Friday, October 3, 2014

Canterbury Tales 2: Character Notes (The Prioress)

In the prologue, the narrator describes the Prioress as a well-mannered, sensitive and elegant person. She was always free from blemish never failing to eat without a simple drop of food to fall on her. She was also known as Madame Eglantine who studied French but still hasn't gotten the hang of it. Her incorrect French is just one of many contradictions of this woman's life and appearance in general. Although she tries hard to act as a prioress, she simply is not a natural. The cracks in her dainty manner exploits her true self of a large women with contradicting behaviors. The prioress is, what we'd call, a good actor as she pretends to be as elegant as she's supposed to be with a lady of such status. For example, it's ironic how "she would weep if she but saw a mouse caught in a trap" yet she feeds her two hounds roasted flesh without a flinch. Her jewelry attire also suggests that she is a worldly woman trapped in a prioress's suit. Her necklace that reads "Love Conquers All" could be a reference to romances rather than God, since that was a popularity of women's literature at the time. The Prioress is another one of Canterbury Tale's contradicting characters as she tries hard to be perceived as something she is not, making her look like nonsensical.

No comments:

Post a Comment