Abbreviations

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pp. viii-9

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Preface: Chaucer and Genre Theory

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pp. ix-xiv

The Father of English Literature: Geoffrey Chaucer holds this title with universal accord. Proving English literature as rich, sophisticated, and entertaining as the French and Italian masterpieces of the Middle Ages, Chaucer availed himself of the English language’s inherent poetry at a time when it was derided as an inelegant vernacular. ...

Chronology of Chaucer’s Life and Literary Connections

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pp. xv-xviii

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1. Chaucer’s Life and Times

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pp. 1-8

Had his surname been translated, the Father of English Literature would be known as Geoffrey Shoemaker. The more elegant surname Chaucer, from the Old French chaucier, to shoe, derived from the Latin calceus, shoe, suggests that Geoffrey Chaucer’s forebears labored in the shoe and leather trade.1 ...

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2. Chaucer’s Literature

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pp. 9-140

Dreams have often been linked to religious prophecies, as in the stories of Joseph and Daniel in the Hebrew Bible, but Chaucer’s dream visions concern more secular issues, tackling questions of love, loss, literary reputation, life, and death. Much as he does in the Canterbury Tales, Chaucer interjects himself as a character in his four major dream visions ...

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3. Chaucer’s Sources and Influences

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pp. 141-190

Literatures prior and contemporary to Chaucer—including the writings of classical Greece and Rome, of the Judeo-Christian Bible, and of the French and Italian traditions—resonate throughout his fictions, and deciphering his many allusions to previous masterpieces adds a challenging but pleasureful element to reading the Canterbury Tales, Troilus and Criseyde, and his other works. ...

Glossary of Literary Terms and Chaucerian Themes

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pp. 191-198

Pronouncing Chaucer’s Middle English

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pp. 199-202

Word List of Chaucer’s Middle English

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pp. 203-208

Plot Outlines of Troilus and Criseyde and the Canterbury Tales by Line Number

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pp. 209-232


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pp. 233-238

Selected Readings

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pp. 239-246


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pp. 247-251

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About the Author, Further Reading

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pp. 271-273

Tison Pugh is professor of English at the University of Central Florida. He is the author of Queering Medieval Genres and of Sexuality and Its Queer Discontents in Middle English Literature ...

E-ISBN-13: 9780813048352
Print-ISBN-13: 9780813044248

Page Count: 272
Publication Year: 2013