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unit

unit goals
Included in this unit: RL 1, RL 2,
RL 3, RL 4, RL 5, RL 6, RL 7, RL 9, RL 10,
RI 1, RI 2, RI 6, RI 7, RI 9, RI 10, W 1, W 1a, W 2, W 2a,
W 2b, W 3, W 3a, W 3b, W 3d, W 3e, W 5, W 7, W 8, W 9,
W 9a, W 10, SL 1, SL 1a, SL 1b, SL 1d, SL 4, L 1, L 1a, L 3,
L 4, L 4a, L 4b, L 4c, L 4d, L 5, L 5a, L 5b, L 6

1
Preview Unit Goals

Complete text of the Common Core State


Standards is found in the correlation on
p. T10. Standards covered in this unit
are found in the standards overview
(pp. 19A -19D) and on the lesson pages where
they are taught.

text
analysis

Understand historical context and cultural influences of the Anglo-Saxon


and medieval periods
Analyze characteristics of epics, medieval romances, and ballads
Identify and analyze elements of Old English poetry
Analyze imagery and figurative language
Analyze methods authors use to introduce and develop characters
Analyze story structure including cause and effect
Analyze plot complications
Analyze characteristics of historical writing and primary sources

Preview Unit Goals

Identify and analyze an authors purpose

Explain to students that they can get more from


their reading by previewing. Then ask them to
skim the page to preview the skills that they will
learn. Note that each strand or category of skill
is color-coded on this page and throughout the
unit. Model the strategy of copying the Academic Vocabulary and writing a preliminary definition for each term. Suggest that students use
their Reader/Writer Notebooks for this purpose.
Encourage them to use the terms in discussions
and in writing. Also urge students to revisit
each term throughout the unit and to refine its
meaning.

reading

Paraphrase and summarize


Make inferences; draw conclusions
Synthesize ideas on a topic from a variety of sources and genres

writing and
language

Write an analysis of a poem


Use adjectives and verbs to create imagery
Use subordinate clauses, participial phrases, and prepositional phrases

speaking and
listening
vocabulary

Prepare and deliver an analysis

Understand that the English language changes over time


Use knowledge of roots and affixes to help determine word meaning
Use context to determine meaning of multiple-meaning words
Consult references to research word origins to determine word meaning

academic
vocabulary
media and
viewing

concept

culture

parallel

structure

section

Analyze multiple interpretations of a story, evaluating how each version


interprets the source text
Integrate ideas on similar topics presented in a variety of media

Find It Online!
Go to thinkcentral.com for the interactive
version of this unit.

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Academic Vocabulary Provide students with
definitions of each Academic Vocabulary
word.

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concept (knPsDpt) n. general notion or idea


about something.
culture (kOlPchEr) n. all products of human
work and thought, including behavioral
patterns, arts, beliefs, and institutions; these
products are an expression of a particular
group, time, or place; a high degree of taste
and refinement gained through education or
other training.

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parallel (pBrPE-lDlQ) adj. having comparable parts,


aims, or grammatical structures; n. something
that closely resembles something else.
section (sDkPshEn) n. part of a whole; a
discussion group of students taking the same
course in a college; v. to separate into parts.
structure (strOkPchEr) n. arrangement or
organization; something constructed, such as
a building; v. to give form or order to.

Use the copy master to help students learn


Academic Vocabulary for this unit.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Academic Vocabulary p. 3

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15/10

The Anglo-Saxon
and Medieval
Periods 4491485

For help in planning this unit, see


RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

pp. 19
Geoffrey
Chaucer

introduce the unit


Call students attention to the pictures on this
page. Explain that the large picture is a photograph of Bodiam Castle in East Sussex, England.
Built in about 1385, the castle was besieged
during the Wars of the Roses. Today the medieval castle is a popular tourist attraction. Tell
students that they will be reading about the
Wars of the Roses in the historical essay.
Ask students if they are familiar with the writer
Geoffrey Chaucer, shown in the smaller picture
on the page. Explain that Chaucer (c. 1340?1400)
was one of the greatest English poets. His
most famous work, The Canterbury Tales, which
consists of interlinked stories told by pilgrims
traveling to the shrine of Thomas Becket, is
considered a masterpiece of world literature.
Tell students that they will read excerpts from
The Canterbury Tales in this unit.

the origins of a nation


The Anglo-Saxon Epic
Reflections of Common Life
The Age of Chaucer
Medieval Romance

dvd-rom

Great Stories on Film


Discover how a movie captures the imagination
of viewers in a scene from King Arthur. Page 266

Unit Resources

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See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1


UNIT AND BENCHMARK TESTS
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT
INTERACTIVE READER
ADAPTED INTERACTIVE READER
ELL ADAPTED INTERACTIVE READER
LANGUAGE HANDBOOK
VOCABULARY PRACTICE
READER/WRITER NOTEBOOK

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TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
PowerNotes DVD-ROM
WriteSmart CD-ROM
MediaSmart DVD-ROM
GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD

12:00:38 PM

Find It Online!
This unit on thinkcentral.com includes
PowerNotes introductions to key
selections
audio supportlisten or download
ThinkAloud models
WordSharp vocabulary tutorials
interactive unit review and
assessment

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unit 1
ecos
Unit 1 Introduction
Questions of the
Times
Historical Essay
Timeline
Legacy of the Era
pp. 2037

strand
Reading Literature

ecos
Text Analysis
Workshops
The Epic pp. 3839
Medieval Narratives
pp. 140141

ecos
from Beowulf
Epic Poem/
A Collaboration
Across 1200 Years
pp. 4075

ecos
Themes Across Cultures:
from the Iliad
Epic Poem
pp. 7695

British Masterpiece:
from Piers Plowman
pp. 124125

The Anglo-Saxon
Period: Historical
Context pp. 2227 RL 9
The Medieval Period:
Historical Context
pp. 2833 RL 9

from A History of
the English Church
and People
Historical Writing
pp. 96101

Lexile: 1270
Fry: 8
Dale-Chall: 7.4

The Epic pp. 3839


RL 2, RL 3, RL 4

Medieval Narratives
pp. 140141 RL 3, RL 6,
RL 9

Epic pp. 41, 44, 4749,


5861, 64, 6769, 71
RL 3

Old English Poetry


pp. 41, 42, 45, 49, 50, 52,
54, 63, 68, 7071 RL 4
Analyze Theme p. 71

Simile and Epic Simile


pp. 77, 84, 87, 93 RL 4
Classify Characters
pp. 77, 8081, 86,
8891, 93 RL 3, RL 10
Cite Evidence p. 93 RL 1

RL 2

Reading
Informational Text

Writing

The Legacy of the Era


pp. 3637 W 7, W 8

Speaking and
Listening

The Legacy of the Era


pp. 3637 SL 1

Language

Historical Writing
pp. 97, 98, 100, 101 RI 9

The Anglo-Saxon
Period: Historical
Context pp. 2227 RI 9
The Medieval Period:
Historical Context
pp. 2833 RI 9
Read a Timeline
pp. 3435 RI 7

The Anglo-Saxon
Period: Historical
Context pp. 2227 L 1a
The Medieval Period:
Historical Context
pp. 2833 L 1a

Writing Prompt
p. 73 W 2, W 9a

Discuss p. 77 SL 1d

Academic Vocabulary
p. 38 L 6

Old English Poetry


pp. 41, 42, 45, 49, 50, 52,
54, 63, 68, 7071 L 5a
Anglo-Saxon Suffixes
(-some) p. 72 L 1a, L 4b
Create Imagery pp. 54,
73 L 3
Language Coach pp. 52,
56 L 4a; p. 65 L 5b
Academic Vocabulary
p. 72 L 6

Etymologies p. 94
L 4c

Language Coach
p. 100 L 5b

Language Coach
pp. 83, 89 L 4
Academic Vocabulary
p. 94 L 6

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ecos
The Seafarer/The
Wanderer/The Wifes
Lament
Poetry
pp. 102115

from The Book of


Margery Kempe
Autobiography
pp. 116123

from The Paston


Letters
Letters
pp. 126139

Lexile: 1720
Fry: 9
Dale-Chall: 6.8

Lexile: 1250
Fry: 8
Dale-Chall: 6.4

Imagery pp. 103, 105,


106, 110, 111, 114, 115 RL 4
Monitor Understanding
of Older Works pp. 103,
106, 107, 108, 111, 112,
115 RL 2, RL 10
Compare Texts
p. 115 RL 9

The Prologue from


The Canterbury Tales
Narrative Poem
pp. 142168

from The Pardoners


Tale from The
Canterbury Tales
Narrative Poem
pp. 169182

Characterization pp.
143, 147, 148, 150, 153,
157, 158, 166, 167 RL 1,

Exemplum pp. 169, 173,


176, 178, 179, 181 RL 3
Predict pp. 169, 170, 174,
177, 179, 181 RL 10
Language Coach
p. 178 RL 4
Make Judgments about
Irony p. 181 RL 6

RL 3

Tone p. 165 RL 4
Paraphrase pp. 143, 144,
146, 151, 152, 158, 163,
167 RL 10
Cite Evidence p. 167
RL 1

Autobiography pp. 117,


118, 121, 122 RI 6, RI 9
Draw Conclusions
pp. 117, 121, 122 RI 1

Primary Sources pp. 127,


130, 131, 136, 137, 138 RI 9
Writers Purpose pp.
127, 128, 132, 133, 135, 136,
138 RI 1, RI 6
Cite Evidence p. 138 RI 1

Writing Prompt
p. 123 W 3a, W 3de

Language Coach
p. 104 L 5b; p. 108 L 4b;
p. 112 L 4

Discuss pp. 117, 120 SL 1

Discuss p. 127 SL 1

Craft Effective
Sentences pp. 121, 123

Analyze Style p. 138 L 3


Language Coach
p. 132 L 4a

L3

Language Coach
p. 120 L 3

Discuss p. 169 SL 1

Descriptive Details
p. 159 L 5
Words from French
p. 168 L 4
Language Coach pp.
146, 165
Academic Vocabulary
p. 168 L 6

Prefixes (-mal ) p. 182


L 4d, L 6

Language Coach p. 177


Academic Vocabulary
p. 182 L 6

ecos
To see the complete
Essential Course
of Study, see
pp. T23T28.

For additional
lesson planning
help, see Teacher
One Stop DVD.

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unit
1
continued

ecos
Linked Selections
The Wife of Baths Tale from
The Canterbury Tales
Narrative Poem
pp. 183199

Lexile: 1601/1480
Fry: 11/12
Dale-Chall: 8.0/8.5

strand
Reading Literature

Ballad pp. 217, 222, 223, 225,


226 RL 5
Language Coach p. 223 RL 4

Synthesize pp. 200, 201, 202,


203, 205 RI 2, RI 7

Writing Prompt p. 199 W 3b

Speaking and
Listening

Language

Barbara Allan/Robin Hood


and the Three Squires/Get Up
and Bar the Door
Ballads
pp. 216227

Lexile: 1520
Fry: 9
Dale-Chall: 7.4

Plot Elements pp. 207, 208,


210, 211, 213, 214 RL 3
Cause and Effect pp. 207, 210,
212, 213, 214 RL 10

Narrator pp. 183184, 187188,


195197 RL 3
Structure pp. 183, 186, 189,
192, 197 RL 5

Reading
Informational Text

Writing

Pilgrimages: Journeys of the


Spirit
Book Excerpt, Magazine
Article, Map and Illustrations
pp. 200205

Themes Across Cultures:


Federigos Falcon: Fifth Day,
Ninth Story
from The Decameron
Tale
pp. 206215

Writing Prompt p. 205 W 9

Discuss p. 207 SL 1

Latin Roots temp p. 198 L 4


Descriptive Details p. 199 L 5
Language Coach pp. 192, 196
Academic Vocabulary
p. 198 L 6

Nuanced Meaning in a
Thesaurus p. 215 L 4c, L 5b
Language Coach p. 211
Academic Vocabulary p. 215

Understand Dialect pp. 217,


219220, 224, 226 L 3

L6

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ecos
from Sir Gawain and the
Green Knight
Romance
pp. 228245

ecos
from Le Morte dArthur
Romance
pp. 246269

Wrap-Ups
The Epic Tradition p. 95
Reflections of Common Life
p. 139
The Age of Chaucer p. 227
Medieval Romance p. 265

Writing Workshop:
Analysis of a Poem
pp. 270281
Speaking and Listening
Workshop: Presenting an
Interpretive Essay
pp. 280281

Lexile: 1080
Fry: 10
Dale-Chall: 7

Medieval Romance pp. 228,


229, 232, 236, 243, 244 RL 5
Inferences pp. 229, 234, 237,
239, 240, 244 RL 1
Plot p. 243 RL 5
Text Analysis p. 244 RL 3

Conflict pp. 247248, 250,


254, 258, 260, 263 RL 3, RL 5
Summarize pp. 247, 250, 252,
254, 256, 258, 263 RL 2
Language Coach p. 251 RL 4

Writing Prompt p. 245 W 3,


W 3ab, W 3d

Analysis of a Poem
pp. 270279 RL 1, RL 4

Writing to Compare and


Contrast p. 95 W 2a, W 2b,

Write an Analysis of a Poem


pp. 270279 W 2af, W 4,

W 7, W 8

W 5, W 9a, W 10

Writing to Compare p. 139


W 2a, W 2b, W 9
Writing to Analyze p. 227
W 2, W 2b
Writing to Persuade p. 265
W 1, W 1a, W 9

Discuss p. 229 SL 1c

Extension p. 139 SL 1ab


Extension p. 265 SL 1a

Presenting an Analysis
pp. 280281 SL 3, SL 4, SL 6

ecos
Use Alliteration pp. 237, 245
L1

Language Coach p. 243 L 2b

Multiple-Meaning Words
p. 264 L 4, L 4d
Vocabulary Acquisition
pp. 248, 251, 253254, 264 L 4
Language Coach p. 257
Academic Vocabulary
p. 264 L 6

Excerpting Poetry, p. 273 L 1


Punctuating Quotations
p. 277 L 2
Presenting an Analysis
pp. 280281 L 1

To see the complete


Essential Course
of Study, see
pp. T23T28.

For additional
lesson planning
help, see Teacher
One Stop DVD.

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Instructional Support
pp
Resource Manager Unit 1

Language Handbook

Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM

unit support

Vocabulary Practice

Student One Stop DVD-ROM

Best Practices Toolkit

MediaSmart DVD-ROM

PowerNotes DVD-ROM

King Arthur in Film

Connections: Nonfiction for


Common Core CD-ROM

WriteSmart CD-ROM

Academic Vocabulary, p. 3
Additional Academic Vocabulary, p. 4
Grammar Focus, p. 5
Text Analysis Workshop, pp. 9, 115
Writing Workshop: Analysis of a Poem,
p. 273

GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
Wordsharp CD-ROM

selection support*
Plan and Teach
Lesson planning pages
Additional leveled selection questions
Extension activities
Student Copy Masters
Selection summaries in four languages
Skills Copy Masters in English and Spanish
Vocabulary preteaching and support
Reading Check and Question Support
Reading Fluency
* Available for all selections
Available on thinkcentral.com

Differentiated
ff
Instruction
STRUGGLING READERS AND WRITERS

ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS

ADVANCED LEARNERS

Resource Manager Unit 1

Resource Manager Unit 1

Resource Manager Unit 1

Additional Selection Questions

Additional Selection Questions

Question Support

Selection Summaries in English,


Spanish, Vietnamese and Haitian Creole

Reading Fluency

Skills Copy Masters in Spanish

Diagnostic and Selection Tests

Interactive Reader
Adapted Interactive Reader
Level Up Online Tutorials
Audio Anthology

English Language Learner Adapted


Interactive Reader Teachers Guide
e
ELL Adapted Interactive Reader
Audio Tutor
Guide to English for Newcomers
Audio Anthology

Selection Tests B/C

(with Audio summaries)

Diagnostic and Selection Tests


Selection Tests A/B

Ideas for Extension

Audio Summaries in Multiple


Languages
(on thinkcentral.com)

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Assessment and Reteaching


Diagnostic and Selection
Tests
Unit and Benchmark Tests
ThinkCentral Online
Assessment:

ExamView Test Generator

All program assessments

ThinkCentral Online
Reteaching:

Level Up Online Tutorials

on the Teacher One Stop


DVD-ROM

at a Glance
One Location, Endless Resources

Online Essay Scoring


on thinkcentral.com

Level Up Online Tutorials


Reteaching Worksheets

Find Resources Browse all Holt McDougal


Literature components for the ones that meet
your students needs and match your teaching
style.
Assess Progress and Reteach Assign electronic
versions of program assessments to measure
your students mastery of the Common Core
Standards. On thinkcentral.com, some tests
deliver online remediation tutorials automatically
to students who have not mastered skills.
Interactive Whiteboard Lessons

Professional
f
Development
p
Video Center Based on

Teacher Toolkit Includes a

interviews with program


consultants and other educational experts, these videos
feature classroom-ready
teaching strategies.

Teacher Handbook as well as a


range of articles and handouts
by program consultants and
other educators.

Citing Textual Evidence


Historical and Cultural Context
Figurative Language and Imagery
Character Development and Motivation

Jim Burke
Jane t Allen

Kylene Beer s

Prepare your students for college and careers


by teaching relevant, real-world skills through
dynamic, interactive instruction. Go to
thinkcentral.com to browse through all whiteboard lessons or to access the lessons that
focus on the skills taught in this unit:

Together Holt McDougal and


HISTORY are revolutionizing
the study of English/language
arts with video that helps
students relive and re-imagine
the people, places, and events
they are discovering through
reading. Look for selections
with the HISTORY icon.

Carol Jago

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unit

1
RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of foundational
works of literature, including how two or more
texts from the same period treat similar themes or
topics. RI 9 Analyze documents of historical and
literary significance for their themes, purposes, and
rhetorical features.

Questions of the Times


Read aloud the questions on pages 20 and 21
and the paragraphs that follow them. Open
the discussion of each idea by having students
respond to the questions that conclude each
paragraph. Use these notes to prompt further
exploration of the ideas.

Questions of the Times


DISCUSS Read and discuss these questions with a partner, and share your
thoughts with the class. Then read on to explore the ways in which these
issues affected the literature of the Anglo-Saxon and medieval periods.

What makes a
true HE RO ?

Who really shapes


S O C IET Y?

From the fierce, doomed Anglo-Saxon warrior Beowulf to


King Arthur and his loyal knights, bound by their code of
chivalry, early British literature shows a deep fascination
with the hero as the embodiment of societys highest
ideals. As these ideals have shifted, the image of the hero
has changed too. What do you believe are the qualities of
a true hero?

The medieval period in British history conjures up images


of kings, queens, and knights in shining armor, but in reality
most of the people were simple peasants. The feudal system
ensured that peasants, despite their large numbers, had very
little political power. Yet their struggles and contributions
helped build a great nation. What do you think truly shapes
society? Is it the power of the few or the struggles of many?

What makes
a true HERO?
Encourage students to share the qualities they
believe make a true hero. Challenge them to
compare actual heroes with the larger-thanlife protagonists of books and movies. Extend
the discussion by asking students what type of
heroreal or fictionalhas a greater impact
on todays society.

Who really shapes


SOCIETY?
Invite students to consider the people who
have shaped modern American society. Discuss
whether a powerful few or the many have
been more influential. Have students offer
specific examples drawn from historical and
contemporary events and support their views.

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unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

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2/10

RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of foundational works of literature, including how


two or more texts from the same period treat similar themes or topics.
RI 9 Analyze documents of historical and literary significance for their themes,
purposes, and rhetorical features.

Does FATE
control our lives?
Invite students to offer their views regarding the role of fate in daily life. Point out that
people are sometimes referred to as being
naturally lucky or unlucky. Discuss whether
there is any sense to this, or whether people
make their own luck.

Does FAT E
control our lives?

Can people live up


to high ID E A L S ?

The seafaring Anglo-Saxons led harsh, brutal lives, often cut


short by violence, disease, or the unpredictable tempests
of the icy North Sea. They admired strength and courage
but ultimately saw humans as helpless victims of a grim,
implacable fate they called wyrd. Do you believe people
can determine their own futures, or does chance or fate
play a part?

During the medieval period, there were elaborate rules of


conduct to guide behavior in battle as well as in romance.
This code of chivalry assumed that knights were uniformly
gallant and loyal, ladies fair and devout, manners impeccable,
and jousting the way to prove bravery and win favor. Is it
possible to live up to such high ideals? Is it worth trying?

Can people live up


to high IDEALS?
Encourage students to express their views
concerning the desirability and value of codes
of conduct. Discuss whether high ideals serve
as inspiration or whether they mainly cause
frustration for people who try to achieve them
and cannot.

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Essential Course of Study

ecos

The Anglo-Saxon and


Medieval Periods
4491485

RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of foundational


works of literature, including how two or more
texts from the same period treat similar themes or
topics. RI 9 Analyze documents of historical and
literary significance for their themes, purposes, and
rhetorical features. L 1a Apply the understanding
that usage is a matter of convention, can change
over time, and is sometimes contested.

The Origins of a Nation

The following essay provides students with a


historical context for the Unit 1 reading selections. It presents a brief overview of significant events occurring during the time period,
4491485, and discusses key people and ideas
of the times.
To get started, read and discuss the opening
paragraph on this page. Ask students what
names come to mind when they think of early
English history and literature. Students may
mention such familiar names as Richard the
Lion-Hearted and King Arthur, both of whom
are discussed in the essay.

A towering circle of ancient stones, draped in the mist


of centuries. The clatter of horses hooves, the clash of
swords and spears. A tiny island whose motley tongue
would become the language of the world, and whose
laws, customs, and literature would help form Western
civilization. This is England, and the story begins here.

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

preview
Have students preview the historical essay
by reading the INDEX IDEAS and skimming the heads, boldfaced terms, and
Taking Notes side-column features. Ask
volunteers to summarize what the essay
is about.

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differentiated instruction

About the Photo The photo shows Stonehenge, a circular arrangement of large prehistoric stones on Salisbury Plain, in southern
England. The exact purpose of Stonehenge
has not been definitively established, but
many scholars believe it may have been used
for religious ceremonies.

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for struggling readers


Vocabulary Support To help students understand the essay, review these words
barbarism, uncivilized or primitive
behavior
province, a region or country controlled by
the ancient Roman government
urban, relating to a city
chieftain, chief or leader
genesis, origin or beginning

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The Anglo-Saxon Period:


Historical Context
Britains early years were dominated by successive waves of
invaders. Among them were the Anglo-Saxonsa people who
gave us the first masterpieces of English literature.

Centuries of Invasion
The Dark Ages, as the Anglo-Saxon period is often called, was a time
of bloody conflicts, ignorance, violence, and barbarism. Life was difficult,
and the literature of the period reflects that reality. Little imagery of the
brief English summers appears in this literature; winter prevails, and spring
comes slowly, if at all. The people were serious minded, and the reader finds
scarce humor in their literature. Indeed, many of the stories and poems
present heroic struggles in which only the strong survive. And no wonder.
early britain The first person ever to write about England may have
been the Roman general Julius Caesar, who in 55 b.c. attempted to
conquer the British Isles. Put off by fierce Celtic warriors, Caesar hastily
claimed victory for Rome and returned to Europe, leaving the Britons
(as the people were known) and their neighbors to the north and west,
the Picts and Gaels, in peace.
A century later, however, the Roman army returned in force and
made good Caesars claim. Britain became a province of the great Roman
Empire, and the Romans introduced cities, roads, written scholarship,
and eventually Christianity to the island. Their rule lasted more than three
hundred years. Romanized Britons adapted to an urban lifestyle, living
in villas and frequenting public baths, and came to depend on the Roman
military for protection. Then, early in the fifth century, the Romans pulled
out of Britain, called home to help defend their beleaguered empire against
hordes of invaders. With no central government or army, it was not long
before Britain, too, became a target for invasion.

RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of
foundational works of literature,
including how two or more texts
from the same period treat similar
themes or topics. RI 9 Analyze
documents of historical and
literary significance for their
themes, purposes, and rhetorical
features. L 1a Apply the
understanding that usage is a
matter of convention, can change
over time, and is sometimes
contested.

taking notes
Outlining As you read this
introduction, use an outline
to record main ideas about
the historical events and
literature of each period.
You can use headings,
boldfaced terms, and
the information in boxes
like this one as starting
points. (See page R49 in
the Research Handbook for
more help with outlining.)

I. Historical Context
A. Centuries of Invasion
1. Early Britain
2. Anglo-Saxons
3. Vikings
B. The Norman Conquest

This section of the essay (pages 2324) summarizes Britains early history: the Roman armys
conquest of the region; subsequent invasions
first by Angles, Saxons, and other Germanic
tribes, then by Vikings; and the Norman Conquest of 1066. The text also discusses how
Anglo-Saxon culture became the basis for
English culture.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in Centuries of Invasion:
Interpret The opening paragraph concludes
with, And no wonder. What does the writer mean by this? Possible answer: The writer
is alluding to the preceding sentence, making
the point that its no wonder that only the
strong survive, because life in the Dark Ages
was so difficult.
Analyze In what ways did the Roman
conquest of Britain benefit Britons? Possible
answer: The Romans introduced cities, roads,
and written scholarship to the Britons. In
addition, the Roman army provided military
protection.

anglo-saxons The Angles and Saxons, along with other Germanic tribes,
began arriving from northern Europe around a.d. 449. The Britons
perhaps led by a Celtic chieftain named Arthur (likely the genesis of the
legendary King Arthur of myth and folklore)fought a series of battles
against the invaders. Eventually, however, the Britons were driven to the
west (Cornwall and Wales), the north (Scotland), and across the English
Channel to an area of France that became known as Brittany.
Settled by the Anglo-Saxons, the main part of Britain took on a new
name: Angle-land, or England. Anglo-Saxon culture became the basis for
English culture, and their gutteral, vigorous language became the spoken
language of the people, the language now known as Old English.

Stonehenge, an ancient monument located in Wiltshire, England

The Anglo-Saxon Period:


Historical Context

Synthesize In what ways does the influence


of the Anglo-Saxons persist to this day?
Possible answer: The Anglo-Saxon language,
Old English, is the basis of numerous words in
modern-day English.

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for struggling readers

Set a Purpose After introducing Britains


early history, ask students to look for the
sequence of invaders and conquerors who
took control of the region during that time.

Vocabulary Support The Germanic tribes,


which included the Angles and Saxons, were
peoples joined through shared language
and custom, who took control of parts of
Europe in the fifth century A.D. Millions of
people in Europe, North America, and other
parts of the world still speak Germanic
languages today.

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vikings The 790s brought the next wave of invaders, a fearsome group
of seafaring marauders from the rocky, windswept coasts of Denmark and
Norway: the Vikings. Shrieking wildly and waving giant battle-axes, Viking
raiders looted, killed, and burned down entire villages. At first, they hit and
ran; later, finding England a more pleasant spot to spend the winter than
their icy homeland, the Danish invaders set up camps and gradually gained
control of much of the north and east of the country.
In the south, the Danes finally met defeat at the hands of a powerful
Anglo-Saxon king known as Alfred the Great. Alfred unified the English,
and under his rule, learning and culture flourished. The Anglo-Saxon
Chronicle, a record of English history, was initiated at his bidding.

check understanding
Have students explain the significance of each
of the following:
Vikings
Alfred the Great
Anglo-Saxon Chronicle

tiered discussion prompts

The Norman Conquest

Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in The Norman Conquest:

In 1042, a descendant of Alfreds took the throne, the deeply religious


Edward the Confessor. Edward, who had no children, had once sworn
an oath making his French cousin William, duke of Normandy, his
heiror so William claimed. When Edward died, however, a council
of nobles and church officials chose an English earl named Harold
to succeed him. Incensed, William led his Norman army in what was
to be the last successful invasion of the island of Britain: the Norman
Conquest. Harold was killed at the Battle of Hastings in 1066, and
on Christmas Day of that year, William the Conqueror was crowned
king of England.
The Norman Conquest ended Anglo-Saxon dominance in England.
Losing their land to the conquerors, noble families sank into the
peasantry, and a new class of privileged Normans took their place.

Summarize What caused William to invade


England? Possible answer: William had expected to be heir to the throne after Edward.
However, the English council chose Harold
instead, which infuriated William.
Analyze What were the effects of the
Norman Conquest? Possible answer: The
Norman Conquest put an end to Anglo-Saxon
dominance in England, relegated English
noble families to peasantry, and created a
new class of privileged Normans.

A Voice from the Times


William returned to Hastings,
and waited there to know
whether the people would submit
to him. But when he found that
they would not come to him, he
went up with all his force that
was left and that came since to
him from over sea, and ravaged
all the country. . . .
Anglo-Saxon Chronicle

Scale model of the Battle of Hastings

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differentiated instruction
for advanced learners/ap*
The Fearsome Vikings The Vikings were
notorious for their ferocity, but there is much
more to their history than just raiding and
killing. Have students research the Vikings:
who they were, where they settled, what
their society was like and how it changed
over time. Ask students to summarize their
findings in an essay and share their essays
with the class.

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The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle Have students


learn more about the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle:
how long it was kept, what it contains, and
why it is historically significant. Ask students
to share their findings with the class in informal oral presentations.

* AP is a registered trademark of the College


Entrance Examination Board. Use of the trademark
does not constitute production, participation, sponsorship, or endorsement by the College Board.

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Early Anglo-Saxon literature reflected a fatalistic worldview, while


later works were influenced by rapidly spreading Christianity.

Cultural Influences

The Spread of Christianity


Like all cultures, that of the Anglo-Saxons changed over time. The early
invaders were seafaring wanderers whose lives were bleak, violent, and short.
Their pagan religion was marked by a strong belief in wyrd, or fate, and
they saved their admiration for heroic warriors whose fate it was to prevail
in battle. As the Anglo-Saxons settled into their new
land, however, they became an agricultural people
less violent, more secure, more civilized.
ianity in the Roman World A.D. 500
Christ
The bleak fatalism of the Anglo-Saxons early beliefs
may have reflected the reality of their lives, but it offered
little hope. Life was harsh, it taught, and the only certainty
was that it would end in death. Christianity opened up a
North
bright new possibility: that the suffering of this world was
Sea
BRITAIN
merely a prelude to the eternal happiness of heaven.
R
Christian areas, 500

This section of the essay describes how the


Anglo-Saxons pagan religion gradually gave
way to Christianity, which spread across Britain
and became a dominant cultural force.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in The Spread of Christianity:
Summarize What important role did monasteries play? Possible answer: Monasteries
were focal points of intellectual, literary,
artistic, and social activity. Since there were
no schools or libraries, monasteries provided
the only educational opportunities.

hin

christianity takes hold No one knows exactly


when the first Christian missionaries arrived in Britain,
GAUL
ATLANTIC
but by a.d. 300 the number of Christians on the island
OCEAN
was significant. Over the next two centuries, Christianity
spread to Ireland and Scotland, including the Picts
and Angles in the north. In 597, a Roman missionary
SPAIN
named Augustine arrived in the kingdom of Kent, where
he established a monastery at Canterbury. From there,
Christianity spread so rapidly that by 690 all of Britain
was at least nominally Christian, though many held on
to some pagan traditions and beliefs.
Monasteries became centers of intellectual, literary,
artistic, and social activity. At a time when schools and
libraries were completely unknown, monasteries offered
the only opportunity for education. Monastic scholars imported books from
the Continent, which were then painstakingly copied. In addition, original
works were written, mostly in scholarly Latin, but later in Old English. The
earliest recorded history of the English people came from the clergy at the
monasteries. The greatest of these monks was the Venerable Bede
(c. 673735), author of A History of the English Church and People.
When Vikings invaded in the late eighth and ninth centuries, they
plundered monasteries and threatened to obliterate all traces of cultural
refinement. Yet Christianity continued as a dominant cultural force for
more than a thousand years to come.

e R.

2/10

Cultural Influences

Dan
ube R.

ITALY
Rome

Med
Hippo

Constantinople
GREECE

iter

ra n

ean

Corinth

Sea

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Vocabulary Support
descendant, a person born of a certain
family; offspring
dominance, control; supremacy
privileged, having certain advantages or
special rights
pagan, of or relating to people who worship
many gods or no gods, especially people who
lived before the spread of monotheism

Evaluate Why would Christianity appeal to


the early Anglo-Saxons? Possible answer:
The Anglo-Saxons pagan religion was bleakly
fatalistic, offering people little hope for
better lives. By contrast, Christianity raised
the possibility that people would leave their
harsh world and go on to heavens eternal
happiness.

fatalism, the idea that events are determined in advance and human beings have
no power to change them
monastery, a house or other residence for a
community of persons living under religious
vows, especially a residence for monks

7:27:12 PM

for english language learners


Set a Purpose After describing how the
Anglo-Saxons religion gradually changed, ask
students to look for the impact of Christianity
on Britain as they read.

monastic, of or relating to a monastery or


the persons living there

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Literature of the Times


Literature of the Times
This section of the essay (pages 2627) focuses
on early Anglo-Saxon literature. The text
describes

Anglo-Saxon literature often focused on great heroes such as Beowulf,


though sometimes it addressed everyday concerns.

For Your Outline

the epic tradition


Epic poems praised deeds
of heroic warriors.

The Epic Tradition


The early literature of the Anglo-Saxon period mostly took the form of
lengthy epic poems praising the deeds of heroic warriors. These poems
reflected the reality of life at this time, which was often brutal. However,
the context in which these poems were delivered was certainly not grim.
In the great mead halls of kings and nobles, Anglo-Saxons would gather
on special occasions to celebrate in style. They feasted on pies and roasted
meats heaped high on platters, warmed themselves before a roaring fire,
and listened to scopsprofessional poetsbring the epic poems to life.
Strumming a harp, the scop would chant in a clear voice that carried over
the shouts and laughter of the crowd, captivating them for hours on end
with tales of courage, high drama, and tragedy.
To the Anglo-Saxons, these epic poems were far more than simple
entertainment. The scops performance was a history lesson, moral sermon,
and pep talk rolled into one, instilling cultural pride and teaching how a
true hero should behave. At the same time, in true Anglo-Saxon fashion, the
scop reminded his listeners that they were helpless in the hands of fate and
that all human ambition would end in death. With no hope for an afterlife,
only an epic poem could provide a measure of immortality.

epic poems presented orally in mead halls,


including Beowulf
lyric poems, such as The Seafarer
the works of Margery Kempe and Margaret
Paston

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in The Epic Tradition:
Restate Under what circumstances were
epic poems presented? Possible answer:
Inside mead halls, professional poets chanted
the poems to the accompaniment of a
harp, while listeners feasted and enjoyed
themselves.

Poems were recited by


scops in mead halls.
Poems instilled cultural
pride.

common life
Lyric poems reflected
everyday reality.
Exeter Book contains
surviving lyrics.
Writing moved from Latin
to English.
Medieval literature
also explored everyday
concerns.

Cover and illustration from a contemporary graphic work


by Gareth Hinds, based on the epic poem Beowulf

Interpret The essay writer explains that


these epic poems were far more than simple
entertainment to the Anglo-Saxons. What
does the writer mean by this statement?
Possible answer: The scops performance of
epic poems combined elements of AngloSaxon history, morality, and culture. It also
reminded listeners of the power of fate and
the inevitability of death.

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers

for english language learners

Vocabulary Support
epic poem, a long narrative poem written
in formal style, recounting the adventures
and accomplishments of a legendary or
historical hero

Set a Purpose After describing different


types of Anglo-Saxon literature, ask students
to look for the characteristics of early AngloSaxon literature as they read.

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literacy, the ability to read and write


scribe, a person whose profession is writing
down or copying manuscripts

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lyric poem, a short poem with a songlike


quality that expresses the poets thoughts
and feelings

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These epic poems were an oral art form: memorized and


performed, not written down. Later, as Christianity spread
through Britain, literacy spread too, and poems were more likely
to be recorded. In this age before printing presses, however,
manuscripts had to be written out by hand, copied slowly and
laboriously by scribes. Thus, only a fraction of Anglo-Saxon poetry
has survived, in manuscripts produced centuries after the poems
were originally composed. The most famous survivor is the epic
Beowulf, about a legendary hero of the northern European
past. In more than 3,000 lines, Beowulf relates the tale of a heroic
warrior who battles monsters and dragons to protect the people.
Yet Beowulf, while performing superhuman deeds, is not immortal.
His death comes from wounds incurred in his final, great fight.

Reflections of Common Life


While epics such as Beowulf gave Anglo-Saxons a taste of glory,
scops also sang shorter, lyric poems, such as The Seafarer, that
reflected a more everyday reality: the wretchedness of a cold, wet
sailor clinging to his storm-tossed boat; the misery and resentment
of his wife, left alone for months or years, not knowing if her
husband would ever return.
Some of these poems mourn loss and death in the mood of
grim fatalism typical of early Anglo-Saxon times; others, written
after the advent of Christianity, express religious faith or offer
moral instruction. A manuscript known as the Exeter Book
contains many of the surviving Anglo-Saxon lyrics, including
more than 90 riddles, such as this one: Wonder was on the wave,
when water became bone. Answer: an iceberg.

a changing language
Old English

a changing language

Just as Britains fifth-century invaders


eventually united into a nation called
England, their closely related Germanic
dialects evolved over time into a
distinct language called English
today called Old English to distinguish
it from later forms of the language.

Old English Historians generally view the


English language as having three main stages
of development. Old English, which was
formerly called Anglo-Saxon, was the earliest
stage, extending from approximately 450 to
1100. It was followed by Middle English and
then Modern English. While Old English words
are generally not recognizable to modern readers, some are similar to present-day English
words. For example, heofon and sawol are the
Old English words for heaven and soul.

A Different Language Old English


was very different from the language
we know today. Though about half
of our basic vocabulary comes from
the Anglo-Saxon language, a modern
English speaker would find the harsh
sounds impossible to understand.
Some words can still be recognized
in writing, though the spelling is a little
unfamiliar: for instance, scoh (shoe),
hunig (honey), milc (milk), and faeder
(father). Other words have disappeared
entirely, such as hatheart (angry) and
gleowian (joke).
Grammatically, the language was
more complex than modern English,
with words changing form to indicate
different functions, so that word order
was more flexible than it is now.

Activity Have students use a dictionary to


compile a list of familiar words that derive
from Old English. Possible answer: Many words
for parts of the body, such as arm and hand, can
be traced back to Old English.

check understanding
Ask students why so little Anglo-Saxon poetry
has survived to the present day.

The Growth of English The most


valuable characteristic of Old English,
however, was its ability to change and
grow, to adopt new words as the need
arose. While Christianity brought Latin
words such as cloister, priest, and candle
into the Anglo-Saxon vocabulary,
encounters with the Vikings brought
skull, die, crawl, and rotten. The arrival
of the Normans in 1066 would stretch
the language even farther, with
thousands of words from the French.

early authors Most Old English poems are anonymous. One


of the few poets known by name was a monk called Caedmon,
described by the Venerable Bede in his famous history of
England. Like most scholars of his day, Bede wrote in Latin, the
language of the church. It was not until the reign of Alfred the
Great that writing in English began to be widespread; in addition
to the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, which was written in the language
of the people, Alfred encouraged English translations of the Bible
and other Latin works.
As England moved into the Middle Ages, its literature continued to
capture the rhythms of everyday life. The medieval period was one of social
turbulence and unrest, and several works give modern readers a glimpse of
the individual hopes and fears of people of the time. Margery Kempe, for
example, describes a crisis of faith brought on by childbirth; the letters of
Margaret Paston and her family mainly deal with issues of marriage and
managing the family estate.

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tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in Reflections of Common Life:
Summarize What was Anglo-Saxon lyric
poetry like? Possible answer: Anglo-Saxon
lyric poetry reflected the challenging circumstances of the times. Early poems were
characterized by a grim fatalism, while later
poems expressed religious faith or provided
moral instruction.

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for advanced learners/ap


Research Oral Art Forms Call attention to the
fact that epic poetry is an oral art form that
has played a key role in the history of English
literature. Ask students to research other
forms of oral literature, such as the stories
and folk tales of Native American, African,
and Indian literature. Encourage them to
identify similarities and differences. Have
students make presentations to the class,
sharing their findings and explaining why

Evaluate Why might the works of such


writers as Margery Kempe and Margaret
Paston be of interest to modern readers?
Possible answer: Because Kempe and Paston wrote about such universal subjects as
childbirth and marriage, their works would
probably still interest readers today.
11:59:12 AM

the oral tradition has been so important to


the development and preservation of the
early literature of cultures around the world.

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The Medieval Period: Historical


Context
This section of the essay on these two pages
presents an overview of Englands rulers from
the time of the Norman Conquest through
1485, when Henry VII took the throne, traditionally marking the end of the Middle Ages in
England. The text also describes the signing
of the Magna Carta, the Hundred Years War
between England and France, and the devastating Black Death.

check understanding
Ask students to summarize the reign of
William the Conqueror.

The Medieval Period:


Historical Context
With the Norman Conquest, England entered the medieval period,
a time of innovation in the midst of war.

The Monarchy
After his victory at Hastings, William the Conqueror lost no time taking full
control of England. He was a new kind of kingpowerful, well-organized,
determined to exert his authority down to the smallest detail. Many people
resented innovations such as the Domesday Book, an extraordinary tax
record of every bit of property owned, from fish ponds to litters of pigs.
Still, no one could deny that William brought law and order to the land,
so that, as one scribe wrote shortly after Williams death, any honest man
could travel over his kingdom without injury with his bosom full of gold.
Power struggles in the decades after Williams death left England in a state
of near-anarchy until 1154, when his great-grandson Henry Plantagenet took

For Your Outline


The Medieval Period
I. Historical Context
A. The Monarchy
1. William the Conqueror

View of London with London Bridge in far distance, Royal Manuscript. From The Poems of
Charles, Duke of Orleans. British Museum/Harper Collins Publishers/The Art Archive.

Analyze Visuals
This illustration from an
illuminated manuscript of
his poems depicts Charles,
the French Duke of Orleans,
imprisoned in the Tower of
London. Charles was captured
at the Battle of Agincourt
during the Hundred Years
War and imprisoned for
the next 25 years. Yet like
most captured nobles,
his confinement was not
strict: he was allowed to
live in a style similar to
that which he had known
as a free man. What details
show how Charles lived?
Does the Tower look as
you imagined it? Explain.

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: Charles is richly dressed and
the room is well furnished. There appears to be
a ceremony taking place with many visitors or
jailors in attendance. Charles is able to view his
surroundings from a window. The Tower does
not look as I had imagined it. It looks more like
a castle (with a courtyard and several other
buildings) than a prison tower to me.

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for struggling readers

for english language learners

Vocabulary Support
medieval, of or relating to the Middle Ages

Set a Purpose After telling students that


the medieval period began with the Norman
Conquest and lasted through 1485, ask students to look for important historical developments that took place during the Middle
Ages in England as they read.

anarchy, lawlessness or political disorder


judicial, of or relating to courts of law or
the administration of justice
plague, epidemic, often fatal, disease

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the throne as Henry II. One of medieval Englands most memorable rulers,
Henry reformed the judicial system by setting up royal courts throughout
the country, establishing a system of juries, and beginning to form English
common law out of a patchwork of centuries-old practices.
Henrys son Richard I, known as Richard the Lion-Hearted, spent most
of his ten-year reign fighting wars abroad. During his absence, his younger
brother, John, plotted against him. The villain of Robin Hood legends,
King John was treacherous and bad-tempered, quarreling with nobles and
raising their taxes until they threatened to rebel. In 1215 he was forced to
sign the Magna Carta (Great Charter), which limited royal authority by
granting more power to the baronsan early step on the road to democracy.

check understanding
Ask students to summarize each of the
following:
how Henry II changed Englands judicial
system
what the Magna Carta was and why it
was significant

War and Plague


As the medieval period drew to a close, war was a near-constant fact of
life. The Hundred Years War between England and France began in
1337, during the reign of Edward III. As the war continued on and off
for more than a century, England also had to weather several domestic
crises, including a terrible plague known as the Black Death, which
killed a third of Englands population.
When the war finally ended in 1453, England had lost nearly all of its
French possessions. Two rival families claimed the thronethe house of
York, whose symbol was a white rose, and the house of Lancaster, whose
symbol was a red rose. The fighting that ensued, known as the Wars of
the Roses, ended in 1485 when the Lancastrian Henry Tudor killed the
Yorkist king Richard III at Bosworth Field and took the throne as Henry
VII. This event marked the end of the Middle Ages in England.

Have students describe the significance of


each of the following terms:

A Voice from the Times


No freeman shall be taken, or
imprisoned, or outlawed, or
exiled, or in any way harmed,
nor will we go upon him nor
will we send upon him, except
by the legal judgment of his
peers or by the law of the land.

Hundred Years War


Black Death
Wars of the Roses

Cultural Influences
This section of the essay (pages 2930)
describes three social forces that shaped
England during the Middle Ages: the political
and economic system known as feudalism; the
powerful church, headed by the Pope; and the
chivalric code that typified the values and ideals of conduct for knights.

Magna Carta

Cultural Influences
Medieval literature is best understood in the context of three
powerful influences on medieval society: feudalism, the church, and
a code of conduct called chivalry.

check understanding
Ask students to explain the concept of
feudalism in their own words.

Three Social Forces


the feudal system Feudalism was a political and economic system
that William the Conquerer introduced into England after the Norman
Conquest. Based on the premise that the king owns all the land in the
kingdom, William kept a fourth of the land for himself, granted a fourth to
the church, and parceled out the rest to loyal barons, who, in return, either
paid him or supplied him with warriors called knights. The barons swore
allegiance to the king, the knights to the barons, and so on down the social
ladder. At the bottom of the ladder were the conquered Anglo-Saxons, many
of whom were serfspeasants bound to land they could not own.

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Set a Purpose After briefly describing feudalism, the church, and chivalry, ask students
to consider how feudalism, the power of the
church, and chivalry each had a strong influence on medieval life.

Research the Magna Carta Call attention to


the quotation in A Voice from the Times,
which comes from the Magna Carta. Invite
students to learn more about the history and
significance of the Magna Cartathe great
charter. Ask them to research and prepare a
brief report summarizing its provisions and
explaining why the document had lasting
importance. Students should also trace the
history of the Magna Carta, including its nullification and subsequent revivals.

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the power of the church There was one grand exception to the
feudal systems hierarchy: the church. Led by the pope in Rome, the
medieval church wielded tremendous powerlevying taxes, making its
own laws, running its own courts, and keeping kings and noblemen in
line with the threat of excommunication. The church owned more land
than anyone in Europe, and its soaring stone cathedrals and great abbeys
were as impressive as any castle. The churchs power did lead to conflicts
with the monarchy. When Henry IIs archbishop and friend Thomas
Becket began favoring church interests over those of the crown, four
knights loyal to the king murdered him. Becket was declared a saint, and
his shrine at Canterbury became a popular destination for pilgrims, such
as those described in Geoffrey Chaucers The Canterbury Tales.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in Three Social Forces:
Analyze What factors would be likely to
contribute to conflict between the monarchy
and the church? Possible answer: The king
was supreme ruler of England, and under
feudalism, he owned all the land in the kingdom. The Pope and the church, however, had
great power, owned more land than anyone
in Europe, and in many ways functioned
independently. Thus, the monarchy and the
church were two powerful forces with sometimes conflicting interests.

chivalry and courtly love Medieval literature, including the


famous stories of King Arthur, was influenced by another social force as
wellthe ideals of chivalry and courtly love made popular during Henry
IIs reign. Henrys wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, brought from French
court circles the concept of chivalry, a code of honor intended to govern
knightly behavior. The code encouraged knights to be generous, brave,
honest, pious, and honorable, to defend the weak and to battle evil and
uphold good. It also encouraged knights to go on holy quests such as
the Crusades, the military expeditions in which European Christians
attempted to wrest the holy city of Jerusalem from Muslim control.
Eleanor and her daughter Marie applied chivalric ideals to the
relationships between men and women as well. They presided over a
court of love, where lords and ladies would come to be entertained
by music and tales of King Arthur and other romantic heroes and argue
about the proper conduct of a love affair. Courtly love and the concept
of chivalry represented ideals rarely met in real life. Yet they served as
inspiration for some of the finest literature of the time.

Evaluate It has sometimes been said that


in todays world chivalry is dead. Do you
agree or disagree with this statement? Explain why. Answers will vary. Encourage students to support their opinions with examples
from everyday life.

