• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

GCSE: Geoffrey Chaucer

Browse by
4 star+ (2)
3 star+ (4)
Word count:
fewer than 1000 (99)
1000-1999 (128)
2000-2999 (30)
3000+ (5)

Meet our team of inspirational teachers

find out about the team

Get help from 80+ teachers and hundreds of thousands of student written documents

  • Marked by Teachers essays 4
  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 10
  1. Marked by a teacher

    Who are the targets for 'Wycherley's satire' in 'The Country Wife' and how does it reflect Restoration society?

    4 star(s)

    This revelation prepares us for the possibility that the women in the play will prove Horner right. If they do, then clearly his cynical assessment will have established their hypocrisy. Lady Fidget behaves exactly as Horner has predicted. Horner enjoys the pleasure of being right about these women in more sense than one. This is where satire comes into the picture. It is Wycherley who makes use of Horner in order to show the double standards by which the women of the age lived.

    • Word count: 1148
  2. Marked by a teacher

    Feminism or Anti-Feminism: Images of Women in Chaucer's "The Wife of Bath".

    4 star(s)

    She is strong, independent, and to be respected as a woman of great courage. Alison has suffered a great deal in her lifetime, indicative of life for women at this time. She has survived five husbands; some of whom beat her, others were unfaithful. She was married off at an early age of twelve and from then on knew what marriage was about: money. "Marriage is the key to survival, and that is what Alisoun seeks and finds" (Carruthers 214), argues Mary Carruthers, justifying Alison's five marriages. Alison equates money with power. With this power comes respect and honor.

    • Word count: 1373
  3. Marked by a teacher

    Les Murrays Widower in the country

    3 star(s)

    Through the first stanza, not only is the man fixated on him by using first person narrator, in addition he is putting things off until later, "I'll get up soon...I'll go outside". This notion of putting off tasks reveals that the countryman is depressed, he never feels like doing the job at that time. As the narrator reveals, there once could have been a family, the "Christmas paddocks" indicates that there would have once been a joyful time during Christmas with a family.

    • Word count: 553
  4. Marked by a teacher

    I am going to compare and contrast two stories the first 'The Fury' and the second 'A Bit of a Commotion' which were both written by Stan Barstow.

    3 star(s)

    He hits her and that morning she leaves him, but he thinks she'll be back hat night. Later that evening when Phyllis doesn't come back so he goes to the pub and finds out that it was his boss's grandmother who was knocked down and the bus station that morning and he realises he could have still kept his job and wife. 'The Fury' story is written in third person narrative and set around the 1950. You get an idea of the time the story was set from the language used, for example 'owt' and 'summat' which are used often in the dialogue.

    • Word count: 1503
  5. Canterbury Tales: The Knight and The Squire. Their differences can be seen by their motivations for battle, how they conduct themselves on a daily basis, and how they chose to live their lives.

    The squire on the other, while fighting bravely and admirably enters battle only to impress women, "He'd seen some service with the cavalry / (...) And had done valiantly in little space / Of time, in hope to win his lady's grace."(87-90). So he does fight admirably, but only for his personal gain. This is in stark contrast to the Knight, who constantly puts his life on the line expecting nothing in return; he does simply because it is the right thing to do.

    • Word count: 800
  6. Chaucer biography and compaing the monk and the prioress.

    The power of the church can still be seen today by the grand churches with many expensive statues. The nobility in England often spoke French because the royalty were decedents of the French so it was seen more acceptable and sophisticated although the common man spoke English. Geoffrey Chaucer was born at some time round the 1340s (the exact date is unknown). both his father and grandfather were Londoners, Geoffrey's father made a living in the wine trade although the family was not rich they were certainly comfortable, since john Chaucer had so many connections he was able to get Geoffrey a place in the service of the wife of the duke of Clarence, as her page he

    • Word count: 773
  7. How did Geoffrey Chaucer change the English Literature?

    the Rose * The Book of the Duchess * The House of Fame * Anelida and Arcite * The Parliament of Fowls * Translation of Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy as Boece * Troilus and Criseyde * The Legend of Good Women * Treatise on the Astrolabe * The Canterbury Tales The Canterbury Tales has over 24 tales; it is about friars going to the Shrine of where Thomas Becket died.

