The Friar and the Summoner


Thinksheet for Tues.


Please answer this question: Who wins the "quite" here? The Friar or the Summoner? Explain your reasoning.


Questions about the Friar's Tale:


1.  What is this tale designed to teach?  What is its Ōmoral?Ķ


2. What is the view of religion in the tale?  How is the devil portrayed?  How does he compare to the summoner in the tale?  Use specific passages to back your claims.  


3.  How does this tale compare in tone to the MillerÕs Tale?  How are they different?  Similar?


4.  Look at the FriarÕs portrait in the GP (lines 208-269)?  How would you characterize him? How does the teller relate to the tale? 


5.  Look at lines 857-881 of the Wife of BathÕs Tale Why are these lines included in the tale?  How does the Friar respond to them? 


Questions about the Summoner’s Tale: 

1.  The Friar’s and Summoner’s Tales are clearly both part of a tradition of ecclesiastical satire.  What exactly are the types of charges being leveled against church corruption?  What is its nature?  Locate specific passages to back up your assertions.
2.  What is the “inpossible” (line 2231) the problem of logic that Thomas poses to the Friar?  How does the Squire answer this riddle?  What does it mean that a “churl” has posed the problem?
3.  In the Miller’s Tale, Jankyn’s fart is a joke, and plays on Absolon’s squeamishness.  Do you think there may be a specific meaning to Thomas’s fart in this tale?  Does it have any symbolic value?
4.  How are the different classes portrayed in the tale?  What are the types of relationships portrayed between the Friar and Thomas and his wife, and between these figures the lord?
5.Turn back to the portrait of the Summoner in the GP.  What is the relationship between teller and tale?