A Voice from the Times


Marriage is no real excuse
for not loving.
He who is jealous cannot
love.
When made public, love
rarely endures.
A new love puts an old one
to flight.
Every lover regularly turns
pale in the presence of his
beloved.
rules from the 12th-century
book The Art of Courtly Love

La Belle Dame Sans Merci, Walter Crane. Private collection. Bridgeman Art Library.

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Main Ideas and Supporting Details Help
students use a Main Idea and Details chart
to identify important ideas and details in
Cultural Influences.
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Main Idea and Details p. B6

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Vocabulary Support
hierarchy, organization by rank or class, one
above the other, of persons or things
excommunication, depriving a church
member of the benefits and privileges of
membership; expulsion from the church
shrine, a place set aside as sacred for a
saint or deity
courtly love, medieval code of conduct
prescribed for lovers

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Literature of the Times


Medieval works, such as The Canterbury Tales and Arthurian
romances, drew from many sources, historical and contemporary,
while reflecting the society and ideals of their time.

The Age of Chaucer


The most famous writer of medieval times, the father of English
literature, was Geoffrey Chaucer, a poet who demonstrated the potential
of English as a literary language. Drawing on sources as diverse as French
poetry, English songs, Greek classics, contemporary Italian tales, and Aesops
fables, Chaucer masterfully blended old with new, all in the natural rhythms
of Middle English, the spoken language of the time.
an english masterpiece The Canterbury Tales, Chaucers best-known
work, displays his ability as a storyteller, his keen sense of humor, and
his sharp eye for detail. A collection of tales ranging from irreverent to
inspirational, it is held together by a frame story about a group of pilgrims
who pass time on their journey to the shrine of Thomas Becket by telling
stories. The pilgrims characters are revealed through the stories they tell
and their reactions to one anothers tales. Though Chaucer apparently
intended to have each of the 30 pilgrims tell 4 stories apiece,
he died having completed only 24 of the tales.
Chaucer lived during a time of change and
turmoil in England. He was born just a few
years after the outbreak of the Hundred
Years War and was still a small child when
the bubonic plague hit Europe. The Black
Death, as it was known, greatly reduced
the population, which led to a shortage
of laborers. In turn, serfs realized their new
value and left the land to work in towns
and on neighboring estates. This shift led to
the decline of feudalism and the growth of a
new middle class, to which Chaucers family
belonged. In addition, the war with France had
spurred the re-emergence of the English language
among the ruling class. With its cast of characters
ranging across British society, from the perfect gentle Knight to a common
miller, and its use of everyday English rather than elevated Latin or French,
The Canterbury Tales reflected all of these developments.

For Your Outline

Literature of the Times

the age of chaucer


Geoffrey Chaucer is
the father of English
literature.
Chaucers The Canterbury
Tales reflected his society
and led to an appreciation
for English as a literary
language.
Ballads are narrative
songs relating the lives
of common folk.

This section of the essay (pages 3133) discusses the significance of Geoffrey Chaucer and The
Canterbury Tales. The text also describes other
important works of the Middle Ages, including William Langlands Piers Plowman and the
romances Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and
Sir Thomas Malorys Le Morte dArthur.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in The Age of Chaucer:
Interpret The essay writer notes that Chaucer
demonstrated the potential of English as
a literary language. What does the writer
mean? Possible answer: Chaucer wrote The
Canterbury Tales in everyday Middle English
instead of elevated Latin or French; he effectively blended diverse elements from various
sources, such as French poetry, English songs,
and Greek classics, to create a literary work.
Analyze In what way did the Black Death
contribute to the decline of feudalism?
Possible answer: The Black Death significantly
reduced the population, causing a shortage of
laborers. The serfs, realizing their new value,
went to work in towns and on neighboring
estates, weakening the feudal system.

Detail of Lydgate and the Canterbury


Pilgrims leaving Canterbury (1520). From
John Lydgates Troy Book and Story of
Thebes. (Roy.18.D.II. Folio No: 148).
British Library, London. HIP/Art
Resource, New York.

other works Chaucer was not the only poet of his time to compose in
English or to write about ordinary people; William Langland did both in
his masterpiece Piers Plowman (see page 124), as did writers of the popular
ballads of the daynarrative songs telling of the lives of common folks
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Concept Support: Frame Story Explain to students that a frame story is a story that is used
as a structure or narrative setting to frame
one or a number of other stories. It can be a
way for the author to tell several stories. The
stories can be made up by the author or else
adapted to suit the overall frame.

Set a Purpose After telling students that


medieval works reflected the society and
ideals of their time and drew from many
sources, ask students to look for important
medieval literary works as they read.

Research Frame Stories Aside from The


Canterbury Tales, other famous works that
use the device of the frame story include The
Thousand and One Nights collectionwhich
includes the well-known tales of Ali Baba and
Aladdinthe Heptameron of Marguerite de
Navarre, and The Decameron by Boccaccio.
Have students research these or other frame
stories and present their findings to the class.

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or of characters and events from folklore (see page 216). The


combination of Chaucers literary gifts and social status, however,
led to a new appreciation of English as a language that, while useful
in everyday life, was elegant and poetic as well.

a changing language

chaucers legacy The Canterbury Tales and Chaucers other


works were wildly popular in his own time and inspired a
generation of English poets. One admirer sent him a ballad,
addressed to noble Geoffrey Chaucer, that described him as the
ancient thinkers Socrates, Seneca, and Ovid all rolled into one.
Another poet, John Lydgate, wrote after Chaucers death, We
may try to counterfeit his style, but it will not be; the well is dry.
Three-quarters of a century later, The Canterbury Tales was still so
widely enjoyed that it was among the earliest books chosen to be
published by William Caxton, the first English printer.

Middle English Following Old English, the


second stage of development of the English
language was Middle English, which dated
from approximately 1100 to the end of the 15th
century. It was followed by Modern English,
which continues into the present. Many more
Middle English words than Old English words
are recognizable to modern readers.
Activity Have students use a dictionary to
trace the etymology of familiar words (for
example, father, bread) back through Middle
English and Old English. Discuss how the
words changed.

Medieval Romance
Medieval romances, stories of adventure, gallant love, chivalry, and
heroism, represent for many readers the social order and ideals of
the Middle Ages. Yet tales such as those of the good King Arthur
and his sword Excalibur, Merlin the magician, Queen Guinevere,
and Sir Lancelot and the Knights of the Round Table were set in
an idealized world quite unlike the real medieval England, with its
plagues, political battles, and civil unrest. In fact, while it is true
that chivalry and courtly love were ideals made popular during
the medieval period, the real Arthur was not of this age.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the ideas in The Age of Chaucer:
Interpret What did John Lydgate mean when
he wrote that . . . the well is dry? Possible
answer: Chaucers contribution was unique,
and other writers lacked his remarkable
literary skills.

a legendary hero From what little is known of him, Arthur


was a Briton, a Romanized descendant of the long-haired, bluedyed warriors who fought Caesars army. A Latin history written
around a.d. 800, two hundred years or more after Arthurs death,
first mentions Artorius as a leader in the sixth-century battles
against Anglo-Saxon invaders.
For centuries, oral poets in Wales celebrated their legendary
hero Arthur just as Anglo-Saxon scops celebrated Beowulf. Then,
about 1135, the monk Geoffrey of Monmouth produced a Latin
history based on old Welsh legends. Geoffreys book caught
the fancy of French, German, and English writers, who soon
created their own versions of the legends, updating them to reflect
then-current notions of chivalry. While the traditional tales focused
on Arthur himself and on his courage and success in battle, these
new romances used Arthur and his court as a backdrop for stories
about knights who go through trials and perform great featsoften
(influenced by the idea of courtly love) in the service of a lady.

Evaluate The essay writer began this section


on page 31 by referring to Chaucer as the
Father of English literature. On the basis
of what you have read about Chaucer and
his legacy, do you think that is an appropriate description? Why or why not? Possible
answer: Yes, because in addition to being
extremely popular and inspiring a generation of English poets, Chaucers work fostered
peoples recognition of English as an elegant
and poetic language.

a changing language
Middle English
Along with political and cultural
upheaval, the Norman Conquest led to
great changes in the English language.
Despite their Viking origins, by 1066
the Normans spoke a dialect of Old
French, which they brought to England.
Status Talk Norman French became
the language of the English court,
of government business, of the new
nobility, and of the scholars, cooks, and
craftspeople that the Norman barons
brought with them to serve their more
refined needs. The use of English
became confined to the conquered,
mostly peasant population.
Hints of this class division still
survive in modern English. For
instance, Anglo-Saxons tending cattle
in the field called the animal a cu, or
cow, while the Norman aristocrats who
dined on the product of their labors
used the Old French word buef, or beef.
Ever adaptable, English soon
incorporated thousands of words and
many grammatical conventions from
Norman French. These changes led to
the development of Middle English, a
form much closer than Old English to
the language we speak today.
English Makes a Comeback During the
long war with France, it came to seem
unpatriotic among the upper class
to use the language of the nations
number-one enemy, especially since
Anglo-Norman French was ridiculed
by the real French speakers across
the English Channel. By the end of the
Hundred Years War, English had once
again become the first language of
most of the English nobility.

check understanding
Ask students to explain why popular tales of
King Arthur are not an accurate portrayal of
the man and his times.

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Vocabulary Support
folklore, traditional tales, beliefs, and
customs of a people, passed down from one
generation to the next
idealized, existing only in the mind or
imagination; not realistic
backdrop, background or setting

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troubadour, one of the many lyric poets


popular from the 11th to the 13th centuries
in parts of Europe, who wrote and sang
poems and songs about courtly love and
chivalry
precursor, something that precedes and
suggests the approach of another;
forerunner

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About the Art This painting by John Mulcaster


Carrick (18331896) shows Sir Bedivere holding
a mortally wounded King Arthur as they wait
for the barge from Avalon. The meticulous detail of the painting is characteristic of Carricks
work.

Morte dArthur (1862), John Mulcaster Carrick. Private collection. Fine Art Photographic
Library, London/Art Resource, New York.

two favorites About 1375, an anonymous English poet wrote Sir


Gawain and the Green Knight, recounting the marvelous adventures of
a knight of Arthurs court who faces a series of extraordinary challenges.
Exciting, suspenseful, and peopled by an array of memorable characters,
from the mysterious green giant who survives beheading to the all-toohuman Sir Gawain, the 2,500-line poem is easy to imagine as a favorite
of troubadors and their audiences.
A century later, in Le Morte dArthur, Sir Thomas Malory retold a
number of the French Arthurian tales in Middle English. Despite its title,
which means The Death of Arthur, Malorys book includes many episodes
in the life of the legendary king and is considered a precursor to the modern
novel. Oddly enough, it was printed just weeks before the final battle in the
Wars of the Roses, the last English battle ever fought by knights in armor.
Fittingly then, the literary fall of Camelot coincided with the real-life end
of chivalryand the end of the Middle Ages as well.

For Your Outline

check understanding

medieval romance

Ask students to explain what a medieval


romance is and identify two examples.

Romances are stories of


adventure, love, heroism,
and chivalry.
They are set in an
idealized world unlike
medieval England.
The real Arthur was a 6thcentury warrior.
Sir Gawain and the Green
Knight and Le Morte
dArthur are two medieval
romances.

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Romance Remind students that the meaning of the term romance has changed over
time. The term originally referred to a
medieval narrative in prose or verse about
knights and heroic deeds. However, today
the term is used to describe a broader range
of works, from love stories to imaginative
adventure novels.

Heroes in Fact and Fiction Countless stories,


books, and movies have been based on the
legendary King Arthur. Challenge students to
identify other such heroes who have similarly
inspired writers. Which heroes are purely
fictional? Which may be based on actual
people? To get students started, mention
such familiar names as Robin Hood, Wyatt
Earp, and Joan of Arc. Have students share
their findings with the class.

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Connecting Literature, History, and Culture


Use this timeline and the questions on the next page to gain insight into the Anglo-Saxon and
medieval periods.

RI 7 Integrate and evaluate multiple sources


of information presented in different media or
formats as well as in words in order to address a
question or solve a problem.

british literary milestones


400

600
CIRCA

673
CIRCA

Connecting Literature,
History, and Culture

750

The Venerable
Bede is born.
The surviving
version of
Beowulf is
likely composed.

800
892

CIRCA

975

Authors begin compiling


data for the Anglo-Saxon
Chronicle, a year-by-year diary
of important world events.
Anglo-Saxon verse is
collected in the Exeter Book.

historical context
400
READING SKILL

read a timeline

449 The Anglo-Saxon invasion of


Britain begins.

RI 7

597

Elicit or explain that each of the three horizontal sections of the timelineBritish
Literary Milestones, Historical Context,
and World Culture and Eventsdisplays a
sequence of events that occurred between
400 and 1600. By looking at the vertical
columns on the timeline, students can see
which events were occurring at approximately the same time.

Christian missionaries
land in Kent; Christianity
begins to spread among
Anglo-Saxons.

600
664

The British Christian Church


unites with the Roman
Catholic Church.

793

Vikings begin the first of many


raids on the Anglo-Saxon
kingdom.

800
871

Alfred the Great becomes king


of Wessex (to 899).

886

Alfred wins important victory


over Danes; Danes accept
Christianity.

world culture and events


400

For practice, have students locate each of


these events on the timeline, by reviewing
the column labeled 1000:
1054 The Christian Church divides into
east and west branches. (See World
Culture and Events.)

500

A mathematician in India
calculates the value of pi.

527

Justinian I becomes Byzantine


emperor.

600

800
800 Charlemagne, who unites
much of Europe, is crowned
emperor of the Holy
Roman Empire.
The Chinese invent
800 gunpowder.
CIRCA

CIRCA

1086 The Domesday Book records the


findings of a property survey ordered
by William the Conqueror. (See British
Literary Milestones.)
1170 Thomas Becket is murdered. (See
Historical Context.)
Ask students what events occurred between
1337 and 1375. Answer: The Hundred Years
War began in 1337. The bubonic plague killed
millions in Europe in 1347. Sir Gawain and
the Green Knight was composed about 1375.

600S Block printing is developed in


China and Korea.
630

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880

Mayan culture
begins decline.

The prophet Muhammad


conquers Mecca, which
becomes the holiest city
of Islam.

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for struggling readers


Understanding a Timeline Explain that the
timeline runs chronologically (in time order)
from left to right across the page. Each of
the six columns represents a 200-year period
between 400 and 1600. The three parallel
rows of the timeline represent events occurring simultaneously. By comparing the three
rows, readers can better understand what
events in literature, history, and culture were
taking place at about the same time.

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making connections
Though William Caxton established the first British printing press, in what
countries was printing first developed? When?
Based on what youve learned in the introductory essay, why are there so few
literary milestones recorded for the early years in Britain?

1000
The surviving version of
1000 Beowulf is recorded by monks.
CIRCA

1086 The Domesday Book records


results of a property survey
ordered by William the
Conquerer.

1200

Chaucer begins
1387 The Canterbury
Tales.

1485 William Caxton prints Sir


Thomas Malorys Le Morte
dArthur.

CIRCA

1200

1400

Wiliam Caxton establishes


1476 first printing press in Britain;
prints first dated book in the
English language (1477).
CIRCA

1192 The Japanese emperor takes


the title of shogun.

additional questions
1. Nearly 400 years before the Christian
Church divided into east and west branches,
what event brought two churches together?
Answer: The British Christian church united
with the Roman Catholic church in 664.

King John signs the Magna


Carta.

1282 England conquers Wales.


1295 A model Parliament is
assembled under Edward I.
1337 The Hundred Years War with
France begins (to 1453).

1000

1095 The first of centuries of holy


wars called Crusades begins
(to 1272).

Early Anglo-Saxon literature mainly took the


form of epic poems that were recited aloud
rather than written down. Moreover, even as
literacy spread and poems were more likely
to be recorded, they had to be written out by
hand, because the printing press hadnt yet
been invented. As a result, very little AngloSaxon writing has survived.

Modern English develops


1430 from Middle English.

1215

1054 The Christian Church divides


into east and west branches.

William Caxton did not invent printing. Printing was developed in China and Korea in the
600s. However, Caxton did establish the first
printing press in Britain in about 1476. People
were printing books in China and Germany
during this time period.

CIRCA

1066 In what will become known


as the Norman Conquest,
William the Conqueror
defeats Harold and becomes
king of England.

Henry II declares himself


lord of Ireland, beginning
centuries of English-Irish
conflict.

Possible answers:

The earliest surviving Paston


1420 letter is written.
CIRCA

1016 Canute, a Dane, becomes


king of England (to 1035).

1171

making connections

1400

Sir Gawain and the Green


1375 Knight is composed.
CIRCA

1000

1170 Thomas Becket is


murdered.

RI 7 Integrate and evaluate


multiple sources of information
presented in different media or
formats as well as in words in
order to address a question or
solve a problem.

1200

2. In 527, Justinian I became Byzantine emperor. Almost 650 years later, a British king
declared himself lord of Ireland. Who was
the king? What was the consequence of his
action? Answer: The king was Henry II. His
action (1171) began centuries of English-Irish
conflict.

1400

1206 Genghis Khan


begins Mongol
conquest of
much of Asia
(to 1227).

1431 Joan of Arc is burned at


the stake.
1453 Ottomans conquer
Constantinople.

The Renaissance
1300 begins in northern
Italy.
CIRCA

In Germany, the Gutenberg


1455 Bible is produced on a
printing press.
CIRCA

1347 Bubonic plague reaches


Europe, killing millions.

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for advanced learners/ap


Making Additional Connections Have
students choose one of the six time periods
shown in the timeline and research other
events that occurred during the 200-year
time span using conventional or electronic
resources. Challenge students to identify
events for each category: British Literary Milestones, Historical Context, and World Culture
and Events. Have students prepare and
present brief oral reports, summarizing

12:00:47 PM

important events and discussing their connection to events shown in the timeline or
discussed in class.

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unit

1
W 7 Conduct short research projects to answer a
question; narrow the inquiry; synthesize multiple
sources, demonstrating understanding of the
subject. W 8 Gather relevant information from
multiple digital sources, using advanced searches
effectively. SL 1 Initiate and participate effectively
in collaborative discussions, building on others ideas
and expressing their own clearly and persuasively.

Arthur Lives
W 7 Conduct short research
projects to answer a question;
narrow the inquiry; synthesize
multiple sources, demonstrating
understanding of the subject.
W 8 Gather relevant information
from multiple digital sources,
using advanced searches
effectively. SL 1 Initiate and
participate effectively in
collaborative discussions, building
on others ideas and expressing
their own clearly and persuasively.

Arthur Lives
Have students read the paragraph. Explain
that stories of Arthur have long been popular.
Ask students to name any books, movies, TV
shows, characters, or scenes based on King
Arthur and his knights with which they are
familiar. Ask students why they think this is
such an enduring story. Possible answer: Arthur
is powerful and admirable, but has human
qualities as well. His knights seem perhaps even
more human. Also, the tales of their quests are
entertaining.

The Legacy of the Era

Stories of King Arthur and his loyal knights have never lost their
appeal. From Alfred, Lord Tennysons 19th-century epic Idylls of
the King, to Mark Twains satiric novel A Connecticut Yankee in King
Arthurs Court, to the Star Wars movies, in which Jedi knights battle
evil in outer space, each generation continues to create its own
interpretations of the Arthurian romance.
CREATE With a partner, search online for other incarnations of the
Arthurian legend. Use keywords such as King Arthur, Camelot,
Knights of the Round Table, Guinevere, and Lancelot to begin your
search. From your results, create a collage of images and words to
show the prevalence of the Arthurian legend over the years.

Keira Knightley and Clive Owen


in the 2004 film King Arthur

CREATE As students begin their research,


encourage them to brainstorm other keywords,
such as Gawain. Suggest that they either do
an overview or else focus on treatments of
one aspect of the story or one character over
the years. After students share their collages,
ask them to consider common themes in the
different incarnations of the Arthurian legend.
Ask them which incarnations surprised them
most. Extend the discussion by asking what
students find most interesting or appealing
about the stories of King Arthur.
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Vocabulary Support
epic, long narrative poem

Research Real Legends [paired option] Have


students research online to identify actual
people or situations that were commonly
compared to or described in Arthurian terms,
such as John F. Kennedys Camelot. Ask them
to think of any other contemporary books,
movies, or people that could be described as
Arthurian. Have students share their findings
with the class.

idylls, short poems idealizing rural life


satiric, ironic or harshly witty
incarnations, versions, forms
prevalence, common occurrence

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Modern Monarchy
In the early days of England, kings ruled the land with absolute
authority. In 1215, the Magna Carta transferred some of that power
to the noblemen. Today, the monarchy plays a less active role in
government, yet to many the royal family is still the public face
of Great Britain and the embodiment of a beloved and romantic
tradition.

Modern Monarchy
Review with students the concept of monarchy
a government headed by a hereditary ruler.
Then have students read and discuss the paragraph. In particular, consider why the monarchy might still be the public face of England,
even though the government has changed.

RESEARCH Go online to research todays royal family. How


involved in creating legislation is todays monarch? What role
does the royalty play in international affairs? What philanthropies
or organizations have members of the royal family founded?
Report your ndings to the class in a brief oral report.

Stories in Song

Princes William and Harry supporting the charity


Sport Relief

Though clubs, music channels, and MP3 players have taken the place of banquet
halls, the spirit of the scops and troubadors survives in modern balladspopular
songs that tell a story. Like the original oral literature, these contemporary verses
combine words and music in an appealing, memorable way. They also reveal the
values of our modern culture as surely as the ancient ballads did theirs.

RESEARCH Have students also research the


role of Parliament in creating legislation and
in international affairs. Encourage students
to hold an informal debate on whether the
monarchy is still necessary.

Stories in Song
Before students read the paragraph, ask them
what comes to mind when they think of
stories in song. As you discuss the paragraph,
ask students to consider the experience of
listening to music today as compared to how
people listened to songs in the days of scops
and troubadours. What is the same about the
experience? What is different?

DISCUSS With a small group, brainstorm examples of current songs that tell a story.
Choose one or two and discuss what they reveal about the worldviews of those who
sing and listen to them.
Musician and singer Tori Amos

DISCUSS Have students think of contemporary


songwriters or musicians who tell stories in
song, including rock bands, folk singers, and
other artists. Invite volunteers to share lyrics
that show the perspective of the songwriter
or singer. Discuss what the songs have in
common.

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for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support
monarchy, government by a hereditary
sovereign

Songwriting Challenge students to try their


hand at writing a song that tells a story.
The song need not be personal or autobiographical; encourage students to think about
contemporary events. Ask them to consider
what makes a song enduring and widely
appealing. Invite volunteers to share their
finished work with the class.

legislation, the act of making laws


philanthropies, charitable institutions
contemporary, current; modern

12:00:19 PM

legacy

NA_L12TE-u01-ul.indd

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37

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8:19:16 AM

Focus and Motivate

RL 2 Provide an objective summary of the text.


RL 3 Analyze the impact of the authors choices
regarding how to develop and relate elements of
a story. RL 4 Determine the meaning of words
and phrases as they are used in the text, including
figurative meanings.

The Epic Tradition

Text
Analysis
Workshop

Included in this workshop:


RL 2 Provide an objective summary
of the text. RL 3 Analyze the impact
of the authors choices regarding
how to develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 4 Determine the
meaning of words and phrases as
they are used in the text, including
figurative meanings.

Poetic Devices Point out that in times past,


epics were told from memory, before an
audience. Poets used sound devices, such as
rhyme and stock epithets, to help remember
the poem. Ask students to think about how
they would tell or perform a story, if they
had to do it repeatedly. Also, ask them to
think about telling a story of a heros deeds
in a vivid way that can be remembered and
repeated. Remind students that epics not only
entertained but also told a certain amount of
history. Explain that for the sake of rhythm
and entertainment, poets embellished the
tales so that the heroes became legendary.

rosy-fingered
dawn

Essential Course
of Study

ecos

What do you do to celebrate the heroes of your day? Hold a parade? Have a party?
Attend a banquet where speakers chronicle the heros deeds? As far back as the
third millenium b.c., heroes have been celebrated in a variety of ways. One type
of celebration common to many cultures throughout history is to honor the heros
story in an epic.

The Epic Tradition


An epic is a long narrative poem
that celebrates a heros deeds.
The earliest epic tales survived for
centuries as oral traditions before
they were finally written down.
They came into existence as spoken
words and were retold by poets
from one generation to the next.
Most orally composed epics date
back to preliterate periodsbefore
the cultures that produced them
had developed written forms.

Detail of Bayeux Tapestry (11th century)

Since many epics were based on historical fact, their public performance
provided both entertainment and education for the audience. The oral poets
(known in different cultures as scops or bards) drew upon existing songs and
legends, which they embellished or combined with original material. The
poets had to be master improvisers, able to compose verse in their heads
while simultaneously singing or chanting it. One characteristic feature of oral
poetry is the repetition of certain words, phrases, or even lines. Two of the most
notable examples of repeated elements are stock epithets and kennings.
Stock epithets are adjectives that point out special traits of particular persons
or things. In Homer, stock epithets are often compound adjectives, such as the
swift-footed used to describe Achilles in the Iliad (page 78).

Use a Two-Column Chart to list some examples of stock epithets and kennings. Invite
students to suggest examples of both, either
from epics they have read or examples that
they themselves make up.
Stock Epithet
Resourceful
Odysseus

The Epic

Kennings are poetic synonyms found in Germanic poems, such as the AngloSaxon epic Beowulf (page 42). Rather than being an adjective, like an epithet,
a kenning is a descriptive phrase or compound word that substitutes for
a noun. For example, in Beowulf the Almightys enemy and sin-stained
demon are two kennings that are used in place of Grendels name.

Kenning
image catcher
to describe a
camera
silver song sun
to describe a
music CD

Stock epithets and kennings were building blocks that a poet could recite
while mentally preparing for the next line or stanza. Epithets had an added
advantagethey were designed to fit metrically into specific parts of the
lines of verse. In skillful hands, these formulas helped to establish tone
and reinforce character traits and setting.

38

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Two-Column Chart p. A25

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Note Taking For students who are unfamiliar


with epics or need help with note taking,
hand out the copy master before discussing
this page.

Note Taking p. 9

Explain that they will be learning many terms


relating to epics in this workshop. Discuss
the major terms on this spread (epic, stock
epithet, kenning) as students record notes on
the copy master.

38

unit

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5:58:02 PM

strategies for
reading an epic

Epic Proportions
Epics from different languages and time periods do not always have the
same characteristics. Kennings, for example, are not found in Homers epics.
All epics, however, concern the actions of a hero, who can be described as
being of noble birth or high position, and often of great historical or
legendary importance
exhibiting character traits, or qualities, that reflect important ideals
of society
performing courageous, sometimes superhuman, deeds that reflect
the values of the era
performing actions that often determine the fate of a nation or group
of people

When reading an epic, use the


following strategies:
Decide what virtues the
hero embodies.
Determine the heros role in
bringing about any changes
in fortune for the characters, the nation, or the
group of people depicted
in the story.
If a passage confuses you,
go back and summarize the
main idea of the passage.

In addition, most epics share certain conventions, which reflect the largerthan-life events that a hero might experience.
The setting is vast in scope, often involving more than one nation.
The plot is complicated by supernatural beings or events and may involve
a long and dangerous journey through foreign lands.
Dialogue often includes long, formal speeches delivered by the major
characters.

Epic Proportions
Epic Heroes and Conventions Before they read
this section, tell students that all traditional
epics feature a hero. Ask students to name
epic heroes they can think of; then ask them
what these heroes have in common. Point
out the qualities listed on this page and have
students give pertinent details about the
heroes they have named.
Have students read about the conventions
of epics. Encourage them to suggest a book,
movie, or television show that can be considered an epic. Possible answer: Braveheart. Suggest that students use the conventions of an
epic to evaluate the example. Possible answer:
The hero is courageous; he leads his Scottish
countrymen in a revolt against the ruling
English. Good and evil are clearly defined.
Close Read
Student responses should include a setting that
is vast in scope and universal ideas involving
good and evil.

The theme reflects timeless values, such as courage and honor, and
encompasses universal ideas, such as good and evil or life and death.
The style includes formal diction (the writers choice of words and
sentence structure) and a serious tone (the expression of the writers
attitude toward the subject).
Close Read

A powerful monster, living down


In the darkness, growled in pain, impatient
As day after day the music rang
Loud in that hall, the harps rejoicing
Call and the poets clear songs, sung
Of the ancient beginnings of us all, recalling
The Almighty making the earth, shaping
These beautiful plains marked off by oceans,
Then proudly setting the sun and moon
To glow across the land and light it;

What characteristics of the


epic do you recognize in this
passage?

from Beowulf

text analysis workshop

10 10:23:00 AM NA_L12PE-u01s10-law.indd

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39

11/22/10

for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Language: Skill Words Help students understand these words by listing them on the
board and asking students to give examples
or definitions:

Research and Analyze Form Ask students


to research an epic. Students should try to
learn such things as when the epic was first
recorded, what actual person and events
the epic may be based on, and to whom
the poem is attributed. Students should
also analyze the epics for stock epithets,
kennings, and other common epic conventions. Invite students to share their findings
with the class.

characteristics: distinctive qualities


traits: qualities
ideals: honorable principles
conventions: accepted practices
vast: large, wide

12:01:00 PM

diction: choice of words

text analysis workshop

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39

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8:16:27 AM

The Anglo-Saxon Epic

Focus and Motivate

RL 2 Determine two or more themes or central


ideas of a text. RL 3 Analyze the impact of the
authors choices regarding how to develop and
relate elements of a story. RL 4 Determine the
meaning of words and phrases as they are used in
the text, including figurative meanings; analyze
the impact of specific word choices on meaning
and tone, including words with multiple meanings
or language that is particularly fresh, engaging,
or beautiful. W 2 Write informative/explanatory
texts to examine and convey complex ideas,
concepts, and information clearly and accurately
through the effective selection, organization,
and analysis of content. W 9a (RL 3) Analyze the
impact of specific word choices on meaning and
tone. L 1a Apply the understanding that usage is a
matter of convention and can change over time.
L 3 Apply knowledge of language to make effective
choices for meaning or style. L 4a Use context as a
clue to the meaning of a word. L 4b Identify
and correctly use patterns of word changes that
indicate different meanings or parts of speech.
L 5a Interpret figures of speech in context and
analyze their role in the text. L 5b Analyze nuances
in the meaning of words with similar denotations.

RL 3 Analyze the impact of the


authors choices regarding how
to develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 4 Determine the
meaning of words and phrases as
they are used in the text, including
figurative meanings; analyze the
impact of specific word choices
on meaning and tone, including
words with multiple meanings or
language that is particularly fresh,
engaging, or beautiful. L 4a Use
context as a clue to the meaning
of a word. L 5a Interpret figures
of speech in context and analyze
their role in the text. L 5b Analyze
nuances in the meaning of words
with similar denotations.

did you know?


The original Beowulf
manuscript . . .
exists in only one copy.
was damaged and
nearly destroyed in a fire
in the 18th century.
has now been preserved
through digitization.

from Beowulf
Epic Poem by the Beowulf Poet Translated by Burton Raffel
VIDEO TRAILER

ecos

Meet the Author

The Beowulf Poet

about 750?

Old English bears little resemblance to


Modern English and so must be translated
for readers today. By the time Beowulf
was written, the Anglo-Saxons had also
converted to Christianity. This Christian
influence is evident in the poem.

Hear me! So begins Beowulf, the oldest


surviving epic poem in English. The
command was intended to capture the
listening audiences attention, for Beowulf
was originally chanted or sung aloud.
Centuries of poet-singers, called scops
(shIps), recited the adventures of Beowulf.
It is our great fortune that eventually a
gifted poet unified the heroic accounts
and produced an enduring work of art.
By Anonymous Unfortunately, we dont

know who that poet was or when Beowulf


was composed. Scholars contend that the
poet may have lived anytime between the
middle of the seventh century a.d. and the
end of the tenth century. However, we do
know where the poem was written. In the
fifth century, bloody warfare in northern
Europe had driven many Germanicspeaking tribes, including groups of
Angles, Saxons, and Jutes, to abandon
their homes. Many of these groups settled
in England, where they established what is
now called Anglo-Saxon civilization.

about the author


Have students read this page and summarize
key points about the history of Beowulf. Point
out that Beowulf, as recorded by the monks, is
the most famous surviving epic of its time.

Essential Course
of Study

KEYWORD: HML12-40A

The people of the Anglo-Saxon period


spoke a language known as Old English, the
language in which Beowulf was composed.

Long Ago and Far Away Although


Beowulf was composed in England, the
poem describes events that take place
in Scandinavia around the 500s among
two groups: the Danes of what is now
Denmark and the Geats (gCts) of what is
now Sweden. Beowulf is a Geat warrior
who crosses the sea to defeat Grendel, a
monster who is terrorizing the Danes. He
later returns to his homeland to succeed
his uncle as king of the Geats.

Beowulf celebrates warrior culture


and deeds requiring great strength and
courage. Scops recited the poem and
other tales in mead halls, large wooden
buildings that provided a safe haven for
warriors returning from battle. During
the performances, audiences feasted and
drank mead, an alcoholic beverage.
Survivor The sole surviving copy of Beowulf

dates from about the year 1000. It is the


work of Christian monks who preserved
the literature of the past by copying
manuscripts. After suffering mistreatment
and several near-disasters, the Beowulf
manuscript is now safely housed in the
British Library in London.

Author Online
Go to thinkcentral.com. KEYWORD: HML12-40B

40

Selection Resources

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40

See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 1118


Summary, pp. 1920*
Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 2124*
Vocabulary, pp. 2527*
Grammar and Style, p. 30

Definition Mapping, p. E6
Jigsaw Reading, p. A1
Comparison Matrix, p. A24
Cluster Diagram, p. B18
INTERACTIVE READER
ADAPTED INTERACTIVE READER

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS
Selection Tests, pp. 2528

* Resources for Differentiation

NA_L12TE-u01-br.indd

40

ELL ADAPTED INTERACTIVE


READER

Also in Spanish

12/15/10

Video Trailer
TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
PowerNotes DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

7:27:43
NA_L12PE-u01
PM

Go to thinkcentral.com to preview
the Video Trailer introducing this
selection. Other features that support
the selection include
PowerNotes presentation
ThinkAloud models to enhance
comprehension
WordSharp vocabulary tutorials
interactive writing and grammar
instruction

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

1/13/11

11:50:17 AM

15/10

Teach

text analysis: characteristics of an epic


An epic, a long narrative poem that traces the adventures of
a great hero, has the power to transport you to another time
and place. Beowulf takes you to the Anglo-Saxon period and
the land of the Danes and the Geats, where a mighty warrior
battles fantastic monsters. As you read the poem, note some
of the following characteristics of epic poetry:

Where do

monsters

The hero is a legendary figure who performs deeds requiring


incredible courage and strength.
The hero embodies character traits that reflect lofty ideals.
The poet uses formal diction and a serious tone.
The poem reflects timeless values and universal themes.

reading strategy: reading old english poetry


Old English poetry is marked by a strong rhythm that is easy to
chant or sing. Here are some of the techniques used in an Old
English poem:
alliteration, or the repetition of consonant sounds at the
beginning of words, which helps unify the lines

Where do

MONSTERS lurk?

lurk?

Unlike the monsters in Beowulf, those


in our world are not always easy to
identify. Evil can hide in the most
unexpected places: behind a smiling
face, between the lines of a law, in
otherwise noble-sounding words. Even
when evil is clearly exposed, people may
disagree on how to confront it.

Explore with students the various forms that


evil may take, from literary and cinematic
villains to people or events in the news. Then
have them do the QUICKWRITE.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

Model the Skill:

QUICKWRITE What does evil mean to


you? Write your own definition of the
word, and provide some examples of
real-life monsters.

characteristics
of an epic
To model how to analyze the characters
in an epic, conduct the following activity:
On the board, list some famous epics, such
as Homers Iliad and Odyssey, the Spanish
Poema del Cid, and Miltons Paradise Lost.
Ask students which ones they are familiar
with, and have students identify some of
the characteristics the epics share, such
as legendary heroes or universal themes.
Ask students why they think epic poems
remain popular over time. Point out that
these epics are all exciting to read and capture a historical time and place. Also, most
readers can relate to the universal themes.

So mankinds enemy continued his crimes


caesura (sG-zhMrPE), or a pause dividing each line, with each
part having two accented syllables to help maintain the
rhythm of the lines
He took what he wanted, // all the treasures
kenning, a metaphorical compound word or phrase
substituted for a noun or name, which enhances meaning
for example, mankinds enemy used in place of Grendel
As you read Beowulf, note examples of these techniques and
consider their effect on rhythm and meaning in the poem.

vocabulary in context
The words shown here help convey the monstrous forces
Beowulf faces in the epic. Choose a word from the list that
has the same definition as each numbered item.

word
list

1. claw

affliction

lair

purge

gorge

livid

talon

infamous

loathsome

2. burden

3. notorious

GUIDED PRACTICE Ask students to describe


how an epic poem is similar to a historical
novel and how it is different.

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

4. cram

Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

Model the Skill: reading


beowulf

7:27:43
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41

vocabulary in context
DIAGNOSE WORD KNOWLEDGE Have all
students complete Vocabulary in Context.
Check their words and phrases against the
following:
affliction (E-flGkPshEn) n. a force that oppresses
or causes suffering
gorge (grj) v. to stuff with food; glut
infamous (GnPfE-mEs) adj. having a very bad
reputation

old english poetry

41

11/22/10

VOCABULARY SKILL

L4

lair (ler) n. the den or resting place of


a wild animal
livid (lGvPGd) adj. discolored from being bruised
loathsome (lIthPsEm) adj. disgusting
purge (prj) v. to cleanse or rid of something
undesirable
talon (tBlPEn) n. a claw

11:59:41 AM

To model how alliteration and kenning are


used in Old English, write the following
lines on the board, and identify examples
of each:
In darkness dwells the dragon,
Mankinds foe amidst the shadows.
Point out that darkness, dwells, dragon are
alliteration; mankinds foe is an example of
kenning.

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Study p. 25

Reading Old English Poetry p. 23


(for student use while reading the
selection)

beowulf

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41

RL 4
L 5a

41

1/3/11

8:14:00 AM

Practice and Apply


summary
The monster Grendel has been terrorizing the
Danes. Beowulf, a young prince of the Geats,
sails to the Danish shore and offers to kill
Grendel. The Danish king Hrothgar gratefully
accepts. A fierce battle between Beowulf and
the monster ends with Grendels death. When
Grendels mother seeks revenge, Beowulf
battles with her and kills her. Years later,
when Beowulf is the aged king of the Geats,
he fights a dragon. Beowulf defeats the beast
but is mortally wounded. The Geats build a
tower in memory of their beloved leader.

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. As
they read Beowulf, tell students to look for
contemporary aspects of the epic.

Hrothgar (hrthPgrQ), king of the Danes, has built a wonderful mead hall called
Herot (hDrQEt), where his subjects congregate and make merry. As this selection
opens, a fierce and powerful monster named Grendel invades the mead hall,
bringing death and destruction.

grendel
R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

old english poetry

RL 4
L 5a

Possible answer: The alliteration conveys a


menacing mood, a mood of evil.

Extend the Discussion How might the


idea that the monster is impatient foreshadow future events in the poem?
10

42

A powerful monster, living down


In the darkness, growled in pain, impatient a
As day after day the music rang
Loud in that hall, the harps rejoicing
Call and the poets clear songs, sung
Of the ancient beginnings of us all, recalling
The Almighty making the earth, shaping
These beautiful plains marked off by oceans,
Then proudly setting the sun and moon
To glow across the land and light it;
The corners of the earth were made lovely with trees
And leaves, made quick with life, with each
Of the nations who now move on its face. And then
As now warriors sang of their pleasure:

a OLD ENGLISH POETRY

Reread lines 12 aloud. Notice


the use of alliteration with the
repetition of the letters p and d.
What mood, or feeling, does the
alliteration convey?

Analyze Visuals
Examine the composition, or
arrangement of shapes, in this
photograph. How does the
angle of the photo contribute to
its impact?

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

NA_L12PE-u01s11-Beowul.indd

42

11/22/10

differentiated instruction

42

unit

for english language learners

for struggling readers

Word Associations Instruct students to


prepare a visual representation of a scene
from Beowulf. Tell them to carefully reread
the lines describing their chosen scene. Have
students create a list of any descriptive words
they encounter. They should then use these
words to help them create their visual representation.

The Audio Anthology CD provides extra support for students with reading difficulties.
It is also recommended for use with English
language learners.

12:01:06
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8:26:42 AM

2/10

Reading Support
This selection on thinkcentral.com includes
embedded ThinkAloud modelsstudents
thinking aloud about the story to model the
kinds of questions a good reader would ask
about a selection.

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The low angle makes the
dead tree seem more ominous because it looms
overhead and is silhouetted against the moon.

cultural connection
Oral Poets Explain that oral poet-singers
were not unique to Anglo-Saxon civilization.
Other cultures had them as well. For example,
the Celtic peoples of Britain and Ireland had
oral poets known as bards, who sang of the
deeds of great heroes, such as King Arthur.
The people of West Africa had oral historians
known as griots, who preserved and passed on
accounts of heroic deeds and events. The most
famous of the tales told by the griots is probably the African epic Sundiata.

beowulf

12:01:06
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PM

43

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11/22/10

for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Use Definition Mapping


to teach these words: grant (line 160), final
(line 281), survive (line 625), brief (line 686).

Analyze Tone Instruct students to refer to


the first passage in Beowulf. Ask them to
describe the mood of the monster. Have
students discuss how this description might
serve as a foreshadowing of events to come.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Definition Mapping p. E6

12:01:25 PM

Possible answer: Grendel is described as living


in darkness and being in pain and impatient,
negative characteristics that foreshadow the
difficult and violent times to come.

beowulf

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1/3/11

8:26:53 AM

15

revisit the big question

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


In lines 1929, Grendel is said to have descended from Cain. How does this indicate
that Grendel is evil? Possible answer: In the
biblical book of Genesis, Cain intentionally kills
his brother Abel, becoming historys first murderer. The Beowulf poet portrays Grendel as a
descendent of Cain to emphasize the monsters
inherent evil.

20

25

30

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The lines might suggest


the idea of good triumphing over evil or
God triumphing over the Devil.

35

40

45

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The tone of this passage


is one of great sorrow. The words joyless,
mourning, and wept all strongly convey
Hrothgars despair at seeing the brutalized
bodies of his warriors.

50

55

Extend the Discussion What is the


meaning of lines 4849: . . . fearing / The
beginning might not be the end?
44

So Hrothgars men lived happy in his hall


Till the monster stirred, that demon, that fiend,
Grendel, who haunted the moors, the wild
Marshes, and made his home in a hell
Not hell but earth. He was spawned in that slime,
Conceived by a pair of those monsters born
Of Cain, murderous creatures banished
By God, punished forever for the crime
Of Abels death. The Almighty drove
Those demons out, and their exile was bitter,
Shut away from men; they split
Into a thousand forms of evilspirits
And fiends, goblins, monsters, giants,
A brood forever opposing the Lords
Will, and again and again defeated. b

17 moors (mMrz): broad, open


regions with patches of bog.
19 spawned: given birth to.
21 Cain: the eldest son of Adam and
Eve. According to the Bible (Genesis 4),
he murdered his younger brother Abel.

b EPIC

Then, when darkness had dropped, Grendel


Went up to Herot, wondering what the warriors
Would do in that hall when their drinking was done.
He found them sprawled in sleep, suspecting
Nothing, their dreams undisturbed. The monsters
Thoughts were as quick as his greed or his claws:
He slipped through the door and there in the silence
Snatched up thirty men, smashed them
Unknowing in their beds and ran out with their bodies,
The blood dripping behind him, back
To his lair, delighted with his nights slaughter.
At daybreak, with the suns first light, they saw
How well he had worked, and in that gray morning
Broke their long feast with tears and laments
For the dead. Hrothgar, their lord, sat joyless
In Herot, a mighty prince mourning
The fate of his lost friends and companions,
Knowing by its tracks that some demon had torn
His followers apart. He wept, fearing
The beginning might not be the end. And that night c
Grendel came again, so set
On murder that no crime could ever be enough,
No savage assault quench his lust
For evil. Then each warrior tried
To escape him, searched for rest in different
Beds, as far from Herot as they could find,
Seeing how Grendel hunted when they slept.
Distance was safety; the only survivors
Were those who fled him. Hate had triumphed.

Note the description in lines


2329 of supernatural creatures
that are again and again
defeated. What universal
theme might these lines
suggest?

lair (lr) n. the den or resting


place of a wild animal

EPIC
What is the tone of lines 4449?
What words and details convey
this tone?

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

lair: Have students create a semantic map


for lair. Write the word in a center circle and
add the definition given, the den or resting
place of a wild animal. Draw spider legs
from the center circle and have students add
synonyms to complete the map. Possible
answers: nest, hideaway, haunt, hole, burrow

44

unit

NA_L12PE-u01s11-Beowul.indd

44

11/22/10

differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Vocabulary: Multiple-Meaning Words
[small-group option] Explain that the verb
stir as it is used in line 16 means to become
active. However, stir also has other meanings, such as to mix with a circular motion.
Discuss how students can use context clues
to figure out the appropriate meaning of a
multiple-meaning word. Then have mixedlanguage-ability Jigsaw groups investigate
these other multiple-meaning words and

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share their findings: moors (line 17); drove


(line 23); bitter (line 24); brood (line 28); will
(line 29); broke (line 43); rest (line 54); bent
(line 86).
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Jigsaw Reading p. A1

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60

65

70

75

80

85

90

95

100

So Grendel ruled, fought with the righteous,


One against many, and won; so Herot
Stood empty, and stayed deserted for years,
Twelve winters of grief for Hrothgar, king
Of the Danes, sorrow heaped at his door
By hell-forged hands. His misery leaped d
The seas, was told and sung in all
Mens ears: how Grendels hatred began,
How the monster relished his savage war
On the Danes, keeping the bloody feud
Alive, seeking no peace, offering
No truce, accepting no settlement, no price
In gold or land, and paying the living
For one crime only with another. No one
Waited for reparation from his plundering claws:
That shadow of death hunted in the darkness,
Stalked Hrothgars warriors, old
And young, lying in waiting, hidden
In mist, invisibly following them from the edge
Of the marsh, always there, unseen.
So mankinds enemy continued his crimes,
Killing as often as he could, coming
Alone, bloodthirsty and horrible. Though he lived
In Herot, when the night hid him, he never
Dared to touch king Hrothgars glorious
Throne, protected by GodGod,
Whose love Grendel could not know. But Hrothgars
Heart was bent. The best and most noble
Of his council debated remedies, sat
In secret sessions, talking of terror
And wondering what the bravest of warriors could do.
And sometimes they sacrificed to the old stone gods,
Made heathen vows, hoping for Hells
Support, the Devils guidance in driving
Their affliction off. That was their way,
And the heathens only hope, Hell
Always in their hearts, knowing neither God
Nor His passing as He walks through our world, the Lord
Of Heaven and earth; their ears could not hear
His praise nor know His glory. Let them
Beware, those who are thrust into danger,
Clutched at by trouble, yet can carry no solace
In their hearts, cannot hope to be better! Hail
To those who will rise to God, drop off
Their dead bodies and seek our Fathers peace!

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

d OLD ENGLISH POETRY

What does the kenning hellforged hands in line 64 suggest


about Grendel?

Possible answer: Hell-forged hands


suggests that Grendel is a creature of hell,
in league with the Devil.

revisit the big question


73 reparation: something done to
make amends for loss or suffering.
In Germanic society, someone who
killed another person was generally
expected to make a payment to the
victims family as a way of restoring
peace.

84 The reference to God shows


the influence of Christianity on the
Beowulf Poet.

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


Discuss Have students reread lines 7985.
Besides reflecting Christian influence on the
original Anglo-Saxon poem, in what way do
these lines establish the theme of conflict between good and evil? Possible answer: These
lines associate Grendel with Satan (mankinds
enemy, line 79) and Hrothgar with God (glorious / Throne, protected by GodGod, / Whose
love Grendel could not know, lines 8385).

tiered discussion prompts


91 heathen (hCPthEn): pagan; nonChristian. Though the Beowulf Poet
was a Christian, he recognized that
the characters in the poem lived
before the Germanic tribes were
converted to Christianity, when they
still worshiped the old stone gods.

