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

Placebo and Justinus, his bad and good advisers

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Placebo and Justinus, his bad and good advisers After discussing the dangers and advantages of marrying young women, January asks friends for advice. Placebo [Latin, "I will please"] flatters him, telling him he is right to marry a young woman. Justinus [L. "just one"] warns him of the dangers he risks and counsels him not to marry, based on his own experience as a married man. January does what he wants, in the end, and suffers for it. Their speeches are almost a little play about bad and good advice. Are they played for satiric/comic effect, or do they seem to tend toward tragedy? ...read more.

Middle

January, wished to have a young wife of no older than thirty, for a young wife would be more pliable, but Placebo warned him that it takes great courage for such an aged man to take a young wife. He warned him of the misery that can come from taking a wife, for she could be shrewish or a drunkard, facts that a husband will not learn until well into the marriage. Despite the common opinion that Placebo has a wonderful wife, he knows what faults she has. They argue about the merits of marriage, with Placebo predicting that January will not please his wife for more than three years, but Placebo eventually assents to January's plan. ...read more.

Conclusion

He muses that marriage might be January's purgatory. The debate between January and Placebo is a relatively dry collection of classical and biblical anecdotes, but it serves to frame the comic sex farce to come as a more serious look at marriage. The beginning passages of the tale also serve as a warning against marriage. When the aged January decides to take a wife he is already sixty and rapidly approaching senility. His wish to marry stems from a realization of his own mortality rather than any love for a wife � in fact, he decides to marry before he has found a fianc�e. The Merchant even indicates that January's life to this point has been fulfilling, leaving dotage as the only reason for him to take a wife. His arguments for marriage therefore appear empty in comparison of those by Placebo. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Geoffrey Chaucer section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Geoffrey Chaucer essays

  1. Why do you think Chaucer included Justinus and Placebo? What does the latter's debate ...

    Both Justinus and Placebo take their arguments from popular proverbial wisdom and learned authority. However, the passage indicates and there is a great deal of conflicting advice available, which in the ends just offers confusion. Placebo and Justinus represent not only the two sides of the debate on marriage, but also two kinds of friendly advice.

  2. An exploration of the satiric representation of men’s perceptions of self in Chekhov’s Three ...

    him and, later, they violently shove their master when he imitates Horace. The playwright again inverts the dichotomy of master and servant to satirize Arnolphe's lack of true authority. Through the opening conversation with Chrysalde, Moli�re introduces us to Arnolphe.

  1. The Marriage Debate.

    He also boasts that his prowess is undiminished with his `limes stark and suffisaunt'. His friends held conflicting opinions about marriage, as did his two brothers. One, Placebo, living up to his name, says that he has `never hem contraried' and the other, Justinius, tells January to find out beforehand

  2. The Miller's Tale - Translate the millers tale in modern English.

    say she knew not where he was, For all day she'd not seen him, far or nigh; She thought he must have got some malady, Because in vain her maid would knock and call; He'd answer not, whatever might befall.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work