The Image of Chaucer's Squire.

Essay by annerackwitszUniversity, Bachelor's December 2006

download word file, 2 pages 3.0

In the General Prologue of Geoffrey Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales, the author provides its readers with an introduction of the pilgrims. In the Prologue, Chaucer describes the pilgrims in a very visual way. When looking at the illustrations, which are located on The Geoffrey Chaucer Website, features, and characteristics, occur in both the text and the illustrations. In this paper, it will become clear which features and characteristics of the Squire are present in the General Prologue as well as in the illustration on the Squire. Furthermore, it will become clear if the illustration of the Squire is "truthfully" represented in comparison with the text. While comparing the wording to the illustration, the book The Riverside Chaucer is used, and for line reference, it is helpful to have this book and the illustration of the Squire, on The Geoffrey Chaucer Website, close by whereas reading this paper.

When reading the General prologue oh Geoffrey Chaucer's "The Canterbury Tales", the reader soon finds out, that the young Squire is the son of the Knight (line 78).

He is represented as a lover and a lively young knight (line 80) with curled hair (line 81) as if it was pressed with a curler. According to the text, he is a strong and alert man of normal height (line 82-83), larger than life itself as if he is a meadow himself (line 89). He is covered in white and red flowers, as fresh as the month May, wears a short gown with long, wide sleeves (line 90-93), and drives his horse well. In the illustration of this young Squire on The Geoffrey Chaucer Website however, not everything is decorated exactly as in the passage. On the other hand, many similarities are seen. Primarily, the hair of the Squire is indeed curled very neatly. Besides his hair, white and red flowers are seen on his wide sleeved, short gown. Because of this clothing, it is seen that the Squire is a great man. What is more is that he seems to control his horse very well, seeing as he sits on it with his foot firmly in the stirrup and has one arm in the air while the horse has its front feet raised.

Although many similarities can be found in the illustration and the text while comparing them, the illustration of the Squire is not represented truthfully as described in the text. First, it is not shown that he is a young man. Many other characteristics are not revealed, or are made up by the painter. This is seen when, looking at the illustration, the Squire wears a hat, which does not occur in the written content at all.

To conclude, when comparing the written text about the Squire in the General Prologue of "The Canterbury Tales" with the illustration, which was found on the Geoffrey Chaucer Website, many similarities in features of the Squire are showed. However, the illustration is not represented exactly as the description in the book, thus not truthfully portrayed.

Works Cited

Benson, Larry D. "The Riverside Chaucer," Oxford university press, 1988

Summerfield, Thea. "Chaucer Assignment," Utrecht University, 2006

Kooper, Erik. "Chaucer Assignment," Utrecht University, 2006