Chaucer's "The Miller's Tale" should be tragic, because a lot of horrible things happen to the characters. The carpenter's wife is disloyal to him, sleeping with others and making fun of him with Nicholas. Also, he is depicted as a fool. However, readers get a humorous feeling from the story, rather than feeling sorry for the carpenter's unfair life. Chaucer makes the whole story come across as comic rather than tragic. This humor is created by the Miller's narration, the use of irony, the cartoon-like characters, and the twists of plot. These elements combine to produce an emotional distance which enhances the comic effect.
The narrator is the first element of humor Chaucer uses in his story. The Miller is rude and drunk but generally a jolly fellow. This sets the tone of story as being fun and even a bit coarse, just like the Miller himself. He tells a few jokes before he tells his story: "One shouldn't be two inquisitive in life? / Either about God's secrets or one's wife. / You'll find God's plenty all you could desire"(53). As well, the Miller wants to punish the Reeve, a ...
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- Summary and Analysis of The Miller's Tale When the Knight had finished, everybody decided that he had told a noble story. The drunken Miller claims that he has a tale as noble as the one the Knight had told. The host tried to quiet the Miller, but he demanded to speak. He claims that he will tell the tale of a carpenter and his wife. His tale will be one of infidelity. The narrator attempts to apologize for the tale that will follow, admitting that the Miller is not well-bred and will therefore tell a bawdy tale.... [tags: Canterbury Tales The Miller's Tale Essays]
1357 words (3.9 pages)
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1486 words (4.2 pages)
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1538 words (4.4 pages)
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