The Canterbury Tales

De (autor) Traducere de Nevill Coghill
Notă GoodReads:
en Limba Engleză Paperback – 30 Jan 2003
'Nevill Coghill's easy, seductive translation ensures that this, the most popular work in English Literature - now 600 years old - will run through yet more centuries' Melvyn Bragg

In The Canterbury Tales Chaucer created one of the great touchstones of English literature. A storytelling competition within a group of pilgrims from all walks of life is the occasion for a series of tales that range from the Knight's account of courtly love and the ebullient Wife of Bath's Arthurian legend to the ribald anecdotes of the Miller and the Cook. This masterly and vivid modern English verse translation retains all the vigour and poetry of Chaucer's fourteenth-century Middle English.

Translated by NEVILL COGHILL
Citește tot Restrânge
Toate formatele și edițiile
Toate formatele și edițiile Preț Express
Paperback (27) 3889 lei  23-35 zile +870 lei  4-10 zile
  WORDSWORTH ED – 08 Oct 2012 3889 lei  23-35 zile +870 lei  4-10 zile
  Signet Book – 05 Feb 2013 4456 lei  3-5 săpt. +318 lei  10-18 zile
  Bantam Books – February 1982 4538 lei  3-5 săpt. +325 lei  10-18 zile
  Simon&Schuster – June 1990 4579 lei  3-5 săpt. +328 lei  10-18 zile
  Penguin Books – 30 Jan 2003 4621 lei  10-17 zile +1345 lei  4-10 zile
  Alma Books COMMIS – 22 Jan 2020 4923 lei  23-35 zile +980 lei  4-10 zile
  Oxford University Press – 11 Aug 2011 4932 lei  10-16 zile +1100 lei  4-10 zile
  SPARKNOTES – November 2009 5353 lei  23-35 zile +744 lei  4-10 zile
  Orion Publishing Group – 20 Sep 1990 6005 lei  3-5 săpt. +2651 lei  4-10 zile
  Klett Sprachen GmbH – February 2014 6637 lei  17-23 zile +616 lei  4-10 zile
  Dover Publications – 18 Feb 2015 6699 lei  3-5 săpt. +491 lei  10-18 zile
  Penguin Books – 07 Apr 2005 8444 lei  10-17 zile +2507 lei  4-10 zile
  Broadway Play Publishing Inc – 30 Mar 2018 9449 lei  3-5 săpt. +889 lei  10-18 zile
  WAKING LION PR – 28 Aug 2020 10947 lei  3-5 săpt. +1170 lei  10-18 zile
  CREATESPACE – 11475 lei  3-5 săpt. +861 lei  10-18 zile
  KUPERARD (BRAVO LTD) – 26 Nov 2009 11601 lei  3-5 săpt. +874 lei  10-18 zile
  SMK Books – 24 Jan 2012 11880 lei  3-5 săpt. +1272 lei  10-18 zile
  CREATESPACE – 12273 lei  3-5 săpt. +923 lei  10-18 zile
  13452 lei  3-5 săpt. +1015 lei  10-18 zile
  13858 lei  3-5 săpt. +1046 lei  10-18 zile
  Pomona Press – 2006 15283 lei  3-5 săpt. +1468 lei  10-18 zile
  FRANKLIN CLASSICS TRADE PR – 13 Nov 2018 16805 lei  3-5 săpt. +1276 lei  10-18 zile
  FRANKLIN CLASSICS TRADE PR – 28 Oct 2018 18355 lei  3-5 săpt. +1395 lei  10-18 zile
  CREATESPACE – 22653 lei  3-5 săpt. +1731 lei  10-18 zile
  Hesperides Press – 12 Nov 2006 23067 lei  3-5 săpt. +2231 lei  10-18 zile
  Penguin Books – 07 Mar 1996 6615 lei  31-38 zile
  Penguin Books – 20 Oct 2008 10731 lei  31-38 zile
Hardback (8) 9790 lei  10-17 zile +2928 lei  4-10 zile
  EVERYMAN – 04 Jun 1992 9790 lei  10-17 zile +2928 lei  4-10 zile
  Penguin Books – 26 Sep 2013 10676 lei  10-17 zile +2996 lei  4-10 zile
  Flame Tree Publishing – 15 Oct 2019 14209 lei  23-35 zile +2024 lei  4-10 zile
  SMK Books – 03 Apr 2018 18631 lei  3-5 săpt. +2024 lei  10-18 zile
  Everyman's Library – June 1992 20335 lei  3-5 săpt. +1550 lei  10-18 zile
  FRANKLIN CLASSICS TRADE PR – 28 Oct 2018 28734 lei  3-5 săpt. +2122 lei  10-18 zile
  Hesperides Press – 04 Nov 2008 37100 lei  3-5 săpt. +3612 lei  10-18 zile
  University of Oklahoma Press – March 1979 116627 lei  3-5 săpt. +12916 lei  10-18 zile
Mixed media product (1) 10091 lei  23-35 zile +435 lei  4-10 zile
  CIDEB s.r.l. – 2014 10091 lei  23-35 zile +435 lei  4-10 zile
Quantity pack (1) 54418 lei  3-5 săpt. +6005 lei  10-18 zile
  University of Oklahoma Press – February 2012 54418 lei  3-5 săpt. +6005 lei  10-18 zile