In lines 6481, use these prompts to help


students understand Grendels merciless war
against the Danes:
Summarize What does this passage describe? Possible answer: how the evil and implacable Grendel relentlessly wages a bloody
war against the Danes

affliction (E-flGkPshEn) n. a
force that oppresses or causes
suffering

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RL 4
L 5a

old english poetry

45

Analyze What words and phrases does the


poet use to establish Grendel as a fearsome creature? Possible answer: The poet
uses strongly negative expressions, such as
hatred, monster, bloody, stalked,
bloodthirsty, and horrible and describes
how Grendel relished his savage war and
refused to accept any settlement or truce.

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Evaluate How effective is the poet in


conveying Grendels assault on the Danes?
Explain. Accept all thoughtful responses.

for struggling readers

lines 5960: what Grendel did

Comprehension Support The poems long,


complicated sentences often consist of
groups of related phrases or clauses punctuated with commas and sometimes with
colons or semicolons. Model how to break
down these sentences by reducing them to
smaller units. For example, the sentence
that spans lines 5964 can be reduced to
these parts:

lines 6061: how Herot was affected

VOCABULARY

lines 6264: how Hrothgar was affected

own the word

Have student pairs apply this strategy to


the long sentence that spans lines 6472.

affliction: Tell students that the Latin word


affligere means to strike down. Have students explain the relationship between the
meaning of the Latin word and affliction.

L4

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tiered discussion prompts


Review lines 104123. Use these prompts to
encourage students to discuss the lines on this
page:
Comprehend In lines 104108, how does
the poet describe Healfdanes son? Possible
answer: sorrowful, bitter, unable to let go of
grief
Speculate From reading lines 120123, what
characteristics do you think the fourteen
men that Beowulf chose to accompany him
had in common? Possible answer: proven
warriors, skilled in battle, courageous

beowulf
105

110

115

120

46

So the living sorrow of Healfdanes son


Simmered, bitter and fresh, and no wisdom
Or strength could break it: that agony hung
On king and people alike, harsh
And unending, violent and cruel, and evil.
In his far-off home Beowulf, Higlacs
Follower and the strongest of the Geatsgreater
And stronger than anyone anywhere in this world
Heard how Grendel filled nights with horror
And quickly commanded a boat fitted out,
Proclaiming that hed go to that famous king,
Would sail across the sea to Hrothgar,
Now when help was needed. None
Of the wise ones regretted his going, much
As he was loved by the Geats: the omens were good,
And they urged the adventure on. So Beowulf
Chose the mightiest men he could find,
The bravest and best of the Geats, fourteen
In all, and led them down to their boat;

Targeted Passage

The Oseberg Ship (850), Viking. Viking Ship Museum, Bygdoy,


Norway. Werner Forman/Art Resource, New York.

104 Healfdanes son: Hrothgar.

109110 Higlacs follower: a warrior


loyal to Higlac (hGgPlBkQ), king of the
Geats (and Beowulfs uncle).

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unit

for advanced learners/ap

for reluctant readers

Analyze Technique Ask students to study


lines 104108. Then have them discuss
the poets technique, especially his use of
imagery (the living sorrow . . . Simmered);
sentence structure; and adjectives (harsh /
And unending, violent and cruel, and evil) to
convey meaning and create a mood. Challenge students to write a concise paragraph
conveying the same information in a similarly
imaginative way. Have them share their
paragraph with a small group.

Connect to the Text Have students reread


lines 120122. Ask students if they were going to fight Grendel, who they would choose
to go with them. What characteristics would
they look for in these warriors? Possible
answer: The warriors should be loyal to their
leader, brave, and strong.

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He knew the sea, would point the prow


Straight to that distant Danish shore. . . . e

Beowulf and his men sail over the sea to the land of the Danes to offer
help to Hrothgar. They are escorted by a Danish guard to Herot, where
Wulfgar, one of Hrothgars soldiers, tells the king of their arrival. Hrothgar
knows of Beowulf and is ready to welcome the young prince and his men.
125

130

135

140

145

150

155

Then Wulfgar went to the door and addressed


The waiting seafarers with soldiers words:
My lord, the great king of the Danes, commands me
To tell you that he knows of your noble birth
And that having come to him from over the open
Sea you have come bravely and are welcome.
Now go to him as you are, in your armor and helmets,
But leave your battle-shields here, and your spears,
Let them lie waiting for the promises your words
May make.
Beowulf arose, with his men
Around him, ordering a few to remain
With their weapons, leading the others quickly
Along under Herots steep roof into Hrothgars
Presence. Standing on that princes own hearth,
Helmeted, the silvery metal of his mail shirt
Gleaming with a smiths high art, he greeted
The Danes great lord:
Hail, Hrothgar!
Higlac is my cousin and my king; the days
Of my youth have been filled with glory. Now Grendels
Name has echoed in our land: sailors
Have brought us stories of Herot, the best
Of all mead-halls, deserted and useless when the moon
Hangs in skies the sun had lit,
Light and life fleeing together.
My people have said, the wisest, most knowing
And best of them, that my duty was to go to the Danes
Great king. They have seen my strength for themselves,
Have watched me rise from the darkness of war,
Dripping with my enemies blood. I drove
Five great giants into chains, chased
All of that race from the earth. I swam
In the blackness of night, hunting monsters
Out of the ocean, and killing them one

EPIC
An epic is a long narrative poem
that traces the adventures of a
great hero. Almost all national
cultures have their own epics,
whose stories and heroes play
a role in defining the national
character. An epic may describe
how a nation was established
or highlight specific traits
associated with its people. Read
lines 109124. At what point in
the story is Beowulf introduced?
What traits of an epic hero does
he appear to possess? Which
traits of Beowulfs might also
be used to describe the British
people and their origins?

47

142 cousin: here, a general term for a


relative. Beowulf is actually Higlacs
nephew.

Comprehension Support Call students attention to the lengthy sentence that spans
lines 143148 (Now Grendels / Name has
echoed . . .). Suggest that students approach
such long sentences by breaking them up
into parts. For example, to facilitate comprehension, the sentence might be broken
up into three sections: lines 143144, lines
144147 (sailors . . . lit), and line 148. Help
students paraphrase each of these parts.

Model the Skill:

epic

To model how to identify the characteristics of an epic hero, create an initial list of
epic hero traits for students. For example,
an epic hero is of noble birth or high
position and is of historical or legendary
importance. Then have students finish the
list with the traits that Beowulf has shown
thus far.
Possible answer: Beowulf is introduced
when he learns of Grendel terrorizing the
Danes and how the monster filled nights
with horror. He sets sail to offer help to
Hrothgar. Beowulf is very strong, courageous, and has a great sense of duty, traits
an epic hero possesses. His sense of duty
and loyalty could also be used to describe
the British people.

140 smiths high art: the skilled


craft of a blacksmith (a person who
fashions objects from iron).

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand Beowulf as an epic hero in lines 141160:
Summarize Why does Beowulf come to see
Hrothgar? Possible answer: Beowulf is volunteering his services, suggesting that it is his
duty to do so because of his many previous
heroic accomplishments.
Interpret What impression of Beowulf does
the poet convey through Beowulfs opening remarks to Hrothgar? Possible answer:
Beowulfs opening remarks suggest an epic
heroa warrior who is bold and confident
and has performed many heroic deeds.

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for struggling readers

RL 3
e

139 mail shirt: flexible body armor


made of metal links or overlapping
metal scales.

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T E X T A N A LY S I S

Point out that lines 145147 describe Herot.


Elicit or explain that the phrase life fleeing
in line 148 refers to people leaving Herot in
fear of Grendels deadly attacks.

12:01:38 PM

Evaluate What is the effect of having


Beowulf describe his own great deeds?
Possible answer: Beowulf sounds confident
and matter-of-fact about his accomplishments. Some readers might think he sounds
boastful. However, had someone else described his deeds, Beowulf might sound even
more impressive.

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160

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The people of Beowulfs


time might have valued great strength and
courage because they were frequently
attacked by enemies.

165

170

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand Beowulfs offer to fight Grendel, which
is discussed in lines 160189:
Summarize What is Beowulf asking of
Hrothgar? Possible answer: Beowulf is asking Hrothgar to let him and his men fight
Grendel.
Interpret Why does Beowulf insist that my
hands alone shall fight for me? Possible
answer: Because Grendel needs no weapons, Beowulf feels that fighting him with
hands alone gives Beowulf no advantage
and thus makes the fight fair.
Evaluate What is the significance of
Beowulfs statement, Fate will unwind as
it must? Possible answer: As discussed in
the historical essay, such fatalism was part of
the Anglo-Saxons pagan religion.

175

180

185

190

195

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

purge: Tell students that the connotation


of purge in this sentence is to purify.
Then have them explain why Beowulf is
calling for the hall to be purged. Possible
answer: The hall is to be purified, rid of evil.
gorge: Tell students that the Latin root for
gorge is gurga, throat. Remind students
that in this instance gorge is used as a
verb, and review the definition with them.
Then have them identify the meaning of
gorge when it is used as a noun. Possible
answer: A gorge is a deep narrow passage
with steep sides.

48

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48

By one; death was my errand and the fate


They had earned. Now Grendel and I are called f
Together, and Ive come. Grant me, then,
Lord and protector of this noble place,
A single request! I have come so far,
Oh shelterer of warriors and your peoples loved friend,
That this one favor you should not refuse me
That I, alone and with the help of my men,
May purge all evil from this hall. I have heard,
Too, that the monsters scorn of men
Is so great that he needs no weapons and fears none.
Nor will I. My lord Higlac
Might think less of me if I let my sword
Go where my feet were afraid to, if I hid
Behind some broad linden shield: my hands
Alone shall fight for me, struggle for life
Against the monster. God must decide
Who will be given to deaths cold grip.
Grendels plan, I think, will be
What it has been before, to invade this hall
And gorge his belly with our bodies. If he can,
If he can. And I think, if my time will have come,
Therell be nothing to mourn over, no corpse to prepare
For its grave: Grendel will carry our bloody
Flesh to the moors, crunch on our bones
And smear torn scraps of our skin on the walls
Of his den. No, I expect no Danes
Will fret about sewing our shrouds, if he wins.
And if death does take me, send the hammered
Mail of my armor to Higlac, return
The inheritance I had from Hrethel, and he
From Wayland. Fate will unwind as it must!

EPIC
Notice that in lines 153159,
Beowulf boasts about past
victories that required
superhuman strength and
courage. Why might the people
of Beowulfs time have valued
such traits?
purge (prj) v. to cleanse or rid of
something undesirable

172 linden shield: a shield made


from the wood of a linden tree.
172174 Beowulf insists on fighting
Grendel without weapons.

gorge (grj) v. to stuff with


food; glut
Targeted Passage

185 shrouds: cloths in which dead


bodies are wrapped.

188 Hrethel (hrDthPEl): a former king


of the GeatsHiglacs father and
Beowulfs grandfather.

Hrothgar replied, protector of the Danes:


Beowulf, youve come to us in friendship, and because
Of the reception your father found at our court.
Edgetho had begun a bitter feud,
Killing Hathlaf, a Wulfing warrior:
Your fathers countrymen were afraid of war,
If he returned to his home, and they turned him away.
Then he traveled across the curving waves
To the land of the Danes. I was new to the throne,
Then, a young man ruling this wide

189 Wayland: a famous blacksmith


and magician.

193 Edgetho (DjPthI): Beowulfs father.


194 Wulfing: a member of another
Germanic tribe.

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for advanced learners/ap
Analyze Tone and Characterization As students read Beowulf, ask them to reflect on
the poets tone and characterization. What
can students infer about the poets feelings
toward Beowulf? toward Hrothgar? toward
the poems other characters? Does the poet
depict all of the characters in a black-andwhite way, as either good or bad, or are there
shades of gray? Does the poet imply any
opinions? Direct students to write a brief

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essay summarizing and supporting their


conclusions. Then ask students to compare
their observations.

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200

205

210

215

220

225

230

Kingdom and its golden city: Hergar,


My older brother, a far better man
Than I, had died and dying made me,
Second among Healfdanes sons, first
In this nation. I bought the end of Edgethos
Quarrel, sent ancient treasures through the oceans
Furrows to the Wulfings; your father swore
Hed keep that peace. My tongue grows heavy,
And my heart, when I try to tell you what Grendel
Has brought us, the damage hes done, here
In this hall. You see for yourself how much smaller g
Our ranks have become, and can guess what weve lost
To his terror. Surely the Lord Almighty
Could stop his madness, smother his lust!
How many times have my men, glowing
With courage drawn from too many cups
Of ale, sworn to stay after dark
And stem that horror with a sweep of their swords.
And then, in the morning, this mead-hall glittering
With new light would be drenched with blood, the benches
Stained red, the floors, all wet from that fiends
Savage assaultand my soldiers would be fewer
Still, death taking more and more.
But to table, Beowulf, a banquet in your honor:
Let us toast your victories, and talk of the future. h
Then Hrothgars men gave places to the Geats,
Yielded benches to the brave visitors
And led them to the feast. The keeper of the mead
Came carrying out the carved flasks,
And poured that bright sweetness. A poet
Sang, from time to time, in a clear
Pure voice. Danes and visiting Geats
Celebrated as one, drank and rejoiced. . . .

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

g OLD ENGLISH POETRY

Observe that as Hrothgar begins


to speak about Grendel in lines
207210, his tone, or his attitude
toward his subject, becomes
bleak and despairing. What
repeated sounds does the poet
use to suggest this tone?

old english poetry

RL 4
L 5a

Possible answer: The poet repeats hs,


ts, and ds.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

h EPIC

Note that Hrothgar delivers


a long speech to Beowulf in
lines 190224. What values are
reflected in the speech?

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: Hrothgars long speech


reflects the values of friendship, loyalty,
and courage. In lines 190207, Hrothgar
describes how he helped Beowulfs father,
Edgetho, appease the anger of the Wulfings. He concludes his speech by describing
his great need to end Grendels reign of
terror.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . .
Have them reread lines 190198. Discuss
who Edgetho was, what he did, and what
happened to him as a consequence of his
actions.
Have them reread lines 204206. Discuss
how Hrothgar helped Edgetho.

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for struggling readers


Comprehension Support To make sure
students understand Hrothgars account
in lines 191207, help them summarize the
events described. Possible answer: Edgetho,
Beowulfs father, started a feud with the Wulfing tribe by killing Hathlaf, one of their warriors. Edgethos people turned him away from
his homeland, fearing that his presence could
cause a war to break out. So Edgetho sailed
to the land of the Danes. Hrothgar helped

12:01:40 PM

Edgetho by sending treasures to Edgethos


enemies, the Wulfings, thus buying peace
between the tribes.

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Targeted Passage

the battle with grendel


After the banquet, Hrothgar and his followers leave Herot, and Beowulf and his
warriors remain to spend the night. Beowulf reiterates his intent to fight Grendel
without a sword and, while his followers sleep, lies waiting, eager for Grendel
to appear.
R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

Model the Skill:

RL 4
L 5a

235

old english poetry


To model how caesuras can affect the
rhythm of poetry, read to the class lines
233235. Then have students work in pairs
to practice reading aloud these lines. Encourage them to analyze the effectiveness
of one anothers reading.
Possible answer: The rhythm of the lines
reflects the relentless, ominous approach of
Grendel as he advances on Herot.

240

245

50

Out from the marsh, from the foot of misty


Hills and bogs, bearing Gods hatred,
Grendel came, hoping to kill i
Anyone he could trap on this trip to high Herot.
He moved quickly through the cloudy night,
Up from his swampland, sliding silently
Toward that gold-shining hall. He had visited Hrothgars
Home before, knew the way
But never, before nor after that night,
Found Herot defended so firmly, his reception
So harsh. He journeyed, forever joyless,
Straight to the door, then snapped it open,
Tore its iron fasteners with a touch

OLD ENGLISH POETRY


Reread lines 233235. Notice
that the translator uses
punctuation to convey the
effect of the midline pauses, or
caesuras, in the lines. In what
way does the rhythm created by
the pauses reinforce the action
recounted here?

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differentiated instruction
for advanced learners/ap
Analyze Symbolism As students read, have
them explore the symbolism in Beowulf. For
example, ask what Grendel (and later, Grendels mother and the dragon) might symbolize. Possible answer: the universal idea of
evil; death; revenge. Remind students that
setting, too, has symbolic significance. Ask
them to consider the location and description of Grendels marsh, the lake, and Herot.
What might the places symbolize?

50

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Possible answer: marsh, lake: hell; Herot:


heaven. Extend the discussion by asking
students to recall other poems, short stories, or novels they may have read in which
characters or settings symbolized similar
ideas. Have students compare the writing
techniques used and discuss which ones
were most effective.

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250

255

260

265

270

275

280

285

And rushed angrily over the threshold.


He strode quickly across the inlaid
Floor, snarling and fierce: his eyes
Gleamed in the darkness, burned with a gruesome
Light. Then he stopped, seeing the hall
Crowded with sleeping warriors, stuffed
With rows of young soldiers resting together.
And his heart laughed, he relished the sight,
Intended to tear the life from those bodies
By morning; the monsters mind was hot
With the thought of food and the feasting his belly
Would soon know. But fate, that night, intended
Grendel to gnaw the broken bones
Of his last human supper. Human
Eyes were watching his evil steps,
Waiting to see his swift hard claws.
Grendel snatched at the first Geat
He came to, ripped him apart, cut
His body to bits with powerful jaws,
Drank the blood from his veins and bolted
Him down, hands and feet; death
And Grendels great teeth came together,
Snapping life shut. Then he stepped to another
Still body, clutched at Beowulf with his claws,
Grasped at a strong-hearted wakeful sleeper
And was instantly seized himself, claws
Bent back as Beowulf leaned up on one arm.
That shepherd of evil, guardian of crime,
Knew at once that nowhere on earth
Had he met a man whose hands were harder;
His mind was flooded with fearbut nothing
Could take his talons and himself from that tight
Hard grip. Grendels one thought was to run
From Beowulf, flee back to his marsh and hide there:
This was a different Herot than the hall he had emptied.
But Higlacs follower remembered his final
Boast and, standing erect, stopped
The monsters flight, fastened those claws
In his fists till they cracked, clutched Grendel
Closer. The infamous killer fought
For his freedom, wanting no flesh but retreat,
Desiring nothing but escape; his claws
Had been caught, he was trapped. That trip to Herot
Was a miserable journey for the writhing monster!

246 threshold: the strip of wood or


stone at the bottom of a doorway.

revisit the big question

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


Discuss In lines 247257, what specific details
suggest that Grendel is a creature of pure
evil? Possible answer: The poet describes him
in frightening terms: snarling and fierce: his
eyes . . . burned with a gruesome / Light (lines
248250). He tells how Grendel laughs cruelly,
relishing the idea of tearing the young soldiers
apart and devouring them.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the battle between Beowulf and
Grendel in lines 268288:
Connect In what ways is Beowulfs encounter with Grendel similar to other manmonster clashes youve read about or seen
on television or in the movies? How is it
different? Accept all thoughtful responses.
Analyze What character traits of an epic
hero does Beowulf display in this passage?
Possible answer: Beowulf shows incredible
courage and superhuman strength, facing
Grendel without a weapon, seizing Grendels
claws, and preventing the monster from
escaping.

talon (tBlPEn) n. a claw


278289 Up to this point Grendel
has killed his human victims easily.

Synthesize How do you predict the battle


between Beowulf and Grendel will end?
Accept all reasonable responses.

infamous (GnPfE-mEs) adj. having


a very bad reputation

VOCABULARY

L4

own the word


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Comprehension: Text Structure Point out


the sudden narrative shift in line 271. Discuss how the poet first establishes a strong
forward flow in lines 262270, conveying
Grendels seemingly unstoppable advance.
Then, abruptly, the poet inserts a dash at
the beginning of line 271, and the forward
flow is reversed in lines 271272: [Grendel]
was instantly seized himself, claws / Bent
back. Discuss how this shift adds drama to
the narrative.

Hypothesize Have students reread Grendels attack on these two pages. Point out
that Beowulf does not spring into action
until after Grendel kills one of the sleeping Geats (lines 262268). Have students
reflect on the possible reasons for Beowulfs
delay. That is, why does Beowulf not act
immediately, so as to spare the Geats life?
Have students summarize their conclusions
in a well-written paragraph, and then share
their conclusions with the class.

12:01:47 PM

talon: Have students name birds of prey


that are known for their sharp talons and
explain how the talons are used. Possible
answers: eagles, hawks, osprey, falcons; to
catch prey
infamous: Have students name famous
people from various walks of life, including presidents and other elected officials,
business people, actors, and athletes.
Then have students name some infamous
people from the same categories. Make
a class list and discuss the differences
in achievements, why some people are
famous and why some are infamous.

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290

295

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

old english poetry

RL 4
L 5a

300

Possible answer: The repeated hard-letter


b and g sounds convey the impression of the
blows and impacts of a hard-fought battle.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Call their attention to such alliterative combinations as
bodies beating at its beautiful walls (line
295) and gold-covered boards grating / As
Grendel (lines 299300).

305

310

Extend the Discussion What sensory


details does the poet include to help the
reader imagine the sounds of the battle?

315

320

revisit the big question

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


Discuss In lines 319322, why might the poet
have used the figurative phrase open a path
for his evil soul rather than simply write slay
or wound? Possible answer: Evil soul reinforces the idea that Grendel is a creature of evil,
a monster from hell (note that the poet has just
referred to him as hells captive in line 311).

325

330

52

The high hall rang, its roof boards swayed,


And Danes shook with terror. Down
The aisles the battle swept, angry
And wild. Herot trembled, wonderfully
Built to withstand the blows, the struggling
Great bodies beating at its beautiful walls;
Shaped and fastened with iron, inside
And out, artfully worked, the building
Stood firm. Its benches rattled, fell
To the floor, gold-covered boards grating
As Grendel and Beowulf battled across them. j
Hrothgars wise men had fashioned Herot
To stand forever; only fire,
They had planned, could shatter what such skill had put
Together, swallow in hot flames such splendor
Of ivory and iron and wood. Suddenly
The sounds changed, the Danes started
In new terror, cowering in their beds as the terrible
Screams of the Almightys enemy sang
In the darkness, the horrible shrieks of pain
And defeat, the tears torn out of Grendels
Taut throat, hells captive caught in the arms
Of him who of all the men on earth
Was the strongest.
That mighty protector of men
Meant to hold the monster till its life
Leaped out, knowing the fiend was no use
To anyone in Denmark. All of Beowulf s
Band had jumped from their beds, ancestral
Swords raised and ready, determined
To protect their prince if they could. Their courage
Was great but all wasted: they could hack at Grendel
From every side, trying to open
A path for his evil soul, but their points
Could not hurt him, the sharpest and hardest iron
Could not scratch at his skin, for that sin-stained demon
Had bewitched all mens weapons, laid spells
That blunted every mortal mans blade.
And yet his time had come, his days
Were over, his death near; down
To hell he would go, swept groaning and helpless
To the waiting hands of still worse fiends.

OLD ENGLISH POETRY


Reread lines 293300. What
impression of the battle does the
alliteration help convey?

TargetedL 4a
Passage

Language Coach
Homophones Many word pairs
sound alike but have different
spellings and meanings. For
example, taught is the past tense
of teach. Which word in line 311 is
a homophone for taught? Guess
the words meaning using the
surrounding text.

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Vocabulary Support Call attention to the
way the poet integrates a description of
Herot into the battle. Discuss these interrelated phrases:
wonderfully / Built to withstand the blows
(lines 293294)
artfully worked (line 297)
fashioned . . . To stand forever (lines 301302)

splendor / Of ivory and iron and wood (lines


304305)

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Language Coach
L 4a

Homophones Possible answer:


Taut is the homophone. It might mean
tight, because thats how your throat feels
when youre in trouble. Remind students
to look at the spelling of new words, especially homophones. Then have students
write four sentences, two that show an
understanding of taut and two that show
an understanding of taught.

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335

340

345

350

355

360

365

370

Now he discoveredonce the afflictor


Of men, tormentor of their dayswhat it meant
To feud with Almighty God: Grendel
Saw that his strength was deserting him, his claws
Bound fast, Higlacs brave follower tearing at
His hands. The monsters hatred rose higher,
But his power had gone. He twisted in pain,
And the bleeding sinews deep in his shoulder
Snapped, muscle and bone split
And broke. The battle was over, Beowulf
Had been granted new glory: Grendel escaped,
But wounded as he was could flee to his den,
His miserable hole at the bottom of the marsh,
Only to die, to wait for the end
Of all his days. And after that bloody
Combat the Danes laughed with delight.
He who had come to them from across the sea,
Bold and strong-minded, had driven affliction
Off, purged Herot clean. He was happy,
Now, with that nights fierce work; the Danes
Had been served as hed boasted hed serve them; Beowulf,
A prince of the Geats, had killed Grendel,
Ended the grief, the sorrow, the suffering
Forced on Hrothgars helpless people
By a bloodthirsty fiend. No Dane doubted
The victory, for the proof, hanging high
From the rafters where Beowulf had hung it, was the monsters
Arm, claw and shoulder and all.

revisit the big question

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


338 sinews (sGnPyLz): the tendons
that connect muscles to bones.

Discuss In lines 314333, in what ways does


the poet make the audience aware that Grendel is truly evil? Possible answer: Beowulfs
men try to cut Grendel to release his evil soul
(line 322). Grendel himself is described as sinstained (line 324). He is destined to be sent to
hell upon his death (line 329).

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the poets portrayal of Beowulfs victory
over Grendel in lines 337358:
Recall What happens to Grendel? Possible
answer: Grendel finally tears loose from
Beowulfs grip, but he loses his arm, claw,
and shoulder in the process. He returns to
his den to die.
Analyze What striking images does the
poet use to bring the narrative to life? Possible answer: The poet describes in detail how
Grendel twisted in pain / And the bleeding
sinews deep in his shoulder / Snapped, muscle
and bone split / And broke (lines 337340).
He goes on to tell how the monster retreated
to his miserable hole at the bottom of the
marsh (line 343). Finally, he concludes the
passage with the dramatic image of Grendels arm, claw, and shoulder hanging from
the rafters (line 358).

And then, in the morning, crowds surrounded


Herot, warriors coming to that hall
From faraway lands, princes and leaders
Of men hurrying to behold the monsters
Great staggering tracks. They gaped with no sense
Of sorrow, felt no regret for his suffering,
Went tracing his bloody footprints, his beaten
And lonely flight, to the edge of the lake
Where hed dragged his corpselike way, doomed
And already weary of his vanishing life.
The water was bloody, steaming and boiling
In horrible pounding waves, heat
Sucked from his magic veins; but the swirling
Surf had covered his death, hidden

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Vocabulary Support
afflictor (line 331), someone who causes
suffering or injury

Related Vocabulary Point out the poets use


of descriptive language to characterize the
defeated and mortally wounded Grendel.
Discuss these interrelated phrases:

sinews (lines 338), tendons


purged (line 349), freed from something
bad

Great staggering tracks (line 363)

Surf (line 372), the foam and splash of


breaking waves

beaten / And lonely flight (lines 365366)

12:01:49 PM

Evaluate How important is Beowulf to


the fate of Denmark? Possible answer: In
defeating Grendel, Beowulf has driven affliction / Off (lines 348349) and saved the
Danes from the monster. He has Ended the
grief, the sorrow, the suffering / Forced on
the Danes (lines 353354). Like a typical epic
hero, Beowulf has been Bold and strongminded (line 348) and killed the terrible,
seemingly invincible monster.

no regret for his suffering (line 364)


dragged his corpselike way, doomed / And
already weary of his vanishing life (lines
367368)

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grammar
and style

L3

Analyze Imagery Point out that the


poet also uses alliteration to heighten
the descriptive effect in these lines, as in
swirling surf and deep in murky darkness. Ask students to find other vivid
images in the poem, such as those in lines
181184 and 262268, and think about how
the poet combines adjectives and verbs to
make an impact.

380

385

390

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

old english poetry

RL 4
L 5a

395

Deep in murky darkness his miserable


End, as hell opened to receive him. k
Then old and young rejoiced, turned back
From that happy pilgrimage, mounted their hard-hooved
Horses, high-spirited stallions, and rode them
Slowly toward Herot again, retelling
Beowulf s bravery as they jogged along.
And over and over they swore that nowhere
On earth or under the spreading sky
Or between the seas, neither south nor north,
Was there a warrior worthier to rule over men.
(But no one meant Beowulf s praise to belittle
Hrothgar, their kind and gracious king!)
And sometimes, when the path ran straight and clear,
They would let their horses race, red
And brown and pale yellow backs streaming
Down the road. And sometimes a proud old soldier
Who had heard songs of the ancient heroes
And could sing them all through, story after story,
Would weave a net of words for Beowulf s
Victory, tying the knot of his verses
Smoothly, swiftly, into place with a poets
Quick skill, singing his new song aloud
While he shaped it, and the old songs as well. . . . l

k GRAMMAR AND STYLE

To capture a scene, the poet


often uses vivid imagery. Notice
the use in lines 369374, for
example, of adjectives such as
bloody, steaming, pounding, and
swirling to help readers see and
feel the violent, churning water.

OLD ENGLISH POETRY


Reread lines 389396. In what
Targeted Passage
ways does this description
reflect the techniques used by
Anglo-Saxon poets? Cite details.

Possible answer: Anglo-Saxon poets used


alliteration and rhythmic lines of stressed
syllables to weave a net of words and tie
verses smoothly, swiftly, into place with a
poets quick skill.

answers
1. Beowulf hears about Grendels attacks on
the Danes and travels to Denmark to help
battle the monster.

Text Analysis
1. Clarify Why does Beowulf journey across the sea to the land of
the Danes?

2. Beowulf lies in wait for Grendel at Herot,


then seizes the monster when he attacks.
Grendel manages to tear himself loose,
but he is severely injured and returns to
the marsh to die.
3. Grendel kills at least partly out of hunger
(lines 255256). He may also feel excluded
from the mens celebrations and be jealous
of their merrymaking. On a more symbolic
level, perhaps this creature of hell rages at
the men because he has been denied Gods
grace and love.
4. Grendels arm serves as a symbol of Beowulfs
great victoryin effect, a trophy of battle.

2. Summarize How does Beowulf trap and kill Grendel?


3. Analyze Motivation What drives Grendel to attack so many
men at Herot, the mead hall?
4. Make Inferences Why does Beowulf hang Grendels arm from
the rafters of Herot?
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Vocabulary Support
murky (line 373), thick and heavy; gloomy
pilgrimage (line 376), journey

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tiered discussion prompts


For lines 397417, use these prompts to help
students understand the poets descriptive
comparison:
Recall Who has reversed / The bright vane
of [the Danes] luck? Answer: Grendels
mother
Interpret Why does Grendels mother
take and kill one of the Danes? Explain the
significance of the single victim (line 411)
that she chooses. Possible answer: Grendels
mother takes and kills a soldier to avenge her
sons death. The victim she chooses is Hrothgars closest friend, / The man he most loved
of all men on earth (lines 414415).

grendels mother
Although one monster has died, another still lives. From her lair in a
cold and murky lake, where she has been brooding over her loss, Grendels
mother emerges, bent on revenge.

400

405

410

415

So she reached Herot,


Where the Danes slept as though already dead;
Her visit ended their good fortune, reversed
The bright vane of their luck. No female, no matter
How fierce, could have come with a mans strength,
Fought with the power and courage men fight with,
Smashing their shining swords, their bloody,
Hammer-forged blades onto boar-headed helmets,
Slashing and stabbing with the sharpest of points.
The soldiers raised their shields and drew
Those gleaming swords, swung them above
The piled-up benches, leaving their mail shirts
And their helmets where theyd lain when the terror took hold of them.
To save her life she moved still faster,
Took a single victim and fled from the hall,
Running to the moors, discovered, but her supper
Assured, sheltered in her dripping claws.
Shed taken Hrothgars closest friend,
The man he most loved of all men on earth;
Shed killed a glorious soldier, cut
A noble life short. No Geat could have stopped her:
Beowulf and his band had been given better

What mood is conveyed by this


photograph? Which elements
help create that mood?

400 vane: a device that turns


to show the direction the wind
is blowinghere associated
metaphorically with luck, which is as
changeable as the wind.
404 boar-headed helmets:
Germanic warriors often wore
helmets bearing the images of wild
pigs or other fierce creatures in the
hope that the images would increase
their ferocity and protect them
against their enemies.

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Evaluate In your opinion, does the poets


description capture the ferocity of battle?
Explain. Possible answer: Yes; the poets vivid
verbs (Smashing, Slashing, stabbing)
and adjectives (shining, bloody, Hammer-forged, boar-headed) strongly convey
the brutality of war.

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The very dark storm clouds
behind the structures and the light shining
through the open door create a mood of danger
and mystery.

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for english language learners


Vocabulary: Idioms Help students use context clues to determine the meaning of these
idioms in the story:
bent on revenge (section introduction), determined to cause harm in return for harm
sustained
took hold of (line 409), affected
cut . . . short (lines 416417), ended too
soon

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420

tiered discussion prompts


For lines 425446, use these prompts to help
students understand the poets technique:
Summarize In what sort of place does
Grendels mother live? Possible answer:
She lives in a dark and dank laira cold and
gloomy lake, with storm-tossed black waves.
Analyze What details of setting help to
create an ominous mood? Possible answer:
Details such as thesewhich describe the
lake as dangerous, gloomy, and eerie
create an ominous mood: secret places,
windy / Cliffs, wolf-dens (lines 425426);
mist / Steams like black clouds (lines
427428); [trees] are all covered / With frozen spray, and wind down snakelike / Roots
(lines 429431); keep it dark (line 432). The
lake is so ominous that a deer would rather
be killed by hounds than jump in the water.

Beds; sleep had come to them in a different


Hall. Then all Herot burst into shouts:
She had carried off Grendels claw. Sorrow
Had returned to Denmark. Theyd traded deaths,
Danes and monsters, and no one had won,
Both had lost! . . .
Devastated by the loss of his friend, Hrothgar sends for Beowulf and
recounts what Grendels mother has done. Then Hrothgar describes
the dark lake where Grendels mother has dwelt with her son.

425

430

435

440

Synthesize What do you predict will happen


if Beowulf seeks out Grendels mother?
Accept all thoughtful responses.
445

56

They live in secret places, windy


Cliffs, wolf-dens where water pours
From the rocks, then runs underground, where mist
Steams like black clouds, and the groves of trees
Growing out over their lake are all covered
With frozen spray, and wind down snakelike
Roots that reach as far as the water
And help keep it dark. At night that lake
Burns like a torch. No one knows its bottom,
No wisdom reaches such depths. A deer,
Hunted through the woods by packs of hounds,
A stag with great horns, though driven through the forest
From faraway places, prefers to die
On those shores, refuses to save its life
In that water. It isnt far, nor is it
A pleasant spot! When the wind stirs
And storms, waves splash toward the sky,
As dark as the air, as black as the rain
That the heavens weep. Our only help,
Again, lies with you. Grendels mother
Is hidden in her terrible home, in a place
Youve not seen. Seek it, if you dare! Save us,
Once more, and again twisted gold,
Heaped-up ancient treasure, will reward you
For the battle you win! . . .

L 4a

Language Coach
Homographs Words with the
same spelling but different
meanings, pronunciations, or
Targeted
Passage
both are
homographs.
The word
wind, for example, can rhyme
with sinned or kind. What is the
pronunciation and meaning
of wind in line 430? How can
you tell?

447449 Germanic warriors placed


great importance on amassing
treasure as a way of acquiring fame
and temporarily defeating fate.

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Language Coach

L 4a

Homophones Answer: Wind rhymes


with kind in this line. You can say that
roots wind (wFnd) but not that they wind
(wGnd). Ask students to identify the parts
of speech that wind can have. Ask them
to pronounce it as a noun and to pronounce it as a verb. Then have students
write a pair of sentences, one using wind
as a noun and the other using it as a verb.

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Comprehension: Text Structure Point out
that lines 425449 have a problem-solution
structure. Work with small groups of students
to read lines 425443 and summarize the
problem. Then work with the students to read
lines 443449 and summarize the solution.
Possible answer: The problem is that Grendels
mother, who has killed Hrothgars friend, lives
at the bottom of a burning lake. The proposed
solution is that Beowulf fight her.

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revisit the big question

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


Discuss What specific details in lines 450458
suggest that the underwater lair of Grendels
mother is an evil place? Possible answer: Evil is
associated with darkness. In addition, Beowulf
sinks for hours . . . through the waves until he
finally reaches the bottom. This long downward movement suggests a descent into hell.

the battle with


grendels mother
Beowulf accepts Hrothgars challenge, and the king and his men accompany the
hero to the dreadful lair of Grendels mother. Fearlessly, Beowulf prepares
to battle the terrible creature.
450

455

460

He leaped into the lake, would not wait for anyones


Answer; the heaving water covered him
Over. For hours he sank through the waves;
At last he saw the mud of the bottom.
And all at once the greedy she-wolf
Whod ruled those waters for half a hundred
Years discovered him, saw that a creature
From above had come to explore the bottom
Of her wet world. She welcomed him in her claws,
Clutched at him savagely but could not harm him,
Tried to work her fingers through the tight
Ring-woven mail on his breast, but tore
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Use Descriptive Details Have students reread
lines 425443. Then ask students to write
a prose description of the dwelling place of
Grendels mother, using sensory images and
descriptive details. Challenge students to
create vivid images and establish a definite
mood. Encourage them to use their imagination to develop their description. Have
students share their work with the class.

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465

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The setting is on a grand


scalean underwater battle-hall with a
high-arching roof, a fiery lakeand the
battle pits a fearless hero against powerful, supernatural creatures (a host of sea
beasts). Beowulf performs in remarkable
heroic fashion, holding off the monsters
and remaining alive underwater without
air for hours.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . .
Have them discuss the specific surroundings in which the battle occurs, as
described in lines 469 and 472474.

470

475

480

485

Ask them to identify aspects of the


battle and Beowulfs actions that are
larger than life.
490

495

500

58

And scratched in vain. Then she carried him, armor


And sword and all, to her home; he struggled
To free his weapon, and failed. The fight
Brought other monsters swimming to see
Her catch, a host of sea beasts who beat at
His mail shirt, stabbing with tusks and teeth
As they followed along. Then he realized, suddenly,
That shed brought him into someones battle-hall,
And there the waters heat could not hurt him,
Nor anything in the lake attack him through
The buildings high-arching roof. A brilliant
Light burned all around him, the lake
Itself like a fiery flame. m
Then he saw
The mighty water witch, and swung his sword,
His ring-marked blade, straight at her head;
The iron sang its fierce song,
Sang Beowulf s strength. But her guest
Discovered that no sword could slice her evil
Skin, that Hrunting could not hurt her, was useless
Now when he needed it. They wrestled, she ripped
And tore and clawed at him, bit holes in his helmet,
And that too failed him; for the first time in years
Of being worn to war it would earn no glory;
It was the last time anyone would wear it. But Beowulf
Longed only for fame, leaped back
Into battle. He tossed his sword aside,
Angry; the steel-edged blade lay where
Hed dropped it. If weapons were useless hed use
His hands, the strength in his fingers. So fame
Comes to the men who mean to win it
And care about nothing else! He raised
His arms and seized her by the shoulder; anger
Doubled his strength, he threw her to the floor.
She fell, Grendels fierce mother, and the Geats
Proud prince was ready to leap on her. But she rose
At once and repaid him with her clutching claws,
Wildly tearing at him. He was weary, that best
And strongest of soldiers; his feet stumbled
And in an instant she had him down, held helpless.
Squatting with her weight on his stomach, she drew
A dagger, brown with dried blood, and prepared
To avenge her only son. But he was stretched

m EPIC

Reread lines 464474. What


details of the battle and its
setting are characteristic of
an epic?

476 his ring-marked blade: For the


battle with Grendels mother, Beowulf
has been given an heirloom sword
with an intricately etched blade.
480 Hrunting (hrOnPtGng): the name
of Beowulfs sword. (Germanic
warriors swords were possessions
Passage
of suchTargeted
value that they
were often
given names.)

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for advanced learners/ap

Related Vocabulary Point out the poets


use of strong verbs to convey the furious
action of the battle between Beowulf and
Grendels mother. Discuss these related
fighting words:

Analyze Technique [small-group option] As


students read the account of Beowulfs battle
with Grendels mother, have them reflect on
the poets technique. How does the poet use
language to add tension and excitement to
the struggle? Have pairs or small groups of
students share and compare their observations.

58

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wrestled, ripped (line 481)


tore, clawed (line 482)
leaped (line 486)
clutching (line 497)
tearing (line 498)

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505

510

515

520

525

530

535

540

545

On his back, and her stabbing blade was blunted


By the woven mail shirt he wore on his chest.
The hammered links held; the point
Could not touch him. Hed have traveled to the bottom of the earth,
Edgethos son, and died there, if that shining
Woven metal had not helpedand Holy
God, who sent him victory, gave judgment
For truth and right, Ruler of the Heavens,
Once Beowulf was back on his feet and fighting.
Then he saw, hanging on the wall, a heavy
Sword, hammered by giants, strong
And blessed with their magic, the best of all weapons
But so massive that no ordinary man could lift
Its carved and decorated length. He drew it
From its scabbard, broke the chain on its hilt,
And then, savage, now, angry
And desperate, lifted it high over his head
And struck with all the strength he had left,
Caught her in the neck and cut it through,
Broke bones and all. Her body fell
To the floor, lifeless, the sword was wet
With her blood, and Beowulf rejoiced at the sight.
The brilliant light shone, suddenly,
As though burning in that hall, and as bright as Heavens
Own candle, lit in the sky. He looked n
At her home, then following along the wall
Went walking, his hands tight on the sword,
His heart still angry. He was hunting another
Dead monster, and took his weapon with him
For final revenge against Grendels vicious
Attacks, his nighttime raids, over
And over, coming to Herot when Hrothgars
Men slept, killing them in their beds,
Eating some on the spot, fifteen
Or more, and running to his loathsome moor
With another such sickening meal waiting
In his pouch. But Beowulf repaid him for those visits,
Found him lying dead in his corner,
Armless, exactly as that fierce fighter
Had sent him out from Herot, then struck off
His head with a single swift blow. The body
Jerked for the last time, then lay still.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the battle between Beowulf and
Grendels mother (lines 458512):
Recall Where does the battle take place?
Possible answer: The battle takes place inside
a battle-hall, at the bottom of the lake in
which Grendels mother resides.
Analyze How does the poet create suspense
in the narrative? Possible answer: The poet
shows Beowulf in a vulnerable position for
the first time. Beowulfs sword proves ineffective against Grendels mother, and his
protective helmet fails him. Then, just when
the reader thinks that Beowulf has gained
the upper hand by throwing the monster to
the floor, she turns the tables and takes him
down, drawing a dagger with which to kill
him. Only his mail shirt saves him.

n EPIC

What does the light described


in lines 526528 suggest about
Beowulfs victory?

Synthesize In what ways is the account


of the struggle between Beowulf and
Grendels mother very contemporary?
Possible answer: This kind of fierce, seesawing struggle between a fearless hero and
a super-powerful enemy occurs in many
modern-day novels and movies, such as in
the Superman and Spider-Man movies and
the comics they are based on.

loathsome (lIthPsEm) adj.


disgusting

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The light suggests that


good has triumphed over evil, and heaven
has triumphed over hell.
beowulf

59
VOCABULARY

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for advanced learners/ap


Analyze Symbolism Call attention to lines
526528. Point out that this is one of a number of places where the poet contrasts light
and dark. Ask students to identify other such
instances (for example, Herots brightness
against the swamps darkness). Then have
them analyze the symbolism of light and
dark in the poem, and present their analyses
to the class for discussion.

12:02:00 PM

L4

own the word

loathsome: Reread the definition of loathsome to students. Then have them name
words with similar meanings, but that carry
less intensity. Possible answers: unlikeable,
distasteful, disliked, offensive

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550

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

555

Possible answer: The lines suggest that


people judged a mans life by his actions
and that fame was of paramount
importance.

560

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand the poets narrative technique in lines
540583:
Recall What are the Danes and the Geats
doing while Beowulf is battling Grendels
mother? Possible answer: They are waiting
at the edge of the lake, staring down into
the water.
Analyze What shifts in setting occur in this
passage? How do they heighten the narrative tension? Possible answer: The action
moves from the bottom of the lake, where
Beowulf battles Grendels mother and cuts
off Grendels head, to the edge of the lake,
where Hrothgar, the Danes, and the Geats
are waiting to see if Beowulf will return.
Then the setting shifts back to Beowulf, who
swims back up to land. These shifts heighten
the tension, because readers know that
Beowulf has survived. Readers are eager for
the skeptical onlookers to learn that they
have drawn the wrong conclusion regarding the waves surging and blood / Spurting
through (lines 548549).
Evaluate Is the poet effective in holding
the readers interest? Explain. Accept all
thoughtful responses.

565

570

575

580

585

60

The wise old warriors who surrounded Hrothgar,


Like him staring into the monsters lake,
Saw the waves surging and blood
Spurting through. They spoke about Beowulf,
All the graybeards, whispered together
And said that hope was gone, that the hero
Had lost fame and his life at once, and would never
Return to the living, come back as triumphant
As he had left; almost all agreed that Grendels
Mighty mother, the she-wolf, had killed him. o
The sun slid over past noon, went further
Down. The Danes gave up, left
The lake and went home, Hrothgar with them.
The Geats stayed, sat sadly, watching,
Imagining they saw their lord but not believing
They would ever see him again.
Then the sword
Melted, blood-soaked, dripping down
Like water, disappearing like ice when the worlds
Eternal Lord loosens invisible
Fetters and unwinds icicles and frost
As only He can, He who rules
Time and seasons, He who is truly
God. The monsters hall was full of
Rich treasures, but all that Beowulf took
Was Grendels head and the hilt of the giants
Jeweled sword; the rest of that ring-marked
Blade had dissolved in Grendels steaming
Blood, boiling even after his death.
And then the battles only survivor
Swam up and away from those silent corpses;
The water was calm and clean, the whole
Huge lake peaceful once the demons whod lived in it
Were dead.
Then that noble protector of all seamen
Swam to land, rejoicing in the heavy
Burdens he was bringing with him. He
And all his glorious band of Geats
Thanked God that their leader had come back unharmed;
They left the lake together. The Geats
Carried Beowulf s helmet, and his mail shirt.
Behind them the water slowly thickened
As the monsters blood came seeping up.

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What do lines 549555 suggest


about attitudes toward fame in
the Anglo-Saxon period?

Targeted Passage

578 that noble protector of all


seamen: Beowulf, who will be
buried in a tower that will serve as a
navigational aid to sailors.

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Vocabulary Support
triumphant (line 553), victorious
Fetters (line 565), chains; restraints

hilt (line 570), handle

unit

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60

550 graybeards: old men.

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Concept Support Ask students to identify


the alliteration in lines 546549 (wise . . .
warriors; surrounded . . . staring . . . Saw . . .
surging . . . Spurting) and the kenning in line
578 (noble protector of all seamen). You may
also want to point out the figurative language in lines 561568: similes making comparisons to water and ice and a metaphor
describing God loosening invisible / Fetters.

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590

595

600

605

They walked quickly, happily, across


Roads all of them remembered, left
The lake and the cliffs alongside it, brave men
Staggering under the weight of Grendels skull,
Too heavy for fewer than four of them to handle
Two on each side of the spear jammed through it
Yet proud of their ugly load and determined
That the Danes, seated in Herot, should see it. p
Soon, fourteen Geats arrived
At the hall, bold and warlike, and with Beowulf,
Their lord and leader, they walked on the mead-hall
Green. Then the Geats brave prince entered
Herot, covered with glory for the daring
Battles he had fought; he sought Hrothgar
To salute him and show Grendels head.
He carried that terrible trophy by the hair,
Brought it straight to where the Danes sat,
Drinking, the queen among them. It was a weird
And wonderful sight, and the warriors stared. . . .

T E X T A N A LY S I S

p EPIC

Reread lines 587594. Why do


you think the Geats want the
Danes to see Grendels skull?

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The Geats, taking great


pride in Beowulfs victory, want to share in
his glory and brag about his heroism.

answers
1. Grendels mother killed Hrothgars closest friend, and Hrothgar believes that only
Beowulf can slay her.

