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How is secrecy presented in The Miller's Tale

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How is secrecy presented in The Miller's Tale? Discuss the theme of secrecy in The Miller's Tale. Secrecy is a prominent theme in The Miller's Tale and Chaucer uses it to not only make the tale more interesting but also to give the characters more depth, or in the case of Alison less depth. The way that secrecy is presented and what effects it has will be discussed. Chaucer introduces the reader to secrecy at the beginning of the tale in The Miller's Prologue, indicating its importance, 'An housbande shal not been inqusitif of Goddes privetee,' and this immediately makes the reader assume that at least one of the characters will in fact be inquisitive of 'Goddes privetee' and that there will be secrets in The Miller's Tale. ...read more.


these two characters are not as 'deep' in personality as Nicholas, this can also be proven by the way that Chaucer gives Alison and Absolon extensive physical description thus making no secret of their vanity and superficiality. The element of secrecy is maintained throughout the tale and Chaucer makes secrets and secrecy dominate the relationships between the characters. The most palpable been Nicolas and Alison. The actions in their first encounter are described as 'prively' and this adds to the bawdiness of their relationship. Alison also says 'That but ye waite wel and been privee' and this line makes it clear to the reader that there is and will be more deceit in the tale. Alison and John's relationship is not only surrounded by possession but also secrecy, and even though Chaucer does not describe John or describes an incident between the ...read more.


The use of the words 'privee', 'prively' and 'ful privee' all accentuate the secrecy and deceit in the tale. It also connects with the reader further as they have always known of the secrets and lies that the characters are telling each other. The presentation of secrecy in the tale is maintained throughout the tale and is apparent to the very end as Absolon's revenge on Nicholas is very much done in secret. Even though there is a sense of openness at the end of the tale with John falling thought the roof and the whole village coming to witness this, Alison and Nicholas are still deceiving Nicholas and the other people 'The man is wood, my leeve brother', thus bringing the tale to full circle as it began with secrecy and ended with secrecy also. ?? ?? ?? ?? Jade Akintola ...read more.

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