Preț: 4621 lei

Preț vechi: 5135 lei

Puncte Express: 69

Preț estimativ în valută:
889 941$ 749£

Carte disponibilă

Livrare economică 03-10 iunie
Livrare express 28 mai-03 iunie pentru 2344 lei

Preluare comenzi: 021 569.72.76


ISBN-13: 9780140424386
ISBN-10: 0140424385
Pagini: 528
Ilustrații: notes
Dimensiuni: 129 x 198 x 23 mm
Greutate: 0.36 kg
Editura: Penguin Books
Colecția Penguin Classics
Locul publicării: London, United Kingdom

Notă biografică

The son of a wealthy and high-connected vintner, Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1342ߝ1400) received a classical education prior to becoming a page at the court of King Edward III. As soldier, statesman, public official, and court poet, he remained in contact with the most important people of his time. Chaucer was sent on several diplomatic missions to Italy, where he read and was deeply influenced by the works of Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio. The Italian influence is evident in his masterpiece, Canterbury Tales, on which he worked intermittently for at least twenty years.

Donald R. Howard was the Olive H. Palmer Professor in the Humanities at Stanford University and the author of a number of noted books on medieval literature, including The Three Temptations: Medieval Man in Search of the World, The Idea of the World (1966), The Idea of The Canterbury Tales (1976), and Writers and Pilgrims: Medieval Pilgrimage Narratives and Their Posterity (1980).

Frank Grady is Professor of English at the University of MissouriߝSt. Louis, where he teaches medieval literature, literary theory, and film. He has published essays on both late medieval English literature and contemporary American popular culture, and he is currently editor of the annual of the New Chaucer Society, Studies in the Age of Chaucer.  


The Knight’s Tale



1 The Knight’s Tale, which mostly takes place in ancient Athens, is the conflicted love story of two royal Theban cousins who love the same woman. Because “The Knight’s Tale” is by far the longest and most complex of the Canterbury Tales presented in this volume, a quick summary of the action of the four parts of the tale may help readers encountering it for the first time:

Part I. On his way back to Athens with his bride, Hypolita, and his sister-in-law, Emily, Duke Theseus responds to the pleas of some grieving widows by defeating Creon, the tyrant of Thebes. Among the bodies of the defeated army, he finds near death the royal cousins Palamon and Arcite. Rather than kill them, Theseus takes them back to Athens and places them in prison. From their barred prison window, the two young men see the lovely Emily and both fall in love with her. Arcite after a time is released but banished from Athens on pain of death, while Palamon remains in prison. The two are envious of each other’s condition.

Part II. Arcite disguises himself as a common laborer and comes back to Athens, where he gets a job working in Emily’s household. Meanwhile, Palamon escapes from prison, and the rival cousins chance to meet in a grove near Athens. While Palamon and Arcite are fighting a bloody duel, Theseus, Hypolita, and Emily, out hunting, by chance come upon them in a grove. At first angry, Theseus soon relents, sets both of his enemies free, and invites them to return in a year, each with a hundred knights, to take part in a glorious tournament, with Emily’s hand going to the winner.