    • Word count: 545
  8. Presentation of the Miller

    Chaucer further develops the Miller's bold character description as; "...At wrastlinge he wolde have alwey the ram..." This expresses to the reader through the technique of metaphor that the Miller is a forceful character through his physical attributes, in comparison to the powerful animal the ram. Chaucer presents a direct comparison between the ram and the Miller as he could break any door at "renning with his head", illustrating the associated charge of the ram. Chaucer further expresses the description of the Miller using the technique of the simile, as the Miller's physical description is compared to the colour of a sow's ear.

    • Word count: 791
  9. In what ways does the Wife of Bath's Prologue and Tale explore issues of power and authority?

    As I will explore later the wife uses some rhetorical methods to explain her points of authority in what she is saying,. Therefore she seems predominantly to be a very honest person, with her revelations of gaining power over her first three husbands through emotional blackmail, sex, and the provocation of their guilt. This said, her account reveals a discrepancy between what we suspect to truth and what she says to her audience so that they can base their opinion of her, and although she does characterise herself more fully than any other pilgrim, one could argue that her sometimes confused nature and lack of coherence makes her self-portrait less plausible.

    • Word count: 2006
  10. Free essay

    How does Chaucer present the Merchant's character in 'The Canterbury Tales'?

    At this point, the reader may begin to dislike or grow suspicious of the Merchant; he is clearly an arrogant man in claiming to be an expert on marriage on the basis of such limited experience. The Merchant compares his wife to 'Grisildis', the Clerk's wife, and mentions how there is a 'long and large difference' between the women. He is constantly degrading marriage; at one point he generalises himself to all men and proposes that 'wedded men liven in sorwe and care.' This evident criticism of marriage begs the question of why he got married in the first place.

    • Word count: 1036
  11. How does Chaucer present views of women in the fourteenth century in 'The Miller's Tale'?

    This tale doesn't follow that; it shows women to be deceiving and to be adulterers. When Nicholas first arrives in John's house, he immediately sets his sights on Alison. He tries his hardest to win her over. At first she says no, but then he grabs her by the "qwente" and after 3 lines she agrees to be with him. It's all very sexual how Nicholas woos her. With him grabbing her she obviously liked it which made her change her mind after three lines.

    • Word count: 630
  12. In The Miller’s Prologue, Chaucer informs us that the Miller “tolde his cherles tale in his manere.” Explore the ways that the Miller’s character is reflected in “The Miller’s Tale”.

    Chaucer's portrayal of this character, makes it appear as though he is ashamed to be in association with such a crass tale, however it becomes apparent that his irony handles this, it is through this advice that he uses excuses on behalf of the Miller and his tale, "blameth nat me if that ye chese amis". Chaucer makes it apparent that the Miller is a character who favours drinking. At the start of the prologue, he is told as having had a drink and being unable to sit steadily upon his horse, "The Millere, that for dronken was al pale, so that unnethe upon his hors he sat".

    • Word count: 920
  13. Remind yourself of the lines 199-243, in which the Miller introduces the character of Absolon.

    To some this may be attractive, but to Alisoun, it certainly isn't. His hair is described; "Crul was his heer, and as the gold it shoon." We also learn he eyes were as "greye as goos" and that he has "Poules window corven on his shoos." This description is important because he is described similar to a courtly lover. Clearly, he is ridiculous and fails as the ideal courtly lover, which lies at the heart of Chaucer's deliberate use of satire. There are some elements of Absolon's character that fit the ideals of courtly love, although he is still an object of satire, such as his appearance but there are also other aspects of his character in this section that clearly don't conform to those of a courtly lover.

    • Word count: 980
  14. creative writing

    His daughter, having decided to study in Edinburgh, had moved out of the house. This sudden change affected both parents significantly. Build up tension to this event ----- His wife would regularly come home late from work frustrated and angry. Arguments, which were non-existent previously, now held a dominant role in their lives. One issue which sparked such a quarrel stuck in his mind quite distinctly. His wife had come home one day to announce that with the opening of a new supermarket down the road, there was no longer a need to pay for the milkman to deliver their milk.

    • Word count: 1679
  15. Remind yourself of the portrait of the Franklin and his prologue and discuss the way Chaucer presents this character to the reader.

    Chaucer is here suggesting that Franklin is a pleasure-seeker and this idea is later repeated and reinforced with his extensive love for food and drink expressed in detail. His wealth and status is implied by language such as "Frankeleyn" which means a landowner, but is later confirmed by the description of his household. Chaucer makes constant accusations of gluttony against the Franklin "sop in wyn" and "His breed, his ale...fish and flessh" and goes into great detail explaining his excessive love for good quality food and drink and how it was always present within his house.

