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What significance does the natural world hold in The Franklin's Tale? (From what you have read so far)

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Introduction

What significance does the natural world hold in The Franklin's Tale? (From what you have read so far) Nature can be perceived as a fundamental theme in Chaucer's writing during certain parts of The Franklin's Tale. It can be conveyed as a positive or negative aspect of the characters surroundings. Dorigen's castle stands "faste by the see." The sea is significant to Dorigen's feelings in several different ways. The unpredictable and commanding reputation of the sea could represent Dorigen's anger, motivated by Aviragus' departure. The sea can be seen as a prison to Dorigen, stressing how secluded she feels from the rest of the world. Her castle is "upon the bank an heigh," which emphasizes how far she is from Aviragus, as the sea can possibly be perceived as a link between her and him. The freedom of the water can be seen as an ironic contrast between Dorigen's current emotional status and how she may have felt before Aviragus left. ...read more.

Middle

The rocks could also represent hidden and half-hidden dangers that separate Dorigen and her husband from one another. In short, the rocks function as a way of her, externalizing her trauma. Dorigen feels so strongly about the rocks that she boldly questions God about his "werk unresonable". Here, the natural world acts as an excuse to vent her anger directly to God. Bizarrely this resilient hate Dorigen holds against the rocks could be seen as a way of praying, showing that her love for Aviragus is so strong that she feels the need to directly criticize God about his supposedly "unresonable" work. Further on in the Tale, Dorigen states that to win her love Aurelius must "remoeve alle the rokkes, stoon by stoon". Initially, Dorigen feels that if the rocks are removed Aviragus will be closer to her, as all of the half-hidden and hidden dangers will be demolished. An alternative reasoning behind what she says is that by removing the rocks she will feel free of how she feels about them. ...read more.

Conclusion

describing the rocks: "That evere was born, but if to greet siknesse Or to greet sorwe helde it in distresse" The garden can represent a variety of different things. It is "craft of mannes hand", therefore it is artificial, however, the "odour of floures" are natural. The beauty of the garden (leading to its comparison to "Paradys") is very ironic. The garden is man made and the rocks are made by God. It is expected that the rocks would be described as beautiful instead of the garden, but this is not the case. Dorigen is in fact comforted more by the man made garden than by pure nature itself. The point of the garden is to make Dorigen feel better. It can be seen as a cover up for Dorigen's strong feelings about the rocks. The garden is described as having whatever was necessary giving the impression that there plentiful stock of food and various other items. This could possibly show a contrast between Dorigen's empty relationship and the rich stock of the garden. ...read more.

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