Part III. Theseus builds a splendid amphitheater in preparation for the tournament and places on its west, east, and north borders elaborately decorated temples to Mars, Venus, and Diana. When the two troops of warriors come back for the tournament, the three principals each pray to one of the planetary deities. Palamon prays to Venus, not for victory but for the hand of Emily. Emily prays to Diana to be spared marriage to either Palamon or Arcite, praying instead to remain a maiden always. Arcite prays to Mars for victory in the tournament.

Part IV. Just before the tournament begins Theseus declares that he wants no lives to be lost and restricts the kinds of weapons that may be used. He sets out the rules of the game, the primary one being that the winning side will be the one that takes the loser to a stake at the end of the field. After vigorous fighting, Arcite’s men drag the wounded Palamon to the stake. No sooner is Arcite declared the winner than Saturn commands Pluto, god of the underworld, to send a diabolical fury to frighten Arcite’s horse. Arcite is thrown and crushed by his own saddle bow. After an elaborate funeral and the passage of some years, Theseus tells Palamon and Emily to marry, and they happily do so.

Arching over the story of the warriors and lovers down on the earth below is a heavenly conflict among the gods or, more precisely, among the planetary or astrological influences that were thought to control the affairs of men. Indeed, a key feature of “The Knight’s Tale” is the prayers of the three principal characters to these influences. Closely tied up with the question of whether Palamon or Arcite will get the young woman they both love is the question of how the powerful Saturn will settle the conflicting demands on him of Mars, Venus, and Diana.

Chaucer’s main source for “The Knight’s Tale” is Giovanni Boccaccio’s several-hundred-page-long Teseida. Readers who are upset at having to read Chaucer’s long and leisurely story of Palamon, Arcite, and Emily should thank Chaucer for streamlining a story that is less than a quarter the length of Boccaccio’s Italian story of Palemone, Arcita, and Emilia. Chaucer reduced the story in lots of ways, particularly by staying focused on the love story. He cut out, for example, Boccaccio’s long opening description of Theseus’s journey to the land of the Amazons, his defeat of them, and his acquiring as his bride the Amazonian queen Hypolita. But Chaucer did more than reduce the Teseida, which focuses on Arcite as the main character, who in Boccaccio is almost a tragic figure who makes the mistake of praying to the wrong deity. For Chaucer, Palamon is raised to equal importance, if not more importance, than his rival. And Chaucer transforms the vain and coquettish Emilia of his source into a more innocent object of the love of rival cousins.

One of Chaucer’s most important changes was to give the story a philosophical overlay by introducing into it the ideas of the ancient philosopher Boethius. One of Boethius’s key ideas was that there is a great God who designs a far better plan for human beings than they could possibly design for themselves. That design sometimes involves what looks like adversity, but the adversity is always (for Boethius) part of a design that leads to happiness. We should then, according to Boethius, not resist or fight against the troubles that come our way, but cheerfully accept them, trusting that in the end things will work out for the best. The ending of “The Knight’s Tale,” then, reflects this reassuring philosophy by showing that although the three principal characters all seem at first not to get what they want most, in the end all of them do get what they want, or perhaps something even better.

For this and the other tales in this volume, readers should reread the portrait of the teller given by Chaucer in the General Prologue. The portrait of the Knight (lines 43–78) shows him to be the idealized Christian soldier who fought with valor and honor at most of the important late-fourteenth-century battles against heathens. We know less of his marital than of his martial life, but he does have a son who is with him on this pilgrimage. The Knight seems, all in all, an ideal teller for the long tale of war, romance, honor, and philosophy that Chaucer assigns to him.


Part I

Femenye (line 8). A race of warlike women, led by Hypolita, who decided that they could live and protect themselves without the help of men. They are sometimes called Amazons, their land Scithia.

Saturne, Juno (470–71). Two forces that Palamon blames for the setbacks that Thebes has suffered. Saturn is the powerful planet. Juno is the jealous wife of Jupiter, who had made love to two Theban women.

Part II

Hereos (516). Eros, a sickness associated with the intense emotion of falling in love.

manye (516). A kind of melancholy madness or mania brought on by the frustration of his love for an inaccessible woman.