604 queen: Welthow, wife of


Hrothgar.

2. Beowulf finds Grendels body, cuts off his


head, and carries the head and the hilt of
the giants / Jeweled sword (lines 570571)
back up to the surface.
3. The behavior of Grendels mother is more
understandable, because she is motivated
by a desire for revenge for her sons death,
not just by a lust for killing.

Text Analysis
1. Clarify Why does Hrothgar ask Beowulf to battle Grendels
mother?
2. Summarize What does Beowulf do after he kills Grendels
mother?
3. Compare and Contrast Compare the two monsters. Does the
behavior of Grendels mother seem as wicked or unreasonable
as Grendels behavior? Support your opinion with evidence
from the text.

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for struggling readers


Concept Support Point out that Beowulf
single-handedly carries Grendels head by
the hair (line 602), but in lines 589592 the
poet describes how four men were staggering under the heads weight. Ask what this
contrast suggests about Beowulf as an epic
hero (Beowulf has remarkable, perhaps superhuman, strength).

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tiered discussion prompts


For lines 606612, use these prompts to help
students understand the poets technique:
Connect What are your thoughts about
Beowulfs actions at this point in the
narrative? Accept all responses.
Interpret What do these lines foreshadow
about the outcome of Beowulfs last battle?
Explain. Possible answer: The phrases final
boast (line 606) and for the last time
(line 612) foreshadow Beowulfs death.
Evaluate Why might the poet want to foreshadow the battles outcome? Possible answer: Foreshadowing builds suspense while
preparing the reader for what is to come.

Targeted Passage

beowulfs last battle


With Grendels mother destroyed, peace is restored to the land of the Danes, and
Beowulf, laden with Hrothgars gifts, returns to the land of his own people, the
Geats. After his uncle and cousin die, Beowulf becomes king of the Geats and rules
in peace and prosperity for 50 years. One day, however, a fire-breathing dragon
that has been guarding a treasure for hundreds of years is disturbed by a thief,
who enters the treasure tower and steals a cup. The dragon begins terrorizing the
Geats, and Beowulf, now an old man, takes on the challenge of fighting it.

610

And Beowulf uttered his final boast:


Ive never known fear, as a youth I fought
In endless battles. I am old, now,
But I will fight again, seek fame still,
If the dragon hiding in his tower dares
To face me.

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615

620

625

630

635

640

645

650

Then he said farewell to his followers, q


Each in his turn, for the last time:
Id use no sword, no weapon, if this beast
Could be killed without it, crushed to death
Like Grendel, gripped in my hands and torn
Limb from limb. But his breath will be burning
Hot, poison will pour from his tongue.
I feel no shame, with shield and sword
And armor, against this monster: when he comes to me
I mean to stand, not run from his shooting
Flames, stand till fate decides
Which of us wins. My heart is firm,
My hands calm: I need no hot
Words. Wait for me close by, my friends.
We shall see, soon, who will survive
This bloody battle, stand when the fighting
Is done. No one else could do
What I mean to, here, no man but me
Could hope to defeat this monster. No one
Could try. And this dragons treasure, his gold
And everything hidden in that tower, will be mine
Or war will sweep me to a bitter death!
Then Beowulf rose, still brave, still strong,
And with his shield at his side, and a mail shirt on his breast,
Strode calmly, confidently, toward the tower, under
The rocky cliffs: no coward could have walked there!
And then he whod endured dozens of desperate
Battles, whod stood boldly while swords and shields
Clashed, the best of kings, saw
Huge stone arches and felt the heat
Of the dragons breath, flooding down
Through the hidden entrance, too hot for anyone
To stand, a streaming current of fire
And smoke that blocked all passage. And the Geats
Lord and leader, angry, lowered
His sword and roared out a battle cry,
A call so loud and clear that it reached through
The hoary rock, hung in the dragons
Ear. The beast rose, angry,
Knowing a man had comeand then nothing
But war could have followed. Its breath came first,
A steaming cloud pouring from the stone,
Then the earth itself shook. Beowulf

q OLD ENGLISH POETRY

Notice the repeated use of the


letter f in lines 606611. What
tone does the alliteration help
convey?

RL 4
L 5a

tiered discussion prompts


For lines 616644, use these prompts to help
students understand the poets technique:
Connect What stories have you read, and
what films have you seen, that end with a
final battle between good and evil characters? How do those stories and films help
you appreciate this passage? Accept all
reasonable responses.
Analyze What imagery does the poet use to
set the stage for Beowulfs climactic battle
with the dragon? Possible answer: The poet
uses strong imagery to establish the dragon
as a fearsome creature: his breath will be
burning / Hot, poison will pour from his
tongue (lines 616617); a streaming current
of fire / And smoke that blocked all passage
(lines 643644). The poet simultaneously
establishes Beowulfs fearless readiness for
battle: when he comes to me / I mean to
stand, not run from his shooting / Flames
(lines 619621); my heart is firm / My hands
calm (lines 622623).

648 hoary (hrPC): gray with age.

Evaluate Do you think the poet wants to


depict the battle as a contest of equals, or
does he view Beowulf as the underdog?
Explain your answer. Accept all thoughtful
responses.

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differentiated instruction

Age

Characteristics
Beowulf of
Beowulf
the past
during his
last battle
young
old

Weapons

bare hands

Attitude

eager to
fight

for struggling readers


Compare and Contrast Use a Comparison
Matrix to help students compare the
Beowulf of the past with Beowulf at the
time of his last battle. Encourage students
to think in terms of Beowulfs abilities, his
attitude, and his vision of the battles outcome. Here are some examples:

old english poetry

Possible answer: The alliteration helps


convey a defiant tone.

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R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

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sword and
shield
resigned to
battle

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Comparison Matrix p. A24

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655

660

665

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The lines suggest that


an epic hero never gives up. He fights on,
even when he knows that fate has turned
against him. He faces death courageously,
just as he has always faced danger.

670

675

680

685

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The lines imply the importance of loyalty, courage, and kinship, and
suggest that too many people have forgotten what these values mean and why they
must be preserved.

690

695

Extend the Discussion Why do you think


None of his comrades / Came to him,
helped him (lines 691692)?
64

Swung his shield into place, held it


In front of him, facing the entrance. The dragon
Coiled and uncoiled, its heart urging it
Into battle. Beowulf s ancient sword
Was waiting, unsheathed, his sharp and gleaming
Blade. The beast came closer; both of them
Were ready, each set on slaughter. The Geats
Great prince stood firm, unmoving, prepared
Behind his high shield, waiting in his shining
Armor. The monster came quickly toward him,
Pouring out fire and smoke, hurrying
To its fate. Flames beat at the iron
Shield, and for a time it held, protected
Beowulf as hed planned; then it began to melt,
And for the first time in his life that famous prince
Fought with fate against him, with glory
Denied him. He knew it, but he raised his sword
And struck at the dragons scaly hide. r
The ancient blade broke, bit into
The monsters skin, drew blood, but cracked
And failed him before it went deep enough, helped him
Less than he needed. The dragon leaped
With pain, thrashed and beat at him, spouting
Murderous flames, spreading them everywhere.
And the Geats ring-giver did not boast of glorious
Victories in other wars: his weapon
Had failed him, deserted him, now when he needed it
Most, that excellent sword. Edgethos
Famous son stared at death,
Unwilling to leave this world, to exchange it
For a dwelling in some distant placea journey
Into darkness that all men must make, as death
Ends their few brief hours on earth.
Quickly, the dragon came at him, encouraged
As Beowulf fell back; its breath flared,
And he suffered, wrapped around in swirling
Flamesa king, before, but now
A beaten warrior. None of his comrades
Came to him, helped him, his brave and noble
Followers; they ran for their lives, fled
Deep in a wood. And only one of them
Remained, stood there, miserable, remembering,
As a good man must, what kinship should mean. s

r EPIC

Reread lines 668671. What


do these lines reveal about the
qualities of an epic hero?

Targeted Passage

678 ring-giver: king; lord. When a


man swore allegiance to a Germanic
lord in return for his protection, the
lord typically bestowed a ring on his
follower to symbolize the bond.

EPIC
What values are implied in lines
691696? What message about
these values do the lines convey?

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for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary: Idioms and Phrasal Verbs


[mixed-readiness pairs] Discuss the meaning
of these expressions, and then help students
use them in original sentences:

Anglo-Saxon Fatalism Lines 681686 reflect


the fatalistic Anglo-Saxon view that life is
short and fragile (discussed in the historical
essay). Ask students to consider whether
contemporary literature generally reflects a
similar philosophy. Have them express their
opinion in a brief essay, supporting their
viewpoint with specific details and examples
from contemporary works they have read.

set on (line 660), intending to do


came at (line 687), attacked
Mind was made up (line 704), had made a
decision

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over and gone (line 721), ended

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700
701
702
703

705

710

715

720

725

730

735

His name was Wiglaf, he was Wexstans son


And a good soldier; his family had been Swedish,
Once. Watching Beowulf, he could see
How his king was suffering, burning. Remembering
Everything his lord and cousin had given him,
Armor and gold and the great estates
Wexstans family enjoyed, Wiglaf s
Mind was made up; he raised his yellow
Shield and drew his sword. . . .
And Wiglaf, his heart heavy, uttered
The kind of words his comrades deserved:
I remember how we sat in the mead-hall, drinking
And boasting of how brave wed be when Beowulf
Needed us, he who gave us these swords
And armor: all of us swore to repay him,
When the time came, kindness for kindness
With our lives, if he needed them. He allowed us to join him,
Chose us from all his great army, thinking
Our boasting words had some weight, believing
Our promises, trusting our swords. He took us
For soldiers, for men. He meant to kill
This monster himself, our mighty king,
Fight this battle alone and unaided,
As in the days when his strength and daring dazzled
Mens eyes. But those days are over and gone
And now our lord must lean on younger
Arms. And we must go to him, while angry
Flames burn at his flesh, help
Our glorious king! By almighty God,
Id rather burn myself than see
Flames swirling around my lord.
And who are we to carry home
Our shields before weve slain his enemy
And ours, to run back to our homes with Beowulf
So hard-pressed here? I swear that nothing
He ever did deserved an end
Like this, dying miserably and alone,
Butchered by this savage beast: we swore
That these swords and armor were each for us all! . . .

tiered discussion prompts


For lines 708735, use these prompts to help
students understand the character of Wiglaf:
Connect Have you ever chosen to do what
was right, even though you were afraid?
Accept all thoughtful responses.
Analyze How does Wiglafs speech show
that he is different from his comrades?
Possible answer: Unlike his comrades, who
have abandoned Beowulf and fled for their
lives, Wiglaf places high value on honor
and loyalty. He makes the point that this is
the time for them to prove that their earlier
promises of bravery were more than just
idle boasts. Wiglaf recognizes their debt to
Beowulf and intends to repay it by coming to
his aid, even at his own peril.

L 5b

Language Coach
Connotation The images or
feelings connected to a word
are its connotations. Killed has
many synonyms with different
connotations. Slain (line 729)
means killed violently or in
large numbers. Butchered (line
734) means killed viciously.
Why are these connotations
important in lines 728735?

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for english language learners


Language Coach

L 5b

Connotation Answer: When


Wiglaf speaks of slaying the dragon that
wounded Beowulf, it is a matter of honor.
When he speaks of the dragons attack on
Beowulf, he uses the more negative word
butchered. Discuss the difference in connotation between the words killed, slain,
and butchered.

Evaluate Does Wiglaf qualify as an epic


hero? Why or why not? Possible answer:
Wiglaf displays courage and loyalty, two
admirable traits associated with epic heroes.
However, readers cannot yet judge whether
he qualifies as an epic hero, because they
have not seen him in action.

7:27:56 PM

for advanced learners/ap


Interpret a Speech Elicit or explain to students that an exhortation is a speech intended to motivate or encourage someone to take
action. Have students prepare and present
a dramatic reading of Wiglafs exhortation
(lines 708735). Ask students to consider
these questions as they prepare their reading.
What words and phrases do they want to
emphasize?
Where will they pause for effect?

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tiered discussion prompts


For lines 736738, use these prompts to help
students understand the poets technique:
Recall What has happened to Beowulf?
Possible answer: He has been mortally
wounded in his battle with the dragon.
Interpret The poet writes that Beowulf
knew hed unwound / His string of days on
earth (lines 737738). What view of fate
does this image suggest? Possible answer:
The image suggests that life is of a certain
length and no longer. Once the string of
life is unwound, it cannot be rewound.
Evaluate Why does the poet use the string
of days image rather than simply say that
Beowulf knew his life was coming to an
end? Possible answer: The poet chose to use
figurative language because it is more moving and memorable.

the death of beowulf


Wiglaf joins Beowulf, who again attacks the dragon single-handed; but the
remnant of his sword shatters, and the monster wounds him in the neck. Wiglaf
then strikes the dragon, and he and Beowulf together finally succeed in killing
the beast. Their triumph is short-lived, however, because Beowulf s wound proves
to be mortal.

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

livid: Have students reread the description


of Beowulfs wound and then describe in
their own words what a livid wound would
look like. Possible answers: The wound
would look discolored, black and blue,
although in the case of Beowulf, the wound
would probably be bloody and red colored.

Iron helmet covered with


decorative panels of tinned bronze
(early 600s). Anglo-Saxon. From
Targeted
Mound
1, SuttonPassage
Hoo, Suffolk,
England. The British Museum.

740

745

66

Beowulf spoke, in spite of the swollen,


Livid wound, knowing hed unwound
His string of days on earth, seen
As much as God would grant him; all worldly
Pleasure was gone, as life would go,
Soon:
Id leave my armor to my son,
Now, if God had given me an heir,
A child born of my body, his life
Created from mine. Ive worn this crown
For fifty winters: no neighboring people
Have tried to threaten the Geats, sent soldiers

livid (lGvPGd) adj. discolored from


being bruised

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for struggling readers


Develop Reading Fluency Point out that
lines 736740 show good examples of the
caesuras (pauses dividing lines) typical of Old
English poetry. Read the lines aloud for students, or have a volunteer do so. Discuss how
the caesuras help to maintain the rhythm.

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750

755

760

765

770

775

780

785

Against us or talked of terror. My days


Have gone by as fate willed, waiting
For its word to be spoken, ruling as well
As I knew how, swearing no unholy oaths,
Seeking no lying wars. I can leave
This life happy; I can die, here,
Knowing the Lord of all life has never
Watched me wash my sword in blood
Born of my own family. Belovd t
Wiglaf, go, quickly, find
The dragons treasure: weve taken its life,
But its gold is ours, too. Hurry,
Bring me ancient silver, precious
Jewels, shining armor and gems,
Before I die. Death will be softer,
Leaving life and this people Ive ruled
So long, if I look at this last of all prizes.
Then Wexstans son went in, as quickly
As he could, did as the dying Beowulf
Asked, entered the inner darkness
Of the tower, went with his mail shirt and his sword.
Flushed with victory he groped his way,
A brave young warrior, and suddenly saw
Piles of gleaming gold, precious
Gems, scattered on the floor, cups
And bracelets, rusty old helmets, beautifully
Made but rotting with no hands to rub
And polish them. They lay where the dragon left them;
It had flown in the darkness, once, before fighting
Its final battle. (So gold can easily
Triumph, defeat the strongest of men,
No matter how deep it is hidden!) And he saw, u
Hanging high above, a golden
Banner, woven by the best of weavers
And beautiful. And over everything he saw
A strange light, shining everywhere,
On walls and floor and treasure. Nothing
Moved, no other monsters appeared;
He took what he wanted, all the treasures
That pleased his eye, heavy plates
And golden cups and the glorious banner,
Loaded his arms with all they could hold.

T E X T A N A LY S I S
t

67

Analyze Although Beowulf is rooted in the


pagan spirit of Anglo-Saxon times, by the
time the poem was recorded as literature,
Christianity had taken firm hold. Have small
groups of students explore the resulting
conflict between Christian and pagan beliefs,
discussing such questions as these:

Possible answer: Beowulfs speech reflects


such ideals as peace, justice, family loyalty,
honesty, and honor.

Seeking no lying wars (line 751), not


starting any wars on the basis of lies or
deceit
wash my sword in blood / Born of my
own family (lines 754755), kill or injure
any person related to me

T E X T A N A LY S I S

u EPIC

Reread lines 768778. What


theme do the lines suggest?

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The lines suggest that


gold has only transitory value and represents nothing more than material wealth.

67

11/22/10

for advanced learners/ap

RL 3

epic

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Discuss with


them the meaning of these difficult
phrases:
swearing no unholy oaths (line 750),
making no promises to do evil deeds

beowulf

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EPIC
Note that Beowulf summarizes
his 50-year reign in lines
744755. What ideals are
reflected in Beowulfs speech?

12:02:13 PM

In what ways is it reflected in the poets


narrative descriptions?
Is the conflict successfully resolved in the
selection? Explain.
Have students share their observations with
the class, supporting their conclusions with
specific examples.

In what ways is this conflict reflected in the


actions of the characters?

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830

Beowulf s dagger, his iron blade,


Had finished the fire-spitting terror
That once protected tower and treasures
Alike; the gray-bearded lord of the Geats
Had ended those flying, burning raids
Forever. v
Then Wiglaf went back, anxious
To return while Beowulf was alive, to bring him
Treasure theyd won together. He ran,
Hoping his wounded king, weak
And dying, had not left the world too soon.
Then he brought their treasure to Beowulf, and found
His famous king bloody, gasping
For breath. But Wiglaf sprinkled water
Over his lord, until the words
Deep in his breast broke through and were heard.
Beholding the treasure he spoke, haltingly:
For this, this gold, these jewels, I thank
Our Father in Heaven, Ruler of the Earth
For all of this, that His grace has given me,
Allowed me to bring to my people while breath
Still came to my lips. I sold my life
For this treasure, and I sold it well. Take
What I leave, Wiglaf, lead my people,
Help them; my time is gone. Have
The brave Geats build me a tomb,
When the funeral flames have burned me, and build it
Here, at the waters edge, high
On this spit of land, so sailors can see
This tower, and remember my name, and call it
Beowulf s tower, and boats in the darkness
And mist, crossing the sea, will know it. w
Then that brave king gave the golden
Necklace from around his throat to Wiglaf,
Gave him his gold-covered helmet, and his rings,
And his mail shirt, and ordered him to use them well:
Youre the last of all our far-flung family.
Fate has swept our race away,
Taken warriors in their strength and led them
To the death that was waiting. And now I follow them.
The old mans mouth was silent, spoke
No more, had said as much as it could;
He would sleep in the fire, soon. His soul

68

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

790

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

old english poetry

RL 4
L 5a

Possible answer: The kenning for the


dragon is fire-spitting terror; for Beowulf,
it is gray-bearded lord of the Geats. The
phrase used to describe Beowulf emphasizes
how the warrior has aged.

795

800

805

810

815

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: It is important to Beowulf


to leave a legacy because he wants future
generations to remember him as a legendary hero. In this way, his life and death will
have had meaning.

820

825

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v OLD ENGLISH POETRY

Identify the kennings used in


lines 789794 to refer to the
dragon and to Beowulf. What
does the phrase used to describe
Beowulf emphasize about the
warrior?

Targeted Passage

816 spit: a narrow point of land


extending into a body of water.

w EPIC

Reread lines 812819. Why is it


important to Beowulf that he
leave a legacy behind?

68

11/22/10

differentiated instruction
for advanced learners/ap
Evaluate Beowulfs Decision [small-group
option] Direct students attention to lines
805810. Invite students to write a paragraph or two explaining whether they agree
or disagree with Beowulf when he says that
he sold his life well. Have students support their viewpoint with specific reasons.
Encourage them to consider whether or not
Beowulf was fulfilling his responsibilities as a
leader and whether the price he paid to gain

68

unit

12:02:14
NA_L12PE-u01
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the treasure was too high. Also ask students


to reflect on what part, if any, Beowulfs age
may have played in his decision. Have students share their work with a small group.

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2/10

835

840

845

850

855

860

865

870

Left his flesh, flew to glory. . . .


And when the battle was over Beowulf s followers
Came out of the wood, cowards and traitors,
Knowing the dragon was dead. Afraid,
While it spit its fires, to fight in their lords
Defense, to throw their javelins and spears,
They came like shamefaced jackals, their shields
In their hands, to the place where the prince lay dead,
And waited for Wiglaf to speak. He was sitting
Near Beowulf s body, wearily sprinkling
Water in the dead mans face, trying
To stir him. He could not. No one could have kept
Life in their lords body, or turned
Aside the Lords will: world
And men and all move as He orders,
And always have, and always will.
Then Wiglaf turned and angrily told them
What men without courage must hear.
Wexstans brave son stared at the traitors,
His heart sorrowful, and said what he had to:
I say what anyone who speaks the truth
Must say. . . .
Too few of his warriors remembered
To come, when our lord faced death, alone.
And now the giving of swords, of golden
Rings and rich estates, is over,
Ended for you and everyone who shares
Your blood: when the brave Geats hear
How you bolted and ran none of your race
Will have anything left but their lives. And death
Would be better for them all, and for you, than the kind
Of life you can lead, branded with disgrace!. . . x
Then the warriors rose,
Walked slowly down from the cliff, stared
At those wonderful sights, stood weeping as they saw
Beowulf dead on the sand, their bold
Ring-giver resting in his last bed;
Hed reached the end of his days, their mighty
War-king, the great lord of the Geats,
Gone to a glorious death. . . .

tiered discussion prompts


836 javelins (jBvPlGnz): light spears
used as weapons.
837 jackals (jBkPElz): doglike animals
that sometimes feed on the flesh of
dead beasts.

Synthesize Would the actions of Beowulfs


followers have been interpreted the same
way by modern-day standards? Why or why
not? Possible answer: Yes; their actions were
cowardly and disloyal.

859 bolted: ran away; fled.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

x EPIC

What does Wiglafs speech in


lines 851862 tell you about the
importance of honor and the
consequences of dishonorable
behavior in Beowulfs time?

69

for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Related Vocabulary Make sure students


understand that Wiglaf is berating his
comradesmen without courage (line
848)for having betrayed Beowulf at his
time of need. Discuss these interrelated
words and phrases:

Synthesize The Beowulf poet chose to tell


the story through a third-person omniscient
narrator. Ask students why the poet may
have used this approach. Discuss how the
narrative might have been different in tone
and content if narrated in the first person,
perhaps by Hrothgar or Wiglaf. Have students support their responses with thoughtful reasons.

shamefaced jackals (line 837)


bolted (line 859)

RL 3

epic

Possible answer: The lines suggest that


gold has only transitory value and represents nothing more than material wealth.

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11/22/10

cowards and traitors (line 833)

Summarize What has just happened?


Answer: Beowulf has died.
Interpret Why are Beowulfs followers
referred to as cowards and traitors (line
833) and shamefaced jackals (line 837)?
Possible answer: They abandoned Beowulf
when he needed them most, leaving him to
fight the dragon alone.

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12:02:14
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For lines 832862, use these prompts to help


students understand the reason for Wiglafs
angry words:

12:02:15 PM

branded with disgrace (line 862)

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Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: A mood of dejection and
gloominess is suggested by the cloudy sky,
stooped posture of the man on horseback, and
his grasp of a sword that is pointing down.

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

old english poetry

mourning beowulf

RL 4
L 5a

Possible answer: These lines have a reverential tone.

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read Beowulf, ask them to think about
the fact that Beowulf is more than 1,200 years
old. Do they find this surprising? Why or why
not? What aspects of the poem have a more
contemporary feel than might be expected?
What might a modern-day Beowulf look like?
Where do characteristics of Beowulf appear in
corporate America? on a college campus?
CRITIQUE
Ask students whether or not they enjoyed
reading the poem, and why. Which parts did
they like most? Which did they like least?
After completing the After Reading questions on page 71, have students revisit
their responses and tell whether they have
changed their opinions.
INDEPENDENT READING
Students may enjoy reading The Collected
Beowulf by Gareth Hinds, a graphic novel
version of the epic poem.

875

880

885

890

895

70

Then the Geats built the tower, as Beowulf


Had asked, strong and tall, so sailors
Could find it from far and wide; working
For ten long days they made his monument,
Sealed his ashes in walls as straight
And high as wise and willing hands
Could raise them. And the riches he and Wiglaf
Had won from the dragon, rings, necklaces,
Ancient, hammered armorall
The treasures theyd taken were left there, too,
Silver and jewels buried in the sandy
Ground, back in the earth, again
And forever hidden and useless to men.
And then twelve of the bravest Geats
Rode their horses around the tower,
Telling their sorrow, telling stories
Of their dead king and his greatness, his glory,
Praising him for heroic deeds, for a life
As noble as his name. So should all men
Raise up words for their lords, warm
With love, when their shield and protector leaves
His body behind, sends his soul
On high. And so Beowulf s followers y
Rode, mourning their belovd leader,
Crying that no better king had ever
Lived, no prince so mild, no man
So open to his people, so deserving of praise.

Analyze Visuals
What details in this photograph
suggest the mourning for
Beowulf? Explain.

y OLD ENGLISH POETRY

Reread lines 889893 aloud.


Notice the alliteration in the
phrases words for their lords
and warm with love. How
would you describe the tone of
these lines?

896 mild: gentle or kindly.

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

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11/22/10

differentiated instruction

70

unit

for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Comprehension Support Call students attention to the long, complex sentence that
spans lines 871877. Suggest that students
can more easily understand this sentence
by dividing it into two parts at the semicolon (line 873) and focusing on one part at
a time. Elicit or explain that strong and
tall (line 872) refers back to tower (line
871) and that far and wide (line 873) is an
idiom here meaning every direction.

Analyze and Evaluate Structure The


Beowulf selection has a generally straightforward, chronological narrative flow. Ask
students to consider what effect a different
structure might have had on the story. Have
small groups of students discuss how such
changes might have added to, or detracted
from, the story, and why. Encourage students to support their answer with specific
reasons and examples.

12:02:15 PM

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8:28:44 AM

After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
1. Recall In what way does Beowulfs sword fail him?
2. Summarize How do the Geats honor Beowulf after he dies?

Text Analysis
3. Examine Epic Characteristics Review the discussion
of the characteristics of an epic in the Text Analysis Workshop on pages
3839. Then use a chart like the one shown to list
Beowulfs traits as an epic hero and the deeds that
Traits
reveal these traits. Is he a typical epic hero?

For preliminary support of post-reading


questions, use these copy masters:

RL 2 Determine two or more


themes or central ideas of a text.
RL 3 Analyze the impact of the
authors choices regarding how to
develop and relate elements of a
story. RL 4 Analyze the impact of
specific word choices on meaning
and tone. L 5a Interpret figures of
speech in context and analyze their
role in the text.

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Reading Check p. 28
Characteristics of an Epic p. 21
Question Support p. 29
Additional selection questions are
provided for teachers on page 15.

Deeds

4. Analyze Old English Poetry Review the list you


created as you read. In what ways might the
alliteration, caesuras, and kennings in Beowulf have
helped Anglo-Saxon poets chant or sing the poem and convey its meaning?

answers

1. Beowulfs sword breaks against the


dragons scaly hide, allowing the dragon to
attack him.

5. Analyze Theme Beowulf is able to defeat Grendel and Grendels mother, yet
he loses his life when he battles the dragon. What themes does this suggest
about the struggle between good and evil?

2. The Geats build a tower, a monument to


Beowulf that will help guide sailors. They
bury the dragons treasure around the
tower, and the bravest Geats circle the
tower, proclaiming Beowulfs heroism.

6. Compare and Contrast Compare and contrast the portrayals of Beowulf as a


young and old man. Also compare Hrothgars recollections of his early deeds
with his limitations as an aged king. What view of youth and age do these
comparisons convey? Support your conclusions with specific evidence.

Possible answers:
3. common core focus Characteristics
of an Epic

7. Draw Conclusions Describe Beowulfs attitude toward death or mortality


in each of the following passages: lines 179189, lines 481492, and lines
665691. How does his attitude change over time?
8. Evaluate Authors Purpose Reread lines 8185, which reveal the influence
of Christianity on the Beowulf Poet. Why might the poet have chosen to
describe Hrothgar and Grendel in terms of their relationship to God?

Traits
of noble birth or
high position
has qualities
that reflect
societal ideals
does deeds
requiring great
courage and
strength
performs actions
that determine
fate of nation or
group

Text Criticism
9. Different Perspectives In his 20th-century novel Grendel, writer John Gardner
tells the story of Grendels attacks against the Danes from the monsters
point of view. Consider the selection you have read from the perspectives
of Grendel, Grendels mother, and the dragon. What reasons might each of
them have to hate Beowulf and other men?

Where do

monsters lurk?

Monsters like Grendel often combine human and animal features. Think
of other monsters from literature, television, or film that combine these
features. Why are such monsters particularly disturbing?

beowulf

71

7. Lines 179189: Beowulf has a fatalistic attitude toward death; lines 481492: Driven
by his desire for fame, Beowulf faces death
fearlessly; lines 665691: Beowulf resists
death, though he realizes it is inevitable.
Over time, Beowulf becomes more resigned
to his fate.

8. The poet wanted to glorify God while


drawing a comparison between the good
Hrothgar and the evil Grendel.

1/8/11

12:04:10 PM

9. Grendel might feel excluded from the mens


celebrations and be jealous of their merrymaking; Grendels mother wants to avenge
her sons death; the dragon may be angry
because men steal from his treasure.

Where do MONSTERS lurk?


Accept all thoughtful responses.

Deeds
is born the
nephew of king
fights with
honor
battles monsters

saves the Danes

Students should support their opinion


about Beowulf as an epic hero with
examples from the text.

71

4.
NA_L12PE-u01s11-arBeowul.indd

RL 2, RL 3, RL 4, L 5a

common core focus Analyze Old


English Poetry These techniques help to
create a strong rhythm and unified sound,
as well as a vivid and compelling narrative.

5. Good and evil are engaged in an ongoing


battle, and sometimes evil wins.
6. Youth is a time for brave and daring deeds,
as evidenced by Beowulfs defeat of Grendel
and Grendels mother. Old age is a time of
honor and dignity, but also a time when
diminishing strength may necessitate dependence on others, as evidenced by Hrothgars dependence on Beowulf and Beowulfs
need for Wiglafs help.

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11:48:28 AM

Vocabulary in Context
vocabulary practice

answers
Vocabulary in Context

word list

Decide whether the words in each pair are synonyms or antonyms.

vocabulary practice

affliction

1. affliction/blessing

5. livid/bruised

gorge

2. gorge/empty

6. loathsome/delightful

infamous
lair

1. antonyms

5. synonyms

3. infamous/respected

7. purge/remove

2. antonyms

6. antonyms

4. lair/hideout

8. talon/claw

3. antonyms

7. synonyms

4. synonyms

8. synonyms

livid
loathsome
purge

academic vocabulary in writing


concept

culture

parallel

section

talon
structure

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master


How has the concept of a hero changed since Beowulfs time? Write a paragraph
about how the hero is represented in movies or TV in todays culture. Refer
to at least one section of Beowulf for comparison. Use at least one additional
Academic Vocabulary word in your response.

Vocabulary Practice p. 26

academic vocabulary in writing


Possible answer: Many of todays heroes are
seen as outsiders and work alone, unlike the
culture of Beowulf, who was respected and had
many loyal followers. Lines 120122 tell how Beowulf took great care in choosing the bravest
and best of the Geats, indicating the importance he placed on forming a cohesive group.

vocabulary strategy:
the anglo-saxon suffix
-some

vocabulary strategy: the anglo-saxon suffix -some


Many English words with Anglo-Saxon word parts were born whole into Old
English, changing slightly over time. Others developed from the combination
of Old English word parts during the time when people spoke Middle English.
The adjective-forming suffix -some, which means like or tending to cause,
appears in both types of words. In Old English, -sum occurred in the word
wynsum (todays winsome). Later, the Middle English word loth (to feel
disgust) combined with the Old English -sum to make lothsum: tending to
cause disgust. Though the spelling has changed over time, loathsome has the
same meaning today.

L 1a, L 4b

L 1a Apply the understanding that


usage is a matter of convention
and can change over time.
L 4b Identify and correctly use
patterns of word changes that
indicate different meanings or
parts of speech.

PRACTICE Use an adjective ending in the suffix -some to describe each person,
place, or thing listed. Form the adjective by adding -some to a word shown in
the equation.

Point out that the suffix may be joined to a


noun, such as awe, or a verb, such as loathe.
Challenge students to come up with other
examples, such as meddlesome, tiresome,
irksome.

1. a load of books to carry

awe

2. a city skyline sparkling in the sun

burden

3. a person who always argues

loathe

Answers:

4. a smile that charms people

quarrel

Go to thinkcentral.com.

5. a cockroach

win

KEYWORD: HML12-72

1. burdensome

+ -some

Interactive
Vocabulary

2. awesome
3. quarrelsome
4. winsome
5. loathsome
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

72

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

Vocabulary Strategy p. 27
NA_L12PE-u01s11-arBeowul.indd

Interactive Vocabulary
Keywords direct students to a WordSharp
tutorial on thinkcentral.com or to other types
of vocabulary practice and review.

72

unit

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Task Support: Vocabulary Practice Point


out that the meaning of the English word
infamous is not quite as strong as that
of the Spanish equivalent infame, which
means loathsome or despicable.

Vocabulary in Writing Have students use


as many vocabulary words as they can in a
paragraph written in the first person from
the point of view of one of the characters of
Beowulf.

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11:48:32 AM

3/11

Language
grammar and style: Create Imagery
Review the Grammar and Style note on page 54. To describe a scene or convey
a mood, the Beowulf Poet uses imagerywords and phrases that create vivid
sensory experiences for the audience. The poet frequently creates this imagery
through an effective use of adjectives and verbs. Here is an example from the
epic:
The dragon leaped
With pain, thrashed and beat at him, spouting
Murderous ames, spreading them everywhere. (lines 675677)

L 3 Apply knowledge of language


to make effective choices for
meaning or style. W 2 Write
informative/explanatory texts
to examine and convey complex
ideas, concepts, and information
clearly and accurately through
the effective selection,
organization, and analysis of
content. W 9a (RL 3) Analyze the
impact of specific word choices on
meaning and tone.

Notice that the verbs leaped, thrashed, and beat suggest a sense of movement and
that the adjective murderous conveys the feeling of the flames heat. The imagery
in the sentence helps you envision the scene and experience its intensity.

Language

L 3, W 2, W 9a (RL 3)

grammar and style


Point out that the poet often uses unexpected
verbs and adjectives, which makes them especially effective. For example, spouting murderous flames is more unusual and dramatic
than something like shooting hot flames
would have been.
Possible answers:
Students sentences will vary.
1. Adjectives: bloody, torn; verbs: crunch,
smear

PRACTICE Write down each of the following lines from Beowulf. Identify the
adjectives and verbs in each sentence that create imagery and then write your
own sentence with similar elements.

2. Adjectives: inlaid, snarling, fierce, gruesome;


verbs: strode, gleamed, burned

example

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

He moved quickly through the cloudy night, / Up from his swampland,


sliding silently / Toward that gold-shining hall.
She drifted slowly down the leaf-strewn street, away from the city
lights, winding sadly toward the deserted house.

Create Imagery p. 30

reading-writing connection
Suggest that students use a Cluster Diagram
to help them brainstorm elements of Beowulf
that bring the poem to life for them. Encourage students to identify particular parts of the
poem that they enjoyed and to consider what
made these parts effective.

1. . . . Grendel will carry our bloody / Flesh to the moors, crunch on our bones /
And smear torn scraps of our skin on the walls / Of his den.
2. He strode quickly across the inlaid / Floor, snarling and fierce: his eyes /
Gleamed in the darkness, burned with a gruesome / Light.

reading-writing connection

YOUR

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency


Expand your understanding of Beowulf by responding to this prompt.
Then use the revising tips to improve your analysis.

Cluster Diagram p. B18

TURN

writing prompt

revising tips

Writing Online

WRITE AN ANALYSIS The review on page


74 describes the experience of listening to
an oral performance of Beowulf. Write a
three-to-five-paragraph analysis of Beowulf
in which you describe what features of the
poem bring it to life for you. You might focus
on its characters, its vivid descriptions, or its
use of elements of Old English poetry.

Clearly identify the features


of the poem that make
Beowulf a distinctive and
powerful work of literature.

following
toolstools
are available
online
AllThe
of the
interactive
and features
onat
thinkcentral.com
on WriteSmart
WriteSmart
are alsoand
available
online CD-ROM:
Graphicin
Organizers
Interactive
thinkcentral.com
the Writing Center.
at
Interactive Student Models
Interactive Revision Lessons
For additional grammar instruction, see
GrammarNotes on thinkcentral.com.

Include details from the


poem to show how each of
these features makes the
poem come to life for you.

Interactive
Revision
Go to thinkcentral.com.
KEYWORD: HML12-73

beowulf

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AM

73

differentiated instruction
for struggling writers
Provide several sample sentences for
students, and have them identify the
adjectives and verbs. For example:
The skater skimmed (verb) across the
opaque (adjective) ice, graceful (adjective) and confident (adjective). Her hair
streamed (verb) behind her, illuminated
(verb) by the silvery (adjective) moonlight.

73

1/8/11

Encourage students to combine short,


simple sentences into one more-complex,
longer sentence. For example, ask them
to combine these sentences:
He shivered under the flimsy blanket. He
trembled with each deafening crash of
thunder. (Possible answer: He shivered
under the flimsy blanket, trembling with
each deafening crash of thunder.)

12:04:14 PM

Assess and Reteach


Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Selection Tests A, B/C pp. 2526, 2728


Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

Reteach
Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com

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11:48:40 AM

Reading for Information


REVIEW Listening to the story of Beowulf sung by a scop playing a harp is not an
experience confined to the past. American musician and medieval scholar Benjamin
Bagby performs Beowulf in the original Anglo-Saxon to enthusiastic audiences. The
following review captures the excitement of Bagbys Beowulf.

connect

A Collaboration
Across 1,200 Years

This selection connects directly to Beowulf.


You can also use it as a minilesson on reading
for information.

reading for information


Point out that A Collaboration Across 1,200
Years is a theater review.
Ask students how a theater review is different from other newspaper articles. Possible
answer: Most newspaper articles are intended
to report information about current events
without expressing personal opinions. Reviews, however, are in effect subjective essays.
A theater review describes a play or other
performance and presents the reviewers
evaluation of that performance and the actors involved.

uropean noblemen of a
thousand years ago had much
more exciting and intelligent
entertainment than anything to
be found now. Anyone who doubts
that need only look in on Benjamin
Bagbys astonishing
performance of the
D. J. R.
first quarter of the
BRUCKNER epic poem Beowulf
in Anglo-Saxon,
no lesstonight at the Stanley
H. Kaplan Penthouse at Lincoln
Center. It will be the last of his three
appearances in the Lincoln Center
Festival.
From the moment he strode on
stage on Sunday for the opening
night, silencing the audience with
that famous first word, Hwaet!
(Pay attention!), until hell
swallowed the pagan soul of the
monster Grendel 80 minutes later,

Review By

After students have read the review, ask


them to summarize the reviewers opinion
of Benjamin Bagbys performance. Possible
answer: The reviewer found Bagbys performance both enjoyable and impressive. He
calls it astonishing and describes how Mr.
Bagby came as close to holding hundreds of
people in a spell as ever a man has.

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Mr. Bagby came as close to holding


hundreds of people in a spell as ever
a man has. As the epics warriors
argued, boasted, fought or fell into
the monsters maw, there were bursts
of laughter, mutters and sighs, and
when Mr. Bagbys voice stopped at
the end, as abruptly as it had begun,
there was an audible rippling gasp
before a thunderclap of applause
from cheering people who called him
back again and again, unwilling to
let him go.
Mr. Bagbya Midwesterner who
fell in love with Beowulf at 12 and
who now is co-director of a medieval
music ensemble, Sequentia, in
Cologne, Germanyaccompanies
himself on a six-string lyre
modeled on one found in a seventhcentury tomb near Stuttgart. This
surprisingly facile instrument
underscores the meter of the epic

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Reading for Information

tiered discussion prompts


verses and is counterpoint to Mr.
Bagbys voice as he recites, chants and
occasionally sings the lines.
On the whole, this is a restrained
presentation. The performer captures
listeners at once simply by letting
us feel his conviction that he has a
tale to tell that is more captivating
than any other story in the world. He
avoids histrionic gestures, letting the
majestic rhythms of the epic seize our
emotions and guide them through the
action. Gradually the many voices
that fill the great poem emerge and

the listener always knows who is


speaking: a warrior, a watchman, a
king, a sarcastic drunk. A translation
is handed out to the audience, but
after a while one notices people are
following it less and just letting the
sound of this strange and beautiful
language wash over them. Perhaps not
so strange, after allenough phrases
begin to penetrate the understanding
that one finally knows deep down
that, yes, this is where English came
from.
How authentic is all this? Well, we
know from many historical sources
that in the first millennium at royal
or noble houses a performer called a
scop would present epics. Mr. Bagby
has lived with this epic for many
years, as well as with ancient music,
and his performance is his argument
that Beowulf was meant to be heard,
not read, and that this is the way
we ought to hear it. It is a powerful
argument, indeed. The test of it is
that when he has finished, you leave
with the overwhelming impression
that you know the anonymous poet
who created Beowulf more than a
dozen centuries ago, that you have
felt the mans personality touch you.
That is a much too rare experience in
theater.

reading for information

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75

Use these prompts to help students understand the reviewers reaction to Benjamin
Bagbys performance of Beowulf:
Connect How did reading this review affect
your appreciation of the written text of
Beowulf? Accept all reasonable answers.
Analyze What does the reviewer find most
striking about Bagbys performance?
Possible answer: Listeners leave with the
feeling that they know the poet who so long
ago created Beowulf, that they have been
touched by the poets personalitya much
too rare experience in theater.
Synthesize How does the reviewer feel
that a work such as Beowulf compares
to modern-day entertainment? Possible
answer: The reviewer feels that Beowulf,
particularly when presented in the manner
that Bagby has performed it, is superior to
modern-day entertainment. As he suggests
in his opening sentence, it is much more
exciting and intelligent entertainment than
anything to be found now.

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Themes Across Cultures

Focus and Motivate

RL 1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to


support analysis of what the text says explicitly
as well as inferences drawn from the text.
RL 3 Analyze the impact of the authors choices
regarding how to develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 4 Determine the meaning of
words and phrases as they are used in the text,
including figurative meanings. RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature. SL 1d Respond thoughtfully
to diverse perspectives. L 4 Determine or clarify
the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning
words. L 4c Consult general and specialized
reference materials to determine or clarify a words
etymology. L 6 Acquire and use accurately general
academic and domain-specific words and phrases.

about the poet


Have students read about Homer and his two
famous epics and summarize key points. Call
attention to the fact that, like Beowulf, the
Iliad took shape as an oral work but was preserved in writing for future generations.

from the Iliad

Video link at
thinkcentral.com

Epic Poem by Homer Translated by Robert Fitzgerald

RL 3 Analyze the impact of the


authors choices regarding how
to develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 4 Determine the
meaning of words and phrases
as they are used in the text,
including figurative meanings.
RL 10 Read and comprehend
literature. SL 1d Respond
thoughtfully to diverse
perspectives. L 4 Determine or
clarify the meaning of unknown
and multiple-meaning words.

Meet the Author

Homer

did you know?


Homer . . .
was probably illiterate.
inspired Alexander the
Great, who carried the
Iliad with him on all of
his military campaigns.
is quoted more
often than any other
Western poet, with the
possible exception of
Shakespeare.

about 700 b.c.

Roughly a thousand years before the


Beowulf Poet composed his epic poem,
another oral poet, Homer, created two
great epics. The Iliad and the Odyssey
were an essential part of the ancient
Greek world. Schoolchildren memorized
verses from the poems, and scholars
discussed their meaning. Alexander the
Great slept with a gold-encrusted copy
of the Iliad under his pillow. But little
or nothing was known about the poet
himself.
Man of Mystery Nothing much has
changed today. Legend and mystery
abound in the life of Homer. According
to one of the most persistent legends,
Homer was blind. However, some
scholars have pointed out that the ancient
Greeks typically depicted a sage or
philosopher as a blind man to emphasize
his exceptional inner vision.

The poets birthplace and date of birth


are also matters for speculation. For
centuries, scholars
even debated about
scho
whether Homer
Hom ever really existed. Today
most agree that
th the author of the Iliad
and the Odyssey
Ody was indeed a man
named Homer
who lived sometime
Ho
between 800
8 and 600 b.c. and was
born either
eithe in western Asia Minor or
on one of the nearby Aegean islands.
Evidence of
o his life has been gathered

notable quote
No one has ever surpassed him in treating
great matters sublimely or small things fittingly. Quintilian, ancient Roman orator

indirectly from writings of ancient


Greece and from Homers poems.
Clash of Titans The Iliad relates events of

the Trojan War, a conflict between Greeks


and Trojans in the ancient city of Troy
in Asia Minor. Most historians believe
that some sort of war really did take place
between Greece and Troy around 1200 b.c.
According to Homers poem, the
Trojan War began when Paris, a prince
of Troy, kidnapped Helen, the worlds
most beautiful woman, from her
husband, King Menelaus (mDnQE-lAPEs) of
Greece. In retaliation, the kings brother,
Agamemnon (BgQE-mDmPnJn), led the
Greek army in an invasion of Troy. The
Greeks laid siege to the city for ten years
before finally achieving victory. The Iliad
describes the final year of that siege.
Unlettered Genius Homer was able to
draw on a rich oral tradition of stories
about heroes and gods. Many scholars
believe that he composed his epics
orally, despite their great length and
complexity. Homer probably could not
read or write, but he may have recited his
epics for someone else to record, thereby
preserving the poems that became the
foundation of Western literature.

Author Online
Go to thinkcentral.com. KEYWORD: HML12-76

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Selection Resources

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See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 3138


Summary, pp. 3940*
Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 4144*
Vocabulary, pp. 4547*

Word Questioning, p. E9
Open Mind, p. D9
Jigsaw Reading, p. A1

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS

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Video link at
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TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

Selection Tests, pp. 2932

* Resources for Differentiation

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Also in Spanish

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

1/3/11

8:22:35 AM

15/10

Teach

text analysis: simile and epic simile


Homer often helps readers visualize the action in his epics
with a simile, a figure of speech that uses the word like or as to
make a comparison between two unlike things. A long simile,
often continuing for a number of lines, is called an epic simile.
In the following epic simile, Achilles compares his hatred for
Hector to the hatred between enemies in nature:
As between men and lions there are none,
no concord between wolves and sheep, but all
hold one another hateful through and through,
so there can be no courtesy between us . . .
As you read the selection from the Iliad, look for examples of
similes and epic similes.
Review: Epic

reading skill: classify characters


The Iliad is a complex poem involving many characters
both human and divine. To help you keep track of the epics
various characters as you read the Iliad, use a chart like the
one shown to classify each character as a Greek, a Trojan, or a
god. For each god, indicate whether he or she is helping the
Greeks or the Trojans. Then note the important actions and
characteristics of each character.
Character

Greek, Trojan, or God?

Thetis

a sea goddess
helps the Greeks

What inspires

What inspires

courage?

COURAGE?

Running into a burning building to


rescue a child. Standing up against
gangs. Saving a drowning swimmer.
These are all acts of courage. But what
motivates people to perform them?
After all, the logical thing to do when
faced with danger is to run away. The
three main characters in this epic draw
on different types of strength when
they confront their adversaries. What
helps you find the courage to face your
enemies and everyday dangers?

Have students reflect on the different ways in


which people demonstrate courage, and then
ask them to carry out the DISCUSS activity.
Encourage students to listen carefully to their
partners ideas about what motivates individuals to behave courageously.
T E X T A N A LY S I S

Model the Skill:

simile
and epic simile

To model how to analyze similes, write this


passage on the board:

DISCUSS With a partner, discuss acts of


courage you have witnessed or heard
about. Talk about why these heroes did
what they did. Are they different from
other people? Is everyone capable of
courageous acts? If your partner has
a different perspective on courage or
heroism, give those ideas thoughtful
consideration before responding.