    • Word count: 1372
  16. Compare and Contrast the characters of Absolon and Nicholas and assess their contribution to the comedy of the fabliau genre in The Miller's Tale

    However it is the specific type of humour that identifies itself with the genre. A strong sense of mockery and repartee are made towards often-defenceless characters and personality traits. The superstitious, ingenuous, kind-hearted and above all foolish are treated with ridicule and derision. Within The Miller's Tale, we see that John the carpenter for example is cruelly mocked and deceived for his gullible actions. The narrator constantly rebukes the character for his ignorance (both of Cato and of common sense) and for his pride in this "blessed be alwey a lewed man." A 'bawdy' and amoral quality is also characteristic of the fabliau humour.

    • Word count: 2538
  17. How does Chaucer present the Miller in The prologue to the Miller's Tale?

    He also uses animal symbolism by comparing the Miller to animals such as a pig, this portrays the image that the Miller is dirty and lazy. Chaucer also tells us that the Miller plays the bagpipes. At the time that the Canterbury tales was wrote bagpipes were associated with hell and evil. In the Millers prologue, Chaucer uses various techniques to present the Miller to the reader. Chaucer does not just describe to the reader what the Miller is like; he lets the Miller speak for himself.

    • Word count: 449
  18. Geoffrey Chaucer was a poet that wrote about the monk and the prioress and he wrote the Canterbury tales. He was an Englishman that wrote stories and tales. He was born around the year 1340

    During Chaucer's time there was the plague and the hundred year war. Chaucer was taken as a captive during this time and the king personally paid for his ransom. Around about three million people were living in England at the time and eight million people are currently living in London which is one city out of many. People in those days were poor and whatever people could grow is what they usually ate, so they lived off of the fat of the land. There were lots of diseases and many people unemployed even if they were able to work they chose not to.

    • Word count: 1027
  19. Review Of: - "My Wife and Kids"

    "My Wife and Kids" is filmed in Stamford, Connecticut. The main setting is the family house, the living room, kitchen, garage or one of the four bedrooms. The programme is directed and produced by the Wayans' family. This is a big family made up of brothers and sisters associated with TV production. The cast includes Damon Wayans who plays the man of the house, Michael Kyle, the working wife, Janet "Jay" Kyle, played by Tisha Campbell-Martin. Along with three children, with the oldest being Michael Kyle Jr. played by George O Gore II, Jennifer freeman, who plays the typical teenage girl, Claire Kyle, and lastly, cute young Kady Kyle, played by Parker McKenna Posey.

    • Word count: 590
  20. The Juxtaposition of the sacred and the erotic is typical of the miller's style of story telling. With reference to the extract (lines 540-548), discuss the narrative technique employed in this tale

    One of the narrative techniques used by the Miller is irony. He uses this when speaking of God as he combines the idea of the sexual and the sacred. He states that 'an housbonde shal nat been inquisitif of Goddes privetee, nor of his wyf so he may finde Goddes foison there.' The theme of foretelling the future is vital in this tale and is hinted at in this remark by the Miller which is then immediately taken up in the account of Nicholas' powers as an astrologer. The Miller here is saying that as long as the husband gets goodness from his wife, he does not need to worry and enquire too closely into God's secrets nor his wife's secrets.

    • Word count: 1389
  21. Discuss how the miller parodies the Knight's tale, focusing especially on the portraits of Nicholas and Alison and Emily

    The suitors in the two tales articulate their love characteristically. Arcite pines away in prison for Emily, 'before me, sorweful, wrecched creature, out of this prisoun help that we may scapen and if so be my destynee be shapen by eterne word to dyen inprisoun.' This suggests that he would rather die than not be near Emily. Similarly, Nick speaks like a courtly lover when he woos Alison. He states 'lemman, love me al atones, or I wol dyen, also God me save!'

    • Word count: 1013
  22. How important is the prologue to understanding the 'Millers Tale'

    The miller's tale runs on the key themes of sex, love, lust and adultery to name but a few, which immediately throws into light the sharp contrast between the knights "noble" tale and the miller's. The interaction, in the prologue, gives a wider perspective of the pilgrimage itself and provides a broader context for the tale. By showing the interaction between the miller and his fellow pilgrims, it presents the importance of social hierarchy and thus the sheer disrespect the miller has for it.

