My Own Notes

Please Login to save notes.

If you are not a registered user, then click here.

The Canterbury Tales
Geoffery Chaucer

Previous Page 120 of 383 Next Page
"You there, you Pardoner," he said, "tell us at once some mirth or sport." [319]

"By Saint Ronan, it shall be done," he said, "but first I will drink and eat a bit of bread here at this ale-house." But immediately the gentle people began to call out, "No, do not let him tell some ribald or coarse joke; tell us some moral thing that we may learn some wisdom, and then will we gladly listen." [326]

"I agree, certainly," he said, "but I must have time to think up some virtuous thing while I drink." [328]

Here follows the Prologue of the Pardoner's Tale.

Radix malorum est cupiditas1; Ad Thimotheum, sexto.

"Gentle people," he said, "when I preach in churches, I strive for a resounding voice, and I ring it out as round as a bell, for I know by heart all that I say. My theme is and always was one and the same: Radix malorum est cupiditas. [334]

"First I pronounce where I come from, and then I show my bulls2, one and all, but first the seal of our liege lord the king on my patent3. I show that first to secure my body, lest any man, priest, or clerk would be so bold as to disturb me in Christ's holy labors. After that I then proceed with my tales, and show bulls of popes and cardinals and patriarchs and bishops, and I speak a few words in Latin to give a flavor to my preaching and to stir men to devotion.

1 Radix malorum est cupidita. Desire for earthly things is the root of evil. 1 Timothy 6.10.
2 bulls Letters of authorization from the pope and other high-ranking officials
3 patent Leather patents, indicating his authority to sell pardons.
Previous Page Table of Contents Next Page
Go to page:   

Copyright © 2020 Gleeditions, LLC. All rights reserved.