Chaucer is one of the best writers in English literature, he is known as the father of English poetry, Chaucer is also known for his art of characterization and Canterbury Tales to the prologue is Chaucer’s assessment of characters. His characters are very lively and lucid, they are as real as they are. However, they have taken from the copy of nature. Chaucer’s art of characterization is very different from other writers, he delineates the character with various angels, sometimes he starts with the conduct of the character, sometimes he takes first the character’s detail his dress, often he goes to his table manners, usually he jumps into his horse details, in this way he breaks the monotony in his work.
Chaucer usually portrays his characters by the inner self, he paints the world of heart and mind rather than the surface world. Here is huge evidence, we get from his work having passed six centuries but the nature of human beings is the same, this thing reveals his realism. Chaucer’s Art of Characterization is not believed very much in the abstract world rather his characters and their means are concrete that can be seen by human eyes as the miller’s face looks like a furnace, the Frankin’s beard is ‘WHITE AS DAISY’
Chaucer’s art of characterization in the Canterbury tale
Chaucer is the greatest master of the art of characterization. Chaucer observes his characters and their habits very minutely. Chaucer is interested in depicting their manners and their styles. Chaucer presents his characters as they are in their real life. They seem much more real and accurate in the contemporary era.
- Chaucer’s characters look real and lifelike
Chaucer has broken the conventional style of writing and adopted his new realistic style. He sees society according to his own notions and interprets them with reference to this observation. He presents their characters with their innate capabilities and desire to live and act in a specific way. He uses it to analyze the characters and manners in the real sense. He observes their all habits and traits and then puts them into words to portray a real character. In the ‘’Canterbury Tales’’ he introduced us to the twenty-nine real characters. He has displayed the personality traits of different persons and different professions. Through these characters, he has introduced different tales before us. So with the help of this narration, we are able to see these characters acting and speaking before our very eyes. These tales are depicted in the sense that we are forced to believe in their genuineness and realism.
Chaucer has exposed the inner realities of his characters through their tales. They are all real and lifelike because they belong to the real society. They are not of imaginative nature. They actually work and play in the real drama of life.
Chaucer’s characters represent different professions
Chaucer has tried to represent his characters from every range of society. He has introduced a variety of characters in ‘’ The Prologue to the Canterbury Tales’’. He has introduced these characters from all the professions raging in society. His characters display the trends in contemporary society. The merchant represents the wealthy class hankering after gaining more pursuits. The man of the law is interested to snatch the heavy pursuits from his clients. He charges too much fee and wants to be the lord of his community. Chaucer has introduced some characters from the religious line. He has depicted the character of the Prioress, The Monk and the Friar. They show the religious rites and rituals of their time. They also depict the corruption in the ecclesiastical characters.
His characters are a blend of vices and virtues
From the Canterbury Tales to the prologue Chaucer’s assessment of characters is very much clear, Chaucer is intended to depict the vices of his society through his works. Through depicting these characters he wants to uproot the evil from society. He does not exaggerate while narrating about the men and manners of his society. He uses to present them as a mixture of vices and virtues and depicts them as the intermediate sort of person. He does not present imaginative solutions to the cause. He just remains a realist while portraying his characters. He gives no details about their ultimate end. He has given all the necessary details about the habits and manners of his characters.
- Chaucer’s characters are representative of their age as well as English society
Chaucer is the greatest representative of his age while portraying his characters. He adds all the necessary details of his contemporary era through the characters in his famous work. He has introduced men from contemporary society. He analyzes contemporary England and focuses to interpret the norms of society through these characters. His characters possess a great place in depicting contemporary England socially and morally. From Canterbury tales to the prologue Chaucer’s assessment of characters and art of characterization shows his craft ship in delineating characters. He has focused on the religious vanity and the conduct of men in their social affairs. He has presented a real picture of their social life. He shows them acting and behaving in a specific way in society.
Some of his characters are morally weak and always superficial and fake. They tend to be more powerful and wealthy in their social status. They want to rise above their status. Some of his characters from the ecclesiastical range show honesty and morality. Some of them are from business sectors always encouraging their pursuits and materialistic benefits. Chaucer has introduced the characters as having capabilities for playing music and flutes. They are representing the interests of the people in their leisure time. He has also depicted them travelling with arms. Because it usually happened people of England travelled with knives and daggers. So Chaucer is presenting the real and true picture of society.
- His character is painted with words instead of colours
Chaucer has given the details about the manners and conducts of his characters in ‘’ Prologue to the Canterbury Tales’’. He has observed all the characters very minutely. Chaucer has given the details about their dresses and their way of speaking and behaving in society. He has presented a real picture of their life. He has recorded all the events of their life on their way to ‘’ Canterbury Tales’’. He has given all the details of the pilgrimage and the pilgrims. He has presented them as acting as real characters in contemporary society. His characters represent all classes and all professions. He records all the necessary details of his age.
- His characters seem to be modernist
Chaucer has portrayed his characters seem to be from the modern era. They look like representatives of all ages. If we analyze among his characters all of his characters seem to be living in the modern era. We can identify such types of characters among us. We can find the man of law and the Knight in our modern era. He has given details about their clothes and their manners of speech and habits. Through this depiction, they look modern and capable to be fit in every modern story and modern era.
- Chaucer portrays the characters in a scientific manner
From the Canterbury Tales to the prologue Chaucer’s portrayal of characters and art of characterization shows his craft ship in making characters. Chaucer has identified the characters with respect to their traits and their styles. He has given the details of the ideas of every individual and every event. Chaucer remains objective while portraying his ideas and depiction of characters. He is not interested to add details about his personal affairs. He distinguishes between their manners and habits. He is much more conscious while narrating about his characters. Chaucer is the greatest painter among the English writers. Thus, Chaucer is one of the best writers in English literature, he is known as the father of English poetry, and he is also known for his art of characterization and Canterbury Tales to the prologue is Chaucer’s assessment of characters.