Essay on Chaucer's View on the Church in The Canterbury Tales

Essay on Chaucer's View on the Church in The Canterbury Tales

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Chaucer's View on the Church in The Canterbury Tales

By analyzing “The Canterbury Tales”, one can conclude that Chaucer did see the merits of the church, but by no means regarded it in a wholly positive light. Whereas some of the clergy are viewed as devout and God-fearing, others are viewed as con- men and charlatans. One can even venture to say that Chaucer was using this story as somewhat of a criticism of the church, showing the flaws of its leaders and the greed that permeated it at the time.
The Prioress is portrayed as a simple, gracious, and charitable woman. The author does seem to hold a sympathetic view towards her, as he makes a point of extolling her virtues and neglecting to mention any of her flaws. The Parson is also painted as a decent and sincere fellow, who has no agenda other than to serve the Lord whom he loves with all his heart. Chaucer seems more ambivalent towards the cleric, a rather boring fellow. The description of the cleric led me to theorize that perhaps his intentions on joining the clergy were not primarily to serve th...

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