Argus (532). In classical mythology, the jealous Juno had set the hundred-eyed Argus as guard to Io, who was a lover of her husband, Jupiter. Argus was killed by Mercury (see line 527), who first sang all of Argus’s hundred eyes to sleep.

Cadme and Amphioun (688). Cadmus and Amphion are the legendary founders of the city of Thebes, home to Palamon and Arcite.

regne of Trace (780). The reference in this and the next lines is to the Thracian kingdom in which a hunter prepares himself at a mountain pass to meet a charging lion or bear.

Part III

Citheroun (1078). Venus’s supposed mountainous island of Cytherea, though Chaucer may have confused the name with the name of a different location.

Ydelnesse, Salamon, Hercules, Medea, Circes, Turnus, Cresus (1082–88). Various literary, historical, and classical allusions, most of them demonstrating the follies and miseries associated with the snares of love.

qualm (1156). Probably a reference to the “pestilence” or bubonic plague that killed millions in Europe during Chaucer’s lifetime. See also line 1611 below, where Saturn claims to have the power to send the plague. The reference to the bubonic plague here is anachronistic, since “The Knight’s Tale” is set in the classical pre-Christian era.

Julius, Nero, Antonius (1173–74). Three famous rulers slaughtered in time of war—exemplary of the mayhem and death caused by mighty Mars. The last is Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Caracalla, a Roman emperor murdered in AD 217.

Puella, Rubeus (1187). Two astrological references to Mars as cast by a complicated process called geomancy, a pseudoscience involving dots and lines.

Calistopee, Dane, Attheon, Atthalante, Meleagre (1198– 1213). Various classical and legendary allusions to hunters or the hunted whose unfortunate tales are depicted on the walls of the temple of Diana, goddess of the hunt.

griffon (1275). A griffin was in Greek mythology a fearsome beast with the head and wings of an eagle on the body of a lion.

in hir houre (1359). Palamon picks his hour of prayer carefully. The various planets were supposed to have special powers on certain hours of the day, hours in which it was particularly propitious to make prayers for their astrological influence. Venus would have had special strength on the twenty-third hour of Sunday night (see line 1351), when it was not yet two hours before dawn on Monday morning (line 1352).

the thridde houre inequal (1413). The medieval astrological day was divided into twenty-four “inequal” or planetary hours. In this system the time between dawn and dusk was divided equally into twelve hours, the time between dusk and the following dawn into twelve more. Except at the two equinoxes, when the daylight hours would have been exactly equal in length to the nighttime hours (that is, sixty minutes), the daylight hours would have been longer or shorter than the hours of darkness, depending on the time of the year—thus the inequality. Emily prays to Diana on the third inequal hour after Palamon prayed to Venus. That would have been the first hour of Monday (“moon day”), or the dawn hour, the hour at which Diana’s power would have been the greatest. Like Palamon, Emily picks her prayer time very carefully.

Stace of Thebes (1436). The Thebaid of Statius, though Chaucer’s more direct source was actually Boccaccio’s Teseida, which he does not mention by name here or elsewhere. Chaucer was often eager to claim an ancient source, not a contemporary one.

Attheon (1445). While hunting, Acteon accidentally saw Diana while she was bathing. In her anger she changed him into a stag, which Acteon’s hunting dogs then killed, not realizing that they were killing their master. See lines 1207–10 above, where Acteon’s unhappy story is artistically summarized on the walls of Diana’s temple.

thre formes (1455). As suggested in lines 1439–42 above, the goddess was imagined to have appeared in various forms. The three referred to here are probably Luna, the moon (in the heavens), the chaste Diana, the huntress (on earth), and Proserpina, the reluctant wife of Pluto (in the underworld).

the nexte houre of Mars (1509). Mars’s next hour, the hour that Arcite would have selected for his prayer to Mars, would have been the fourth hour of that Monday.

Part IV

al that Monday (1628). Monday is given over to partying and celebrations so that the tournament itself takes place the next day, on a Tuesday, or Mars’s day (“Mardi” in French). Since Tuesday is the day when the influence of Mars is strongest, it would not have surprised a medieval audience that Arcite, who had prayed to Mars, wins the tournament.

Galgopheye (1768). Probably a valley in another part of Greece, perhaps Gargaphia.

