Geoffrey Chaucer: The Merchant's Tale (4641 words)



Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Merchant’s Tale is the second of two narratives found in Fragment IV of the Ellesmere manuscript of The Canterbury Tales, to be read following The Clerk’s Tale. In the Hengwrt manuscript, and some others, the Merchant’s Tale’s Prologue is absent, indicating that Chaucer composed and included it at a later date to make the text a companion piece to The Clerk’s Tale (Cooper, 1996). Some critics have proposed that the Merchant’s Tale was originally intended for another narrator, because on occasion the Merchant refers to “secular” people as though he were a religious figure (1251; 1322; Cooper, 1996). J. M. Manly …

Citation: Hanna, Natalie. "The Merchant's Tale". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 02 November 2017 [, accessed 25 October 2021.]

36247 The Merchant's Tale 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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