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Barron's Booknotes-The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer-Free Book Notes
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CHAUCER'S RETRACTION

At the end Chaucer puts in a modest note asking readers to forgive him if there's anything in the tales they disapprove of. Anything displeasing, Chaucer says, comes from my lack of ability, since I'd have said it better if I could. (Yet at the start he tells us he has no choice but to write exactly what the pilgrims say!) He asks God to pray for him and forgive him the "worldly vanities" he has written or translated: Troilus and Criseyde, the House of Fame, Parliament of Fowls, Book of the Duchess, and other "lecherous" tales, even the Canterbury Tales. He revokes them all, asking Christ and Mary to save him on Judgment Day. It's not clear why Chaucer wrote this, but it serves again to remind us of the ultimate seriousness of Chaucer's tales and faith.

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Barron's Booknotes-The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer-Free Book Notes
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