    • Word count: 580
  23. The miller is a cherl.' That a drunken 'cherl' would tell a tale so beautifully structured and so delightfully crafted is clearly unconvincing. Discuss The Miller's Tale is in the form of fabliau

    Additionally, the tale is structured as a parody of the Knight's Tale and courtly love values and the consistency in the imagery and poetic devise used seem beyond the capabilities of a drunken 'cherl.' In the prologue, the Miller is conveyed as being mischievous and witty when he clearly implies that the host Harry Bailly is to blame for his drunkenness-'And therefore if that I misspeke or seye, Wite it the ale of Southwerk.' As Harry Bailly is the landlord of the Tabard Inn at Southwark, The Miller here is making the host responsible for getting him drunk.

    • Word count: 1159
  24. Discuss the representation of the north and south of England, in the channel 4 episode of "wife swap" featuring the Sprys and Bardsleys. 'Wife swap' is a recent programme broadcast on Channel 4 where two wives with different families move

    Everyone has a stereotype formed of what they believe the North and South are like. When I think of the North I think of poor education, men with beer bellies- very manly and sort of rough looking, domestics - wife looking after lots of children, pubs, socialising, lots of gossiping, children playing on the streets, no high fashion, bad weather, small terraced houses, a real sense of community and overall a parochial society. But this is not necessarily true. I believe the media gives this idea of the north to me by the things that I have watched on television.

    • Word count: 1322
  25. William Cowper - John Gilpin Dear Matthew, I am writing to tell you all about my misfortunes I had last month upon my wedding day

    Then Betty came running back to me and said that we had left the alcohol behind and so I tied it to my belt, one on each side so I was balanced and so I could try to not fall off of the horse. Once on my way for the second time, I finally got to some smoother road which became easier for the horse to ride upon. But instead of the easiness I believed this road would be it was the complete opposite, the horse got faster, he began trotting.

    • Word count: 657

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • Compare and Contrast Chaucer’s Presentation of the Monk and the Pardoner

    "In conclusion the actions and priorites are the only part of the Monk that are saterised, but the Pardoner is saterised for his whole way of life. Perhaps it is worth bearing in mind that out of the four pilgrims who work for the church only the Parson is praised for his work, this could be Chaucer's way of saying that he think the churches method of selecting workers is flawed."

  • Miller's Tale - Analyse the narrative structure of the tale and the effectiveness of its ending.

    "Overall the conclusion to the Miller's Tale makes the two men look thoroughly ridiculous and humiliated; Alisoun appears to get away with her crimes and comes away looking as 'clean as a whistle'. But the audience has seen every dark side to her character. The readers' interest is carefully maintained through a mixture of comedy, shocks, courtly love and ironic twists throughout the Tale. Chaucer makes the reader feel superior to the characters who seem somewhat disillusioned in their pathetic plight to get what they want without paying for the consequences. Nicholas and Alisoun plot to deceive the foolish carpenter of their nefarious doings. Absolon is blinded by his love for Alisoun, who cares nothing for him and constantly makes cruel jokes of him. All these elements help captivate the reader and pull them deep into the personalities of the characters. I noticed that infidelity seems to run prominently as the main theme throughout the tale. There are many more themes such as love, revenge and humour which all seem equally as important. I feel that the main point of the story is that actions have consequences, something the characters did not seem to grasp until everything around them began to fall apart. Stephen Blighe 5/2/2007 AS English Language and Literature"

  • Discuss how at least three authors during the mid to late Nineteenth Century explore conflict within the family. What are the family conflicts caused by? What are the results of the conflict?

    "Conclusion In the three short stories, the conflicts had been caused by marriage, fuelled by wealth to end up as disaster. The main reasons behind the conflicts are often over money problems and jealousy. The ending of "The Half-Brothers" seemed more tragic compared to the other two stories as it was an extremely emotional and symbolic story. This results in the sympathetic attitude of the reader towards this character. Similarly, all three of these stories ended in a sad dramatic way and they were all set around the same time. This may suggest that during that time period, it involved a lot of conflicts."

Marked by a teacher

This document has been marked by one of our great teachers. You can read the full teachers notes when you download the document.

Peer reviewed

This document has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review on the document page.

Peer reviewed

This document has been reviewed by one of our specialist student document reviewing squad. Read the full review under the document preview on this page.