Actions/Characteristics

tries to console Achilles


loving toward son

The sky grew dark and ominous, and


beneath the sailors the ocean shifted,
stretched, and swelled, like a giant
beast waking.
Then discuss that the roughening seas are
compared to a giant beast stirring to life:
the waters are moving unpredictably and
may soon prey on the sailors.
GUIDED PRACTICE Elicit other examples of
similes from prose or poetry.

vocabulary in context
These words in the poem help convey the passions and exploits
of war. Substitute the boldfaced word in each of the following
sentences with a word from the list.

word
list

abstain

havoc

scourge

defile

ponderous

vulnerable

felicity

rancor

RL 4

READING SKILL

RL 3
RL 10

Model the Skill:

classify characters
1. The feuding families viewed each other with hatred.
2. The elephants weighty leg broke the trainers stool.
3. The monster left behind a terrible trail of devastation.
Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

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V O C A B77U L A R Y S K I L L

vocabulary in context
DIAGNOSE WORD KNOWLEDGE Have all
students complete Vocabulary in Context.
Check their words and phrases against the
following:
abstain (Bb-stAnP) v. to hold oneself back from
doing something
defile (dG-fFlP) v. to make filthy or impure; to
violate the honor of
felicity (fG-lGsPG-tC) n. happiness; good fortune
havoc (hBvPEk) n. widespread destruction

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L4

ponderous (pJnPdEr-Es) adj. very heavy


rancor (rBngPkEr) n. bitter, longlasting anger;
ill will
scourge (skrj) n. a source of great suffering or
destruction
vulnerable (vOlPnEr-E-bEl) adj. open to attack;
easily hurt
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Study p. 45

12:06:12 PM

To help students understand how characters can be classified, explain that there
are many ways to classify the characters of
a literary work and that the classification
criteria used can help readers gain insight
into the characters and the overall work.
For example, characters might be classified
on the basis of social class, geographical
origins, ethnic background, education, and
so on. Such classifications can help readers
see similarities and differences between
characters and understand why certain
characters are drawn together while others remain apart.
GUIDED PRACTICE Help students create
a chart classifying Achilles and Hector as
they read this selection.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Classify Characters p. 43 (for student


use while reading the selection)

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Themes Across Cultures

Practice and Apply


summary

The ILIAD

The Greek hero Achilles vows to avenge the


death of his best friend, Patroclus, who has
been killed by the Trojan warrior Hector. When
Achilles and Hector fight, Achilles fatally stabs
Hector and then refuses Hectors dying request to return his body to the Trojan people.
Instead, Achilles ties the corpse to his chariot
and drags it to the Greek camp. Hectors
fatherPriam, king of Troygoes to Achilles
to beg for his sons body. Moved by the old
mans grief and prompted by the gods, Achilles
agrees to return Hectors body.

HOMER

While the Greeks are laying siege to Troy, a quarrel breaks out
between Agamemnon and his greatest warrior, Achilles (E-kGlPCz). As
a result, the angry Achilles decides to remain in his tent and let the
Greeks fight without him. The Trojans, under the leadership of
Hector, are able to drive the Greeks back to the sea. During the
battle, Hector kills Achilles best friend, Patroclus (pE-trIPklEs).
While grieving for his friend, Achilles is visited by his mother,
Thetis (thCPtGs), a goddess of the sea.

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read the Iliad to learn how one warrior
deals with an enemy who has killed his friend.

from Book 18

Bending near
her groaning son, the gentle goddess wailed
and took his head between her hands in pity,
saying softly:

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand Thetiss feelings for Achilles in lines 110:
Connect Think about a time when you tried
to comfort someone you cared about. How
does that experience help you understand
Thetiss feelings? Accept all reasonable
responses.

10

Analyze How does Homer make clear


Thetiss sympathetic feelings toward her
son? Possible answer: Through his description, Homer shows just how upset Thetis is at
the sight of her groaning son. The goddess
wail[s] and then grasps Achilles head in
pity, softly asking him why he is crying.
Evaluate How well does the poet succeed
in conveying Thetiss feelings? Explain.
Possible answer: The image of the mother
taking her sons head between her hands
and trying to comfort him captures Thetiss
feelings very effectively.

the immortal shield

Child, why are you weeping?


What great sorrow came to you? Speak out,
do not conceal it. Zeus
did all you asked: Achaean troops,
for want of you, were all forced back again
upon the ship sterns, taking heavy losses
none of them could wish.

Analyze Visuals
What traits and emotions are
suggested by this painting of
Achilles? Which details help
convey them?

67 Previously Achilles asked Thetis


to persuade Zeus (zLs), ruler of the
gods, to turn the tide of battle against
the Greeks so that they would see
how much they needed him.
7 Achaean (E-kCPEn): Greek.

The great runner


groaned and answered:

15

78

Mother, yes, the master


of high Olympus brought it all about,
but how have I benefited? My greatest friend
is gone: Patroclus, comrade in arms, whom I
held dear above all othersdear as myself

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12 Olympus (E-lGmPpEs): the highest


mountain in Greece, on whose peak
the Greek gods and goddesses were
thought to dwell.

Achilles Contemplating the Body of Patroclus, Giovanni


Antonio Pellegrini. Muse Municipal, Soissons, France.
Giraudon/Art Resource, New York.

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for struggling readers

Comprehension: Transitions Read aloud lines


710, starting with Achaean troops... Have
students write a summary of these lines in
their own words. Ask for volunteers to share
their summaries and discuss them as a group.

Comprehension Support Read aloud to students lines 110. Then ask these questions:

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Who is winning? the Trojans


Why did Achilles want his side, the Greeks, to
begin losing? He wanted them to realize how
important he was to their winning the war.
What is meant by forced back again upon
the ship sterns? The Greeks were forced to
the shore where they had landed.

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Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: Several elements help convey the heroic stature of Achilles: the dramatic
lighting, Achilles central position, his grand
clothing, and the laurel wreath that he wears
on his head.
About the Art Venetian artist Giovanni
Antonio Pellegrini (16751741) is known for his
decorative works done in elaborate rococo
style, such as this oil painting, Achilles
Contemplating the Body of Patroclus.

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for struggling readers

for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

The Audio Anthology CD provides extra support for students with reading difficulties.
It is also recommended for use with English
language learners.

Vocabulary Support Use Word Questioning


to teach these words: reject (line 26), respond
(line 168), nonetheless (line 302).

Ask students to list qualities of an epic hero


that they learned while reading Beowulf.
Then have students compile a list of Achilles
heroic qualities. When finished, have students
write a paragraph comparing and contrasting
the two.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Word Questioning p. E9

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20

25

READING SKILL

Model the Skill:

RL 3
RL 10

30

now gone, lost; Hector cut him down, despoiled him


of my own arms, massive and fine, a wonder
in all mens eyes. The gods gave them to Peleus
that day they put you in a mortals bed
how I wish the immortals of the sea
had been your only consorts! How I wish
Peleus had taken a mortal queen! Sorrow
immeasurable is in store for you as well,
when your own child is lost: never again
on his homecoming day will you embrace him!
I must reject this life, my heart tells me,
reject the world of men,
if Hector does not feel my battering spear
tear the life out of him, making him pay
in his own blood for the slaughter of Patroclus! a

classify characters
Letting a tear fall, Thetis said:

To model how to classify a character, write


the following on the board: If Hector does
not feel my battering spear tear the life
out of him . . . Point out that Homer could
have simply wrote that Achilles intended
to kill Hector. However, the language
Homer chose to use emphasizes the intensity of Achilles rage and desire for revenge.
Possible answer: Achilles reveals that he is
vengeful, passionate, and headstrong.

Youll be
swift to meet your end, child, as you say:
your doom comes close on the heels of Hectors own.

35

Extend the Discussion How might these


characteristics benefit Achilles? How
might they hurt him?

40

revisit the big question

45

What inspires

COURAGE?
Discuss Use lines 2636 to discuss how
Achilles is not deterred by the knowledge that
his own death is close on the heels of Hectors
own; indeed, he says, May it come quickly.
Is Achilles apparently fearless attitude a form
of courage? Explain. Possible answer: His
attitude is a form of courage in that Achilles is
unafraid, but it is courage that is heavily mixed
with self-recrimination, guilt, and a desire for
vengeance.

50

80

own the word

L4

rancor: Read aloud the passage and have


students name words and phrases with
related meanings that can help them
determine the meaning of rancor.
Possible answers: strife, anger, envenoms

80

18 Peleus (pCPlC-Es): Achilles human


father.

a CLASSIFY CHARACTERS

Reread lines 2630. Notice that


Achilles suggests that his heart
is guiding him rather than his
head. What characteristics does
Achilles reveal in these lines?

Achilles the great runner ground his teeth


and said:
May it come quickly. As things were,
I could not help my friend in his extremity.
Far from his home he died; he needed me
to shield him or to parry the death stroke.
For me theres no return to my own country.
Not the slightest gleam of hope did I
afford Patroclus or the other men
whom Hector overpowered. Here I sat,
my weight a useless burden to the earth,
and I am one who has no peer in war
among Achaean captains
though in council
there are wiser. Ai! let strife and rancor
perish from the lives of gods and men,
with anger that envenoms even the wise
and is far sweeter than slow-dripping honey,
clouding the hearts of men like smoke: just so
the marshal of the army, Agamemnon,
moved me to anger. But well let that go,

38 parry: to turn aside; deflect.

rancor (rBngPkEr) n. bitter, longlasting anger; ill will


48 envenoms (Dn-vDnPEmz): fills
with poison.

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VOCABULARY

1617 Patroclus wore Achilles armor


to frighten the Trojans. Despoiled
him of my own arms refers to
Hectors taking the armor from
Patroclus corpse.

Language: Verb Tenses Make sure students


are not confused by the use of subjunctive
and conditional tenses. Help students
paraphrase each statement:
How I wish / Peleus had taken a mortal
queen! (lines 2122)

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Likewise with me, if destiny like his /


awaits me, I shall rest when I have fallen!
(lines 6263)
Now, though, may I win my perfect
glory (line 64)
. . . should Zeus allow me / victory in the
end, your life as prize. (lines 8283)

I must reject this life . . . if Hector does not


feel my battering spear (lines 2630)

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Themes Across Cultures

though Im still sore at heart; it is all past,


and I have quelled my passion as I must.
55

60

65

70

Now I must go to look for the destroyer


of my great friend. I shall confront the dark
drear spirit of death at any hour Zeus
and the other gods may wish to make an end.
Not even Heracles escaped that terror
though cherished by the Lord Zeus. Destiny
and Heras bitter anger mastered him.
Likewise with me, if destiny like his
awaits me, I shall rest when I have fallen!
Now, though, may I win my perfect glory
and make some wife of Troy break down,
or some deep-breasted Dardan woman sob
and wipe tears from her soft cheeks. Theyll know then
how long they had been spared the deaths of men,
while I abstained from war!
Do not attempt to keep me from the fight,
though you love me; you cannot make me listen.

5961 Heracles (hDrPE-klCzQ): another


name for Hercules, the greatest
legendary hero of ancient Greece,
son of Zeus and a mortal woman
named Alcmena (Blk-mCPnE). Zeus
wife, the goddess Hera (hrPE), hated
and persecuted Heracles until his
death.

READING SKILL

abstain (Bb-stAnP) v. to hold


oneself back from doing
something

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Have them use


the prereading chart offered on page 77.
Greek,
Trojan, or
Character God?
Hector
Trojan

desolation before troy

And when at last the two men faced each other,


Hector was the first to speak. He said:

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80

85

I will no longer fear you as before,


son of Peleus, though I ran from you
round Priams town three times and could not face you.
Now my soul would have me stand and fight,
whether I kill you or am killed. So come,
well summon gods here as our witnesses,
none higher, arbiters of a pact: I swear
that, terrible as you are,
Ill not insult your corpse should Zeus allow me
victory in the end, your life as prize.
Once I have your gear, Ill give your body
back to Achaeans. Grant me, too, this grace. b

76 Priams (prFPEmz) town: Troy.


Priam is the Trojan King.

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b CLASSIFY CHARACTERS

In lines 8285, Hector refers to


the Greek and Trojan custom
of returning the bodies of slain
warriors to their people. What
does this speech reveal about
Hector?

Compare and Contrast Philosophies Achilles shows that he is resigned to his fate with
such statements as these: if destiny like his
/ awaits me, I shall rest when I have fallen!
(lines 6263) and make an end. I shall accept my own / whenever Zeus and the other
gods desire (lines 214215). In Beowulf, the
hero declares that Fate will unwind as it
must (page 48, line 189).

Promises to
return Achilles
body to the
Greeks; asks
Achilles to do
likewise for
him
Appears to be
honorable and
reasonable

VOCABULARY

L4

own the word

abstain: Read the definition of abstain


aloud to students. Then have them name
common synonyms. Possible answers:
refrain, avoid, forgo, refuse, resist

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for advanced learners/ap

Actions/
Characteristics

Extend the Discussion Do you think that


Achilles will accept the pact that Hector
offers? Why or why not?

80 arbiters (rPbG-tErz): judges;


referees.

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12:03:44 PM

In what ways do Achilles and Beowulf share


similar attitudes toward life and death?
How do their attitudes differ? Direct students
to compare and contrast the philosophies
underlying Beowulf and the Iliad in a discussion. Encourage students to support their
points with specific examples from the text.

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RL 3
RL 10

Possible answer: Hectors speech suggests


that he has great respect for Achilles and
realizes that there is a good chance that
Achilles will kill him.

66 Dardan (drPdn): Trojan.

Achilles seeks to avenge Patroclus by slaughtering Trojans. Apollo, a


god who protects Troy, opens the gates of the city so the Trojans can
rush to safety inside the walls. Only Hector is left outside. Achilles
chases him around the walls three times. Finally the goddess Pallas
Athena, disguised as Hectors brother Deiphobus (dC-GfPE-bEs), appears
to Hector and persuades him to fight Achilles.
from Book 22

classify characters

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Analyze Visuals
Activity After students read the selection, ask
them how the mood of the painting compares
with the mood of the story. Accept all reasonable responses.
About the Art Italian artist Donato Creti
(16711749) is known for decorative frescoes
and altarpieces as well as oil paintings. As
is typical of the idealized style of the time,
Creti uses bright colors and graceful forms to
capture the situation and mood of his subject
mattereven such grim subject matter as
that of Achilles Dragging Hector Around the
Walls of Troy.

Achilles Dragging the Body of Hector Around the Walls of Troy, Donato Creti. Oil on canvas,
142.5 cm. 241.5 cm. Muse Massey, Tarbes, France. Bridgeman Art Library.

But swift Achilles frowned at him and said:

90

95

100

T E X T A N A L Y S I S : Review

105

epic

Possible answer: Plot events are complicated by the participation of supernatural


beingsin this case, the goddess Pallas
Athena.

82

Hector, Ill have no talk of pacts with you,


forever unforgiven as you are.
As between men and lions there are none,
no concord between wolves and sheep, but all
hold one another hateful through and through,
so there can be no courtesy between us,
no sworn truce, till one of us is down
and glutting with his blood the wargod Ares.
Summon up what skills you have. By god,
youd better be a spearman and a fighter!
Now there is no way out. Pallas Athena
will have the upper hand of you. The weapon
belongs to me. Youll pay the reckoning
in full for all the pain my men have borne,
who met death by your spear.
He twirled and cast
his shaft with its long shadow. Splendid Hector,
keeping his eye upon the point, eluded it
by ducking at the instant of the cast,
so shaft and bronze shank passed him overhead
and punched into the earth. But unperceived
by Hector, Pallas Athena plucked it out
and gave it back to Achilles. Hector said: c

90 concord (kJnPkrdQ): peace or


harmony.

94 glutting with his blood the


wargod Ares (rPCz): satisfying Ares,
the god of war, by bleeding to death.
9798 Pallas Athena, the goddess of
wisdom, favors the Greeks.

EPIC
Reread lines 102108. What
characteristic of an epic is
revealed in these lines?

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Have them


review the characteristics of epics.
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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

keeping his eye upon (line 103), watching

Vocabulary: Idioms Help students use context clues to determine the meaning of these
idioms:

blotted out (line 120), eliminated

through and through (line 91), completely


is down (line 93), has been defeated
Summon up (line 95), call upon

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for nothing (line 124), so as to have no


effect
not a soul (line 128), no person
s liking (line 136), regarded
to
favorably by

no way out (line 97), no means of escape


the upper hand (line 98), advantage or
control

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Themes Across Cultures

110

115

120

125

130

135

140

145

A clean miss. Godlike as you are,


you have not yet known doom for me from Zeus.
You thought you had, by heaven. Then you turned
into a word-thrower, hoping to make me lose
my fighting heart and head in fear of you.
You cannot plant your spear between my shoulders
while I am running. If you have the gift,
just put it through my chest as I come forward.
Now its for you to dodge my own. Would god
youd give the whole shaft lodging in your body!
War for the Trojans would be eased
if you were blotted out, bane that you are.
With this he twirled his long spearshaft and cast it,
hitting his enemy mid-shield, but off
and away the spear rebounded. Furious
that he had lost it, made his throw for nothing,
Hector stood bemused. He had no other.
Then he gave a great shout to Deiphobus
to ask for a long spear. But there was no one
near him, not a soul. Now in his heart
the Trojan realized the truth and said:
This is the end. The gods are calling deathward.
I had thought
a good soldier, Deiphobus, was with me.
He is inside the walls. Athena tricked me.
Death is near, and black, not at a distance,
not to be evaded. Long ago
this hour must have been to Zeuss liking
and to the liking of his archer son.
They have been well disposed before, but now
the appointed times upon me. Still, I would not
die without delivering a stroke,
or die ingloriously, but in some action
memorable to men in days to come.
With this he drew the whetted blade that hung
upon his left flank, ponderous and long,
collecting all his might the way an eagle
narrows himself to dive through shady cloud
and strike a lamb or cowering hare: so Hector
lanced ahead and swung his whetted blade.
Achilles with wild fury in his heart

Language Coach

revisit the big question

Fixed Expressions Words


that, combined, have a special
meaning are called xed
expressions. When Hector says,
by heaven (line 111), he means,
as the gods are my witnesses.
What similar expressions do we
use today?

What inspires

120 bane: a cause of distress, death,


or ruin.

125 bemused (bG-myLzdP): dazed;


confused.

Fixed Expressions Answer: I swear; thats


for sure, etc. Explain that the meaning of a
fixed expression cannot be determined by
studying its parts. Present some examples, such as:
Come rain or shine, we will be there.
To make up for missing the meeting, I
worked extra hard on my project.
Ask for other examples of fixed expressions.

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Evaluate Are the metaphors that Homer


uses to describe Hector and Achilles fitting?
Why or why not? Possible answer: The comparisons are only partially valid. Hector may
be attacking in the manner of an eagle swooping down from the sky, but Achilles is certainly
not a helpless lamb or cowering hare.

135139 Zeus archer son is Apollo,


god of the sun, whose arrows may
represent the suns rays. Apollo
typically favored the Trojans, while
Zeus helped individuals on both sides.

VOCABULARY
ponderous (pJnPdEr-Es) adj.
very heavy

L4

own the word

ponderous: Tell students that ponderous


refers to things that have great weight.
Have them name common items that they
believe are ponderous. For example, a Japanese sumo wrestler and a tyrannosaurus
rex could be described as ponderous.

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Language Coach

tiered discussion prompts

Summarize What is happening in this


passage? Possible answer: Hector draws
his sword and launches himself at Achilles.

83

for english language learners

Discuss In what ways does Hector display


courage in his encounter with Achilles in
lines 125148? Possible answer: Even though
Deiphobus is not there to help him and Hector
realizes that This is the end. The gods are calling deathward, Hector fights on, determined
to die in some action / memorable to men in
days to come (lines 141142).

For lines 143148, use these prompts to help


students understand Homers narrative
technique:

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COURAGE?

12:03:48 PM

for advanced learners/ap


Research Greek Terms Many familiar words
and phrases come from ancient Greek literature and mythology. Ask students to research
the meaning and origin of the following
terms and report their findings to the class:
Achilles heel
narcissistic
atlas
Pandoras box
sword of Damocles

Trojan horse
odyssey
Herculean
tantalize

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150

155

T E X T A N A LY S I S

Model the Skill:

RL 4
160

epic simile
To model the skill of analyzing epic similes,
read aloud to students lines 154160. Point
out the ways in which Achilles spear is
compared to the evening star. For
example, it is conspicuous, amid the first
in heaven, and is most lovely. All of these
attributes tell the reader that Achilles
spear has supernatural power.

165

170

Possible answer: The simile compares


Achilles spear to the evening star. The
comparison suggests that the spear is
blessed by the heavenly gods and wielded
by a godlike being.

175

tiered discussion prompts


For lines 169179, use these prompts to help
students understand the character of Achilles:

180

Connect What is your opinion of Achilles


at this point in the narrative? Accept all
thoughtful responses.
Analyze What personal characteristics does
Achilles show in his speech to the dying
Hector? Possible answer: Achilles shows himself to be boastful, cruel, prideful, unforgiving
toward his enemies, and loyal to his friend.
Synthesize Now that Hector is dying and
Patroclus death has been avenged, do you
think Achilles anger will soften? Why or
why not? Possible answer: Accept all reasonable responses.

185

84

pulled in upon his chest his beautiful shield


his helmet with four burnished metal ridges
nodding above it, and the golden crest
Hephaestus locked there tossing in the wind.
Conspicuous as the evening star that comes,
amid the first in heaven, at fall of night,
and stands most lovely in the west, so shone
in sunlight the fine-pointed spear
Achilles poised in his right hand, with deadly
aim at Hector, at the skin where most
it lay exposed. But nearly all was covered d
by the bronze gear he took from slain Patroclus,
showing only, where his collarbones
divided neck and shoulders, the bare throat
where the destruction of a life is quickest.
Here, then, as the Trojan charged, Achilles
drove his point straight through the tender neck,
but did not cut the windpipe, leaving Hector
able to speak and to respond. He fell
aside into the dust. And Prince Achilles
now exulted:
Hector, had you thought
that you could kill Patroclus and be safe?
Nothing to dread from me; I was not there.
All childishness. Though distant then, Patroclus
comrade in arms was greater far than he
and it is I who had been left behind
that day beside the deepsea ships who now
have made your knees give way. The dogs and kites
will rip your body. His will lie in honor
when the Achaeans give him funeral.

153 Hephaestus (hG-fDsPtEs): the god


of fire and blacksmith of the gods,
who made Achilles new armor.

d EPIC SIMILE

Note the epic simile in lines


154160. What two things are
being compared? What does the
comparison suggest about the
power of Achilles spear?

177 kites: hawklike birds of prey.


178 His [body] refers to that of
Patroclus.

Hector, barely whispering, replied:


I beg you by your soul and by your parents,
do not let the dogs feed on me
in your encampment by the ships. Accept
the bronze and gold my father will provide
as gifts, my father and her ladyship
my mother. Let them have my body back,
so that our men and women may accord me
decency of fire when I am dead.

185186 Hectors father is Priam, and


his mother is Hecuba (hDkPyE-bE).
188 Burning the bodies of the dead
was customary. Truces were often
arranged for this purpose.

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Language: Pronoun Referents Help students
identify the referents for the underlined
pronouns:

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mourned by her who gave you birth


(line 200), Patroclus mother
And he who said this would (line 225),
other Achaeans

amid the first in heaven (lines 154156), star


where most / it lay exposed (lines 159160),
skin
greater far than he (lines 173174), Patroclus
His will lie in honor (lines 177178), Patroclus
body

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Themes Across Cultures

Achilles the great runner scowled and said:


190

195

200

Beg me no beggary by soul or parents,


whining dog! Would god my passion drove me
to slaughter you and eat you raw, youve caused
such agony to me! No man exists
who could defend you from the carrion pack
not if they spread for me ten times your ransom,
twenty times, and promise more as well;
aye, not if Priam, son of Dardanus,
tells them to buy you for your weight in gold!
Youll have no bed of death, nor will you be
laid out and mourned by her who gave you birth.
Dogs and birds will have you, every scrap.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand Hectors fate:
Summarize What has just happened?
Possible answer: Achilles has defeated Hector
in combat, and Hector has died of his wound.

194 carrion (kBrPC-En) pack: the wild


animals that feed on dead flesh.

197 Dardanus (drPdn-Es): the


founder of the line of Trojan kings.
Here son means descendant.

Interpret Explain the meaning of the statement, no one came who did not stab the
body (line 221). Possible answer: All the
other Greek soldiers stab Hectors body, perhaps as symbolic revenge or simply to gloat
over their victory.

Then at the point of death Lord Hector said:

205

210

215

220

I see you now for what you are. No chance


to win you over. Iron in your breast
your heart is. Think a bit, though: this may be
a thing the gods in anger hold against you
on that day when Paris and Apollo
destroy you at the Gates, great as you are.

205208 Although Achilles is still


alive as the Iliad ends, other tales
of the Trojan War tell how he is
eventually killed by Hectors brother
Paris, with the aid of Apollo.

Even as he spoke, the end came, and death hid him;


spirit from body fluttered to undergloom,
bewailing fate that made him leave his youth
and manhood in the world. And as he died
Achilles spoke again. He said:

VOCABULARY

At this he pulled his spearhead from the body,


laying it aside, and stripped
the bloodstained shield and cuirass from his shoulders.
Other Achaeans hastened round to see
Hectors fine body and his comely face,
and no one came who did not stab the body.
Glancing at one another they would say:

L4

own the word

vulnerable: Ask students to name situations


in which they might feel vulnerable. Do
they know anyone who could be described
as vulnerable as Achilles describes Hector?
Can students name Achilles vulnerable
spot? Possible answer: Achilles heel

Die, make an end. I shall accept my own


whenever Zeus and the other gods desire.

Now Hector has turned vulnerable, softer


than when he put the torches to the ships!

218 cuirass (kwG-rBsP): an armored


breastplate. Hector is wearing the
armor of Achilles that he took from
Patroclus body.

vulnerable (vOlPnEr-E-bEl) adj.


open to attack; easily hurt
224 Hectors torching of the ships
occurred when the Trojans forced the
Greeks (fighting without Achilles)
back to the sea.

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Synthesize How would the actions of


Achilles and the other Greek soldiers be
interpreted by modern-day standards?
Possible answer: Their actions would probably be interpreted as needlessly brutal.

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for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Comprehension Support To make sure


students understand Achilles response in
line 190, explain that beggary means begging, and help them paraphrase Achilles
statement. Possible answer: Dont plead for
mercy by invoking my morals or thoughts of
my parents! Ask students what earlier line
of Hectors Achilles is responding to. Answer:
line 181

Write Descriptive Prose Have students reread


Homers description of the battle between
Achilles and Hector. Then challenge them
to write a prose account of the battle, using
descriptive and sensory details to create vivid
images and establish a mood. Ask volunteers
to share their work with the class.

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225

230

235

And he who said this would inflict a wound.


When the great master of pursuit, Achilles,
had the body stripped, he stood among them,
saying swiftly:
Friends, my lords and captains
of Argives, now that the gods at last have let me
bring to earth this man who wrought
havoc among usmore than all the rest
come, well offer battle around the city,
to learn the intentions of the Trojans now.
Will they give up their strongpoint at this loss?
Can they fight on, though Hectors dead?

228229 captains of Argives


(rPjFvzQ): Greek officers.

havoc (hBvPEk) n. widespread


destruction

But wait:

240

READING SKILL

classify characters

RL 3
RL 10

Possible answer: Achilles wants to disgrace


Hector and humiliate the Trojans. He
also wants to publicly proclaim his victory
while assuaging his feelings about
Patroclus death.

245

Extend the Discussion How does the


image of Achilles in your mind compare
with the artists depiction of Achilles in
the painting on page 79?

250

255

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

havoc: Ask students to describe the


havoc caused by natural disasters, such
as floods, hurricanes, or drought. Then
have them write a pair of sentences using
the term, the first describing the havoc
referred to in this stanza and the second
describing a recent situation they have
witnessed or read about.
defile: Read the first part of the definition of defile aloud to students. Then
have them explain its meaning in the
passage. Possible answer: The body was
dragged through dirt and dust.

260

86

why do I ponder, why take up these questions?


Down by the ships Patroclus body lies
unwept, unburied. I shall not forget him
while I can keep my feet among the living.
If in the dead world they forget the dead,
I say there, too, I shall remember him,
my friend. Men of Achaea, lift a song!
Down to the ships we go, and take this body,
our glory. We have beaten Hector down,
to whom as to a god the Trojans prayed.
Indeed, he had in mind for Hectors body
outrage and shame. Behind both feet he pierced
the tendons, heel to ankle. Rawhide cords
he drew through both and lashed them to his chariot,
letting the mans head trail. Stepping aboard,
bearing the great trophy of the arms,
he shook the reins, and whipped the team ahead
into a willing run. A dustcloud rose
above the furrowing body; the dark tresses
flowed behind, and the head so princely once
lay back in dust. Zeus gave him to his enemies e
to be defiled in his own fatherland.
So his whole head was blackened. Looking down,
his mother tore her braids, threw off her veil,
and wailed, heartbroken to behold her son.
Piteously his father groaned, and round him
lamentation spread throughout the town,
most like the clamor to be heard if Ilions

CLASSIFY CHARACTERS
Reread lines 246256. Why do
you think Achilles mistreats
Hectors body in this manner?
defile (dG-fFlP) v. to make filthy or
impure; to violate the honor of

263 Ilions (GlPC-Enz): Troys.

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers
Inverted Word Order Explain that Homer
often inverts or otherwise complicates the
word order of sentences, either by departing from the usual sequence of words or by
inserting descriptive phrases. Encourage
students to paraphrase and simplify these
sentences:
Conspicuous as the . . . exposed (lines
154160), Achilles aimed his bright spear at
Hectors exposed throat.

86

240 The dead world is the house of


Hades, or the underworld, where the
Greeks believed the shades of the
dead to reside.

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Iron in your breast / your heart is (lines


204205), Your heart is hard.
Indeed, he had . . . and shame (lines 246247),
He planned to desecrate Hectors body.
Behind both feet . . . ankle (lines 247248),
Achilles pierced the tendons at the back of
Hectors ankles.
And he who stood . . . Hector (lines 311314),
You killed my beloved, superior son, who
was defending his land.

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265

270

275

280

towers, top to bottom, seethed in flames.


They barely stayed the old man, mad with grief,
from passing through the gates. Then in the mire
he rolled, and begged them all, each man by name:
Relent, friends. It is hard; but let me go
out of the city to the Achaean ships.
Ill make my plea to that demonic heart.
He may feel shame before his peers, or pity
my old age. His father, too, is old.
Peleus, who brought him up to be a scourge
to Trojans, cruel to all, but most to me,
so many of my sons in flower of youth
he cut away. And, though I grieve, I cannot
mourn them all as much as I do one,
for whom my grief will take me to the grave
and that is Hector. Why could he not have died
where I might hold him? In our weeping, then,
his mother, now so destitute, and I
might have had surfeit and relief of tears.

scourge (skrj) n. a source of


great suffering or destruction

T E X T A N A LY S I S
282 surfeit (srPfGt): more than
enough for satisfaction.

Achilles and his warriors return to their camp and carry out the
burial rites for Patroclus. Three times, Achilles drags Hectors body
behind his chariot around Patroclus grave. Afterwards, the gods
cleanse and restore the body, and Zeus asks Thetis to tell Achilles to
return the body to the Trojans. Priam sets out for the Greek camp to
ask Achilles to return the body. He is not aware that the god Hermes
(hrPmCz) helps him by putting the sentries to sleep and opening the
gates. Hermes leads Priam to Achilles tent and then vanishes.
from Book 24

285

290

Possible answer: The simile emphasizes that


Priams action is audacious and desperate.
It also suggests that he is risking his life by
coming to Achilles alone and unprotected.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . .
Discuss with them the meaning of the
phrase taken with mad Folly (line 287):
falling victim to criminally foolish actions

a grace given in sorrow

Priam,
the great king of Troy, passed by the others,
knelt down, took in his arms Achilles knees,
and kissed the hands of wrath that killed his sons.
When, taken with mad Folly in his own land,
a man does murder and in exile finds
refuge in some rich house, then all who see him
stand in awe.
So these men stood. f
Achilles
gazed in wonder at the splendid king,

RL 4

epic simile

Help them paraphrase lines 287290.


Possible answer: When a man has foolishly committed a murder and been
forced into exile, people who see him stare
in wonder.

Extend the Discussion Is the comparison


that Homer makes here appropriate? Why
or why not?

EPIC SIMILE
Note the epic simile in lines
287291. What does the simile
emphasize about Priams action?

VOCABULARY
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for advanced learners/ap


Synthesize [small-group option] Homer
relates events mainly from the point of view
of Achilles and the Greeks. Have students
work in small groups to discuss how the narrative might have been different in content
and tone if Homer had instead told the story
from the viewpoint of Hector, Priam, and
the Trojans. Would the narrative have been
more or less effective? Why? Direct students
to support their responses with thoughtful
reasons.

Evaluate As students finish reading the Iliad,


have them review Quintilians quotation on
page 76. Ask students whether they agree or
disagree that Homer is a master at treating
great matters sublimely and small things
fittingly. Have them express their opinions
in a paragraph or two, supporting their
views with specific reasons and details from
the poem.

L4

own the word

87

12:03:51 PM

scourge: Tell students that another meaning for scourge is to whip. Have students
write a pair of sentences, one using scourge
as a noun, the other using scourge as a verb.
Possible answers: Those horrible children are
the scourge of our neighborhood. The cruel
owner took a whip and scourged the poor,
tired horse.

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295

300

READING SKILL

classify characters

RL 3
RL 10

305

Possible answer: Priam is asking Achilles


to take pity on an old man, appealing to
Achilles love and reverence for his own
father.
310

tiered discussion prompts

and his companions marveled too, all silent,


with glances to and fro. Now Priam prayed
to the man before him:
Remember your own father,
Achilles, in your godlike youth: his years
like mine are many, and he stands upon
the fearful doorstep of old age. He, too,
is hard pressed, it may be, by those around him,
there being no one able to defend him
from bane of war and ruin. Ah, but he
may nonetheless hear news of you alive,
and so with glad heart hope through all his days
for sight of his dear son, come back from Troy,
while I have deathly fortune. g
Noble sons
I fathered here, but scarce one man is left me.
Fifty I had when the Achaeans came,
nineteen out of a single belly, others
born of attendant women. Most are gone.
Raging Ares cut their knees from under them.
And he who stood alone among them all,
their champion, and Troys, ten days ago

Use these prompts to help students understand Priams appeal to Achilles in lines
317322:

g CLASSIFY CHARACTERS

Reread Priams speech in lines


295305. What tactic is Priam
using to persuade Achilles to
return Hectors body?

Analyze Visuals
How do the gestures and facial
expressions in this painting
convey what happens in the
scene between Priam and
Achilles? Explain.

Recall Why is Priam visiting Achilles?


Possible answer: Priam wants to bring home
the body of his slain son Hector.
Interpret Why does Priam tell Achilles to
think me more pitiful by far (line 319)?
Possible answer: Priam is telling Achilles that
he has suffered more than anyone because
he has been compelled to kiss the hand of the
man who killed his son.
Synthesize Do you think Achilles will be
moved by Priams appeal? Why or why not?
Accept all reasonable responses.
Achilles Besought by Priam for the Body of his Son Hector (1776), Giovanni Battista
Cipriani. Oil on canvas, 421/16 413/4. The Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: Priam kneels before Achilles,
clutching Achilles knee, begging for the release
of Hectors body. Priam clasps Achilles hand
and kisses it, even though it belongs to the man
who killed his son. Achilles listens attentively
to Priam, and uses his hand to keep the guard
from harming Priam.
About the Art Giovanni Battista Cipriani
(17271785) was an Italian artist and engraver
who worked mainly in England. He is best
known for his decorative artwork. His oil
painting Achilles Besought by Priam for the
Body of his Son Hector captures the feeling of
the poignant scene from the Iliad.

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Language: Pronoun Referents Help students


identify the referents for the underlined words:

Evaluate Direct students attention to lines


322331. Point out that in the midst of this
passage about the two mens shared grief,
Homer characterizes Hector with the epithet
killer of men (line 328). Ask students why
the poet may have used this jarring phrase
in this context and whether it is appropriate.
Possible answer: It is appropriate because it
reminds readers of Hectors achievements in
battle and the cause of Achilles vengefulness.

by those around him (line 299), enemies


nineteen out of a single belly, others (line
308), Priams sons
And he who stood alone (line 311), Hector
of one who killed my son (line 322), Achilles
before the eyes of one who (line 340), Achilles

88

they / feel no affliction (lines 347348),


the gods

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Themes Across Cultures

you killed him, fighting for his land, my prince,


Hector.

315

320

325

330

335

340

345

It is for him that I have come


among these ships, to beg him back from you,
and I bring ransom without stint.

316 stint: limitation.

Achilles,
be reverent toward the great gods! And take
pity on me, remember your own father.
Think me more pitiful by far, since I
have brought myself to do what no man else
has done beforeto lift to my lips the hand
of one who killed my son.
Now in Achilles
the evocation of his father stirred
new longing, and an ache of grief. He lifted
the old mans hand and gently put him by.
Then both were overborne as they remembered:
the old king huddled at Achilles feet
wept, and wept for Hector, killer of men,
while great Achilles wept for his own father
as for Patroclus once again; and sobbing
filled the room. h
But when Achilles heart
had known the luxury of tears, and pain
within his breast and bones had passed away,
he stood then, raised the old king up, in pity
for his grey head and greybeard cheek, and spoke
in a warm rush of words:
Ah, sad and old!
Trouble and pain youve borne, and bear, aplenty.
Only a great will could have brought you here
among the Achaean ships, and here alone
before the eyes of one who stripped your sons,
your many sons, in battle. Iron must be
the heart within you. Come, then, and sit down.
Well probe our wounds no more but let them rest,
though grief lies heavy on us. Tears heal nothing,
drying so stiff and cold. This is the way
the gods ordained the destiny of men,

326 overborne: overcome;


overwhelmed.

READING SKILL

Notice the change in Achilles


attitude in lines 322331. What
qualities of Achilles do these
lines reveal?

L4

Language Coach

L4

Word Definitions Answer: designed:


Only designed makes sense when substituted into the sentence. Remind students that
many words can have more than one definition. Ask for volunteers to share words
that have more than one meaning. Have
the group come up with sentences that use
each word in at least two different ways.

Call attention to the repetition of the


word wept in lines 328329. Discuss
how the two mens shared grief moves
Achilles.

Word Definitions You often


have to consider several
definitions to find the one
that fits. The word ordained
can mean 1) made a priest, 2)
designed, or 3) destined. Which
meaning fits the use of the word
in line 346? How can you tell?

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for struggling readers


Comprehension Support Use an Open Mind
diagram to help students reflect on Achilles
emotional state during his meeting with
Priam. Have students list thoughts and
feelings that might be going through
Achilles mind.
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

I long to see my own


father.
In a way, Priam is not
so different from my
father.
I miss my friend
Patroclus.

Open Mind p. D9

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RL 3
RL 10

Possible answer: These lines show that


Achilles can be compassionate and that
he has deep feelings for the people he has
losthis father and his friend Patroclus.

Language Coach

89

classify characters

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . .


Discuss with them the meaning of the
word evocation (line 323): bringing to
mind; causing to remember. Point out
that it comes from the verb evoke.

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h CLASSIFY CHARACTERS

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READING SKILL

350

RL 3
RL 10

classify characters

Possible answer: Achilles accepts that


humans are at the mercy of the gods, who
control their lives.

355

360

365

370

375

to bear such burdens in our lives, while they


feel no affliction. At the door of Zeus i
are those two urns of good and evil gifts
that he may choose for us; and one for whom
the lightnings joyous king dips in both urns
will have by turns bad luck and good. But one
to whom he sends all evilthat man goes
contemptible by the will of Zeus; ravenous
hunger drives him over the wondrous earth,
unresting, without honor from gods or men.
Mixed fortune came to Peleus. Shining gifts
at the gods hands he had from birth: felicity,
wealth overflowing, rule of the Myrmidons,
a bride immortal at his mortal side.
But then Zeus gave afflictions toono family
of powerful sons grew up for him at home,
but one child, of all seasons and of none.
Can I stand by him in his age? Far from my country
I sit at Troy to grieve you and your children.
You, too, sir, in time past were fortunate,
we hear men say. From Macars isle of Lesbos
northward, and south of Phrygia and the Straits,
no one had wealth like yours, or sons like yours.
Then gods out of the sky sent you this bitterness:
the years of siege, the battles and the losses.
Endure it, then. And do not mourn forever
for your dead son. There is no remedy.
You will not make him stand again. Rather
await some new misfortune to be suffered.

CLASSIFY CHARACTERS
Reread lines 345348. What is
Achilles attitude toward fate?

felicity (fG-lGsPG-tC) n. happiness;


good fortune
359 Myrmidons (mrPmE-dJnzQ):
a people of Thessaly in Greece,
subjects of Achilles father, Peleus.

363 Of all seasons and of none


suggests that Achilles expects an
early death for himself.

367368 Lesbos (lDzPbJs) . . . Phrygia


(frGjPC-E) . . . the Straits: Lesbos is
an island off the western coast of
Asia Minor; Phrygia was an ancient
kingdom in western Asia Minor; the
Straits are the Dardanelles.

The old king in his majesty replied:


T E X T A N A L Y S I S : Review

epic

Possible answer: Homer uses the epithet


the great runner to describe Achilles. This
epithet underscores Achilles athleticism,
speed, and youth.

380

Never give me a chair, my lord, while Hector


lies in your camp uncared for. Yield him to me
now. Allow me sight of him. Accept
the many gifts I bring. May they reward you,
and may you see your home again.
You spared my life at once and let me live.
Achilles, the great runner, frowned and eyed him
under his brows:

revisit the big question

385

What inspires

COURAGE?

90

Discuss Does it take courage for Priam to request his sons body in lines 376382? Explain.
Possible answer: It does indeed take courage,
because Priam risks provoking Achilles to anger.

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

felicity: Tell students that common


synonyms for felicity are delight and joy.
Have students list common antonyms.
Possible answers: sorrow, misery, sadness,
unhappiness

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EPIC
Note the use in line 383 of a
stock epithet, a brief phrase
(similar to a kenning) that points
out traits associated with a
character. What epithet is used
to describe Achilles in this line?
What traits does it underscore?

Do not vex me, sir, he said.


I have intended, in my own good time,

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers

Where will they pause for effect?

Develop Reading Fluency The Iliad contains


many heartfelt and passionate speeches, such
as Priams appeal to Achilles (pages 8889)
and Achilles reply (pages 8990). Have
students choose one of the speeches and
present a dramatic reading. Ask them to
consider these questions as they prepare their
reading, using a chart like the sample below
to make notes:

Where will they speak more loudly or


softly?

What words and phrases do they want to


emphasize?

Have listeners discuss which parts of the


speech they find most effective, and why.

Line Numbers
337341

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Technique
Emphasis: sad,
old, Trouble,
pain
Pause: after
old, borne

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390

395

400

405

410

415

420

to yield up Hector to you. She who bore me,


the daughter of the Ancient of the sea,
has come with word to me from Zeus. I know
in your case, toothough you say nothing, Priam
that some god guided you to the shipways here.
No strong man in his best days could make entry
into this camp. How could he pass the guard,
or force our gateway?
Therefore, let me be.
Sting my sore heart again, and even here,
under my own roof, suppliant though you are,
I may not spare you, sir, but trample on
the express command of Zeus!
When he heard this,
the old man feared him and obeyed with silence.
Now like a lion at one bound Achilles
left the room. Close at his back the officers
Automedon and Alcimus went out
comrades in arms whom he esteemed the most
after the dead Patroclus. They unharnessed
mules and horses, led the old kings crier
to a low bench and sat him down.
Then from the polished wagon
they took the piled-up price of Hectors body.
One chiton and two capes they left aside
as dress and shrouding for the homeward journey.
Then, calling to the women slaves, Achilles
ordered the body bathed and rubbed with oil
but lifted, too, and placed apart, where Priam
could not see his sonfor seeing Hector
he might in his great pain give way to rage,
and fury then might rise up in Achilles
to slay the old king, flouting Zeuss word. k
So after bathing and anointing Hector
they drew the shirt and beautiful shrouding over him.
Then with his own hands lifting him, Achilles
laid him upon a couch, and with his two
companions aiding, placed him in the wagon.
Now a bitter groan burst from Achilles,
who stood and prayed to his own dead friend:

387 The Ancient of the sea is the


sea god Nereus (nrPC-Es), father of
Thetis.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students understand Achilles in lines 383397:
Restate In your own words, restate the
threat Achilles issues Priam. Possible answer: Leave me alone, Priam. If you bother
me again, I may not hold back, even though
youre in my home and asking for my mercy.

395 suppliant (sOpPlC-Ent): one who


begs or pleads earnestly.

Analyze What insight into Achilles do these


lines provide? Possible answer: Achilles does
not like to be pressured. Though he may feel
compassion one moment, this feeling can
readily give way to anger, perhaps violence,
if he is pushed.

401 Automedon (-tJmPE-dn) . . .


Alcimus (BlPsE-mEs).

Evaluate Is it believable that Achilles could


weep with Priam and soon after threaten to
kill him? Why or why not? Possible answer:
Yes. Achilles moods are changeable, and he
has very strong emotions, especially as far as
Hector is concerned.

408 chiton (kFtPn): a shirtlike


garment; tunic.

READING SKILL

k CLASSIFY CHARACTERS

Reread lines 410416, which


reveal Achilles thoughts. What
do the lines suggest about
Achilles temperament?

classify characters

RL 3
RL 10

Possible answer: The lines suggest that


Achilles is impetuous and quick to anger.

Patroclus,
do not be angry with me, if somehow
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Vocabulary Support
crier (line 404), someone who makes
announcements, usually by shouting them
in a public place
shrouding (line 409), burial garment
flouting (line 416), disregarding;
disobeying
anointing (line 417), applying oil, especially
in a religious ceremony

12:03:55 PM

Comprehension Support Call students


attention to lines 406421. Suggest that to
facilitate comprehension, students approach
this complex passage by breaking it up into
parts, especially the long sentence spanning lines 410416. Elicit or explain that the
reason Achilles orders the body lifted . . . and
placed apart, where Priam / could not see his
son is to prevent the old king from seeing
the mutilated condition of the body before
the beautiful shrouding is put on.

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425

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read the Iliad, call attention to the
fact that even though the Iliad was written
centuries before Beowulf, the two poems
share a number of similarities. Ask students
to think about how the two works are alike
and also how they are different. Which of the
two epics did students find more interesting?
Why? Possible answer: Both Beowulf and the
Iliad revolve around powerful warriors who see
themselves as loyal and honorable. However,
Achilles is fighting humans and exacts revenge
on a foe who has killed his friend Patroclus,
whereas Beowulf battles the dragon Grendel,
who represents a more abstract form of evil
than the Trojans. Answers to the last part of
this question will vary, but students should
state specific reasons for their preferences.

430

435

440

445

CRITIQUE
Have students rate the poem on a scale of
1 to 5, with 5 the highest. Ask students
whether they would have rated the work
higher if it had been written as prose rather
than poetry. Why or why not?

450

After completing the After Reading questions on page 93, have students revisit their
responses and tell whether they have
changed their opinions.

455

even in the world of Death you learn of this


that I released Prince Hector to his father.
The gifts he gave were not unworthy. Aye,
and you shall have your share, this time as well.
The Prince Achilles turned back to his quarters.
He took again the splendid chair that stood
against the farther wall, then looked at Priam
and made his declaration:
As you wished, sir,
the body of your son is now set free.
He lies in state. At the first sight of Dawn
you shall take charge of him yourself and see him.
Now let us think of supper. We are told
that even Niobe in her extremity
took thought for breadthough all her brood had
perished,
her six young girls and six tall sons. Apollo,
making his silver longbow whip and sing,
shot the lads down, and Artemis with raining
arrows killed the daughtersall this after
Niobe had compared herself with Leto,
the smooth-cheeked goddess.
She has borne two children,
Niobe said, How many have I borne!
But soon those two destroyed the twelve.
Besides,
nine days the dead lay stark, no one could bury them,
for Zeus had turned all folk of theirs to stone.
The gods made graves for them on the tenth day,
and then at last, being weak and spent with weeping,
Niobe thought of food. Among the rocks
of Sipylus lonely mountainside, where nymphs
who race Achelous river go to rest,
she, too, long turned to stone, somewhere broods on
the gall immortal gods gave her to drink.

