General Prologue to the Canterbury Tales Study Questions and Short Answers

Introduction: General Prologue to the Canterbury Tales study Questions and Short Answers. It is a collection of important University Questions of General Prologue. It includes Character sketches, Objective Answers and Important Terms definitions.

Table of Contents

Prologue to the Canterbury Tales General Questions and Short Answers

Why Chaucer is called the father of English Poetry?

Chaucer was the first who had written poetry in English language. Before Chaucer there were different dialects but Chaucer used one and gave it worth and made it a language.

What is Chaucer’s contribution to English Literature?

Chaucer found English a dialect and left it a language. He gave the new shape to verse and rise to drama. He is also called the grandfather of English novel.

Which dialect did Chaucer use for his poetry?

In Europe four prominent dialects were used Southern, Northern, Midland and Kentish. But, he used the East Midland dialect in his poetry.

Who wrote the Canterbury Tales?

Geoffrey Chaucer the father of English poetry wrote the Canterbury Tales.

When was the Canterbury Tales written?

Canterbury Tales was written between 1387 and 1400 AD.

When was Canterbury Tales published first?

Geoffrey Chaucer wrote Canterbury Tales and it was published in 1400 AD first.

Important University Questions and Objective Answers of Prologue to the Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer

Why are the showers of April sweet?

In Europe the month of April is pleasant and beginning of spring season. So, the poet says it the showers of April sweet.

Name some important characters in ‘The Prologue’?

The important characters are the host, the village parson, the knight etc.

List the ecclesiastical characters in ‘The Prologue’?

The ecclesiastical characters are Prioress, nun, priest, Friar, monk, the village parson, the summoner and pardoner.

What are some of the places where the Knight has fought?

Knight has fought in Christendom and heathen lands. Also, in Alexandria, Prussia, Lithuania and Russia, Granada, Lyes, Attalia and Turkey.

What is the actual name of Prioress?

The actual name of Prioress is Madame Eglantine.

Do you like anything special in Chaucer’s description of the Prioress?

Chaucer specially described the manner of eating, her speaking in French and her forehead.

How many husbands The Wife of Bath had?

She had five husbands at the church door, besides other company in her youth.

When the Parson asks allegorically, “if gold rust, what would the iron do?” what is he talking about?

Parson means the guide or the leader himself corrupted than what will be the common man do.

What song could the Pardoner sing?

Pardoner sang an offertory.( the portion of the mass sung while the faithful present their offerings)

Why do the pilgrims go to the shrine of St. Beckett?

The pilgrims go to see the shrine of blessed martyr (St. Beckett). Who helped them when they were sick.

Why did the assorted people stay at Tabard Inn?

They were pilgrims and by chance had fallen in fellowship. They wanted to ride to Canterbury.

How many stories are presented Canterbury Tales?

There are twenty four tales or stories that presented in the Canterbury Tales.

Name the ideal characters in ‘The Prologue’. 

The ideal characters in The Prologue to the Canterbury Tales are Parson and Plowman. Because, they were presented good and noble persons.

What is the difference between The Knight and The Squire?

The Knight is a simple and experienced man. But, The Squire is a fancy and lustrous.

What is the important about the fact that ‘The Prologue’ is set in the month of April?

In Europe the month of April is pleasant and beginning of spring season. Spring is symbol of the creation of new lives. So, “The Prologue” is set in the April.

Who was St. Thomas A. Becket?

St. Thomas Becket was the Archbishop of Canterbury. He was murdered by King Henry II’s knights. Because, he refused to give the monarchy power over the church.

What is the purpose of ‘The Prologue’?

The Prologue” has dual purpose. First is to reveal the characters for story, second is satire on the contemporary society of Chaucer.

What was the plan of Canterbury Tales?

The plan of Canterbury Tales is that everyone tells a story. And who tells the best story a supper will give him, paid by all the pilgrims.

How many pilgrims are making the journey to Canterbury?

Thirty pilgrims were making the journey to Canterbury.

Why are the pilgrims going to Canterbury?

The pilgrims are going to worship the relics of Saint Thomas Becket to Canterbury.

By what devices does Chaucer reveal his characters?

Chaucer reveals his characters by general description and association with other characters. They show their nature in the recitation of their tales and by the comments of the host.

Why did the associated people stay at Tabard Inn?

They were pilgrims and by chance had fallen in fellowship. They wanted to ride to Canterbury.

Important Terms Definition of Prologue to the Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer

Define poetry?

Poetry is one genre of literature. In which rhythmic and aesthetic qualities of language is used. It may be in verse or meter form. It may be with or without symbolism, imagery, simile and metaphor etc.

Define alliteration?

The repetition of initial consonant sounds of words. Close together in a phrase or line of poetry is called ‘Alliteration’. Examples:

  • Dark drop
  • Tip top
  • Breeze blue
  • Cold coffee

What do you mean by accent?

Accent is the significant stress on the syllable or emphasis a syllable. It is denoted by (/).

What is apostrophe?

Apostrophe is a figure of speech. In which poet addresses a died or absent person, abstract idea or personification. Like, Walt Whitman’s poemO captain, my captain”.

How is a simile different from a metaphor?


Simile is a direct comparison of two things by using “as” and “like”.


Metaphor is as one thing is described as being another thing.

Define humor?

Humor is a literary work. In which a character, dialogue or situation seem funny/ amuse-able/ laughable or ludicrous.

Define irony?

“The contrast between appearance and reality is called irony“.  There are many types of irony. Like, irony of dialogue, irony of situation and irony of character etc. What a character says and what he actually means? is the irony of dialogue. What a character thinks himself and what he actually is? What he desires but what actually occurs? are the irony of characterWhat a character believes and what the readers know? What we had expected and what actually happens? are the irony of situations.

Define satire?

Satire is a formal term. Usually, applies to written literature. It is ridicule of human folly and vices with the purpose to bring about reform.

What do you understand by understatement?

Understatement is a literary device. In which a writer or speaker attributes less importance or less passion than the subject would demand. For example, “a bit cold at the North Pole”.

What do you understand by Renaissance?

Renaissance means “rebirth”. It is rebirth (change) of literature, society, culture and religion after middle ages (14th to 17th century).

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