Comparison between the "sexual policies" presented in The Wife of Bath Prologue and The wife of Bath's Tale

Essay by trannityHigh School, 11th grade May 2002

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In The Wife of Bath prologue, we get the basic idea that the Wife of Bath desires nothing more than dominate power over her spouse. This ideal was clearly shown through her thoughts on the first three husbands she had. She explained that the first three husbands she married were old, and a little short on the intelligent side, and because of that, she described them as the three good husbands. Everyday, she would ask her husbands as to why the neighboring wives were so pretty with their beautiful clothing while she always had to look so dingy and dull. Very often, her first three husbands would answer her complaint by asking her as to why she needed to be so glamorous, and if she wanted to be glamorous so she could be with another man. The Wife of Bath would often accuse her husbands of being the ones who were committing adultery and that she was the one who was innocent.

Then after that, she would often end the conversation by saying that since she does fulfill her duty as a wife to her first three husbands and gives them all they could take in bed, what would it matter if she gave some to someone else. So in turn, it does show that The Wife of Bath isn't as innocent as she said she was at the beginning, and that she does have the dominate power over her first three husbands, considering that her first three husbands weren't able to control nor cheat on her.

Then, she goes on and talks about her fourth and fifth husband, the two that she thought were the bad husbands mainly they were either able to control her at the beginning, or if the husband was able to cheat on her.