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Canterbury Tales: The Wife Of Bath's Tale

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by

Nicole Roediger

on 2 November 2012

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Transcript of Canterbury Tales: The Wife Of Bath's Tale

The Wife Of Bath's Tale Her story takes place in the time of King Arthur.... With that, the Wife of Bath's story concludes. The isle of Britain used to be full of fairies and elves, but their places have been taken by the friars and merchants.. Another chance to save his life! King Arthur's wife and the ladies of the court system disagreed with the court's ruling and ask to give the knight another chance.. Some said sex, some said money, and some also said looks, and honor. The knight goes off on this quest to find the answer... He asked every woman he saw, but every one of them came up with different answers. He asked the hag what women desire most, and she told him that she would give him the answer but only if the knight would do whatever the hag wanted... As the knight approaches, the group disappears, but the only one that remained was an old hag... Basically, what the Wife of Bath is trying to tell the listeners of her story is that husbands should respect and obey their wives who are either ugly or beautiful. The Wife Of Bath says that the friars only cause the women dishonor. The friars rape women and get them pregnant, just as the incubi did to the fairies before the merchants and friars took their place. This tale starts with a lusty knight.. He meets a young and beautiful woman
and is overcome by this own power and lust
and rapes her. King Arthur's court find out about the knight's crime and sentences him to death by decapitation! But that is not how this story ends.... King Arthur decided to accept this proposal, but the knight was given a challenge... His challenge was to discover what women desire most and to report his findings back the the court exactly a year later. The knight felt helpless and his year was almost up, but one day he came across a large group of women dancing in the forest... The knight had no choice but to accept the offer... The knight and the hag travel to the court together and before the court, they presented his findings... What women desire most is to be in charge of their husbands and their loved ones. Although the knight's life was saved, the hag demanded his hand in marriage... They arrange a small and private wedding (we all know why...) and that same night they go to bed together... The knight is depressed (again, we all know why) and the hag questions him why. He tells her," because he could hardy bear the shame of having such a ugly lowborn wife." She then asked the knight whether he would want a beautiful but unfaithful wife, or a ugly but loyal wife... The knight ponders this, but then answers with, " I would rather trust your judgement, and to choose whatever she thinks is best." Since his answer gave the hag what she desired, she transformed into a young and beautiful woman who is also good and obedient to her husband.
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