Canterbury Tales Summary

  • Last updated on March 25, 2021


Geoffrey Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales is a Middle-English text, which Chaucer was thought to have begun at around 1387. The book is comprised of several smaller tales, as fictional pilgrims in linking "prologue" pieces each take a turn in telling their own story. Thus, the main body of the text follows the structure of a "prologue" which tells us something about one of the fictional pilgrims, followed by that pilgrim's tale, which generally shows the medieval society of the time through their eyes. Therefore, the structure and themes are varied.

Pilgrims and Tales:

The pilgrims and their tales are listed below:

General Prologue

The Knight's Tale

The Miller's Tale

The Reeve's Tale

The Cook's Tale

The Man of Law's Tale

The Wife of Bath's Tale

The Friar's Tale

The Summoner's Tale

The Clerk's Tale

The Merchant's Tale

The Squire's Tale

The Franklin's Tale

The Physician's Tale

The Pardoner's Tale

The Shipman's Tale

The Prioress's Tale

The Tale of Sir Thopas

The Tale of Melibee

The Monk's Tale

The Nun's Priest's Tale

The Second Nun's Tale

The Canon's Yeoman's Tale

The Manciple's Tale

The Parson's Tale

Chaucer's Retraction

Categories: Classics