Category Archives: Age of Chaucer

Do You Know The Origin of These Words and Phrases?

Three Sheets to the Wind – Urban Dictionary defines this phrase to mean “to be explicitly drunk; inebriated.” The origin is likely found in practicality: Sheets actually refer to the ropes that are used to secure a ship’s sail. If the … Continue reading

Posted in Age of Chaucer, Canterbury tales, etymology, history, Jane Austen, real life tales, tall tales, word choices, word origins, word play, writing | Tagged , , , , , | 4 Comments

Thomas Malory’s “Morte D’Arthur” Part II

Previously, I posted a detailed summary of Books 1 and 2 or Malory’s “Morte D’Arthur.” Today, I have chosen bits of the other books to discuss. Book XIII: This is the beginning of the Holy Grail legend. Arthur and his … Continue reading

Posted in Age of Chaucer, Anglo-Normans, Anglo-Saxons, ballads, British history, Canterbury tales, Great Britain, legacy, legends and myths, medieval, reading, religion, romance, romantic verse, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

A Primer for Books 1-2 of Thomas Malory’s “Le Morte d’Arthur”

For those of you who have never read Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur or have not read it since you were in secondary school, I intend to keep this simple (or as simple as a 545 years old story can … Continue reading

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Sir Thomas Malory, Knight-Prisoner, Author of “Le Morte Darthur,” and Criminal?

We know that Sir Thomas Malory compiled the tales of King Arthur to give us Le Morte Darthur. But was the real Thomas Malory?  Encyclopedia of World Biography | 2004, COPYRIGHT 2004 The Gale Group Inc., tells us some important facts … Continue reading

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William Caxton, Publisher and Translator

Born in Hadlow, Kent around 1420, William Caxton traveled to London somewhere between the age of 14 and 16 to serve as an apprentice to a London merchant, When Caxton’s master passed, Caxton inherited a sum large enough to begin his … Continue reading

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London’s Architecture and Commerce Combine in The Royal Exchange

The Royal Exchange, a trapezoid-shaped structure, was opened by Queen Elizabeth I in 1571. Cornhill and Threadneedle Streets flank the exchange. The original building was destroyed by the Great Fire in 1666. It was rebuilt in 1669 and again destroyed … Continue reading

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John Gower, Medieval English Poet and Contemporary of William Langland and Geoffrey Chaucer

John Gower was a medieval English poet whose work spoke of moral allegory and courtly love. He was known to be a friend of Geoffrey Chaucer and their styles were compatible. Gower was said to influence many other poets of … Continue reading

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William Langland, Cleric and Social Reformer and Author of “Piers Plowman”

William Langland is the presumed author of the Middle English alliterative poem known as Piers the Ploughman. “After George Kane’s thorough study of the available internal and external evidence in his Piers Plowman: The Evidence for Authorship (1965), single authorship … Continue reading

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What the Heck is “Deodand”?

“In 1336, a drunken sailor climbed the mast of his ship at anchor in the Thames by means of a rope, presumably part of the rigging. When he tried to descend the same way he fell and died. A coroner’s … Continue reading

Posted in Age of Chaucer, Anglo-Normans, British history, Great Britain, Living in the Regency, real life tales, Regency era, Uncategorized, Victorian era | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Chaucer’s Influence (Part 2): The Canterbury Tales

What should every learner of British literature know of Chaucer’s “The Canterbury Tales”? Chaucer, in the persona of the narrator and civil servant relates the stories from the different characters found within the tales. The pilgrims are making a journey … Continue reading

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