436455 The mortal woman Niobe


(nFPE-bC) claimed that having so
many children made her superior
to the goddess Leto (lCPtI), who had
only two. Letos son and daughter,
Apollo and Artemis (rPtE-mGs),
punished Niobe by killing all her
children. After many days of
grieving, Niobe asked the gods to
relieve her by turning her to stone.

452 Sipylus (sGpPE-lEs): a mountain


in west-central Asia Minor.
453 Achelous (BkQE-lIPEs): a river
near Mount Sipylus.
455 gall: bitterness; bile.

Like her well think of supper, noble sir.


Weep for your son again when you have borne him
back to Troy; there hell be mourned indeed.

INDEPENDENT READING
For a creative look at the siege of Troy,
students may enjoy reading Troy by
Adle Geras.

Priam and Achilles agree to an 11-day truce. During that


time, the Trojans will mourn Hectors body before its burial.

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for english language learners
Vocabulary: Multiple-Meaning Words Explain that the noun extremity (line 437) here
means extreme or desperate condition.
However, extremity also has other meanings, such as farthest or most remote part
or point. Discuss how students can use
context clues to figure out the appropriate
meaning of multiple-meaning words. Then
have mixed-language-ability Jigsaw groups
investigate these other multiple-meaning

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words and share their findings: brood (line


438); whip (line 440); stark (line 447); spent
(line 450). Also elicit or explain that lies in
state (line 434) is an idiom meaning lies in
a public place before burial.
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Jigsaw Reading p. A1

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
1. Recall Why does Achilles vow to kill Hector?

RL 1 Cite strong and thorough


textual evidence to support
analysis of what the text says
explicitly as well as inferences
drawn from the text. RL 3 Analyze
the impact of the authors choices
regarding how to develop and
relate elements of a story.
RL 4 Determine the meaning
of words and phrases as they
are used in the text, including
figurative meanings. RL 10 Read
and comprehend literature.

2. Recall What does Achilles do with Hector after he kills him?


3. Summarize What happens when Priam confronts Achilles?

Text Analysis
4. Analyze Epic Similes Reread the following passages, which contain epic
similes. Explain what is being compared in each simile, and identify the
quality or qualities emphasized in the comparison.

For preliminary support of post-reading


questions, use these copy masters:
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Reading Check p. 48
Simile and Epic Simile p. 41
Question Support p. 49
Additional questions are provided for
teachers on page 35.

As between men . . . Ares. (lines 8994)


With this he . . . whetted blade. (lines 143148)

answers

Conspicuous as . . . exposed. (lines 154160)


5. Classify Characters Review the chart in which you classified the characters
from the Iliad. Are the gods responsible for what happens to the mortals in
the epic? Support your answer with specific details from the Iliad.

1. Hector killed Achilles best friend, Patroclus.


2. He drags Hectors body behind the chariot
around Patroclus grave.

6. Interpret Characters Actions Characters in the Iliad show courage in different


ways. What courageous actions do Achilles, Hector, and Priam perform?

3. Priam begs Achilles to return Hectors body.


Moved by the old kings pitiful appeal,
Achilles finally agrees.

7. Draw Conclusions Reread lines 3133. In these lines and in others, it is


apparent that Achilles and other characters in the epic know that he is fated
to die soon. What do you think prevents Achilles from attempting to change
his fate?

Possible answers:
4.

common core focus Simile and Epic


Simile Lines 8994: compares the hatred
between Achilles and Hector to the animosity between natural enemies; emphasizes the enmity between enemies. Lines
143148: compares Hectors attack with that
of an eagle; emphasizes the determination
of an attacker. Lines 154160: compares
Achilles spear to the evening star; emphasizes the spears shine.

5.

common core focus Classify


Characters The gods and the mortals share
respons-ibility, but the gods play a key
role. For example, Apollo opens the gates
of Troy so the Trojans can rush to safety;
Pallas Athena, disguised as Hectors brother,
persuades Hector to fight Achilles.

8. Make Judgments In your opinion, do Achilles feelings about his friend


Patroclus justify the way he treats Hector? Cite evidence from the epic to
explain your answer.
9. Compare Epic Heroes Compare and contrast Achilles
and Beowulf as epic heroes. Use a diagram like the one
shown to list and compare their traits and their actions.
Which character do you think is more heroic?

Achilles

Both

Beowulf

Text Criticism
10. Critical Interpretations Critic John Scott has said that although the Iliad is
set during wartime, the real greatness of that poem is in the portrayal of
powerful human emotions rather than in military exploits. Do you agree
or disagree? Cite evidence to support your response.

What inspires

courage ?

Which character in the Iliad would you define as most courageous? Which do
you consider the least courageous? Why?

iliad

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Achilles:
vengeful,
emotional,
enlists the
gods help to
kill Hector,
mistreats
Hectors body

Both:
brave,

Beowulf:
exhibits superhuman powers,
honorable,
battles
monsters

RL 1, RL 3, RL 4, RL 10

6. Achilles: fearless in battle; Hector: faces


Achilles; Priam: goes to Achilles to retrieve
Hectors body

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10. Agree, because the most moving aspects
of
the poem are linked to human emotions
for example, Achilles anguish over Patroclus death and Priams grief over Hectors
death.

What inspires COURAGE?

12:05:03 PM

7. Achilles realizes that the gods ultimately


determine his fate. Moreover, in his anguish
over Patroclus death, Achilles is consumed
by the desire for revenge.
8. Answers will vary, but many students may
feel that Achilles is unnecessarily and excessively cruel.

Possible answer: Some students may cite Priam or Achilles as most courageous and Hector
as least courageous. Students should support
their answers with evidence from the text.

Beowulf seems more heroic because he is


larger than life in his deeds and is less ruled
by human emotions than Achilles.

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Vocabulary in Context
vocabulary practice

answers
Vocabulary in Context

word list

Identify the word that is not related in meaning to the other words in each
numbered set.

vocabulary practice

abstain
defile

1. (a) ponderous, (b) swift, (c) weighty

felicity

5. (c) scourge

2. (a) cleanse, (b) defile, (c) corrupt

havoc

2. (a) cleanse

6. (a) abstain

3. (a) strong, (b) vulnerable, (c) defenseless

ponderous

7. (c) felicity

4. (a) destruction, (b) havoc, (c) protection

rancor

3. (a) strong

1. (b) swift

scourge

5. (a) guardian, (b) protector, (c) scourge

4. (c) protection

vulnerable

6. (a) abstain, (b) proceed, (c) perform


7. (a) bitterness, (b) rancor, (c) felicity

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Practice p. 46

academic vocabulary in speaking


concept

academic vocabulary in speaking


In their discussions, students should use academic vocabulary correctly and explain why
Achilles and Hector are motivated by revenge.

culture

parallel

section

structure

Discuss the concept of revenge as it applies to this section of the Iliad. How does
revenge act as a parallel motivation for Hector and Achilles? Use at least one
additional Academic Vocabulary word in your discussion.

vocabulary strategy: dictionary etymologies

vocabulary strategy:
dictionary etymologies

Learning to decode a words etymology, or history, deepens your understanding


of its connotations and derivations. Here is a typical dictionarys etymology:

L 4c, L 6

Answers:

scourge (skrj) n. [ME < OFr escorgie < L ex, off, from + corrigia, a strap, whip]

1. havok

L 4c Consult general and


specialized reference materials
to determine or clarify a words
etymology. L 6 Acquire and use
accurately general academic
and domain-specific words and
phrases.

The etymology is usually in brackets after the pronunciation and part of speech.
The < symbol means derived from. The etymology for scourge reads, a Middle
English (ME) word, from the Old French (OFr) escorgie, which comes from the
Latin (L) prefix ex- (off or from) and corrigia, (a strap or whip).

2. defile
3. scourge
4. abstain
5. vulnerare (to wound) and
vellere (to pluck)

PRACTICE Consult a dictionary to answer the following questions about these


vocabulary words. (Your dictionarys introduction will likely have information
about the abbreviations and symbols used in its etymologies.)

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

1. What Middle English word does havoc come from?

Vocabulary Strategy p. 47

2. Which word above comes from an Old French word meaning to trample?
3. Look up excoriate. Which word above is related to excoriate?
4. Which word above derives from the Latin word tenere, to hold back?

Interactive Vocabulary

5. What Latin word or words are vulnerable and revulsion both related to?

Keywords direct students to a WordSharp


tutorial on thinkcentral.com or to other types
of vocabulary practice and review.
94

Assess and Reteach


Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Selection Test A pp. 2930


Selection Test B/C pp. 3132
Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

Reteach
Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com
Reteaching Worksheets on thinkcentral.com:
Literature Lessons 14, 15, 27

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Task Support: Vocabulary Practice Point out


cognates in the numbered items, such as:

Vocabulary in Writing Have students use


as many vocabulary words as they can in a
paragraph written from the point of view of
one of the gods or goddesses of the Iliad.

corrupt: corromper (Spanish), corrompre


(French)

12:03:27
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vulnerable: vulnerable (Spanish); vulnrable


(French)
destruction: destruccin (Spanish),
destruction (French)
guardian: guardian (Spanish), gardien
(French)

unit 1

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Wrap-Up: The Anglo-Saxon Epic

The Epic in Translation


The following versions of Beowulf prove the power of the translator.
Although both describe the same passage (Grendels murderous raid
on Herot), they are stunningly dissimilar.

Then, when darkness had dropped, Grendel


Went up to Herot, wondering what the warriors
Would do in that hall when their drinking was done.
He found them sprawled in sleep, suspecting
Nothing, their dreams undisturbed.
Translated by Burton Raffel

So, after nightfall, Grendel set out


for the lofty house, to see how the Ring-Danes
were settling into it after their drink,
and there he came upon them, a company of the best
asleep from their feasting, insensible to pain
and human sorrow.

Extension Online
INQUIRY & RESEARCH With
a partner, use the Internet to
compile a list of literary and
cinematic epics. Starting with a
primary search engine, you may
also want to integrate information
from online movie databases and
literary reference sites. Consider
using advanced search terms
such as epic hero (enclosed in
quotation marks) to narrow your
results. Of the works you find,
which feature heroes closest in
spirit and deeds to Beowulf?

Write a short essay comparing and contrasting Raffels and


Heaneys translations. Which do you prefer? Why? Examine each
translators word choice, style, and the rhetorical devices they
use. How does each translator portray the qualities of an epic?
Since you are writing a comparison-contrast essay, apply the
Point-by-Point method. Use at least one body paragraph to show
how the translations are similar. Then continue with additional
similarities or move to differences between the two passages.

Emphasize that using the Point-by-Point


method described here will provide students
with a structured way of discussing similarities
and differences between the two translations.

The character Aragorn, a hero from the


modern-day epic The Lord of the Rings

Topic Sentence/Paragraph
Translation 1
Topic Sentence/Paragraph
Translation 1
Translation 2

Extension Online
Encourage students to reflect on the spirit
and deeds of Beowulf and jot down some
notes in order to make it easier to identify
similar literary and cinematic heroes.

W 2ab Organize complex ideas; develop the


topic by selecting details, quotations, or other
information. W 7 Conduct short research
projects; narrow the inquiry; synthesize
multiple sources. W 8 Gather relevant
information from multiple sources, using
advanced searches effectively.

wrap-up

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This Wrap-Up provides students with an


opportunity to reflect on the role of the
translator in adapting literary works from
another language.

Review with students that comparing means


identifying similarities and differences
between two or more items. Explain that
by making comparisons between different
translations of an epic poem, students can
gain insight into the poem and also see how
the choices that a translator makes shape the
final work.

Writing to Compare and Contrast

Translation 2

Wrap-Up: The Anglo-Saxon Epic

Writing to Compare
and Contrast

Translated by Seamus Heaney

Point-by-Point Method

W 2a Organize complex ideas. W 2b Develop


the topic by selecting details, quotations, or other
information. W 7 Conduct short research projects;
narrow the inquiry; synthesize multiple sources.
W 8 Gather relevant information from multiple
sources, using advanced searches effectively.

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for struggling writers

for english language learners

Writing Support Explain that students can


choose how they want to organize their
essays. They can focus first on all aspects
of Raffels translation and then discuss all
aspects of Heaneys translation. Or, they can
take a point-by-point approach. For example,
they can discuss language in Raffels translation and then language in Heaneys version,
imagery in Raffels translation and then
imagery in Heaneys version, and so on.

Writing Topic Sentences To help students create topic sentences for the paragraphs
of their essays, provide sentence starters
such as these:

As students begin their Internet research,


suggest that they narrow their search by
using such phrases as epic hero, literary
epic, and epic movies. Searching on a broad
10:56:18 AM
term like epic will produce too many
unsuitable hits.

Raffel and Heaney take very different


approaches to
Unlike Raffel, Heaney
The biggest difference between the two
translations is that

wr ap-up

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Reflections of Common Life

Focus and Motivate

RI 2 Determine two or more central ideas of a text


and analyze their development over the course
of the text. RI 6 Determine an authors point of
view or purpose in a text, analyzing how style and
content contribute to the power, persuasiveness,
or beauty of the text. RI 9 Analyze documents of
historical and literary significance for their themes,
purposes, and rhetorical features. L 5b Analyze
nuances in the meaning of words with similar
denotations.

about the author

from
RI 6 Determine an authors
point of view or purpose in a
text, analyzing how style and
content contribute to the power,
persuasiveness, or beauty of the
text. RI 9 Analyze documents of
historical and literary significance
for their themes, purposes, and
rhetorical features. L 5b Analyze
nuances in the meaning of words
with similar denotations.

did you know?


The Venerable Bede . . .
invented the footnote.
popularized the dating
of events from the birth
of Christthe b.c./a.d.
system.

Read the biography aloud. Explain that a


monastery is a place where people pursue
a religious life of quiet contemplation; that
an honorific is an informal title that honors
a person; and that venerable is an honorific
that commands respect by virtue of a persons
age, character, or achievements. Ask students
to suggest words and phrases that describe
the Venerable Bede. Point out that studying
Bedes life provides insight into the Middle
Ages, just as his writings provide insight into
even earlier times.

A History of the English Church and People


p

Historical Writing by the Venerable Bede

ecos

Meet the Author

The Venerable Bede

The Venerable Bede (bCd), regarded


as the father of English history, lived
and worked in a monastery in northern
Britain during the late seventh and early
eighth centuries. His most famous work,
A History of the English Church and
People, is a major source of information
about life in Britain from the first
successful Roman invasion (about a.d.
46) to a.d. 731. The book contains many
stories about the spread of Christianity
among the English.
Bede was taken by his parents to a
monastery at Wearmouth, on the
northeast coast of Britain, where he was
left in the care of the abbot, Benedict
Biscop. It is not known why the boys
parents left him or whether he ever
saw them again. When he was nine,
Bede moved a short distance to a new
monastery at Jarrow, where he spent
the rest of his life.
A Bookish Boy Bede seems to
t
have been a naturally devout and
studious child. He read widely in the
participated
monastery libraries and partici
fully in the religious life of the
monastery. He was exposed to the
art and learning of Europe through
throu
the paintings, books, and religious
relig

If history relates good things of good men,


the attentive hearer is excited to imitate that
which is good. Venerable Bede

objects brought from Rome by Abbot


Biscop. Bede became a deacon of the
church at the age of 19six years earlier
than was usualand was ordained to the
priesthood when he was 30.
Multitalented Scholar Bede was a

brilliant scholar and a gifted writer


and teacher. He was also a careful
and thorough historian. He sought
out original documents and reliable
eyewitness accounts on which to base
his writing. Working in a chilly, damp,
poorly lit cell in the monastery, Bede
managed to write about 40 books,
including works on spelling, grammar,
science, history, and religion.
Still Venerable Today Bedes reputation

as a scholar and a devout monk spread


throughout Europe during his lifetime
and in the centuries following. (The
honorific title Venerable was probably
first applied to him during the century
after his death, as an acknowledgment of
his achievements.) Although Bede was
influenced by the outlook of his timeas
is evident in the miracle stories he
included in his Historyhis carefulness
and integrity are still respected and
valued by scholars today, almost 1,300
years later.

Author Online
Go to thinkcentral.com. KEYWORD: HML12-96

Have students discuss the meaning of this


quote and explain what the Venerable Bede
sees as the power of well-presented historical
writing.

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Selection Resources

NA_L12PE-u01s21-brChurch.indd

See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 5158


Summary, pp. 5960*
Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 6164*

Word Squares, p. E10

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS

c. 673735

Raised By Monks At the age of seven,

notable quote

Essential Course
of Study

INTERACTIVE READER
ADAPTED INTERACTIVE READER
ELL ADAPTED INTERACTIVE
READER

Find it Online!

96

TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
PowerNotes DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

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Features on thinkcentral.com that


support the selection include
PowerNotes presentation
ThinkAloud models to enhance
comprehension
WordSharp vocabulary tutorials
interactive writing and grammar
instruction

Selection Tests, pp. 3336

* Resources for Differentiation

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Also in Spanish

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

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2/10

Teach

text analysis: historical writing


Bede was one of the first to write about English history.
Historical writing is a systematic account, often in narrative
form, of the past of a nation or a group of people. Historical
writing generally has the following characteristics:
It is concerned with real events in the relatively distant past.
The events are treated in chronological order.
It is usually an objective retelling of facts rather than a
personal interpretation. However, the author may have a
specific purpose in mind, such as teaching a moral lesson.
The author may incorporate literary devices, such as
anecdotes, or brief stories that focus on an episode or event
in a persons life to illustrate a point.
As you read the selection about the poet Caedmon (kBdPmEn),
consider Bedes use of narrative to tell Caedmons story and
what it tells you about life in Caedmons time.

reading skill: analyze authors purpose


The excerpt that you will read is an early biography; one
of Bedes purposes is to inform readers about Caedmons
life. But there is a second purpose. In the Preface to Bedes
History, he explains to King Ceolwulf (chAlPwMlfQ)
his reason for writing about important Englishmen of the
past. He believes that they serve as good role models to
imitate or examples of bad behavior to avoid. As you read,
take notes about Caedmon on a web diagram. Determine
which details of Caedmons life Bede emphasizes to present
him as a positive role model.

How do dreams
inspire you?
History is full of stories of people who
received a flash of inspiration during a
dream. For example, the 19th-century
German chemist Friedrich August
Kekul (kAPkL-lA) said that the ringlike
structure of the molecule benzene
presented itself to him when he dozed
off and dreamed of a snake holding
its tail in its mouth. In the following
selection, the Venerable Bede recounts
a tale of a humble man who fell asleep
one night and woke up the next
morning an accomplished poet.

How do dreams
INSPIRE you?
After students have read the paragraph about
this question, ask them for examples of
inspiration. Encourage students to apply their
QUICKWRITE responses to the selection by
considering what Caedmon discovered about
himself through his dream.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RI 9

Model the Skill:

QUICKWRITE Write a description of


a memorable dream that helped you
discover something about yourself,
solve a problem, or unlock a hidden
talent. If no dream has ever inspired
you in this way, describe something else
that has, such as a conversation or a
daydream.

historical writing
Read to students excerpts from other
well-known historical accounts, including
Tacituss The Burning of Rome, William
Bradfords Of Plymoth Plantation, and Coretta
Scott Kings Montgomery Boycott. As you
read the excerpts, identify the characteristics of historical accounts, including dates,
setting, and accounts of events discussed.
Identify for students the perspective: is it a
first-hand, eyewitness account? Explain to
students how to determine the perspective.

Caedmon

GUIDED PRACTICE Have students preview


the first ten lines of this selection. Ask
them to identify the characteristics that
show that it is a historical account.

skillfully composed
religious songs

Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

READING SKILL

RI 6

Model the Skill:

analyze authors purpose


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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

integrity, personal moral strength

Vocabulary Support To support instruction,


clarify the meaning of the words listed below. Then invite English language learners to
pair with fluent students and practice using
these words in simple sentences.

systematic, orderly
relatively, more or less
objective, not emotional; not prejudiced

12:04:18 PM

Model for students how to analyze the


authors likely purpose for the biography
on page 96. Explain that the author likely
wrote the biography to inform readers
about important facts and to persuade
readers that Bede was a remarkable person.
GUIDED PRACTICE Ask what characteristics
of the biography show that it was intended
for students.

chronicle, historical account

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

abbot, the person in charge of a


monastery

role models, people who serve as


examples

devout, deeply religious

recounts, tells (a narrative)

Analyze Authors Purpose p. 63


(for student use while reading the
selection)

deacon, in the Roman Catholic church,


the position one rank below a priest

accomplished, skilled

a history of the english church . . .

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Practice and Apply

a history of
the english church
and people

summary
In this biographical narrative, Bede tells of
Caedmon, a humble man who thought that
he had no skill at poetry. One night, Caedmon
dreamed that a man told him to sing of Gods
creation of the world. Caedmon created
verses in his dream, and when he repeated
them to an abbess the next day, she advised
him to leave secular life. As a monk, Caedmon
continued to create beautiful verses about
sacred subjects.

The Venerable Bede

background Caedmon is the earliest English poet known to us by name, and


Bedes History is the only source of information about him. According to Bede,
Caedmon composed many poems written in English, his native tongue. However, only
his first poem, a hymn to God the Creator, has survived. Caedmon lived at Whitby
Abbey, a religious community on the coast of England. It was founded in 657 by St.
Hilda, who in Caedmons day was still the abbess in charge.

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read A History of the English Church
and People to learn how a dream inspired the
life of an important historical figure.

revisit the big question

How do dreams INSPIRE you?


Discuss In lines 15, how was Caedmon
serving as an inspiration to others? Possible
answer: Caedmon was an inspiration in that he
moved many people to reject worldliness and
seek godliness.

10

T E X T A N A LY S I S

historical writing

RI 9

Possible answer: The reader learns that


poetry was sung at feasts to the accompaniment of a harp.
Extend the Discussion What strengths
would poetry that is sung to listeners have
over poetry that is printed for readers?

What ideas about


Caedmon are conveyed
through this image?

a HISTORICAL WRITING

What do you learn from


this paragraph about the
importance of poetry in
Caedmons time?

1. brother: a man who lives in or works for a religious community but is not a priest or monk.

St. Caedmon. Detail of stained glass in


Kirkby Malham Church. Yorkshire.
Charles Walker/Topfoto/The Image Works, Inc.

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for english language learners

for struggling readers

As students read this selection, have them


take notes on Caedmon. Organize students
into small groups and have them share their
information. Then have each student create a
visual representation of Caedmon, share, and
explain their drawings to the class.

The Audio Anthology CD provides extra support for students with reading difficulties. It
is also recommended for use with English
language learners.

98

Analyze Visuals

2. directly he saw the harp: as soon as he saw the harp. In Anglo-Saxon times, poetry was often recited to
the accompaniment of a small harp.

98

differentiated instruction

In this monastery of Whitby there lived a brother1 whom Gods grace made
remarkable. So skillful was he in composing religious and devotional songs, that
he could quickly turn whatever passages of Scripture were explained to him into
delightful and moving poetry in his own English tongue. These verses of his stirred
the hearts of many folk to despise the world and aspire to heavenly things. Others
after him tried to compose religious poems in English, but none could compare
with him, for he received this gift of poetry as a gift from God and did not acquire
it through any human teacher. For this reason he could never compose any
frivolous or profane verses, but only such as had a religious theme fell fittingly from
his devout lips. And although he followed a secular occupation until well advanced
in years, he had never learned anything about poetry: indeed, whenever all those
present at a feast took it in turns to sing and entertain the company, he would get
up from table and go home directly he saw the harp2 approaching him. a
On one such occasion he had left the house in which the entertainment was
being held and went out to the stable, where it was his duty to look after the
beasts that night. He lay down there at the appointed time and fell asleep, and in
a dream he saw a man standing beside him who called him by name. Caedmon,

Comprehension Support Model for students


how to gather information by using the web
diagram introduced on the previous page.
This example covers lines 1013:

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followed secular
occupation for years

never learned
about poetry
Caedmon
attended feasts

did not sing for


people at feasts

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2/10

Reading Support
This selection on thinkcentral.com includes
embedded ThinkAloud modelsstudents
thinking aloud about the story to model the
kinds of questions a good reader would ask
about a selection.

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The harp conveys Caedmons
gift of poetry and song. His simple robe
suggests his humility and religious piety.
About the Art This portrait of Caedmon, a
work in stained glass, is located in a church in
Yorkshire, England. The harp in his handa
harp that Bede says he once rejected (lines
1113)symbolizes his poetic vocation.

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 1420, use these prompts to help
students grasp the turning point in Caedmons
life:
Recall In what way does Caedmon discover
his poetic talent? Possible answer: A man
comes to Caedmon in a dream and commands him to sing. When Caedmon does, he
discovers his ability to create poetry.
Interpret Who is the man in Caedmons
dream? Possible answer: He is an angel.
Evaluate Based on the events in Bedes
account, is this an entirely historical
account? Possible answer: Bede fuses
his historical account with events, such
as the dream, that may be less reliable.

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for english language learners


Vocabulary Support Use Word Squares to
teach these words: acquire (line 7), theme (line
9), stable (line 15), Author (line 25), Community
(line 42).
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency
Word Squares p. E10

a history of the english church . . .

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20

T E X T A N A LY S I S

historical writing

RI 9

Possible answer: Bede attributes Caedmons


ability to God, who gives Caedmon a dream
in which Caedmon is able to compose when
he is told to sing about God. Caedmons
poem praises God for creating the heavens
and earth for human beings.

30

Extend the Discussion Explain the irony in


Caedmons statement in lines 1819.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

historical writing

RI 9

40

Possible answer: Dreams were taken


seriously as communications from God
that can, in turn, dictate the course of
real-life events.

50

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

analyze authors
purpose

RI 6

Possible answer: Bede wants Caedmon to


inspire readers to lead a life devoted to God
and good, rather than to evil.

he said, sing me a song. I dont know how to sing, he replied. It is because I


cannot sing that I left the feast and came here. The man who addressed him then
said: But you shall sing to me. What should I sing about? he replied. Sing
about the Creation of all things, the other answered. And Caedmon immediately
began to sing verses in praise of God the Creator that he had never heard before,
and their theme ran thus: Let us praise the Maker of the kingdom of heaven,
the power and purpose of our Creator, and the acts of the Father of glory. Let
us sing how the eternal God, the Author of all marvels, first created the heavens
for the sons of men as a roof to cover them, and how their almighty Protector
gave them the earth for their dwelling place. This is the general sense, but not
the actual words that Caedmon sang in his dream; for however excellent the
verses, it is impossible to translate them from one language into another3 without
losing much of their beauty and dignity. When Caedmon awoke, he remembered
everything that he had sung in his dream, and soon added more verses in the same
style to the glory of God. b
Early in the morning he went to his superior the reeve,4 and told him about
this gift that he had received. The reeve took him before the abbess, who ordered
him to give an account of his dream and repeat the verses in the presence of many
learned men, so that they might decide their quality and origin. All of them agreed
that Caedmons gift had been given him by our Lord, and when they had explained
to him a passage of scriptural history or doctrine, they asked him to render it into
verse if he could. He promised to do this, and returned next morning with excellent
verses as they had ordered him. The abbess was delighted that God had given such
grace to the man, and advised him to abandon secular life and adopt the monastic
state. And when she had admitted him into the Community as a brother, she
ordered him to be instructed in the events of sacred history.5 So Caedmon stored
up in his memory all that he learned, and like an animal chewing the cud, turned it
into such melodious verse that his delightful renderings turned his instructors into
his audience. He sang of the creation of the world, the origin of the human c
race, and the whole story of Genesis.6 He sang of Israels departure from Egypt,
their entry into the land of promise, and many other events of scriptural history. He
sang of the Lords Incarnation, Passion, Resurrection, and Ascension into heaven,
the coming of the Holy Spirit, and the teaching of the Apostles. He also made
many poems on the terrors of the Last Judgment, the horrible pains of Hell, and the
joys of the kingdom of heaven. In addition to these, he composed several others on
the blessings and judgments of God, by which he sought to turn his hearers from
delight in wickedness, and to inspire them to love and do good. For Caedmon was
a deeply religious man, who humbly submitted to regular discipline,7 and firmly
resisted all who tried to do evil, thus winning a happy death.  d

L 5b

Language Coach
Synonyms Identify the
five words Caedmon
uses to name God in his
song (lines 2327). Why
does he use so many?
Starting with Creator,
rank the words on a
numbered scale showing
how closely related they
are as synonyms (words
with the same meaning).

b HISTORICAL WRITING

Reread lines 1432. In this


anecdote , to what does
Bede attribute Caedmons
ability to compose
poetry?

HISTORICAL WRITING
Reread lines 3346.
According to this passage,
what role did dreams
play in real life during
Caedmons time?

d AUTHORS PURPOSE

What does Bede want


readers to learn in
lines 52 56 about how
Caedmons life changed?

3. impossible . . . another: Caedmons verses were composed in Old English, but Bede wrote his history in Latin.
4. reeve: the officer who oversaw the monasterys farms.
5. sacred history: the narratives of the Christian Bible.

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Ask


What does Caedmon do with Gods gift?

6. Genesis (jDnPG-sGs): the opening book of the Bible, which tells of Gods creation of the universe and the
first human beings.
7. regular discipline: the rules of monastic life.

What is Caedmons purpose for singing?


What is Caedmons death like? Why?

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differentiated instruction

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read A History of the English Church and
People, ask them to discuss their own beliefs
on the significance of dreams.
INDEPENDENT READING
Students may also enjoy reading Eleanor
Shipley Ducketts Alfred the Great, The King
and His England.

for english language learners


Language Coach
Synonyms Answer: Each word
describes a different aspect of God. (1)
Creator, (2) Maker, (3) Author, (4) Father,
(5) Protector

L 5b

7:28:40
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for struggling readers


Develop Reading Fluency Ask students to
work in small groups. Instruct them to take
turns in their groups practicing the fluent
reading of sentences found in the passage
from lines 3356. Encourage students to
clarify unfamiliar terms and use appropriate
pacing when reading. Remind them that
proper pacing can improve an audiences
comprehension and enjoyment of the text
being read.

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
1. Recall What was Caedmons gift?
2. Recall How did Caedmon receive his gift?
3. Clarify How did Caedmons life change because of his gift?

Text Analysis
4. Draw Conclusions What would be the reason for including Caedmons story
in a history of the English church?

RI 2 Determine two or more


central ideas of a text and analyze
their development over the course
of the text. RI 6 Determine an
authors point of view or purpose
in a text, analyzing how style and
content contribute to the power,
persuasiveness, or beauty of the
text. RI 9 Analyze documents of
historical and literary significance
for their themes, purposes, and
rhetorical features.

5. Analyze Authors Purpose Review the notes you took about Caedmon as
you read. What is the moral message that can be taken from his story? Does
presenting Caedmons story as a narrative of personal transformation help or
hinder Bedes purpose?

For preliminary support of post-reading questions, use these copy masters:


RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Reading Check p. 65
Historical Writing p. 61
Question Support p. 66
Additional selection questions are
provided for teachers on page 55.

answers

6. Analyze Historical Writing What do you learn from Bede about life in
seventh-century England? Discuss facts about each of the following:

1. Caedmons gift was that he could compose


beautiful religious poetry in English.

religious life

2. Caedmon received his gift in a dream,


presumably sent by God.

language and literacy


7. Apply Themes What does Caedmons story suggest about how creativity was
viewed during his time?

3. Caedmons life changed in that he left his


secular work and joined a monastery, where
he was instructed in scripture and urged to
write poems on many religious subjects.

Text Criticism
8. Historical Context Discuss ways in which Bedes purpose and worldview
shape the way he presents information. How might a modern historian
present information differently?

How do dreams

Possible answers:
4. Bede may have wanted to include him
because Caedmon was a major poet, with
a life story that Christians would find
inspiring.

inspire you?

A dream inspires Caedmon to change the way he lives. What other factors
might inspire a dramatic shift in the way someone lives?

a history of the english church and people

7. Accept 101
all reasonable responses supported
by the text.

7:28:40
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RI 2, RI 6, RI 9

common core focus Analyze Authors Purpose Caedmon is admirable because he is humble, devout, gifted, and able
to inspire goodness in others. One moral
message from his story is that being devout
can give a person a satisfying, productive
life.

6.

common core focus Historical Writing A good Christian life is of utmost concern; transformations via religious visions
are taken seriously; monasteries are centers
of intellectual as well as spiritual culture.

101

8. Bede is religious and motivated to pres-1/8/11


ent Caedmon as a model to imitate, so he
tells only good things about Caedmon and
attributes his talent to God. A modern
historian might be more objective and
more skeptical of the idea that Caedmons
talent appeared suddenly, full-blown, as
the result of a dream.

How do dreams INSPIRE you?

5.

12:05:34 PM

Assess and Reteach

Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Selection Test A pp. 3334


Selection Test B/C pp. 3536
Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

Reteach
Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com

Possible answers: a difficult situation,


desire to accomplish something

a history of the english church and people

NA_L12TE-u01s03-englishchu.indd

101

101

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Reflections of Common Life

Focus and Motivate

RL 2 Determine two or more themes or central


ideas of a text and analyze their development over
the course of the text, including how they interact
and build on one another to produce a complex
account. RL 4 Analyze the impact of specific
word choices on meaning and tone, including
words with multiple meanings or language that is
fresh, engaging, or beautiful. RL 9 Demonstrate
knowledge of how two or more texts from the
same period treat similar themes or topics.
RL 10 Read and comprehend literature, including
poems. L 4 Determine or clarify the meaning
of unknown and multiple-meaning words and
phrases. L 4b Identify and correctly use patterns
of word changes that indicate different meanings
or parts of speech. L 5a Interpret figures of speech
in context and analyze their role in the text.
L 5b Analyze nuances in the meaning of words with
similar denotations.

about the exeter book

RL 4 Analyze the impact of


specific word choices on meaning
and tone, including words with
multiple meanings or language
that is fresh, engaging, or
beautiful. RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature, including
poems. L 4 Determine or clarify
the meaning of unknown and
multiple-meaning words and
phrases. L 4b Identify and
correctly use patterns of word
changes that indicate different
meanings or parts of speech.
L 5b Analyze nuances in the
meaning of words with similar
denotations.

The Seafarer
The Wanderer
The Wifes Lament
Poetry from the Exeter Book

Meet the Author

The Exeter Book

c. 950

first bishop of Exeter. He donated it to


the Exeter Cathedral library sometime
between 1050 and 1072. For several
centuries the book was neglected and
abused; few people were able to read the
Old English language in which it was
written and thus had little use for it. Some
pages are badly stained or scorched. The
original binding and an unknown number
of pages are lost.

did you know?


The Exeter Book . . .
consists of 131 leaves of
parchment, each slightly
bigger than a standard
sheet of paper.
has knife cuts on some
of its pages, which
suggests that at one
point it was used as a
cutting board.
inspired the building of
a 19-foot-high stainlesssteel statue imprinted
with riddles in the city
of Exeter.

Read the information aloud. Emphasize these


points:
The contents of the Exeter Book were not
created by the same person but were collected in writing by one scribe.

Rediscovery With the rise of Anglo-Saxon

Nothing is known about the authors of


The Seafarer, The Wanderer, and
The Wifes Lament. All three poems
survive in the Exeter Book, a manuscript of
Anglo-Saxon poems produced by a single
scribe around a.d. 950. In addition to
these and other secular poems, the Exeter
Book contains religious verse, nearly 100
riddles, and a heroic narrative. It is the
largest collection of Old English poetry in
existence.
Neglected Treasure Originally, the Exeter
Book belonged to Leofric (lAPE-frGk), the

The contents reflect a variety of writing


forms and purposes.

studies in the 19th century, scholars


began to take an interest in the Exeter
Book. Benjamin Thorpe published the
first complete translation in 1842. He
assigned titles to The Seafarer and The
Wanderer, as none of the poems in the
manuscript had titles. A photographic
facsimile was published in 1933; it became
the basis for later scholarly editions. A CD
version, with facsimile pages and audio
readings, was released in 2006.
The original manuscript still resides at
the library at Exeter Cathedral, where it
is cherished as one of the few surviving
collections of Anglo-Saxon poetry.

The book was handwritten; the only copy


languished in a church library for centuries.
Tell students that in addition to being great
poetry, the three poems that they will read
from the Exeter Book provide insights into the
concerns of ordinary people of the time.
102

Selection Resources

NA_L12PE-u01s22-brLament.indd

See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

102

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 6774


Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 7578*

Visualizing, p. A11
Monitoring, p. A12
Open Mind, p. D9
Analysis Frame: Poetic
content, pp. D21, D36, D37
Three-Column Journal, p. B10

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS
Selection Tests, pp. 3740

* Resources for Differentiation

NA_L12TE-u01s04-exeter.indd

102

Also in Spanish

11/22/10

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TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

1/21/11

1:42:30 PM

2/10

Teach

text analysis: imagery


Poets communicate through imagery, words and phrases that
re-create sensory experiences for the reader by appealing to
one or more of the five senses. Notice how the imagery in this
passage from The Seafarer appeals to the senses of sight,
touch, and hearing:
My feet were cast
In icy bands, bound with frost,
With frozen chains, and hardship groaned
Around my heart.
The images bring to mind coldness and confinement and
suggest the speakers lonely, painful emotional state. As you
read the following three poems, pay attention to the imagery,
allowing it to evoke ideas and feelings in you.
Review: Old English Poetry

reading strategy: monitor your understanding


These poems have been translated from Old English into
Modern English, but sections of the texts may still be hard to
understand. Use the following strategies to understand them:
Visualize the many images layered in the poems.
Question as you read. Ask who the speaker is, for example.
Reread passages that are confusing.
Paraphrase difficult lines, restating them in your own words.
Clarify events. The speakers remember past experiences and
reflect on their present experiences. Let indentations and
stanza breaks alert you that the speaker is turning to a new
thought.
For each poem, create a chart to record what the speaker
remembers or ponders in each section of the poem to help
clarify events the speaker describes.

Section 1 (lines 126)

When are people most

ALONE?

alone?

When people find themselves cut off


from contact with others, the sense of
isolation can be all consuming. It is not
surprising that loneliness is a frequent
topic in poetry written during the
Anglo-Saxon eraan era during which
disease, war, and other perils often
wrenched people away from their loved
ones. In many Anglo-Saxon poems,
images of freezing seas and jagged
cliffs mirror this sense of isolation
and the challenge of living in a harsh,
unpredictable world.

Read the question aloud and have students


read the paragraph that follows. Ask students
to suggest words and phrases that come to
mind when they think of the word isolation.
Encourage students to draw upon those responses as they complete the QUICKWRITE.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 4

Model the Skill: imagery


To model an understanding of imagery,
read lines 7475 from The Wanderer.

QUICKWRITE Imagine that you are


making a five-minute silent film about
isolation and loneliness. What would
you show onscreen? Where would you
set the film? Who would the main
character be, and what would he or she
be doing? List some visual images that
come to mind.

The wind-swept walls stand far and wide,


The storm-beaten blocks besmeared with
frost . . .
Point out to students the sense or senses
to which the images appeal and the
ideas and feelings that the images evoke.
Explain that the images appeal to sight,
touch, and possibly hearing. They evoke
the idea of barrenness and feelings of cold,
grief, and isolation.

Film Images

single robed traveler,

trudging across the Sahara


Desert

The Seafarer

Section

When are
people most

Speaker Remembers or Ponders


being cold, hungry, and lonely on
the sea

GUIDED PRACTICE Ask students to describe


an image that a modern poet might present to capture isolation.

endless sand dunes

Section 2

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y
Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

RL 10

Model the Skill: monitor

your understanding
103

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103

11/22/10

differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Concept Support: Monitor Understanding


of Older Works Before English language
learners read the poems in this lesson, have
them work with visualizing, clarifying, and
paraphrasing by using a present-day prose
text. Provide copies of a newspaper or
magazine article. Read the first paragraph
aloud and model visualizing, clarifying, and
paraphrasing. Call on volunteers to repeat
the procedure with subsequent paragraphs.

Analyze a Strategy Have students think


about their experience with the excerpt
from A History of the English Church and
People. Ask students to recall how they
visualized Bedes biographical narrative,
clarified the events in the story of Caedmon,
and paraphrased to check their understanding. Invite students to share their analyses
and urge all students to apply these skills to
the poems from the Exeter Book.

12:04:05 PM

Demonstrate for students how to visualize


the images in the lines quoted from The
Wanderer by choosing one of the images
and describing what you see.
GUIDED PRACTICE Have students ask
questions that help clarify the images.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Monitor Understanding of Older


Works p. 75 (for student use while
reading the selections)

poetry from the

NA_L12TE-u01s04-exeter.indd

103

EX ETER BOOK

103

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8:21:22 AM

Practice and Apply


summary
The speaker, who feels alone in the world,
describes his hard life at sea, reflects upon
lifes impermanence, and ends with spiritual
observations and a prayer.

The Seafarer

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read The Seafarer, The Wanderer,
and The Wifes Lament to learn about the
work of Anglo-Saxon poets.

background The poems in the Exeter Book reflect the hardship and
uncertainty of life in Anglo-Saxon times. Men who made their living on the sea
had to leave behind their families and sail long distances in primitive, poorly
equipped boats. The women and children left behind endured months and
even years without knowing whether their menfolk would return. In addition,
frequent outbreaks of disease and war scattered communities and brought
untimely death to many people.

revisit the big question

When are people most

ALONE?
In lines 1217, what missing element in the
world makes the speaker feel such isolation?
Possible answer: The speaker feels that love is
missing. He believes that he is Alone in a world
blown clear of love (line 16).

additional teaching
opportunity

10

Elegy Inform students that each poem in this


lesson can be considered an elegya poem in
which the speaker mourns for someone (such
as a friend or spouse) or something (such as
a way of life) that has passed away. When
students have finished reading The Seafarer,
have them identify its elegiac element. Possible
answer: In the second section of the poem, the
speaker mourns the passing of a glorious past, a
more honorable age of the world at large (lines
80102). As students read The Wanderer and
The Wifes Lament, have them identify passages in which elegiac statements occur.

differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Language Coach

15

20

104

This tale is true, and mine. It tells


How the sea took me, swept me back
And forth in sorrow and fear and pain,
Showed me suffering in a hundred ships,
In a thousand ports, and in me. It tells
Of smashing surf when I sweated in the cold
Of an anxious watch, perched in the bow
As it dashed under cliffs. My feet were cast
In icy bands, bound with frost,
With frozen chains, and hardship groaned
Around my heart. Hunger tore
At my sea-weary soul. No man sheltered
On the quiet fairness of earth can feel
How wretched I was, drifting through winter
On an ice-cold sea, whirled in sorrow,
Alone in a world blown clear of love,
Hung with icicles. The hailstorms flew.
The only sound was the roaring sea,
The freezing waves. The song of the swan
Might serve for pleasure, the cry of the sea-fowl,
The death-noise of birds instead of laughter,
The mewing of gulls instead of mead.
Storms beat on the rocky cliffs and were echoed

L 5b

Etymology A words etymology,


or origin, can help you understand
its connotationsthe images or
feelings connected with a word.
Wretched, which comes from the
Old English wrecca (outcast or
exile), means miserable. Why
is wretched a better word than
miserable in lines 1217?

22 mead (mCd): an alcoholic beverage


drunk at Anglo-Saxon gatherings.

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

NA_L12PE-u01s22-Lament.indd

104

for struggling readers


Options for Reading: Audio Recording

Etymology Answer: Wretched carries


the sense of not just simple misery but of
being outcast and alone. Have students
write two or three sentences describing a
time when they may have felt wretched.

L 5b

Language Coach

Have students listen to the poems on the


Audio Anthology CD (also recommended
for English language learners) while they
read along in their texts. Ask students to
listen for and list the sounds that make each
poems imagery effective.

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Have a group of volunteers prepare and


perform a choral reading of one of these
poems. Remind them to consider the poems
main idea and imagery and to discuss tone
and pacing as they plan and rehearse their
performance. Follow up by inviting participants to share any insights into the poem
that they gained through the activity.

104 unit 1: the anglosaxon and medieval periods

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104

1/3/11

8:21:30 AM

2/10

Analyze Visuals
Describe the mood of this
photograph as well as
those on pages 109 and
113. What features of each
landscape determine
its mood?

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The mood in all three
photographs is one of icy-cold loneliness and
desolation, matching the mood of the poems.
In the images, blue tones suggest coldness and
barrenness. Other features that determine
the mood are the frozen waters and rock cliff
(The Seafarer); the small figure of the man
walking alone in a vast, empty landscape (The
Wanderer); and the blurred image of a solitary
woman (The Wifes Lament).

T E X T A N A LY S I S

25

30

35

40

By icy-feathered terns and the eagles screams;


No kinsman could offer comfort there,
To a soul left drowning in desolation. a
And who could believe, knowing but
The passion of cities, swelled proud with wine
And no taste of misfortune, how often, how wearily,
I put myself back on the paths of the sea.
Night would blacken; it would snow from the north;
Frost bound the earth and hail would fall,
The coldest seeds. And how my heart
Would begin to beat, knowing once more
The salt waves tossing and the towering sea!
The time for journeys would come and my soul
Called me eagerly out, sent me over
The horizon, seeking foreigners homes.
But there isnt a man on earth so proud,
So born to greatness, so bold with his youth,
Grown so brave, or so graced by God,
That he feels no fear as the sails unfurl,
Wondering what Fate has willed and will do.
No harps ring in his heart, no rewards,

a IMAGERY

In lines 1226, what senses does the


imagery appeal to? Describe the
mood created by the imagery.

background
Swan Song As students read lines 1922, point
out that people formerly believed that a swan
was mute until the moment of its death, when
it sang a beautiful song. From that legend
came the term swan song, which refers to a
final performance, work, or appearance. Ask
students to explain the ways in which this information contributes to their understanding
of the seafarer and his circumstances.

105

105

11/22/10

for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Concept Support: Monitor Understanding of


Older Works Have students continue filling
in the chart they began in the Reading Strategy activity, as in this example:

Analyze Sound Devices Point out that AngloSaxon poetry is alliterative; that is, lines often
are held together by repetitions of consonant
sounds. Although The Seafarer is shown
here in modern translation, the translator has
used alliteration in many lines. Have students locate examples in lines 138. Possible
answers: sea/swept/sorrow/suffering
(lines 24); smashing/surf/sweated (line
6); bands/bound (line 9); mewing/mead

Section

Speaker Remembers
or Ponders
his former eagerness about returning
to sea

Section 2 (lines
2738)

Possible answer: the senses of touch (the


coldness of icy waters and icicles), sight
(the storms that beat against the rocky
shore; the birds), and hearing (the roaring
sea and the cries of various birds, described
as death-noise); mood: coldness and
desolation

24 terns: sea birds similar to gulls.

the seafarer

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RL 4

imagery

12:04:40 PM

(line 22); kinsman/could/comfort


(line 25); drowning/desolation (line 26);
passion/proud (line 28); put/paths (line
30); how/heart (line 33); begin/beat
(line 34). Discuss the effect that the alliteration creates. Possible answer: Alliteration
creates movement from line to line and often
reinforces the mood of an image.

the seafarer

NA_L12TE-u01s04-exeter.indd

105

105

1/3/11

8:21:35 AM

45

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 4

imagery

50

Possible answer: The lively images of summer suggest that the speaker is tempted by
thoughts of life on land.
55

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Direct their


attention to the vivid, rich images of life on
land in lines 4849 and 5354.

60

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y

RL 10

monitor

65

Possible answer: Here the speakers


thoughts turn to God. He says that just
as the sea is irresistible, so is a life that is
devoted to God, even though earthly life
is brief.

70

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 6680, use these prompts to help students explore the message of this transitional
section:

75

Connect Which do you think is more important: wealth or a good reputation? Explain.
Student responses will vary.

