Web Resources by Tale
Fragment II / Group B1
The Electronic Canterbury Tales:
An Online Compendium and Companion
The "Frame Tale," Continuations, and Chaucerian Apocrypha
The "Frame Tale" is the term used to describe the story of the tale-telling contest between pilgrims and their interactions with the Host, Harry Bailly, and it details their interactions during the incomplete pilgrimage to Canterbury. Comprised of the "links" between tales (both prologues and endlinks), the Frame Tale contains some of the most famous moments in the Canterbury Tales, like the Miller's drunken intervention after the Knight's Tale and the Pardoner's interruption of the Wife of Bath.
After Chaucer's death and the compilation of the Canterbury Tales into manuscripts, later authors attempted to complete unfinished tales or add to the Canterbury collection. At the same time, other anonymous medieval tales were sometimes added to different segments of the Canterbury Tales and were then attributed to Chaucer. Those "continuations" or "additions" have been found by modern scholarship to be "apocryphal"--that is, attributed to Chaucer but likely not actually written by him.
Nonetheless, these tales, links, and fragments have exerted profound influence on the development of Chaucer studies and our understanding of Chaucer's work and its "reception"--that is, how subsequent readers have received and understood Chaucer and his work.
Manuscripts, Printed Editions, and e-Texts - A new page in the Electronic Canterbury Tales provides access to different manuscripts of the Canterbury Tales, a topic closely related to the Frame Tale, Continuations, and Chaucerian Apocrypha.
New on this Web Page
Arnie Saunders (Goucher College) has written a brief explanation for how the manuscripts of CT were placed in "families," and how manuscripts get accidentally altered in production. The errors actually turned out to help us discover the relationships among the MSS.
David Scott Wilson-Okamura (East Carolina U) has developed a fine classroom exercise, with bibliography, illustrating Examples of Chaucerian Revision and "describing examples of authorial revision in the Canterbury Tales. Probably best used in conjunction with a facsimile of the Hengwrt manuscript." In Wilson-Okamura's own words, "Note: author buys Ralph Hanna's booklet theory of Hengwrt MS without reservation, ignores N. F. Blake at his peril." Also available as a .pdf file.
1. The Logic of the "Fragment" (Joe Wittig, UNC)
2. The Canterbury "Links" in Middle English
3. Spurious Tales, Continuations, & Chaucerian Apocrypha
From the TEAMS Middle English Text volume, The Canterbury Tales: Fifteenth- Century Continuations and Additions, edited with an Introduction to the Links by John M. Bowers. Kalamazoo, MI: Western Michigan University for TEAMS, 1992.
John Lydgate's Prologue to the Siege of Thebes
The Tale of Beryn
The Floure and the Leafe
The Tale of Gamelyn
Long considered a "Scottish Chaucerian," Robert Henryson (c. 1430-c.1506) wrote two poems important to Chaucer's legacy:
The Printer's Tale: An Unknown Chaucerian Pilgrim (David Byram-Wigfield, Capella Archive) purports to be "a surviving galley proof of a page of the Kelmscott Chaucer, published by William Morris in 1896. This facsimile shows the text of an hitherto unpublished incomplete work by Chaucer entitled The Printeres Tale."
Bartleby.com continues to do a great service to the educational community by making available out-of-copyright editions of valuable older scholarly texts, like The Oxford Book of English Verse: 1250–1900, by Arthur Quiller-Couch (1919), which includes these by Chaucer's early followers and later successors:
4. Historical & Cultural Backgrounds
5. Online Notes & Commentary
David Wilson-Okamura (Macalester U) provides deft Examples of Chaucerian Revision.
6. Online Articles
Essays in Medieval Studies, full-text articles from the proceedings of the Illinois Medieval Association, edited by Allen J. Frantzen (Loyola - Chicago). Some of the articles related to Chaucer and the Canterbury Tales include:
Compositional Finalization in the Canterbury Tales (Frederick Martin, Tulane U), from an ongoing e-project melding critical and cultural theory & medieval studies. See Martin's e-dissertation in progress, Pilgrimage in the Age of Schism: Chaucer, Sociological Poetics, and the Canterbury Tales.
Chaotic Order in the Supertext of The Canterbury Tales (Zach Thundy, Northern Michigan U) applies chaos theory to the order of the Canterbury Tales.
Introduction to the Spurious
Links by John M. Bowers
7. Student Projects & Essays
Dave Clark's MA thesis (Iowa State U) on Chaucer in the Renaissance is entitled, Reaping What Was Sown: Spenser, Chaucer, and the Plowman's Tale.
Anniina Jokkinen's Essays and Articles on Chaucer includes a number of sample student essays, of varying quality. Like any other source, student essays must be evaluated rigorously, cited correctly, and used responsibly.
10. Images & Multimedia
11. Language Helps & Audio Files
13. The Next Step
Google Academic Resources
Google Custom Search:
I welcome your suggestions for suitable websites. Please be patient as I tune the search terms.
This subpage of the Electronic Canterbury Tales offers several features:
I'll cross-list the recommended Google Books on the appropriate webpage throughout the Electronic Canterbury Tales under Online Articles & Books (on the expanded Electronic Canterbury Tales - Kankedort.Net Index Page) and also detail them on the webpages devoted to specific Canterbury Tales or associated pages).
This will be an ongoing project, so check back periodically for new finds!
Electronic Canterbury Tales
Additional Chaucer Pages in The Electronic Canterbury Tales
Chaucer the Pilgrim-Narrator & Author
Major Medieval Conferences Websites
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