The Pardoner’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer: A New Edition

Geoffrey Chaucer's The Pardoner's Tale Kindle Cover
Geoffrey Chaucer's The Pardoner's Tale Cover

Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Pardoner’s Tale: New Edition Now Available

The Pardoner’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer is probably one of the most accessible works of Middle English for modern readers – it features a neat moral parable, bawdy language and a barbed satire of the avarice prevalent in some elements of the medieval Church. The Pardoner’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer is also fairly short, and that no doubt makes it a favourite for English Lit classes at school and university level.

But even though Geoffrey Chaucer’s language is not that hard to understand, the very fact that every line or so you have to refer to a glossary or footnote does mean that the experience of reading a poem such as The Pardoner’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer can be frustrating and less enjoyable than it might be. Although there are some good prose translations available, I thought it would be useful to make a verse translation of the poem – partly because I thought it would be useful for others – and partly to help me re-engage with the text and get to grips with the meaning (it’s so easy to just read something and get the gist of what it’s about, but actually digging around and working out the meaning can be very rewarding). So to that end I have created an eBook of The Pardoner’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer, and a free online version, which feature both the original Middle English text, a parallel Middle and Modern English text in verse and also a Modern English version on its own. The verse translation into Modern English does not scan or rhyme perfectly – to do so would, I think, bend the meaning too much, but I hope it gives some of the flow or the original while also retaining the meaning.

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Should restorers be covering up a 14th Century Mural at Friborg Cathedral?

Some interesting news came out a couple of days ago announcing that restorers working at Friborg Cathedral have discovered a 14th Century mural while restoring an altar in the side chapel of the Cathedral.

It seems odd that they after allowing the wall painting to be viewed by the public until 7th April, it will then be covered up again? Presumably whatever covered the mural is deemed to be of more significance or aesthetic beauty, but unfortunately the press release does not go into more depth about that.

Here’s the full press release from swissinfo.ch

Mar 7, 2012 – 15:09

14th-century mural found in Fribourg Cathedral

Restorers working at Fribourg’s St Nicholas cathedral in western Switzerland have discovered a wall painting dating from 1300 to 1350 behind an altar.

Described by experts as being of exceptionally high quality, the images represent, among other figures, Abraham gathering the souls of the chosen people in his cloak.

The painting was discovered during the dismantling of the back of the nativity altar in a side chapel, cantonal officials said.

Other figures featured in the work are St Christopher carrying the child Jesus on his shoulders and a bishop – most likely St Nicholas – offering gold to three girls, a scene which matches the legend of the saint providing dowries for a poor family.

The cathedral was constructed between 1283 and 1490 and the current restoration project started in 2003.

The mural will be open to public viewing until April 7, after which it will be covered up again by the altar painting.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

Demon River Promotion – Free on Kindle from 2nd March to 4th March 2012

My fantasy short Demon River is now free for Kindle for three days, from 2nd March 2012 to 4th March 2012. Enjoy!

Set in a fantasy world of dark magic, Benetus, the King’s chancellor, fears the return of a rival he had thought banished from court. Benetus turns to the help of demons to rid himself of his enemy. But things are not always as they seem in the spirit world.

“Recently I had even felt the beginnings of optimism. After years of cloud and storm, the sun had broken through and I could at last bask in the success that I deserved. After all, who else now stood between me and the ear of the King?”

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Latest Fantasy Fiction News March 1, 2012

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