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Title: No Laughing Matter: Fraud, the Fabliau and Chaucer’s Franklin’s Tale
Authors: Parsons, Ben
First Published: 6-May-2011
Publisher: Springer Verlag
Citation: Neophilologus, 2012, 96 (1), pp. 121-136
Abstract: In terms of its genre, the Franklin’s Tale is one of Chaucer’s most puzzling texts. It not only presents an Italian novella as a Breton lay, but splices further material from chronicles, saints’ lives and classical and patristic literature into its overall form. This paper aims to deepen the Tale’s complexity by noting the presence of a further, unremarked genre in the text, that of the fabliau. In particular, it pays close attention to the figure of the magician, arguing that this character and his tacitly rationalised sorcery are designed to evoke the rascally clercs escoliers of the French texts, whose trickery often has comparable methods and results. The wider implications of these allusions for interpreting the poem are also considered.
DOI Link: 10.1007/s11061-011-9268-y
ISSN: 0028-2677
eISSN: 1572-8668
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: © 2011 Springer Science+Business Media B.V. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s archiving policy available on the SHERPA/RoMEO website.
Description: The original publication is available at
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of English

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