80

Interpret According to the speaker, how


does a life become blessed? Possible
answer: A life becomes blessed through
personal integrityspecifically, by living
well even when surrounded by bitterness.
Evaluate Would this idea appeal to a modern
audience? Why or why not? Possible answer:
Most modern audiences would admire a life
of integrity.

differentiated instruction

85

106

No passion for women, no worldly pleasures,


Nothing, only the oceans heave;
But longing wraps itself around him.
Orchards blossom, the towns bloom,
Fields grow lovely as the world springs fresh,
And all these admonish that willing mind
Leaping to journeys, always set
In thoughts traveling on a quickening tide.
So summers sentinel, the cuckoo, sings
In his murmuring voice, and our hearts mourn
As he urges. Who could understand,
In ignorant ease, what we others suffer
As the paths of exile stretch endlessly on? b
And yet my heart wanders away,
My soul roams with the sea, the whales
Home, wandering to the widest corners
Of the world, returning ravenous with desire,
Flying solitary, screaming, exciting me
To the open ocean, breaking oaths
On the curve of a wave.
Thus the joys of God c
Are fervent with life, where life itself
Fades quickly into the earth. The wealth
Of the world neither reaches to Heaven nor remains.
No man has ever faced the dawn
Certain which of Fates three threats
Would fall: illness, or age, or an enemys
Sword, snatching the life from his soul.
The praise the living pour on the dead
Flowers from reputation: plant
An earthly life of profit reaped
Even from hatred and rancor, of bravery
Flung in the devils face, and death
Can only bring you earthly praise
And a song to celebrate a place
With the angels, life eternally blessed
In the hosts of Heaven.
The days are gone
When the kingdoms of earth flourished in glory;
Now there are no rulers, no emperors,
No givers of gold, as once there were,
When wonderful things were worked among them
And they lived in lordly magnificence.
Those powers have vanished, those pleasures are dead,
The weakest survives and the world continues,
Kept spinning by toil. All glory is tarnished,

NA_L12PE-u01s22-Lament.indd

for advanced learners/ap


Research a Critical View [small-group option]
As the text indicates, the speaker of this poem
takes a strongly religious turn beginning in
line 64. Tell students that this shift in thought
is so dramatic that some scholars believe that
the second part of the poem is a later addition.
(This view is different from the two speakers
interpretation, discussed on page 115.) Ask a
small group of students to find and discuss a
few examples that support this critical view.

rancor (line 75), bitterness or resentment


flourished (line 81), grew healthily
tarnished (line 88), dirtied; contaminated
Blanch (line 91), Turn white
strewing (line 98), spreading or scattering

b IMAGERY

Note how the images in lines


4457 contrast with the images of
the sea. How is the speaker affected
by thoughts of life on land?

MONITOR
Notice the break at line 64. Here
the speaker turns to a new idea.
How do you interpret the sentence
beginning Thus the joys of God . . .?

80 hosts of Heaven: bands of angels.

106

Vocabulary Support
fervent (line 65), hot; glowing

53 summers sentinel (sDnPtE-nEl), the


cuckoo: summers guard or watchman.
The cries of cuckoos are common in
Europe in summer, but in autumn the
birds migrate south.

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

for struggling readers


ravenous (line 61), extremely hungry

50 admonish (Bd-mJnPGsh): criticize or


caution.

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12:04:43
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Have group members come to a consensus,


share it with the class, and then lead a brief
class discussion that covers these questions:
If the second section of the poem (lines
64124) is a later addition, why was it added?
How does it change the meaning of the first
section (lines 164)?
If the poem is presented as originally
intended, how do you explain the shift in
line 64?

106 unit 1: the anglosaxon and medieval periods

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106

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2/10

90

95

100

105

110

115

120

The worlds honor ages and shrinks,


Bent like the men who mold it. Their faces
Blanch as time advances, their beards
Wither and they mourn the memory of friends,
The sons of princes, sown in the dust.
The soul stripped of its flesh knows nothing
Of sweetness or sour, feels no pain,
Bends neither its hand nor its brain. A brother
Opens his palms and pours down gold
On his kinsmans grave, strewing his coffin
With treasures intended for Heaven, but nothing
Golden shakes the wrath of God
For a soul overflowing with sin, and nothing
Hidden on earth rises to Heaven. d
We all fear God. He turns the earth,
He set it swinging firmly in space,
Gave life to the world and light to the sky.
Death leaps at the fools who forget their God.
He who lives humbly has angels from Heaven
To carry him courage and strength and belief.
A man must conquer pride, not kill it,
Be firm with his fellows, chaste for himself,
Treat all the world as the world deserves,
With love or with hate but never with harm,
Though an enemy seek to scorch him in hell,
Or set the flames of a funeral pyre
Under his lord. Fate is stronger
And God mightier than any mans mind.
Our thoughts should turn to where our home is,
Consider the ways of coming there,
Then strive for sure permission for us
To rise to that eternal joy,
That life born in the love of God
And the hope of Heaven. Praise the Holy e
Grace of Him who honored us,
Eternal, unchanging creator of earth. Amen.

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y

RL 10

Model the Skill: monitor

Model for students how to correctly classify details in the passage as referring to
the past or to the present. Call on volunteers to share their overall impressions of
each group of details.
Possible answer: The images convey the
main idea of past glories and youth that
have given way to present decay. Moreover, images such as The soul stripped of
its flesh (line 94) and nothing / Golden
shakes the wrath of God / For a soul overflowing with sin (lines 99101) strongly
convey the importance of living a devout
life rather than one focused on material
wealth.

d MONITOR

Visualize the images of the world


in lines 80102. What main idea do
they convey?

110 chaste (chAst): pure in thought and


deed.

Extend the Discussion Identify each image


in this passage. What additional meanings
can you find in individual images?

114 funeral pyre (pFr): a bonfire for


burning a corpse.

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y
e

MONITOR
Paraphrase the advice the speaker
gives in lines 117122. Where is our
home?

RL 10

monitor

Possible answer: Paraphrase: Remember


our true home. Think about how you can
get there; then live in such a way that you
will get there, where you will experience
eternal life and eternal joy. Our home is
Heaven.

Translated by Burton Raffel

Text Analysis
1. Paraphrase What views does the speaker express about
earthly life and God in lines 64124 ?
2. Compare How does the last half of the poem (from line
64 on) relate to the first half of the poem?

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Evaluate a Translation Point out that a good
translator of poetry must be faithful to the
literal meaning of the original and must
make the translation poetically effective in its
new language. Tell students to assume that
Burton Raffel (whose translation of Beowulf
students have read earlier in this unit) has
been completely faithful to the Anglo-Saxon
of the original. How effective has he been
in making his translation a work of modern

English poetry? Ask students to discuss the


question, offering their opinions as sophisticated readers and citing textual evidence
to support their opinions. Encourage lively
conversation with varied views.

answers
12:04:44 PM

1. From line 64 on, the speaker expresses the


view that life is short and precarious; that
the world is not as great as it used to be;
and that one should lead a humble, Godfearing life that leads to Heaven.
2. Possible answer: In the first half of the
poem, the speaker endures pain because he
feels more at home at sea than on land. In
the second half of the poem, the speaker devalues earthly existence in favor of pursuing
a true home in Heaven. In both halves, he
devalues everyday life on earth.

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The anderer

summary
The speaker tells of his past as the follower of
a lord who was killed, along with the speakers
kinsmen. Ever since, the grieving speaker has
wandered in exile.

REVISIT THE BIG QUESTION

When are people most ALONE?


Discuss What connection do lines 16 make
between physical and emotional isolation?
Possible answer: The opening lines show that
the traveler is physically alone; furthermore, he
is isolated within his memory, closed off from
the world through which he travels.

10

15

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y

20

RL 10

monitor

Possible answer: The speaker has seen his


kinsmen killed and has had to flee into exile.
He feels sad, lonely, and displaced.
25

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Remind them


to visualize, clarify, and paraphrase as they
work on this poems version of the chart introduced in the opening Reading Strategy
activity.

30

Extend the Discussion The speaker says


that silence is noble and that talking
through his feelings cannot erase his sorrow (lines 1314). Do you agree or disagree
with this view? Explain.

35

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Language Coach

L 4b

Roots and Affixes Answer:


It means relating to. Point out spelling rule
11.2 on p. R77. Because the suffix -ly is added
to the root word which ends in a consonant,
the -ly is added without changing the spelling of ghostly or worldly. Urge students to
employ spelling rules as they write English
words with increasing accuracy.

This lonely traveler longs for grace,


For the mercy of God; grief hangs on
His heart and follows the frost-cold foam
He cuts in the sea, sailing endlessly,
Aimlessly, in exile. Fate has opened
A single port: memory. He sees
His kinsmen slaughtered again, and cries:
Ive drunk too many lonely dawns,
Grey with mourning. Once there were men
To whom my heart could hurry, hot
With open longing. Theyre long since dead.
My heart has closed on itself, quietly
Learning that silence is noble and sorrow
Nothing that speech can cure. Sadness
Has never driven sadness off;
Fate blows hardest on a bleeding heart.
So those who thirst for glory smother
Secret weakness and longing, neither
Weep nor sigh nor listen to the sickness
In their souls. So I, lost and homeless,
Forced to flee the darkness that fell
On the earth and my lord. f
Leaving everything,
Weary with winter I wandered out
On the frozen waves, hoping to find
A place, a people, a lord to replace
My lost ones. No one knew me, now,
No one offered comfort, allowed
Me feasting or joy. How cruel a journey
Ive traveled, sharing my bread with sorrow
Alone, an exile in every land,
Could only be told by telling my footsteps.
For who can hear: friendless and poor,
And know what Ive known since the long cheerful nights
When, young and yearning, with my lord I yet feasted
Most welcome of all. That warmth is dead.
He only knows who needs his lord
As I do, eager for long-missing aid;
He only knows who never sleeps

L 4b

Language Coach
Roots and Affixes Added to an
adjective, the suffix -ly forms an
adverb (like endlessly or aimlessly,
lines 45). Added to a noun, -ly
means relating to and forms an
adjective. How is the suffix used in
ghostly and worldly (lines 7172)?

MONITOR
What has happened to the speaker,
and what is his state of mind?

31 telling: counting.

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Concept Support [paired option] As students


continue to check their understanding of the
poems, have them work with the Visualize and
Monitoring strategies. Model the strategies,
or have students work on them with partners,
as needed.

Comprehension: Text Structure Point out


the long passages within quotation marks:
lines 885 and 90108. Make sure students
understand that these sections (most of the
poem) are the words of the wanderer. Elicit or
explain that the lines that frame the quoted
sections are the words of another speaker
perhaps the poet.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparencies

Visualizing p. A11
Monitoring p. A12

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tiered discussion prompts


In lines 2225, use these prompts to help
students understand the wanderers journey:
Restate When and where did the wanderer
begin his journey? Possible answer: He left
his homeland in wintertime, journeying on
the frigid sea by ship (lines 2224).
Analyze What words and phrases reveal
the wanderers attitude toward his journey?
Possible answer: The wanderers attitude is
that his journey is bleak and comfortless, as
indicated by How cruel a journey (line 28);
an exile in every land (line 30); friendless
and poor (line 32); and That warmth is
dead (line 35).
Synthesize With whose journeythe
wanderers or the seafarersdo readers
probably have more sympathy? Why?
Possible answer: The wanderer probably
inspires more sympathy. The seafarer goes
to sea because, despite its hardships, he feels
irresistibly called to it. The wanderer, however, feels forced to travel because of the loss
of his lord and kinsmen; he takes no joy in
his journey.

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Explore Metaphor Work with students to
visualize, clarify, and paraphrase these
metaphors in lines 89:
Ask what drunk too many lonely dawns
means. Possible answer: took in or experienced too many lonely days
Ask what was Grey with mourningthe
dawns or the wanderer. Possible answer:
The adjective refers to the dawns.

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T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 4

imagery

45

Possible answer: The images from the


speakers pasthonoring his lord, greeting
his kinconvey warmth, human companionship, and a sense of belonging. The
images from his presentthe brown waves,
the sea-birds, the wintry weatherconvey
coldness, loneliness, and a lack of human
contact.

50

55

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 6277, use these prompts to help
students grasp the wanderers concept of
wisdom:

60

Summarize According to the wanderer,


what are the traits of a wise person? Possible answer: A wise person is patient, eventempered, cautious in speech, bold but not
blindly so, observant, courageous, modest,
not greedy, not boastful, and aware of the
impermanence of human achievements.

65

Analyze In what way has the wanderers


experiences shaped his understanding of
wisdom? Possible answer: Perhaps the wanderer was less wise in his younger days and
came to his view of wisdom only through the
tragedy that he experienced and the wanderings that have followed.

70

75

Evaluate How well does the wanderers


description of wisdom hold up today?
Explain. Accept reasonable answers.

80

110

Without the deepest dreams of longing.


Sometimes it seems I see my lord,
Kiss and embrace him, bend my hands
And head to his knee, kneeling as though
He still sat enthroned, ruling his thanes.
And I open my eyes, embracing the air,
And see the brown sea-billows heave,
See the sea-birds bathe, spreading
Their white-feathered wings, watch the frost
And the hail and the snow. And heavy in heart
I long for my lord, alone and unloved.
Sometimes it seems I see my kin
And greet them gladly, give them welcome,
The best of friends. They fade away,
Swimming soundlessly out of sight,
Leaving nothing. g
How loathsome become
The frozen waves to a weary heart.
In this brief world I cannot wonder
That my mind is set on melancholy,
Because I never forget the fate
Of men, robbed of their riches, suddenly
Looted by deaththe doom of earth,
Sent to us all by every rising
Sun. Wisdom is slow, and comes
But late. He who has it is patient;
He cannot be hasty to hate or speak,
He must be bold and yet not blind,
Nor ever too craven, complacent, or covetous,
Nor ready to gloat before he wins glory.
The mans a fool who flings his boasts
Hotly to the heavens, heeding his spleen
And not the better boldness of knowledge.
What knowing man knows not the ghostly,
Waste-like end of worldly wealth:
See, already the wreckage is there,
The wind-swept walls stand far and wide,
The storm-beaten blocks besmeared with frost,
The mead-halls crumbled, the monarchs thrown down
And stripped of their pleasures. The proudest of warriors
Now lie by the wall: some of them war
Destroyed; some the monstrous sea-bird
Bore over the ocean; to some the old wolf
Dealt out death; and for some dejected
Followers fashioned an earth-cave coffin.
Thus the Maker of men lays waste

43 thanes (thAnz): followers of a lord.

g IMAGERY

In what way do the images from


the speakers past contrast with the
images of the present?

69 spleen: bad temper. The spleen is a


body organ that was formerly thought to
be the seat of strong emotions.

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Comprehension Support: Characterization
Help students develop a mental picture of
the wanderers character by having them fill
out an Open Mind diagram for him, such as
the one begun here. Instruct students to visualize him as if he were a person they know
and to infer his traits and feelings from what
he says about his life.

grieving over past


losses
lonely
unhappy
emotionally weary

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

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Open Mind p. D9

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85

90

95

100

105

This earth, crushing our callow mirth.


And the work of old giants stands withered and still.

84 callow (kBlPI) mirth: childish joy.

h IMAGERY

What ideas about earthly life do you


get from the images in lines 7485?
Note that work of old giants refers
to old ruins and burial mounds.

He who these ruins rightly sees,


And deeply considers this dark twisted life,
Who sagely remembers the endless slaughters
Of a bloody past, is bound to proclaim:
Where is the war-steed? Where is the warrior?
Where is his war-lord?
Where now the feasting-places? Where now the mead-hall
pleasures?
Alas, bright cup! Alas, brave knight!
Alas, you glorious princes! All gone,
Lost in the night, as you never had lived.
And all that survives you a serpentine wall,
Wondrously high, worked in strange ways.
Mighty spears have slain these men,
Greedy weapons have framed their fate.
These rocky slopes are beaten by storms,
This earth pinned down by driving snow,
By the horror of winter, smothering warmth
In the shadows of night. And the north angrily
Hurls its hailstorms at our helpless heads.
Everything earthly is evilly born,
Firmly clutched by a fickle Fate.
Fortune vanishes, friendship vanishes,
Man is fleeting, woman is fleeting,
And all this earth rolls into emptiness.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 4

imagery

Possible answer: The imagesruined


buildings that once were great, dead men
who once were proud warriorssuggest
that nothing earthly lasts, that even the
grandest human endeavor passes away.
95 serpentine (srPpEn-tCnQ): winding or
twisting, like a snake.

revisit the big question

When are people most ALONE?


Discuss In lines 104108, does the wanderer
see any remedy for isolation, or does he view
all of life as futile? Possible answer: Many
students may point to line 108 as evidence that
the wanderer views all of life as futile. Others
may say that he sees faith in God as the remedy
for isolation.

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y

110

So says the sage in his heart, sitting alone with His


thought.
Its good to guard your faith, nor let your grief come forth
Until it cannot call for help, nor help but heed
The path youve placed before it. Its good to find your grace
In God, the heavenly rock where rests our every hope. i

i
i

Possible answer: Another speakerpossibly the poetdescribes the wanderer in


lines 110113. The speaker views faith in God
as a consolation for earthly suffering.

MONITOR
Reread lines 110113. Is the wanderer
speaking, or is someone else? What
advice is offered in these lines?

Translated by Burton Raffel

Text Analysis

answers
1. His present life is cold, lonely, and sad; formerly, he was warm, welcomed within his
family and at court, protected, and happy.

1. Compare How does the wanderers present life


compare with his former life?
2. Summarize What does a wise man understand,
according to the wanderer?

the wanderer

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Research a Motif [small-group option] Introduce the Latin term ubi sunt, which literally
means where are? Explain that the term ubi
sunt describes a type of medieval verse whose
theme is the transitory nature of all things.
Invite a group of students to do some research
and answer these questions for the class:
How is the ubi sunt motif apparent in each of
the poems in this lesson?
What are some questions that might be
raised in a piece of ubi sunt writing?

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2. A wise man understands that it is best to


take a conservative approach to life and
that all endeavors in life (and even the best
people in life) ultimately pass away.

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RL 10

monitor

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Evaluate Authorship Ask students to discuss


(orally or in writing) whether, in their opinion,
The Seafarer and The Wanderer were written by the same author. Suggest that students look at narrative elements (such as action, setting, and characterization) in addition
to poetic elements (such as imagery, figurative
language, and devices of sound). Tell students
to assume that the translations of both poems
are equally faithful to the originalsa fair
assumption, for Burton Raffel is the translator
of both poems. If you have at least one

student for each side of the case, invite them


to hold an informal debate.

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summary
A wife mourns over her failed marriage: Her
husband has left the country and banished her
to a den in the woods, where she ponders her
loneliness and wishes him ill.

The ifes ament

T E X T A N A L Y S I S : Review

Model the Skill: old

RL 4
L 5a

english poetry
Model for students how to correctly read
aloud lines 14, pausing briefly at each
caesura. Discuss how the wifes plan
becomes clearer when the lines are heard.

Possible answer: The pauses emphasize the


speakers weariness and grieving sighs.
10

R E A D I N G S T R AT E G Y

RL 10

monitor

Possible answer: The wife is in


exile because her husband has sent her
away (line 15) rather than kill her outright
(line 20), seemingly at the urging of his relatives (lines 1112).

15

20

25

Extend the Discussion Does the wifes suspicion of a plot (lines 1112) make sense?
What might have motivated the husbands
relatives to break up the marriage?
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L4

Multiple Meanings Possible answer:


If service means help or the job of a
servant, then the wife seems to be an innocent victim of her in-laws conniving. (The
job of a servant, doesnt seem to fit very
well, however.) If it means that she sought
someone elses love, her in-laws response is
somewhat more explicable.

112

First my lord went out away from his people


over the wave-tumult. I grieved each dawn
wondered where my lord my first on earth might be.
Then I went forth a friendless exile
to seek service in my sorrows need.
My mans kinsmen began to plot
by darkened thought to divide us two
so we most widely in the worlds kingdom
lived wretchedly and I suffered longing.
My lord commanded me to move my dwelling here.
I had few loved ones in this land
or faithful friends. For this my heart grieves:
that I should find the man well matched to me
hard of fortune mournful of mind
hiding his mood thinking of murder. k

OLD ENGLISH POETRY


The translator has divided each
line with a caesura, or pause,
which helps maintain the rhythm
of the line. What do the pauses
emphasize?
6 my lord: the speakers husband.
7 wave-tumult: a kenning, or compound
metaphoric expression, for the sea.

L4

Language Coach
Multiple Meanings Service (line
10) can mean help or the job of
a servant, among other things.
One obsolete meaning is a pledge
of love. How do these different
meanings affect your interpretation
of the events in lines 1114?

k MONITOR

Why is the wife in exile?

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Suggest that


they reread lines 915 and make notes
on the chart introduced in the opening
Reading Strategy activity.

Language Coach

I make this song about me full sadly


my own wayfaring. I a woman tell
what griefs I had since I grew up
new or old never more than now.
Ever I know the dark of my exile.

Blithe was our bearing often we vowed


that but death alone would part us two
naught else. But this is turned round
now . . . as if it never were
our friendship. I must far and near
bear the anger of my beloved.
The man sent me out to live in the woods

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Concept Support Make sure students understand that in feudal Anglo-Saxon times,
society was organized for war and dominated
by males. A woman was virtually the property
of the male head of her household, usually
her husband or father. She was legally bound
to obey his commands, and she had little say
in major decisions about her life. Arranged
marriages during the early teen years were
common.

Evaluate Style Point out that the translators


use of caesura sometimes results in unusual
sentence structures and ambiguous meanings, as in lines 14 and 1314. Have students
paraphrase any lines that they feel are made
confusing by this style. Ask them to discuss
whether the ambiguity is justified, or whether
a more straightforward translation would have
been preferable. (Interested students may
want to locate and share such a translation.)

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tiered discussion prompts


In lines 1527, use these prompts to help students explore the wifes situation:
Connect Think about a time when you were
treated unfairly. How did you respond to
this treatment? Answers will vary but should
show understanding of the confusion or pain
that a person would feel.
Interpret In what way have the wifes
feelings about her husband changed over
the years? Possible answer: At first the wife
loved her husband, but now she is angry and
bitter over his mistreatment of her.
Evaluate Is the wifes experience so alien to
modern times that readers cannot identify
with it, or is there a modern equivalent?
Possible answer: People today do not exile
their spouses, but they do sometimes turn
against their loved ones, creating resentment.

REVISIT THE BIG QUESTION

When are people most ALONE?


Discuss In lines 2127, how does the wifes
isolation change her feelings toward her husband? Possible answer: The wifes feelings turn
from love to anger and betrayal.

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Develop Reading Fluency Direct students


to work in pairs for this activity. Using the
second, third, and fourth stanzas on this
page, have students practice the fluent reading of the caesura, as it is used in The Wifes
Lament. Encourage students working in
pairs to provide feedback to one another and
make constructive suggestions for improving fluency. Remind them to also pay close
attention to other unconventional uses of
punctuation as they read.

Analyze Have students use the Poetic


Content Analysis Frame to organize their
thoughts about the themes, attitudes, and
setting of The Wifes Lament. Urge students to draw upon their notes as they write
about the poem or as they help guide mixedability discussion groups.

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BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITCopy Masters

Analysis Frame: Poetic Content


pp. D21, D36, D37

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under an oak tree in this den in the earth.


Ancient this earth hall. I am all longing.
30

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 4

imagery

Possible answer: The images of the dark


valleys, high hills, overgrown yard, and bitter briars (lines 3031) express the speakers
feelings of confinement and sadness. Those
feelings are underscored by the fact that it
is summertime (line 37), a time when most
people are active, while she remains in exile.

35

40

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 4

imagery

45

Possible answer: The speaker imagines


that her husband is alone, even outcast,
and sorrowful under a rocky, frosty cliff and
drenched with water in a ruined hall.

50

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Direct their


attention to the words May that young
man and the masculine pronouns his, he,
and himself in the passage. Elicit or explain
that the imagery refers to a revenge that
the wife wishes upon her husband.

2829 den . . . earth hall: In describing


her living quarters, the speaker uses an
expression something like the modern
hole in the ground.

The valleys are dark the hills high


the yard overgrown bitter with briars
a joyless dwelling. Full oft the lack of my lord
seizes me cruelly here. Friends there are on earth
living beloved lying in bed
while I at dawn am walking alone
under the oak tree through these earth halls.
There I may sit the summerlong day
there I can weep over my exile
my many hardships. Hence I may not rest
from this care of heart which belongs to me ever
nor all this longing that has caught me in this life.

May that young man be sad-minded always


hard his hearts thought while he must wear
a blithe bearing with care in the breast
a crowd of sorrows. May on himself depend
all his worlds joy. Be he outlawed far
in a strange folk-land that my beloved sits
under a rocky cliff rimed with frost
a lord dreary in spirit drenched with water
in a ruined hall. My lord endures
much care of mind. He remembers too often
a happier dwelling. Woe be to them
that for a loved one must wait in longing. m

IMAGERY
What does the speakers description
of her surroundings express about
her emotional state?
42 that young man: the speakers
husband. In these final lines, the speaker
seems to wish for her husband to lead
the same sort of life that he has forced
her to endure.

m IMAGERY

What sad images does the speaker


imagine in lines 4250?

Translated by Ann Stanford

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read The Seafarer, The Wanderer, and
The Wifes Lament, ask them what all three
have in common. Possible answer: All three
poems discuss travel, or journeys.
CRITIQUE Have students give and support
opinions about the realism of each poem. After
completing the After Reading questions on page
115, have students revisit their responses and tell
whether they have changed their opinions.
INDEPENDENT READING
Students may also enjoy reading Edward
Hirschs How to Read a Poem.

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Vocabulary: Outdated Forms Provide these


definitions of outdated forms in The Wifes
Lament. Have students reread the lines,
substituting the modern forms.

Compare Tone Ask students to analyze the


tone in each of the three poems, recording
their responses and textual evidence in a
Three-Column Journal. Then have them
write a paragraph in which they address this
question: What general conclusions can you
draw about Anglo-Saxon life based on the
tone of each poem?

full (line 1), very


Ever (line 5), Always
oft (line 32), often
Hence (line 39), From now on; Therefore
Be he (line 46), I hope that he will be

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BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Three-Column Journal p. B10

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
1. Recall How does the speaker in The Seafarer feel about life at sea?
2. Clarify Why is the title character in The Wanderer in exile?
3. Clarify In The Wifes Lament, what does the wife wish for her husband?

Text Analysis
4. Monitor Understanding Review the charts you made as you read. What is
the speaker remembering or pondering in each poem? What elements in
each poem helped you reach these conclusions?
5. Compare Texts Compare these three poems, noting similarities you see in
each of the following elements:
subject

mood

imagery

theme

RL 2 Determine two or more


themes or central ideas of
a text and analyze their
development over the course
of the text, including how
they interact and build on one
another to produce a complex
account. RL 4 Analyze the
impact of specific word choices
on meaning and tone, including
words with multiple meanings or
language that is fresh, engaging,
or beautiful. RL 9 Demonstrate
knowledge of how two or
more texts from the same
period treat similar themes
or topics. RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature, including
poems.

For preliminary support of post-reading questions, use these copy masters:


RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Imagery p. 75
Question Support p. 79
Additional selection questions are
provided for teachers on page 71.

answers

1. The speaker finds life at sea painful, but he


is irresistibly drawn to it.

6. Synthesize Ideas What ideas about Anglo-Saxon life and religious attitudes
do you get from the poems?

2. The wanderer is in exile because his lord and


all his kinsmen have been killed.

7. Evaluate Imagery How does the imagery in these poems reflect the passage
of time? Support your answer with details from the poems.

3. She wishes for him to be alone, cold, wet,


and longing for her.

8. Apply Themes What advice might the speakers of The Seafarer and The
Wanderer give the speaker of The Wifes Lament? In what circumstances
could modern people benefit from this advice?

Possible answers:
4.

Text Criticism

alone?

A cold, stony landscape mirrors the harsh, unpredictable lives of the


AngloSaxons. What other kinds of landscapes might evoke a feeling of
isolation or loneliness?

5. Subject: All three speakers are alone in


dismal surroundings; Mood: isolation and
longing; Imagery: cold, sea, rocky cliffs,
ruined halls; Theme: the transience of
happiness; life on Earth is very difficult.

the seafarer / the wanderer / the wifes lament

6. The attitudes
expressed are that life is fleet115
ing and lonely; that there is much warfare
and a sense of a lost, glorious past; and that
people find consolation in religion.

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7.

common core focus Imagery: Accept all reasonable answers. Students


should include examples of imagery and
styles specific to Old English poetry.

8. The speakers might advise the wife to


transcend her grief and find a way to live
usefully, for the good of others, in the
present. This advice could benefit modern
people who have suffered loss.

common core focus Monitor


Understanding The Seafarer: the sea;
the brevity of life and wealth; faith The
Wanderer: the slaughter of his lord and
kinsmen; his exile; the brevity of life, wealth,
and human accomplishment The Wifes
Lament: her separation from her husband;
her lonely life in the forest; their past happiness; her wish for his sorrow Students will
name different elements.

9. Critical Interpretations There has been much debate over the number
of speakers in The Seafarer. Some critics believe that a second person
begins to speak at line 64, and others believe that there is only one speaker
throughout the poem. Which interpretation do you believe is more accurate,
and why?

When are people most

RL 2, RL 4, RL 9, RL 10

115

9. Answers will vary, but a change in speak11/22/10


ers may be seen in the change from
pessimism to optimism and the disappearance of first-person pronouns.

When are people most ALONE?


Possible answers: when separated
from friends and family, when feeling
discouraged or defeated, when treated
unkindly by others

12:06:50 PM

Assess and Reteach

Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Selection Test A pp. 3738


Selection Tests B/C pp. 3940
Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

Reteach
Reteaching Worksheets on thinkcentral.com:
Literature Lessons 26, 42
Reading Lesson 2

the seafarer / the wanderer / the wifes lament

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Reflections of Common Life

Focus and Motivate

RI 1 Cite evidence to support inferences,


including determining where the text leaves
matters uncertain. RI 6 Determine an authors
point of view or purpose in a text. RI 9 Analyze
documents of historical and literary significance
for their themes and purposes. W 3a, de Set
out a problem, situation, or observation and
its significance; create a smooth progression of
experiences or events; use precise words and
phrases, telling details, and sensory language to
convey a vivid picture of the experiences; provide
a conclusion that reflects on what is experienced,
observed, or resolved. SL 4 Present information,
findings, and supporting evidence, conveying a
clear and distinct perspective. L 3 Understand how
language functions in different contexts.

about the author

from The
RI 1 Cite evidence to support
inferences, including determining
where the text leaves matters
uncertain. RI 6 Determine
an authors point of view or
purpose in a text. SL 4 Present
information, findings,
and supporting evidence,
conveying a clear and distinct
perspective. L 3 Understand how
language functions in different
contexts.

Margery Kempe . . .
gave birth to 14 children.
was ridiculed for
dressing all in white
when married women
customarily wore dark
clothing.
so annoyed the
archbishop of York
that he paid a man five
shillings to escort her
out of town.

notable quote

Autobiography by Margery Kempe

Meet the Author

Margery Kempe

c. 13731439

The Book of Margery Kempe (kDmp), a


religious mystics story of her spiritual
life, is thought to be the earliest surviving
autobiography in the English language.
Ordinary Wife and Mother Margery

did you know?

Have students read this page and identify


details that reveal both the religious and the
secular or worldly aspects of Kempes life.
Point out that Kempes memoir presents a picture of English society in which personal faith
and daily life were intertwined.

Book of Margery Kempe

Kempe was born about 1373 in


Lynna town in the county of Norfolk,
Englandwhere her father served five
terms as mayor. Although born to a
prominent family, Kempe, like most
women of her time, received little
education. Around the age of 20, she
married John Kempe, a tax collector,
and raised a family.
Forsaking Secular Life At around the
age of 40, Margery Kempe decided to
become a bride of Christto live in
chastity and preach to the world. As a
vocal, outgoing speaker, she was quite an
oddity at a time when most aspects of
society, including the religious hierarchy,
were controlled by men. Most women
remained at home as wives and mothers.
Any woman who wished to pursue a
spiritual
spiritua calling was expected to join a
convent or to live as a recluse. Margery
Kempe did neither.

Once Kempe had made her


commitment to G
God, she began
religious pilgrimages
a series of religio
Spain, Italy,
to Jerusalem, Sp
Germany. Although
and Germany
many men and women she

He commanded her and charged her that


she should have written her feelings and
revelations and her form of living, so that His
goodness might be known to all the world.

View
Vi
V
iew
ew o
of Jerusalem

met considered her a model of human


compassion and devotion, many others
disapproved of her lifestyle.
A Gift of Holy Tears It was in Jerusalem

that Kempe received her gift of holy


tears. She would fall into violent fits of
crying at unpredictable times throughout
the rest of her life, often during church
services. Both the clergy and the common
people found her hysterical crying at best
annoying, at worst heretical. As a result,
Kempe encountered a good deal of
persecution and ridicule, although she
maintained that her tears were a special
gift from God, a physical token of her
special worth in his eyes.
Her Life Story In the 1430s, Kempe

began dictating her life story to scribes


(like most women of her class, she was
illiterate). She began her narrative by
describing a deeply troubling experience
following the birth of her first child,
which eventually led to her devotion to a
spiritual life. Her memoir is important for
several reasons. It serves as a sort of time
capsule of life in the 1400s, preserving
for the reader the social customs, speech,
and attitudes of the day. It also reveals
the singular character of Kempe herself,
a woman of strong faith who lived by her
convictions despite intense social criticism
and opposition.

Author Online
Go to thinkcentral.com. KEYWORD: HML12-116

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Selection Resources

NA_L12PE-u01s23-brKempe.indd

See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 8188


Summary, pp. 8990*
Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 9194*
Grammar and Style, p. 97

Word Questioning, p. E9

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS

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TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

Selection Tests, pp. 4144

* Resources for Differentiation

NA_L12TE-u01s05-kempe.indd

116

Also in Spanish

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

1/3/11

8:25:39 AM

15/10

Teach

text analysis: autobiography


The Book of Margery Kempe is an autobiography, a writers
account of his or her own life. An autobiography, as opposed to
a diary or a memoir, is a sustained narrative that attempts to
make sense of a persons life. Most autobiographies are written
in the first person, with a narrator who uses the pronoun I.
Kempes autobiography is instead written in the third person,
and Kempe is referred to as she or this creature.
When this creature was twenty years of age, or somewhat more,
she was married to a worshipful burgess [of Lynn] and was with
child within a short time, as nature would have it.
This third-person narration may reflect the fact that Kempe
dictated her story to a scribe, who did the actual writing,
or it may reflect her desire to be humble. As you read her
autobiography, notice what her thoughts and experiences
suggest about life in medieval times.

reading skill: draw conclusions


To draw a conclusion is to reach a judgment based on text
evidence, experience, and reasoning. For example, if a person
answered a question hesitatingly and could not meet the
questioners eyes, you might conclude that the person was
lying, based on these clues and your own knowledge of human
behavior. As you read Kempes autobiography, use a chart to
note details from the text about her personality and beliefs,
her illness, and the society she lives in. Note any additional
thoughts you have about these subjects based on your own
knowledge. Also note where the text leaves matters uncertain,
requiring the reader to infer key information. Then after
reading, draw conclusions about Kempes life.
Evidence
from Text

My Own Thoughts /
Knowledge

Where do
you find

Where do you find

strength?

Margery Kempe didnt take the easy


path in life. By living as a bride of
Christ despite being a married woman,
she challenged traditional womens
roles and risked being branded as a
heretic who could be burned at the
stake. Her religious faith gave her the
strength she needed to adhere to her
convictions.

STRENGTH?
After students have read the question and the
paragraph that follows, ask for examples of
ways in which people have found the strength
to challenge tradition today. Suggest that
students consider those examples as they
approach the DISCUSS activity, and invite
groups to share insights from the completed
activity with the class.
T E X T A N A LY S I S

DISCUSS People have proved time and


again that it is possible to overcome
challenges, such as illness, poverty,
physical disabilities, and oppression.
With a group, discuss what gives people
the strength to tackle a challenge
or to keep going despite obstacles
or setbacks. Draw evidence for your
perspective from your own experiences
or those of someone you know.

RI 6

Model the Skill:

autobiography
Read this passage aloud:
I was born in a small house on a deadend street. No one would have predicted that I would grow up to be the
leader of a great nation and change the
course of history.
Model for students why you would call this
passage autobiographical. Explain that
the passage is autobiographical in that the
author is telling the reader about his or her
life and accomplishments. Point out that
it, like most autobiographies, is written in
the first person.

Conclusions

Personality
Beliefs
Illness

GUIDED PRACTICE Have students write a


R2.5
passage similar to this one.

Society
Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

READING SKILL

RI 1

Model the Skill:

draw conclusions
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differentiated instruction

for english language learners

token, a sign or proof

Vocabulary Support To support instruction,


clarify the meaning of these words:

sustained, continuing

mystic, a person who experiences insights


that go beyond what can be known through
reason or the senses

setbacks, sudden changes to worse


conditions

chastity, purity
hierarchy, a group organized by ranks
according to power

convictions, deeply held beliefs

Then, pair English language learners with


fluent speakers. Ask each pair to make and
use flash cards to review the meaning of
these words.

12:06:46 PM

Model for students how to draw one or


more conclusions about the author of the
Literary Analysis passage. Point out that
the authors bold claims suggest that he or
she is conceited.
GUIDED PRACTICE Ask students to draw a
conclusion about Margery Kempe from the
facts on the previous page. Make sure
that the answer does not merely restate
the facts.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Draw Conclusions p. 93 (for student


use while reading the selection)

heretical, going against accepted beliefs

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Practice and Apply


summary
In this autobiographical excerpt, Kempe
reports her troubled first pregnancy and its
aftermath. Haunted by thoughts that she
might die and that her acts of penance are
insufficient, she sends for her confessor, but
his reproof silences her. Tormenting visions
of devils follow, and for several months she
has evil thoughts. However, she then has a
vision of Jesus Christ, whose words of love
and forgiveness restore her.

the book of
margery kempe
Margery Kempe

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read this excerpt from The Book of
Margery Kempe to learn about the experiences
that brought about a dramatic transformation
in the authors life.

chapter one: illness and recovery

10

T E X T A N A LY S I S

autobiography

RI 6

Possible answer: Kempe views herself as


a weak creature stricken by illness and
harassed by the devil. By mentioning her
penance, charitable acts, and prayers, she
presents herself as a person who wants to
be good but who is flawed.

20

Extend the Discussion Why does Kempe,


looking back, speak against the many acts
of penance that she performed privately?

When this creature was twenty years of age, or somewhat more, she was married
to a worshipful burgess1 [of Lynn] and was with child within a short time, as
nature would have it. And after she had conceived, she was troubled with severe
attacks of sickness until the child was born. And then, what with the labor-pains
she had in childbirth and the sickness that had gone before, she despaired of her
life, believing she might not live. Then she sent for her confessor,2 for she had a
thing on her conscience which she had never revealed before that time in all her
life. For she was continually hindered by her enemythe devilalways saying to
her while she was in good health that she didnt need to confess but to do penance
by herself alone, and all should be forgiven, for God is merciful enough. And
therefore this creature often did great penance in fasting on bread and water, and
performed other acts of charity with devout prayers, but she would not reveal that
one thing in confession. a
And when she was at any time sick or troubled, the devil said in her mind that
she should be damned, for she was not shriven3 of that fault. Therefore, after her
child was born, and not believing she would live, she sent for her confessor, as said
before, fully wishing to be shriven of her whole lifetime, as near as she could.
And when she came to the point of saying that thing which she had so long
concealed, her confessor was a little too hasty and began sharply to reprove her
before she had fully said what she meant, and so she would say no more in spite of

Analyze Visuals
What details suggest that
the woman pictured is
convalescent?

a AUTOBIOGRAPHY

Notice what Kempe tells


you about her life in lines
113. How does she view
herself and her actions?

1. burgess (brPjGs): a citizen of an English town.


2. confessor: spiritual advisor; the priest to whom Margery confessed her sins.
3. shriven: absolved; forgiven for a sin or flaw.

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Convalescent (Emma) (1872), Ford Madox Brown.


Colored chalks on paper. Birmingham Museums
and Art Gallery/Bridgeman Art Library.

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers
Have students listen to the Audio Anthology
CD for this selection. Then list these words on
the board:
Vocabulary Support
worshipful (line 2), honorable; respected
with child (line 2), pregnant
hindered (line 8), kept from a goal

12:06:52
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penance (line 9), any action that shows


sorrow over ones sins
fasting (line 11), eating little or no food
devout (line 12), very religious
reprove (line 19), to scold
Instruct students to practice writing sentences that correctly incorporate these vocabulary
terms.

confess (line 9), to tell ones sins (to a


priest)

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8:26:00 AM

2/10

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The woman appears convalescent in that she is lying back in bed, partly
covered by a blanket; in that her facial expression seems fatigued and possibly feverish; and
in that she holds flowers, which may have been
given to her by a well-wisher.
About the Art Convalescent is a pastel
drawing by British artist Ford Madox Brown
(18211893). Brown was connected to a group
of artists known as the Pre-Raphaelites,
who admired the art of the 1400s, Margery
Kempes era. This work had a very personal
connection for Brown: The woman depicted
is his daughter, Emma, who suffered from an
illness marked by fever in 1872.

cultural connection
Visionaries Many cultures have religious
visionaries, both male and female, who set
aside everyday life to pursue spiritual truth
and contact with the divine. In Hinduism, for
example, some spiritual seekers retire into forests to spend virtually all their time in meditation. Among the traditions of some Native
American groups is the vision quest, a time
during which an individual goes into isolation,
fasts, and seeks supernatural guidance. Ask
students to supply examples of visionaries and
seekers from other cultures with which they
are familiar.

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Use Word Questioning


to teach these words: somewhat (line 1), odd
(line 24), deny (line 30), implement (line 38),
Nevertheless (line 61).

Evaluate Have students work in pairs to


discuss what inspired Kempe in her confession. Ask students whether they agree with
Kempe that bad deeds need to be confessed
rather than made up for on ones own.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

12:07:14 PM

Word Questioning p. E9

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REVISIT THE BIG QUESTION

Where do you find

STRENGTH?
Discuss In lines 2124, why do you think that
Kempe did not have the strength to fight
off this torment? Students may suggest that
Kempe had looked to her confessor for strength,
only to be disappointed; accept all reasonable
answers.

30

anything he might do. And soon after, because of the dread she had of damnation
on the one hand, and his sharp reproving of her on the other, this creature went
out of her mind and was amazingly disturbed and tormented with spirits for half a
year, eight weeks and odd days.
And in this time she saw, as she thought, devils opening their mouths all alight
with burning flames of fire, as if they would have swallowed her in, sometimes
pawing at her, sometimes threatening her, sometimes pulling her and hauling her
about both night and day during the said time. And also the devils called out to
her with great threats, and bade her that she should forsake her Christian faith
and belief, and deny her God, his mother, and all the saints in heaven, her good
works and all good virtues, her father, her mother, and all her friends. And so she
did. She slandered her husband, her friends, and her own self. She spoke many
sharp and reproving words; she recognized no virtue nor goodness; she desired all
wickedness; just as the spirits tempted her to say and do, so she said and did. She
would have killed herself many a time as they stirred her to, and would have been

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 2532, use these prompts to help students explore Kempes torment:

L3

Language Coach
Formal Language The
translator of Kempes
autobiography uses
formal language
different from our
everyday speech. Reread
lines 2831, which include
the words the devils . . .
bade her that she should
forsake her Christian
faith. . . . How could you
say this informally?

Recall Why is Kempes spiritual struggle


more severe now than it was immediately
after the birth of her child? Possible answer:
Kempe tried to seek help from her confessor after the birth of her child, but his hasty
reprimand prevented her from finding the
spiritual release that she had hoped their
meeting would bring.
Interpret As Kempe looks back on the aftermath of her childs birth, what especially
troubles her about it? Possible answer: She
seems troubled that she obeyed the devils
call (lines 2832 and 34), that she forsook her
faith for a time (lines 2832), and that she
insulted her loved ones (line 32).
Evaluate What aspects of Kempes descriptive style most effectively convey her
experience? Explain. Possible answer:
Vivid images such as devils opening their
mouths all alight with burning flames of fire
(lines 2526) create a sense of immediacy;
in addition, the directness and sincerity of
Kempes style make the reader sympathetic
to her ordeal.

Light Entering Empty Room (1995). Tempera on panel. James Lynch/Getty Images.

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers
Develop Reading Fluency Point out to students that the sentences found in lines 2834
use a great deal of repetition and alliteration.
Elicit from students that these devices help
to convey a mood of tension and desperation
surrounding the actions being described.
Direct students to work in small groups to
practice reading these lines fluently. Ask
them to pay close attention to the repetition
and alliteration found in these sentences and

120

12:07:20
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read them in a way that helps to convey the


intended mood.

for english language learners


Language Coach
Formal Language The devils urged her
to give up her Christian faith.

L3

Have students choose three other sentences from the text that include formal language different from our everyday speech
and rewrite them in a more informal way.

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40

50

60

damned with them in hell, and in witness of this she bit her own hand so violently
that the mark could be seen for the rest of her life. And also she pitilessly tore the
skin on her body near her heart with her nails, for she had no other implement,
and she would have done something worse, except that she was tied up and
forcibly restrained both day and night so that she could not do as she wanted. b
And when she had long been troubled by these and many other temptations, so
that people thought she should never have escaped from them alive, then one time
as she lay by herself and her keepers were not with her, our merciful Lord Christ
Jesusever to be trusted, worshiped be his name, never forsaking his servant in
time of needappeared to his creature who had forsaken him, in the likeness of a
man, the most seemly, most beauteous, and most amiable that ever might be seen
with mans eye, clad in a mantle of purple silk, sitting upon her bedside, looking
upon her with so blessed a countenance that she was strengthened in all her
spirits, and he said to her these words: Daughter, why have you forsaken me, and
I never forsook you? c
And as soon as he had said these words, she saw truly how the air opened as
bright as any lightning, and he ascended up into the air, not hastily and quickly,
but beautifully and gradually, so that she could clearly behold him in the air until
it closed up again.
And presently the creature grew as calm in her wits and her reason as she ever
was before, and asked her husband, as soon as he came to her, if she could have
the keys of the buttery4 to get her food and drink as she had done before. Her
maids and her keepers advised him that he should not deliver up any keys to her,
for they said she would only give away such goods as there were, because she did
not know what she was saying, as they believed.
Nevertheless, her husband, who always had tenderness and compassion for her,
ordered that they should give her the keys. And she took food and drink as her
bodily strength would allow her, and she once again recognized her friends and
her household, and everybody else who came to her in order to see how our Lord
Jesus Christ had worked his grace in herblessed may he be, who is ever near in
tribulation.5 When people think he is far away from them he is very near through
his grace. Afterwards this creature performed all her responsibilities wisely and
soberly enough, except that she did not truly know our Lords power to draw us
to him.6  d

READING SKILL
b DRAW CONCLUSIONS

Reread lines 2540. What


conclusions do you draw
about the nature of
Kempes illness? What
details help you draw this
conclusion?

draw conclusions

RI 1

Possible answer: Kempe may have had


postpartum depression or a nervous
breakdown. Details that help in drawing
the conclusion are that she had frightening
hallucinations, she made bad statements
about herself and those around her, and at
times she wanted to kill herself.

GRAMMAR AND STYLE


Notice how Kempe layers
subordinate clauses,
participial phrases, and
prepositional phrases
in a single-sentence
paragraph to fully
describe her vision of
Jesus.

grammar
and style

L3

Craft Effective Sentences Elicit or explain


these examples:
The subordinate clause who had forsaken
him (line 45) emphasizes that Kempe
acknowledged her sinful actions.
The participial phrases in lines 4749
(clad . . . sitting . . . looking . . . ) add
information about Jesus appearance.

d AUTOBIOGRAPHY

How does Kempe


conclude this first
episode? How does she
view herself at this point
in her story?

The paired prepositional phrases in the


likeness of a man (lines 4546) make
it clear that Jesus came to Kempe in a
friendly way.
Point out that modern writers still use
subordinate clauses, participial phrases,
and prepositional phrases to add information and variety to their writing.

4. buttery: pantry, where food provisions were stored.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

5. tribulation (trGbQyE-lAPshEn): suffering; distress.


6. she did not . . . to him: She still was not giving her complete devotion to God, as she would later.

D
the book of margery kempe

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121

for advanced learners/ap


Evaluating Point of View Ask students to
discuss how the third-person point of view
affects the impact of this autobiography.
For example, consider these questions:
Does the third-person point of view make
the reader feel too distant from the author,
or does the power of the events that she
recounts overcome that problem?

Are the events more meaningful or less


meaningful to readers because of the use
of the third person?
Then have students rewrite brief passages
from the selection in the first person, changing nothing except the point of view. After
volunteers have read their revisions aloud,
invite discussion about whether the change
in point of view alters the impact of each
passage.

