Friday, October 3, 2014

Tale of a Canterbury Tale

In the prologue, the prioress praises Mary the mother of Jesus. Her prologue is also a preview into her following tale.

Tale Summary:
The story takes place at a town in Asia where the majority of the population is Christian, in this town lives a little boy who walks up and down a road that leads the towns children to the Christian school at the end of the road. One day, the little boy overheard the older kids singing O Alma Redemptoris meaning "Gracious Mother of the Redeemer." The boy begs his friend to teach him the song since it's not in his native tongue after he discovers it's a hymn of praise for the Virgin Mary. After a short period of time the boy's friend agrees and teaches him the song, to which he "would merrily be signing everyday." One day Satan twisted the heart's of his fellow Jews whispering to them that the boy's song was a mockery since they lacked interpretation of the song. Therefore, the Jews hired someone to slit the throat of the boy as he was walking to school.
As the days progressed on worry began to build in the mother as she went looking for her son with no luck. Finally, "Jesus, by his grace, put in her mind" the location of the ditch were her son lay. Astonishingly, the boy breaks out in the hymn and all the townspeople gather to see. The boy proclaims that the Jews responsible were to be put to "pain and shameful death." The boy explains the Mother Mary placed a pearl on his tongue and urged him to continue to sing until his appropriate burial when the pearl is taken away. At the end of the tale, a monk removes the pearl and "the child gave up the ghost, soft and serene."
The boy's name is revealed at the end of the tale as Hugh of Lincoln and a memorial was made to praise the boy who was from then on proclaimed a martyr.

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