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Editorial Reviews

Medieval master Geoffrey Chaucer’s literary classic begins with the narrator extolling the return of spring and detailing the background of how and why certain pilgrims to the Saint Thomas Becket relics at Canterbury Cathedral came together. The noted Welsh character actor Philip Madoc engages his rich, sonorous baritone to provide the brief descriptions of the fellow travelers and to set the stage for the humorous, serious, bawdy, but always very human tales to follow as the pilgrims make their way along the historic path. This selection, based on Frank Ernest Hill’s modern English translation, is from an original audiobook production of Geoffrey Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales.

Publisher's Summary

This is a story from the Canterbury Tales I: Modern Verse Translation collection.

Chaucer's greatest work, written towards the end of the fourteenth century, paints a brilliant picture of medieval life, society and values. The stories range from the romantic, courtly idealism of "The Knight's Tale" to the joyous bawdy of the Miller's; all are told with a freshness and vigor in this modern verse translation that make them a delight to hear.

©1995 NAXOS AudioBooks Ltd. (P)1995 NAXOS AudioBooks Ltd.

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The Canterbury Tales' Prologue

The Canterbury Tales can be a little bit intimidating in length and also with the language. I read it back in high school without audiobook accompaniment and am excited to be rereading it now along with my two girls who are both high schoolers. This audio is a small part of the larger Canterbury Tales. A tiny snippet, really. I love this version of the Prologue as it is only 22 minutes and not at all intimidating. This is, of course, where the [entire] rest of the book is set up and the characters are introduced. The Prologue's narrator does two things in this piece: he suggests that the travelers take turns telling stories to one another as they make their pilgrimage to Canterbury. He also gives a nice description of each member of the traveling party.

Philip Madoc as audiobook narrator is delightful. His accent is perfect alongside this story and he accentuates the words so well, as this is indeed poetry.

I chose to purchase and listen to this one because my girls need to pay specific attention to certain selections from The Canterbury Tales and The Prologue is one of them. It was very reasonably priced for its length and I recommend it to students and anyone else that may be interested in Chaucer.