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From The Wife of Bath's Prologue, lines 83-100:
About St. Paul's virginity
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From The Canterbury Tales:
The Wife of Bath's Prologue
lines 101-120: About virginity in general


       I graunte it wel, I have noon envie,
Thogh maydenhede preferre bigamye;
Hem liketh to be clene, body and goost.
Of myn estaat I nyl nat make no boost,
105For wel ye knowe, a lord in his houshold,
He nath nat every vessel al of gold;
Somme been of tree, and doon hir lord servyse.
God clepeth folk to hym in sondry wyse,
And everich hath of God a propre yifte -
110Som this, som that, as hym liketh shifte.
       Virginitee is greet perfeccioun,
And continence eek with devocioun.
But Crist, that of perfeccioun is welle,
Bad nat every wight he sholde go selle
115Al that he hadde, and gyve it to the poore,
And in swich wise folwe hym and his foore.
He spak to hem that wolde lyve parfitly,
And lordynges, by youre leve, that am nat I.
I wol bistowe the flour of myn age
120In the actes and in fruyt of mariage.
      I grant this well, I have no great envy
Though maidenhood's preferred to bigamy;
Let those who will be clean, body and ghost,
Of my condition I will make no boast.
105For well you know, a lord in his household,
He has not every vessel all of gold;
Some are of wood and serve well all their days.
God calls folk unto him in sundry ways,
And each one has from God a proper gift,
110Some this, some that, as pleases him to shift.
       Virginity is great perfection known,
And continence also with devotion shown.
But Christ, who of perfection is the well,
Bade not each separate man he should go sell
115All that he had and give it to the poor
And follow him in such wise going before.
He spoke to those that would live perfectly;
And, masters, by your leave, such am not I.
I will devote the flower of all my age
120To all the acts and harvests of marriage.




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From The Wife of Bath's Prologue, lines 121-140:
The purpose of the genitals
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