Belmarye (1772). Probably Benmarin in Morocco but, like the previous name, perhaps just meant to be an exotic place where wild animals were rampant and dangerous.

furie infernal (1826). A fury was an avenging spirit usually confined to the underworld but released from time to time to influence the affairs of men, sometimes to see that justice was done.

vertu expulsif (1891). This “virtue” involved the ability to expel certain harmful poisons from the body. This complex account of the mechanics of Arcite’s dying, the technical details of which are not important here, shows Chaucer’s awareness of the medical terminology of his day.

Firste Moevere (2129). This First Mover who creates the links in the great “chain of love,” though later in the passage identified as Jupiter, may perhaps be read as an anachronistic stand-in for the Judeo-Christian godhead, the all- loving deity who stands above and beyond the planetary gods and goddesses that seem to control the fates of men. This prime mover determines the number of years indi- vidual men and women get to live on earth and arranges things better for them than they could arrange them for themselves.


“A delight . . . [Raffel’s translation] provides more opportunities to savor the counterpoint of Chaucer’s earthy humor against passages of piercingly beautiful lyric poetry.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Masterly . . . This new translation beckons us to make our own pilgrimage back to the very wellsprings of literature in our language.” —Billy Collins

The Canterbury Tales has remained popular for seven centuries. It is the most approachable masterpiece of the medieval world, and Mr. Raffel’s translation makes the stories even more inviting.”—Wall Street Journal

From the Trade Paperback edition.


Part of Alma Classics' Evergreen series, The Canterbury Tales are here presented in their original Middle-English

Textul de pe ultima copertă

A group of pilgrims bound for Canterbury Cathedral agree to pass the weary miles by taking turns at storytelling. The travelers noble, coarse, jolly, and pious offer a vibrant portrait of fourteenth-century English life. Their narratives form English literature's greatest collection of chivalric romances, bawdy tales, fables, legends, and other stories.
The Canterbury Tales reflects a society in transition, as a middle class began to emerge from England's feudal system. Craftsmen and laborers ride side by side with the gentry on the road to the shrine of St. Thomas a Becket, and their discussions and arguments about ethical issues mirror their changing world. The pilgrims' conversations and stories also reveal their individual personalities, and Chaucer's vivid, realistic characterizations assured the Tales an instant and enduring success. Each pilgrim's story can be read separately and appreciated in its own right; all appear here in a lucid translation into modern English verse by J. U. Nicolson.
Dover (2015) republication of the modern English verse translation by J. U. Nicolson, originally published in 1934.
See every Dover book in print at



Acknowledgements ix
Editor's Note xi
Chronology xii
Introduction xvii
Further Reading l
Chaucer's Language liii
A Note on the Text lxi
Abbreviations of the Canterbury Tales lxxi
The Canterbury Tales
Fragment I (Group A)
The General Prologue
The Knight's Tale
The Miller's Prologue and Tale
The Reeve's Prologue and Tale
The Cook's Prologue and Tale
Fragment II (Group B1)
The Man of Law's Prologue, Tale [and Epilogue]
Fragment III (Group D)
The Wife of Bath's Prologue and Tale
The Friar's Prologue and Tale
The Summoner's Prologue and Tale
Fragment IV (Group E)
The Clerk's Prologue and Tale
The Merchant's Prologue, Tale and Epilogue
Fragment V (Group F)
The Squire's Prologue and Tale
The Squire-Franklin Link, The Franklin's Prologue and Tale
Fragment VI (Group C)
The Physician's Tale
The Physician--Pardoner Link, The Pardoner's Prologue and Tale
Fragment VII (Group B2)
The Shipman's Tale
The Shipman--Prioress Link, The Prioress's Prologue and Tale
The Prioress-Sir Thopas Link and Sir Thopas
The Thopas--Melibee Link and the Tale of Melibee
The Monk's Prologue and Tale
The Nun's Priest's Prologue, Tale [And Epilogue]
Fragment VIII (Group G)
The Second Nun's Prologue and Tale
The Canon's Yeoman's Prologue and Tale
Fragment IX (Group H)
The Manciple's Prologue and Tale
Fragment X (Group I)
The Parson's Prologue and Tale
Chaucer's Retractions
Abbreviated References 785(10)
Notes 795(317)
Glossary 1112