Previous Previous:
From General Prologue, lines 311-332:
The Sergeant of the Law
Previous
Librarius Homepage
© Librarius
All rights reserved.



From The Canterbury Tales:
General Prologue
lines 333-362: The Franklin


       A FRANKELEYN was in his compaignye.
Whit was his berd as is a dayesye;
335Of his complexioun he was sangwyn.
Wel loved he by the morwe a sope in wyn,;
To lyven in delit was evere his wone,
For he was Epicurus owene sone,
That heeld opinioun that pleyn delit
340Was verray felicitee parfit.
An housholdere, and that a greet, was he;
Seint Julian was he in his contree.
His breed, his ale, was alweys after oon,
A bettre envyned man was nowher noon.
345Withoute bake mete was nevere his hous
Of fissh and flessh, and that so plentevous,
It snewed in his hous of mete and drynke,
Of alle deyntees that men koude thynke.
After the sondry sesons of the yeer,
350So chaunged he his mete and his soper.
Ful many a fat partrich hadde he in muwe,
And many a breem and many a luce in stuwe.
Wo was his cook, but if his sauce were
Poynaunt and sharp, and redy al his geere.
355His table dormant in his halle alway
Stood redy covered al the longe day.
At sessiouns ther was he lord and sire;
Ful ofte tyme he was knyght of the shire.
An anlaas and a gipser al of silk
360Heeng at his girdel, whit as morne milk.
A shirreve hadde he been, and a countour.
Was nowher swich a worthy vavasour.
        There was a FRANKLIN in his company;
White was his beard as is the white daisy.
335Of sanguine temperament by every sign,
He loved to dip his morning bread in wine.
A pleasing live was the custom he'd won,
For he was Epicurus' very son,
That held opinion that plain and pure delight
340Was true happiness, perfect and right.
A householder, and that a great, was he;
Saint Julian he was in his own country.
His bread, his ale were always good and fine;
No man had cellars better stocked with wine.
345His house was never short of food and pies
Of fish and flesh, and these in large supplies
It seemed to snow therein both food and drink
Of every dainty that a man could think.
According to the various seasons of the year
350He changed lunch and changed his supper.
Very many fattened partridges he kept in a mew,
And many a bream and pike in fish-pond too.
Woe to his cook, unless the sauces were
Poignant and sharp, and ready all his gear.
355His dining table, waiting in his hall, I say,
Stood ready covered throughout the whole day.
At county sessions he was lord and sire,
And often acted as a knight of shire.
A dagger and a purse all of silk
360Hung at his belt, white as morning milk.
He had been sheriff and been tax auditor;
There was nowhere such a worthy vavasor.




Next Next:
From General Prologue, lines 363-380:
The Haberdasher, Carpenter, Arras-maker, Dyer and Weaver
Next