12:07:25 PM

selection wrapup
READING WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read The Book of Margery Kempe, invite
them to discuss the types of events that lead
to the transformation of individuals lives. Ask
students whether positive transformations
always result from negative events.

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121

RI 6

Possible answer: Kempe concludes that


Jesus Christ is near to troubled people and
is ready to encourage and restore them.

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
For preliminary support of post-reading questions, use these copy masters:

1. Recall Why did Kempe send for a priest?


2. Summarize How did Kempe behave in the months after seeing the priest?
3. Clarify What changed her behavior?

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Reading Check p. 95
Autobiography p. 91
Question Support p. 96

Text Analysis
4. Examine Autobiography What kind of person does Kempe present herself
to be, and for what purpose? Support your answer with details from the
text. Be sure to note the key piece of information she leaves out of her
autobiography.

Additional selection questions are


provided for teachers on page 85.

answers

5. Draw Conclusions Review the chart you made as you read. What conclusions
did you draw about each of the following?

RI 1, RI 6, RI 9

Kempes personality

1. Kempe sent for a priest because she thought


that she might die, and she wanted to
confess a sin.

Kempes religious beliefs


Kempes illness
English society in Kempes time

2. Unable to reveal her sin to her confessor,


Kempe abandoned her faith during those
months, said terrible things about herself
and others, and bit and scratched herself.

6. Interpret Theme Kempe undergoes a transformation during her illness.


What does this transformation symbolize?
7. Compare Texts What does this selection have in common with Bedes
account of Caedmon (page 98)? What do the two selections suggest
about Christian beliefs in England during early times?

3. The change resulted from Kempes mystical


vision, in which Jesus assured her that he
had not forsaken her.

Text Criticism

Possible answers:
4.

8. Compare Texts Readers are often divided in their reactions to The Book of
Margery Kempe. Some feel that Kempe was mentally unstable and should
not be taken seriously. Others see her as a strong-minded woman who
insisted on the validity of her own spiritual life. Do you agree with either of
these opinions, or do you see Kempe differently? Why?

common core focus Autobiography Kempe first presents herself as a


troubled person, misunderstood by her confessor (lines 1821) and tormented by devils
(lines 2540); later, she presents herself as
cured by the loving reassurance of Jesus
Christ (lines 4256) and now as a testimony
for Gods grace (lines 6266). However,
Kempe never explains what she was going
to confess to the priest whom she called
for when she thought she was going to die
(lines 15-21).

5.

common core focus Draw


Conclusions Personality: Kempe was willful and she was prone to fear. Religious
beliefs: She was a devout Christian. Illness:
Her illness was caused by the difficulties of
childbirth.
Society: The society was dominated by
religion; women were expected to fulfill
household roles; some people were wealthy
enough to have servants.

6. her recovery through a return to God

RI 1 Cite evidence to support


inferences, including determining
where the text leaves matters
uncertain. RI 6 Determine an
authors point of view or purpose
in a text. RI 9 Analyze documents
of historical and literary
significance for their themes and
purposes.

Where do you find

strength?

Kempe drew upon her faith to find strength. Favorite activities, people, or
places can also serve as sources of strength in difficult times. What activity,
person, or place serves as such a source of strength during difficult times for
you or someone you know?

122

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

122
8. Students answers
will vary, but should provide evidence from the text to support their
agreement with one of the stated positions,
or their own unique interpretation of Kempe
and her work.

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Where do you find STRENGTH?


Possible answers: from family and friends,
through spiritual beliefs, from the examples
of role models or heroes

7. Both Kempe and Caedmon were transformed by a religious vision, which moved
them to devote their lives to God. The two
selections suggest that Christian beliefs in
England during that time included both
traditional teaching and insights gained
through personal, mystical revelation.

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Language
grammar and style: Craft Effective Sentences
Review the Grammar and Style note on page 121. Margery Kempe uses a series of
subordinate clauses, prepositional phrases, and participial phrases to chronicle
the harrowing experience of her illness and recovery. The single, lengthy
sentence below vividly portrays Kempes visions:
And in this time she saw, as she thought, devils opening their mouths all alight
with burning flames of fire, as if they would have swallowed her in, sometimes
pawing at her, sometimes threatening her, sometimes pulling her and hauling
her about both night and day during the said time. (lines 2528)

L 3 Apply knowledge of
language to make effective
choices for meaning or
style. W 3a, de Set out
a problem, situation, or
observation and its significance;
create a smooth progression
of experiences or events; use
precise words and phrases,
telling details, and sensory
language to convey a vivid
picture of the experiences;
provide a conclusion that
reflects on what is experienced,
observed, or resolved.

Kempe interjects the subordinate clause as she thought to alert readers that
she was hallucinating, without unduly interrupting the flow of her description.
Two prepositional phraseswith burning flames and of fireprovide vivid
sensory details of Kempes torment, as do the participial phrases she includes,
such as sometimes pawing at her and sometimes threatening her.

Language

L 3, W 3a, W 3de

grammar and style


Review the terms subordinate clause, prepositional phrase, and participial phrase. Have
students identify these details:
in this time as a prepositional phrase that
helps establish the setting
opening their mouths all alight . . . as a
participial phrase that presents the first
description of the devils
as if they would have swallowed her in as a
subordinate clause that describes the devils
actions

PRACTICE Rewrite the following paragraph by incorporating subordinate clauses,


prepositional phrases, and participial phrases that mimic Kempes style.

Possible answer: As the doctor told me the


bad news, he handed me a pair of crutches, on
which I would have to hobble down the streets
for six weeksas long as it would take for my
knee to heal. The first day on crutches was
agony. It took me 20 minutes to go one block,
stopping every few minutes to catch my breath.

The doctor told me the bad news and handed me a pair of crutches. I was
going to have to use them for six weeks. It would take that long for my
knee to heal. The rst day on crutches was agony. It took me 20 minutes
to travel one block. I had to stop every few steps to catch my breath.
example

As the doctor told me the bad news, he put a pair of crutches in my hands.

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Craft Effective Sentences p. 97

reading-writing connection

YOUR
TURN

Expand your understanding of the excerpt from The Book of Margery


Kempe by responding to this prompt. Then, use the revising tips to
improve your personal narrative.

writing prompt

revising tips

WRITE A SURVIVAL TALE Think about a time


when you or someone you know recovered
from an injury, illness, or some other difficult
experience. Draft a one-page personal
narrative in which you describe the attitudes
and strategies that made it survivable.
Conclude by reflecting on the importance of
the experience.

Ensure the story has a clear


beginning, middle, and end.
Add descriptive details and
sensory language to vividly
portray the experience.
Use subordinate clauses,
prepositional phrases, and
participial phrases to create a
smooth progression of events.

reading-writing connection
Have students use an Autobiographical or
Personal Narrative writing template to plan
their survival tales.

123

differentiated instruction

for struggling writers

following
toolstools
are available
online
AllThe
of the
interactive
and features
onat
thinkcentral.com
on WriteSmart
WriteSmart
are alsoand
available
online CD-ROM:
Graphicin
Organizers
Interactive
thinkcentral.com
the Writing Center.
at
Interactive Student Models
Interactive Revision Lessons
For additional grammar instruction, see
GrammarNotes on thinkcentral.com.

Go to thinkcentral.com.
KEYWORD: HML12-123

the book of margery kempe

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Writing Online

Interactive
Revision

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12:06:00 PM

Assess and Reteach

Writing Support

Assess

Have students begin by listing difficult


experiences and then freewriting about the
experience demanding the most strength.

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Remind students to include descriptions


of their thoughts and feelings rather than
recounting bare events.
Remind students to revise and edit with the
help of peers.

Selection Tests A, B/C pp. 4142, 4344


Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

Reteach
Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com
Reteaching Worksheets on thinkcentral.com:
Reading Lesson 9: Drawing Conclusions

the book of margery kempe

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British
Masterpiece
RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of foundational
works of literature. W 3b Use narrative
techniques, such as dialogue and description to
develop experiences, events, and/or characters.
W 3d Use telling details to convey a vivid picture of
the experiences, events, setting, and/or characters.

BACKGROUND Some scholars have argued


that more than one person wrote Piers Plowman; however, most feel that the style points
to a single author: William Langland. While no
separate evidence confirms his authorship, the
writer refers to himself throughout the text as
Will or Long Will. Other details indicate that
he came from the Malvern Hills in western England, the setting he describes in the opening. He
apparently trained for the church but was never
able to take orders; instead he would end up
spending many years in poverty, perhaps even
wandering and begging.

Plowman

Allegory by William Langland

background Piers Plowman is a 14th-century narrative poem that combines


RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge
of foundational works of
literature. W 3b, d Use narrative
techniques, such as dialogue
and description, to develop
experiences, events, and/or
characters; use telling details
to convey a vivid picture of the
experiences, events, setting, and/
or characters.

deep religious faith with biting social satire. Its authorship is uncertain, but
evidence points to William Langland, about whom little is known. The poems large
number of surviving manuscripts suggests its popularity in its day, and it influenced
the works of later writers such as Edmund Spenser, John Milton, and John Bunyan.
Piers Plowman, like much medieval literature, is written in Middle English alliterative
verse, in which several words in each line repeat the same initial sound. For modern
readers, the poem provides valuable insights into medieval life. This excerpt is
a modern translation of the so-called B text, the second and best known of the
poems three surviving versions.

text analysis Piers Plowman is an allegory, or work in which characters, settings,


and events represent abstract concepts to convey a message, such as the need to
lead a more moral life. Like the Venerable Bede (page 96) and Margery Kempe (page
116), Langland uses the device of a dream vision to portray a powerful spiritual
struggle and transformation to his audience. Through a series of dreams, Will, the
hero of Piers Plowman, travels to a strange, alternative world where Conscience,
Reason, and Truth have human characteristics that allow them to walk, talk, and
debate important religious issues. Each encounter with these characters represents
another step in Wills quest to achieve greater spiritual understanding.
Allegories often incorporate personication, a gure of speech in which
the author attributes human qualities to ideas. In Piers Plowman each of the
Seven Deadly Sins has a distinct appearance, personality, and point of view. In
the following excerpt, for example, Envy, characteristically dissatised, carries a
knife, shakes his sts in frustration, and admits he deliberately causes trouble
wherever he goes. In an effort to redeem himself, Envy begs Repentance to hear his
confession in hopes of doing shrift, or penance, for his dreadful deeds.

TEXT ANALYSIS Make sure students understand

that because the book-length Piers Plowman is


an allegory, the first word of the excerpt, Envy, is
both the name of an emotion and the name of
the character who represents that emotion. As
one of the Seven Deadly Sins, according to medieval Christian tradition, envy is a sin that can
condemn a person to hell. The others are pride,
wrath, greed, lust, sloth, and gluttony.
WRITE Encourage students to start with the
message they want their allegories to convey.
Suggest that they model their allegories on
Piers Plowman by starting with a description
of their allegorical character that is rich in
descriptive details.

from Piers

WRITE After you read the excerpt, write a short allegory in which you convey a
message about an abstract concept, such as love, anger, or fear, by personifying it as
a character with human traits. If you saw this character walking down the street,
what would he or she look like? How would he or she speak? What would this
character say about him- or herself?

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differentiated instruction
for struggling writers
Organize Your Ideas Remind students that
the characters in their allegories should
convey a message about an abstract concept;
therefore, students should consider how
their characters appearance, words, and
actions convey meaning. Have students use
a Character Traits Web to organize their ideas.
Model filling in the web by using the character of Envy from the Piers Plowman excerpt.

An Ugly
Man
Represents
Envy
Appearance:
pale, shaky,
lean

Actions:
shakes fists; spits
out his words;
starts disputes

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Words:
speaks words full
of hate; harmful
to others

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Character Traits Web p. D7

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9
8
9
8
9
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38

 nvy with heavy heart asked for shrift

introduce the masterpiece

And grieving for his guilt began his confession.


He was pale as a sheeps pelt, appeared to have the palsy.
He was clothed in a coarse clothI couldnt describe it
A tabard and a tunic, a knife tied to his side,
Like those of a friars frock were the foresleeves.
Like a leek that had lain long in the sun
So he looked with lean cheeks, louring foully.
His body was so blown up for anger that he bit his lips
And shook his fist fiercely, he wanted to avenge himself
With acts or with words when he saw his chance.
Every syllable he spat out was of a serpents tongue;
From chiding and bringing charges was his chief livelihood,
With backbiting and bitter scorn and bearing false witness.
This was all his courtesy wherever he showed himself.
Id like to be shriven, said this scoundrel, if shame would let me.
By God, Id be gladder that Gib had bad luck
Than if Id won this week a wey of Essex cheese.
Ive a neighbor dwelling next door, Ive done him harm often
And blamed him behind his back to blacken his name.
Ive done my best to damage him day after day
And lied to lords about him to make him lose money,
And turned his friends into foes with my false tongue.
His good luck and his glad lot grieve me greatly.
Between household and household I often start disputes
So that both life and limb are lost for my speech. . . .
I condemn men when they do evil, yet I do much worse;
Whoever upbraids me for that, I hate him deadly after.
I wish that every one were my servant,
And if any man has more than I, that angers my heart.
So I live loveless like a loathsome dog
So that my breast is blown up for bitterness of spirit.
For many years I might not eat as a man ought
For envy and ill will are hard to digest.
Is there any sugar or sweet thing to assuage my swelling
Or any diapenidion that will drive it from my heart,
Or any shrift or shame, unless I have my stomach scraped?
Yes, readily, said Repentance, directing him to live better;
Sorrow for sins is salvation for souls.

Piers Plowman Emphasize that the original


Middle English version of Piers Plowman was
written in unrhymed alliterative verse and
that this modern translation maintains the
alliterative style. Have students scan the first
eight lines to find examples of alliteration that
begin with the h, p, f, and l sounds.

tiered discussion prompts


Use these prompts to help students explore
the characterization of Envy:
Connect Think of a time when you or
someone you know felt envious. What does
that memory suggest about what a character named Envy might be like? Students
descriptions should display an understanding of the feeling of envy, such as that envy
can produce unreasonable hostility between
people and that it is an ugly emotion.
Analyze What do Envys words reveal about
him? Possible answer: His words reveal that
Envy is bitter and rarely, if ever, satisfied
and that he freely brings harm upon others.
Readers even might doubt the sincerity of
this confession.
Synthesize In what respect is the presentation of Envy allegorical, and in what respect
does it represent a realistic portrayal of the
emotion? Possible answer: The presentation
is allegorical because the character and his
behavior are an extreme representation of a
single quality. It is realistic because most of
the details could apply to an envious individual in everyday life, both in Langlands time
and today.
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for english language learners

chiding (line 13), criticizing

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support

wey (line 18), a measure of weight (in this


case, about 224 pounds)

Research and Compare [small-group option]


Ask a small group of students to do research
into allegories over the centuries (extending
as far back as Aesops fables and as recently as
George Orwells Animal Farm) and prepare an
annotated reading list of allegories. As students
present the list, have them compare various
entries to what they know of Piers Plowman.

shrift (line 1), forgiveness of sins


palsy (line 3), an illness characterized by
uncontrollable shaking

upbraids (line 28), criticizes

tabard (line 5), a short cape

diapenidion (line 36), sugar when used as a


medicine

tunic (line 5), a loose outer coat


louring (line 8), looking gloomy or
threatening

assuage (line 35), to ease or satisfy

british masterpiece

NA_L12TE-u01s06-plowman.indd

125

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8:20:57 AM

Reflections of Common Life

Focus and Motivate

RI 1 Cite evidence to support inferences drawn


from the text. RI 6 Determine an author's purpose
in a text, analyzing how content contributes
to the power, persuasiveness, or beauty of the
text. RI 9 Analyze documents of historical and
literary significance for their themes, purposes,
and rhetorical features. SL 1a Come to discussions
prepared, having read and researched material
under study. L 3 Apply knowledge of language to
understand how language functions in different
contexts. L 4a Use context as a clue to the
meaning of a word.

from The
RI 1 Cite evidence to support
inferences drawn from the
text. RI 6 Determine an authors
purpose in a text, analyzing how
content contributes to the power,
persuasiveness, or beauty of the
text. RI 9 Analyze documents of
historical and literary significance
for their themes, purposes, and
rhetorical features. SL 1a Come to
discussions prepared, having read
and researched material under
study. L 4a Use context as a clue
to the meaning of a word.

Paston Letters

Letters by the Paston Family

Meet the Author

The Paston Family


Endless Legal Wrangling William Paston
marrie
iedd
J hn
Jo
h Passto
ton
n I marr
(144
(1
440)
0)
(142
14211
11466
4666)

Marg
Ma
rgar
rg
a et
ar
Maut
Ma
utby
ut
b
by
(142
(1
422?
2?1
148
484)
4)

JJoohn
h II
Joohn
John
n IIII
Maarg
M
argger
ey
(1144
442
214
1479
79)) (144
(1444
415
1504
04)) (144
(1447?
7?147
479?
9?))
marr
ma
rrie
iedd (1
(146
469)
9
Rich
Ri
char
ch
ard
d Caall
llee

did you know?


The Paston family . . .

notable quote
I beg you with all my heart that you will be
kind enough to send me word how you are.
Margaret Paston
Tell students that the statement comes from
a letter written by Margaret Paston to her
husband, John I. Read the quote aloud; then
have students paraphrase it. Point out that
the letters in this lesson will deal with
urgent family matters.

is immortalized in the
old Norfolk saying
There never was a
Paston poor, a Heydon a
coward, or a Cornwallis
a fool.
claimed that they were
willed the property of
Sir John Fastolf, who
inspired Falstaff, a comic
character in three of
Shakespeares plays.

The 15th century in England was a


period of great unrest and lawlessness.
Landowners often attacked their neighbors
estates and betrayed their political allies.
The Wars of the Roses, a conflict between
two royal families for control of the
kingdom, ravaged England between 1455
and 1485. In addition, several outbreaks
of the plague devastated many English
families during the century.
The Saga Begins A firsthand record of this

turbulent era survives in more than 1,000


documents and letters written by the
Pastons, an English landowning family.
During the early 1400s, William Paston,
a lawyer, began accumulating property
in Norfolk, a county in eastern England,
both through purchases and through his
acquisition of estates inherited by his
wife, Agnes Berry. Williams extensive
landholdings and growing prosperity
earned him a number of enemies. Some
even challenged his claim to certain
properties and brought grief to Williams
descendants for many years.

and Agnes Berry had five children. The


oldest, John I, inherited much of the
family property when his father died
in 1444, and his marriage to Margaret
Mautby led to the acquisition of even
more property from his wifes family.
Like his father, John I was a lawyer,
possessed of skills that were much needed
in his constant legal battles over claims
to various properties. His many legal
disputes required him to stay in London
for long periods of time, leaving Margaret
to manage the Paston estates. John I and
Margarets seven children included two
sons named JohnJohn II and John
IIIand a daughter named Margery.
The letters you will read concern John I,
Margaret, and these three children.
Anxiously Awaited Letters In their

letters, the Pastons exchanged detailed


information about their legal disputes
and other problems. Although writing
letters had become an important means
of communication by the 15th century,
sending the letters was not easy. They
had to be delivered by hand, often by a
servant or even a total stranger. Weeks
might pass before a letter reached its
destination, and many never arrived.
Despite these limitations, the Pastons
wrote hundreds of letters over the course
of 90 years, leaving an invaluable source
of information about the social and
political conditions of the times.

Author Online
Go to thinkcentral.com. KEYWORD: HML12-126

126

Selection Resources

NA_L12PE-u01s24-brPaston.indd

See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 99106


Summary, pp. 107108*
Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 109112*

Think-Pair-Share, p. A18
Read Aloud/Think Aloud, p. A34
Word Squares, p. E10
Venn Diagram, p. A26
Two-Column Chart, p. A25
Three-Column Journal, p. B10
Sequence Chain, p. B21
Analysis Frame: Literary Nonfiction, pp. D21, D48, D49

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS
Selection Tests, pp. 4548

* Resources for Differentiation

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Also in Spanish

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TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

1/3/11

8:24:15 AM

2/10

Teach

text analysis: primary sources


Primary sources, such as diaries and letters, are materials
created by people who took part in or witnessed the events
portrayed. These documents can help you synthesize ideas and
make logical connections based on evidence from the text to
draw conclusions about the people who wrote them and the
period in which they lived. Consider this excerpt from a letter
written by Margaret Paston to her husband:
They let me know that various of Lord Moleyns men said that
if they could get their hands on me they would keep me in the
castle. They wanted you to get me out again, and said that it
would not cause you much heart-ache.
The excerpt shows that participants in land disputes of the
time would sometimes resort to kidnapping for ransom. As
you read these letters, determine what they reveal about their
writers and life in the 15th century.

reading skill: understand writers purpose


To understand a writers purpose, you must make subtle
inferences, or reasonable assumptions based on clues in
the text. The writer may wish to accomplish a goal, such as
explaining a situation or eliciting a desired response. For
example, you can infer how much danger the Pastons face
when Margaret urges her husband to please take care when
you eat or drink in any other mens company, for no one can be
trusted. Clues to the writers purpose may include
significant details the writer includes about events or ideas
the writers opinions or observations
attempts by the writer to influence the recipients thoughts
or actions
As you read each letter, note significant details the writer
provides. Record your thoughts on a chart like the one shown
to help you conclude what each writers purpose is.
Writer/
Recipient/Date

Significant
Details

Your Inferences

Writers
Purpose

Margaret
to John I, 28
February 1449

What disturbs
your sense of

What disturbs your sense of

SECURITY?

security?
Imagine living with the fear of
being struck down by the plague or
learning that parts of your home and
property had been destroyedand
feeling powerless to prevent further
destruction. For the Paston family, such
horrors were a reality. Although they
were relatively wealthy and privileged,
a sense of security was not something
their money could buy.

Ask the question; then have students define


security before reading the paragraph that
follows. After partners have shared some of
their responses to the DISCUSS activity, briefly
discuss the security concerns that exist today.
In what ways are these concerns similar to
those experienced in 15th-century England?
In what ways are they different?

DISCUSS Life in 21st-century America


is radically different from life in 15thcentury England, but events can still
intrude upon our security. Working with
a partner, think of a global, national,
or local event that shook your sense
of security. Prepare for a thoughtful
discussion by researching details of the
event that you might not have previously
known. Discuss why you found the event
disturbing and what you did to attempt
to regain your peace of mind.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RI 9

Model the Skill:

primary sources
After students have read the excerpt on
this page, model for them what they can
learn from primary sources that they
probably would not learn from a history
textbook. Explain that they can learn
about the urgency of a situation through a
first-person conversation.

Event
Terrorist Attacks, 9-11-01
Aspects That Shook My
Sense of Security

READING SKILL

1.

Model the Skill:

2.

understand writers
purpose

3.
What I Did to Regain My
Sense of Security

Model for students how to assess the purposes for Margaret Pastons letter in the
passage. Point out to them that Margaret
wishes to inform her husband about the
danger she is in.

Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

the paston letters

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127

differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Concept Support: Purposes Call on volunteers to explain why different individuals
might have very different purposes for taking
the same action. For example, students might
join a club for different reasons: one might
join to spend time with friends, another
might join in order to be able to add activities
to a college application, and another might
join because he or she believes in the clubs
goals.

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Discuss how some purposes might be revealed


through a persons words or actions. Conclude
by telling students that when they read the
Paston letters, they should stop at least once
per letter and ask themselves why the writer
has written the letter. Instruct students to
work in mixed-ability pairs.

12:06:30 PM

GUIDED PRACTICE Read aloud a


letter to the editor from a magazine.
Have students assess the writers possible
motives.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Understand Writers Purpose p. 111


(for student use while reading
the selection)

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RI 1
RI 6

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Practice and Apply


summary
In the first letter, Margaret Paston tells her
husband, John, that she has fled their estate for fear of attack. The next two letters
describe events at another Paston estate.
Two further letters concern the controversial
marriage of Margery Paston to Richard Calle, a
Paston estate manager. The last three letters
discuss financial problems, an injury, and
the plague.

he aon etters


The Paston Family

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read The Paston Letters to learn about
the challenges facing English families during
the 15th century.

Margaret Paston, in the absence of her husband, John I, was able to deal equally
well with small housekeeping problems and with family disasters, including attacks
against the Paston manors. While she was living at the Paston estate of Gresham, it was
attacked by a Lord Moleyns, who claimed rights to the property and ejected Margaret
from her home. Margaret first escaped to a friends house about a mile away; but later,
fearing that Moleynss band of men might kidnap her, she fled to the city of Norwich,
where she wrote the following letter to her husband.

Analyze Visuals
What is the economic
status of the family
pictured? How can
you tell?

argaret to ohn I
28 February 1449

READING SKILL

writers purpose

RI 1
RI 6

Possible answer: Margaret is explaining


that she did not stay where John left her
because she heard that Lord Moleynss men
wanted to kidnap her. She may want John
to be upset enough by the news to return
home.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Have them
work with partners on the chart introduced on the previous page, recording
notes like these:
Possible Motives
Margaret is
afraid; she wants
John to come
home.

128

Clues to Motives
Some of Lord Ms
men have threatened to kidnap
her.

10

Right worshipful husband, I commend myself to you, wishing with all my heart to
hear that you are well, and begging that you will not be angry at my leaving the
place where you left me. On my word, such news was brought to me by various
people who are sympathetic to you and me that I did not dare stay there any
longer. I will tell you who the people were when you come home. They let me
know that various of Lord Moleyns men said that if they could get their hands
on me they would carry me off and keep me in the castle. They wanted you to
get me out again, and said that it would not cause you much heart-ache. After I
heard this news, I could not rest easy until I was here, and I did not dare go out of
the place where I was until I was ready to ride away. Nobody in the place knew a
that I was leaving except the lady of the house, until an hour before I went. And I
told her that I would come here to have clothes made for myself and the children,
which I wanted made, and said I thought I would be here a fortnight1 or three

a WRITERS PURPOSE

What is Margaret
explaining to John I in
lines 110? Speculate
about how she wants
him to react.

1. fortnight: 14 nights, or two weeks.

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The Four Conditions of Society: Nobility, Jean


Bourdichon. Vellum. cole Nationale Suprieure
des Beaux-Arts, Paris. Bridgeman Art Library.

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for english language learners

for struggling readers

Connect to the Text Read aloud the italicized


introductory paragraph to students. Ask
them to explain why Margaret Paston was
forced to leave her home and the purpose for
the letter. Then have students predict what
the letter might say. Invite volunteers to
share their ideas.

Have students read silently while they listen


to the Audio Anthology CD. Encourage
students to listen carefully to this selection
in order to clarify difficult passages from the
text and improve reading fluency.

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Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: These are members of a
wealthy family, as evidenced by the beautiful
clothes and jewelry that they wear; by their
comfortable demeanor; and by the well-built,
well-furnished room in which they are shown.
About the Art French artist Jean Bourdichon
(14571521) created this painting on vellum (a
fine parchment used in medieval books). It is
entitled The Four Conditions of Society: Nobility; as the title suggests, it is one of a series.
(The other social conditions that Bourdichon
depicted are Work, Poverty, and The Wild
State.) Bourdichon was the official court
painter to four French kings. In addition to
painting, he illuminated manuscripts, created
stained-glass windows, and designed coins.

background
Medieval Mail In the Pastons time, letter
writers exerted great care to make sure that
their letters were not opened by unintended
recipients. Typically a letter from an affluent
or noble writer would be folded, fastened by
a paper strap, wrapped with silk thread or
string, and finally sealed with wax. Prominent
families stamped their wax seals with custommade designs identifying their family (often
through the use of the family coat of arms).
These seals were both artistically attractive
and an aid to security, for the recipient could
tell if the seal had been broken.

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12:05:34 PM

for struggling readers


Comprehension Support Encourage students
to help each other understand this letter and
the subsequent ones by modeling for them
the use of a Think-Pair-Share or Read Aloud/
Think Aloud strategy.
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparencies

Think-Pair-Share p. A18
Read Aloud/Think Aloud p. A34

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tiered discussion prompts


In lines 2336, use these prompts to help
students grasp the conflict that this letter
discusses:

20

Recall What events in earlier passages


indicate that the Pastons are at odds with
Lord Moleyns and his men? Possible answer:
Margaret has fled the place where John left
her, fearing that Lord Moleynss men would
kidnap her (lines 110).
Interpret How does Barow take both sides
in this conflict? Possible answer: Barow
speaks for Lord Moleyns (lines 2324), but he
also tells Margaret that he is willing to meet
with John in London, to try to settle the conflict (lines 2830), and that he has acted only
as Lord Moleynss servant (lines 3031).

30

Evaluate Is Margarets active role in this


conflict surprising? Why or why not? Possible answer: It is surprising to see a medieval
woman taking a central role in a business
dispute; however, a wife would be expected
to take charge on her familys behalf if her
husband were away.

weeks. Please keep the reason for my departure a secret until I talk to you, for
those who warned me do not on any account want it known.
I spoke to your mother as I came this way, and she offered to let me stay in this
town, if you agree. She would very much like us to stay at her place, and will send
me such things as she can spare so that I can set up house until you can get a place
and things of your own to set up a household. Please let me know by the man
who brings this what you would like me to do. I would be very unhappy to live
so close to Gresham as I was until this matter is completely settled between you
and Lord Moleyns.
Barow2 told me that there was no better evidence in England than that Lord
Moleyns has for [his title to] the manor of Gresham. I told him that I supposed
the evidence was of the kind that William Hasard said yours was, and that the
seals were not yet cold.3 That, I said, was what I expected his lords evidence to
be like. I said I knew that your evidence was such that no one could have better
evidence, and the seals on it were two hundred years older than he was. Then
Barow said to me that if he came to London while you were there he would have
a drink with you, to quell any anger there was between you. He said that he only
acted as a servant, and as he was ordered to do. Purry4 will tell you about the
conversation between Barow and me when I came from Walsingham.5 I beg you
with all my heart, for reverence of God, beware of Lord Moleyns and his men,
however pleasantly they speak to you, and do not eat or drink with them; for
they are so false that they cannot be trusted. And please take care when you eat or
drink in any other mens company, for no one can be trusted. b
I beg you with all my heart that you will be kind enough to send me word how
you are, and how your affairs are going, by the man who brings this. I am very
surprised that you do not send me more news than you have done. . . .

b PRIMARY SOURCES

From Margarets
statements in lines 2336,
what can you infer that a
claimant might do to gain
property in these times?

In 1465, in still another property dispute, the Paston estate of Hellesdon was attacked
by the duke of Suffolk, who had gained the support of several local officials. Although
Margaret and John were not living at Hellesdon at the time, many of their servants
and tenants suffered from the extensive damage. In the following two letters, Margaret
tells her husband about the devastation.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

primary sources

RI 9

Possible answer: The reader can infer that


a claimant might forge documents or commit murder to gain property.

argaret to ohn I
17 October 1465
40

. . . On Tuesday morning John Botillere, also John Palmer, Darcy Arnald your
cook and William Malthouse of Aylsham were seized at Hellesdon by the bailiff

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . .


Make sure that they read the footnote
regarding the seals (lines 2526).
Discuss why Margaret cautioned John
about eating or drinking with others
(lines 3236).

2. Barow: one of Lord Moleynss men.


3. the seals . . . cold: A seal, often made by impressing a family emblem on hot wax, was placed on a document
to show its authenticity. Margaret is suggesting that Lord Moleynss documents are recent forgeries.
4. Purry: perhaps a servant or tenant of the Pastons.
5. Walsingham (wlPsGng-Em): a town near Lynn in the English county of Norfolk.

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for english language learners


Language: Pronoun Referents [mixedreadiness pairs] Because these are personal
letters, the pronoun references are careless at
times, as in they say they will carry them off
(lines 4344). Model reviewing the context
of the passage to comprehend events and
to find pronoun referents. Have students
work on this skill with more fluent partners
throughout the selection.

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2/10

50

60

70

of Eye,6 called Bottisforth, and taken to Costessey,7 and they are being kept there
still without any warrant or authority from a justice of the peace; and they say
they will carry them off to Eye prison and as many others of your men and tenants
as they can get who are friendly towards you or have supported you, and they
threaten to kill or imprison them.
The duke came to Norwich at 10 oclock on Tuesday with five hundred men
and he sent for the mayor, aldermen and sheriffs, asking them in the kings name
that they should inquire of the constables of every ward within the city which men
had been on your side or had helped or supported your men at the time of any of
these gatherings and if they could find any they should take them and arrest them
and punish them; which the mayor did, and will do anything he can for him and
his men. At this the mayor has arrested a man who was with me, called Robert
Lovegold, a brazier,8 and threatened him that he shall be hanged by the neck. So I
would be glad if you could get a writ sent down for his release, if you think it can be
done. He was only with me when Harlesdon and others attacked me at Lammas.9
He is very true and faithful to you, so I would like him to be helped. I have no one
attending me who dares to be known, except Little John. William Naunton is here
with me, but he dares not be known because he is much threatened. I am told that
the old lady and the duke have been frequently set against us by what Harlesdon,
the bailiff of Costessey, Andrews and Doget the bailiffs son and other false villains
have told them, who want this affair pursued for their own pleasure; there are evil
rumors about it in this part of the world and other places. c
As for Sir John Heveningham, Sir John Wyndefeld and other respectable men,
they have been made into their catspaws,10 which will not do their reputation any
good after this, I think. . . .
The lodge and remainder of your place was demolished on Tuesday and
Wednesday, and the duke rode on Wednesday to Drayton and then to Costessey
while the lodge at Hellesdon was being demolished. Last night at midnight
Thomas Slyford, Green, Porter and John Bottisforth the bailiff of Eye and others
got a cart and took away the featherbeds and all the stuff of ours that was left at the
parsons and Thomas Waters house for safe-keeping. I will send you lists later, as
accurately as I can, of the things we have lost. Please let me know what you want
me to do, whether you want me to stay at Caister11 or come to you in London.
I have no time to write any more. God have you in his keeping. Written at
Norwich on St. Lukes eve.12
M.P.

revisit the big question

What disturbs your sense of

SECURITY?
Discuss In lines 4046, why cant the Paston
family look to the law for security in their
property dispute with the duke of Suffolk?
Possible answer: The Pastons can find no
security in the law because the bailiff of Eye,
who represents the law, has sided with the duke
of Suffolk and is holding four of their allies
without a warrant or any judicial authority;
furthermore, other supporters of theirs are
being threatened with similar arrest.
T E X T A N A LY S I S
c

PRIMARY SOURCES
Reread lines 4763. What
methods of intimidation
does the duke of Suffolk
use against the Pastons?
What is the Pastons
recourse?

RI 9
c

primary sources
To model analyzing primary sources,
identify for students the various authority
figures the duke has won to his side. Also,
point out the menacing connotations of
arrest (line 51,) punish (line 52), threatened
(line 54), and hanged (line 54).
Possible answer: To intimidate the Pastons,
the duke of Suffolk arrives with 500 men;
he obtains cooperation in the kings name
from the mayor, aldermen, and sheriffs;
and he demands that supporters of the
Pastons be arrested and punished. The
Pastons recourse is to try to get a writ from
higher authorities for the release of Robert
Lovegold, whom the mayor has arrested
and threatened to hang.

6. bailiff of Eye: an administrative official of Eye, a town in the English county of Suffolk.
7. Costessey: an estate owned by the duke of Suffolk.
8. brazier (brAPzhEr): a person who makes articles of brass.
9. when Harlesdon . . . Lammas (lBmPEs): when Harlesdon and others of the duke of Suffolks men attacked
on Lammas, a religious feast celebrated on August 1.
10. catspaws: people who are deceived and used as tools by others; dupes.
11. Caister: one of the Paston estates.
12. St. Lukes eve: the eve of St. Lukes Day, a religious feast. The feasts of different saints were celebrated on
different days throughout the year, and writers often dated letters with the name of a saints day or eve
instead of using days and months.

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Use Word Squares to


teach these words: release (line 55), method
(line 106), commission (line 109), bond (line
123), attitude (line 171), amend (line 187),
assure (line 228).

Evaluate Tone Have students reread this letter, focusing on Margarets tone. Urge them
to think about factors that might influence
tone, including diction, sentence length, and
repeated phrases such as dares to be known/
dares not be known (lines 5859).

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Word Squares p. E10

Model the Skill:

12:05:40 PM

Have students describe Margarets tone.


Possible answer: Her tone is matter-of-fact
and dry; beneath a calm surface is an undercurrent of alarm and desperation.
Ask students whether the tone is appropriate for the occasion, too emotional, or not
emotional enough. Possible answer: Her tone
is perfect because it combines both factuality
and a sense of urgency.

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argaret to ohn I
27 October 1465

background
Lordly Estates Under the feudal system, land
that was not owned by the king was owned
by a local landowner, termed the lord of the
manor, who might be a noble (such as the
duke of Suffolk) or a wealthy commoner (such
as the Pastons). Typically, the local village
and its church, because they were situated
within the manorial estate, were part of the
landowners domain. Thus, the duke of Suffolks attack on the church and the village
houses (lines 8897) was a direct attack on
the Pastons property. To clarify how much the
estate was worth, direct attention to Margarets comment, The duke would have done
better to lose 1000 than to have caused this
to be done (lines 8182). In the 15th century,
1000 was a vast sum. Even 400 years later,
in Victorian England, it would have been a
respectable annual income for a middle-class
professionals family. Today, 1000 would
equal approximately $1,800.

80

90

100

READING SKILL

writers purpose

RI 1
RI 6

Possible answer: Margaret asks John to


have men sent from the king to assess the
damage done to their property. She further
asks that he finish his business and come
home, for she cannot collect rents, she has
to pay a lot for men to protect her, and
she is in physical danger. Most students
will conclude that she fears for her physical safety and for the future of the family
estate.

110

. . . I was at Hellesdon last Thursday and saw the place there, and indeed no one
can imagine what a horrible mess it is unless they see it. Many people come out
each day, both from Norwich and elsewhere, to look at it, and they talk of it as
a great shame. The duke would have done better to lose 100013 than to have
caused this to be done, and you have all the more goodwill from people because it
has been done so foully. And they made your tenants at Hellesdon and Drayton,
and others, help them to break down the walls of both the house and the lodge:
God knows, it was against their will, but they did not dare do otherwise for fear.
I have spoken with your tenants both at Hellesdon and Drayton, and encouraged
them as best I can.
The dukes men ransacked the church, and carried off all the goods that were
left there, both ours and the tenants, and left little behind; they stood on the
high altar and ransacked the images, and took away everything they could find.
They shut the parson out of the church until they had finished, and ransacked
everyones house in the town five or six times. The ringleaders in the thefts were
the bailiff of Eye and the bailiff of Stradbroke, Thomas Slyford. And Slyford was
the leader in robbing the church and, after the bailiff of Eye, it is he who has most
of the proceeds of the robbery. As for the lead, brass, pewter, iron, doors, gates,
and other household stuff, men from Costessey and Cawston have got it, and
what they could not carry they hacked up in the most spiteful fashion. If possible,
I would like some reputable men to be sent for from the king, to see how things
are both there and at the lodge, before any snows come, so that they can report
the truth, because otherwise it will not be so plain as it is now. For reverence of
God, finish your business now, for the expense and trouble we have each day is
horrible, and it will be like this until you have finished; and your men dare not
go around collecting your rents, while we keep here every day more than twenty
people to save ourselves and the place; for indeed, if the place had not been
strongly defended, the duke would have come here. . . . d
For the reverence of God, if any respectable and profitable method can be used
to settle your business, do not neglect it, so that we can get out of these troubles
and the great costs and expenses we have and may have in future. It is thought
here that if my lord of Norfolk would act on your behalf, and got a commission to
inquire into the riots and robberies committed on you and others in this part of
the world, then the whole county will wait on him and do as you wish, for people
love and respect him more than any other lord, except the king and my lord of
Warwick.14 . . .

L 4a

Language Coach
Oral Fluency Part of
reading fluently is
correct pronunciation. As
a plural noun meaning
profits, proceeds has
a stress on the first
syllable. As a form of
the verb proceed (go
forward), proceeds
has a stress on its
final syllable. Which
pronunciation should
you use in line 95?

d WRITERS PURPOSE

In lines 97105, what does


Margaret ask John to do,
and why?

13. 1000: a thousand pounds (British money).


14. the king . . . Warwick (wJrPGk): King Edward IV and the earl of Warwick, a figure so influential that he
was known as Warwick the Kingmaker. Warwick put his friend, the Yorkist King Edward IV, on the throne
but later turned against him and fought with the Lancastrian faction, who opposed the Yorkists in the
War of the Roses.

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for english language learners
Language Coach
Oral Fluency Answer: /prIsCdz/.

L 4a

Have students work in pairs, using both


meanings and pronunciations of proceeds
in sentences.

7:29:16
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for struggling readers


Comprehension Support Help students
break long, complex sentences into short,
simple ones, such as the sentence beginning
For reverence of God, . . . in lines 100105.
Model these strategies:
Replace all semicolons with periods.
Change commas into periods when the
commas separate independent clauses,
such as each day is horrible, and it will be
like this (lines 101102).

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8:25:00 AM

15/10

Please do let me know quickly how you are and how your affairs are going, and
let me know how your sons are. I came home late last night, and will be here until I
hear from you again. Wykes came home on Saturday, but he did not meet your sons.
God have you in his keeping and send us good news from you. Written in haste on
the eve of St. Simon and St. Jude.
By yours, M.P.

background
Daughters and Dowries During the Middle
Ages, a woman was considered the property of
either her father or her husband. Parents who
approved of their daughters marriage would
offer a dowrya payment of money and
propertyto the groom. Young men hoped to
marry wealthy women as a means of acquiring more wealth for themselves. Margerys
parents, however, disapproved of her engagement to Richard, so they would give her only a
meager dowry. By marrying Richard, therefore,
she would be surrendering her wealth and her
status as a landowners daughter.

During the 15th century, most marriages among the upper classes were arranged by
families, usually to strengthen economic or political ties. The Paston family was greatly
alarmed, therefore, when they learned that Margery, a daughter of Margaret and John
I, had secretly become engaged to the Paston bailiff Richard Calle. Eventually, the two
were married, in spite of bitter opposition from Margerys family. In the following letter
to Margerythe only piece of their correspondence to surviveRichard expresses his
feelings about their predicament. The next letter is the response of Margerys mother,
Margaret, to the situation, written to her son John II.

ichard alle to argery aston


Spring-Summer 1469
120

130

140

My own lady and mistress, and indeed my true wife before God,15 I commend
myself to you with a very sad heart as a man who cannot be cheerful and will not
be until things stand otherwise with us than they do now. This life that we lead
now pleases neither God nor the world, considering the great bond of matrimony
that is made between us, and also the great love that has been, and I trust still is,
between us, and which for my part was never greater. So I pray that Almighty
God will comfort us as soon as it pleases him, for we who ought by rights to be
most together are most apart; it seems a thousand years since I last spoke to you.
I would rather be with you than all the wealth in the world. Alas, also, good lady,
those who keep us apart like this, scarcely realize what they are doing: those who
hinder matrimony are cursed in church four times a year. It makes many men
think that they can stretch a point of conscience in other matters as well as this
one. But whatever happens, lady, bear it as you have done and be as cheerful as
you can, for be sure, lady, that God in the long run will of his righteousness help
his servants who mean to be true and want to live according to his laws. e
I realize, lady, that you have had as much sorrow on my account as any
gentlewoman has ever had in this world; I wish to God that all the sorrow you
have had had fallen on me, so that you were freed of it; for indeed, lady, it kills
me to hear that you are being treated otherwise than you should be. This is a
painful life we lead; I cannot imagine that we live like this without God being
displeased by it.

revisit the big question

What disturbs your sense of

SECURITY?
Discuss In lines 125132, in what sense is
Richard Calle feeling a lack of security? Possible answer: Richard lacks the security that
he would like to find by being with Margery as
husband and wife, in a marriage approved by
Margerys parents. It is her parents opposition
to the union that makes him so unhappy.
e

WRITERS PURPOSE
According to Richard, how
do he and Margery stand
in relation to God? How
might his words affect
Margery, and Margerys
parents, were they to
read them?

READING SKILL

7:29:16
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for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Make Connections [paired option] Encourage pairs of students to make connections to


the Paston Letters. Direct each pair to create
a Venn Diagram that compares the Pastons
world to their everyday world. Urge students
to think about how they relate to such issues
as ambition, romance, material wealth, and
health. Invite students to compare their completed diagrams.

Contrast Approaches [small-group option]


In his letter, Richard uses both logic and emotion to make his points. Have small groups
of students complete a Two-Column Chart,
such as the one begun here, to distinguish
emotional appeals and logical appeals in this
letter. As groups review the completed charts,
have them contrast the approaches, discussing which of Richards comments might have
moved Margery the most and which might
have moved her parents the most.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Venn Diagram p. A26

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133

RI 1
RI 6

Possible answer: According to Richard,


their marriage is recognized by God, who is
displeased that they are living apart. Margery might be comforted, but her parents
might be shamed or, more likely, angered,
were they to read his words.

15. my true wife before God: In the 1400s, the vow of a man and woman spoken before God, even without
a witness, was regarded as an official marriage.

the paston letters

writer's purpose

12:05:42 PM

Logic
those who hinder
matrimony are
cursed in church
(lines 129130)

Emotion
my true wife
before God
(line 120)

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Two-Column Chart p. A25

the paston letters

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Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The formality of this activity
is indicated by the serious expression on the
womans face; by the fact that she is standing
upright at a finely appointed desk, wearing formal clothes; and by the fact that she is observed
by an audience of women who seem keenly
interested in her task.
About the Art Jean Bourdichon painted this
picture of Anne de Bretagne, or Anne of Brittany (14771514). Anne was a powerful woman
in her day, governing the duchy of Brittany and
becoming the queen consort of two successive
French kings. She also was an avid patron of
the arts, including commissioning a beautifully
illuminated Book of Hours.

Analyze Visuals
In this picture, a
noblewoman writes a
letter to her husband.
What indicates the
formality of this activity?
Epistres en Vers Franois, dedicated to Anne de Bretagne (1500s). Parchment, 29.5 cm 19.5 cm. 112 pages. Anne de
Bretagne replies to her husband, fol.40 verso. Russian National Library, St. Petersburg, Russia.

150

You will want to know that I sent you a letter from London by my lad, and he
told me he could not speak to you, because so great a watch was kept on both you
and him. He told me that John Thresher came to him in your name, and said that
you had sent him to my lad for a letter or token which you thought I had sent
you; but he did not trust him and would not deliver anything to him. After that
he brought a ring, saying that you sent it to him, commanding him to deliver the
letter or token to him, which I gather since then from my lad was not sent by you,
but was a plot of my mistress [i.e., Margaret Paston] and James Gloys.16 Alas, what
do they intend? I suppose they think we are not engaged; and if this is the case I
am very surprised, for they are not being sensible, remembering how plainly I told
my mistress about everything at the beginning, and I think you have told her so
too, if you have done as you should. And if you have denied it, as I have been told
16. James Gloys: the Paston family chaplain.

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Language: Verb Tenses Point out that Richard
is writing about things that happened in the
past, things happening in the present, and
things that might happen in the future. Give
this example from line 141: You will want
to know that I sent you a letter. . . . Use a
Three-Column Journal to help students follow the sequence of events and ideas in such
passages.

134

Past
Line 141: I
sent you a
letter. . . .

Present
Line 149:
I suppose
they think
we are not
engaged. . . .

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Future
Line 141:
You will
want to
know. . . .

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Three-Column Journal p. B10

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160

170

180

you have done, it was done neither with a good conscience nor to the pleasure of
God, unless you did it for fear and to please those who were with you at the time.
If this was the reason you did it, it was justified, considering how insistently you
were called on to deny it; and you were told many untrue stories about me, which,
God knows, I was never guilty of.
My lad told me that your mother asked him if he had brought any letter to
you, and she accused him falsely of many other things; among other things, she
said to him in the end that I would not tell her about it at the beginning, but she
expected that I would at the ending. As for that, God knows that she knew about
it first from me and no one else. I do not know what my mistress means, for in
truth there is no other gentlewoman alive who I respect more than her and whom
I would be more sorry to displease, saving only yourself who by right I ought to
cherish and love best, for I am bound to do so by Gods law and will do so while
I live, whatever may come of it. I expect that if you tell them the sober truth, they
will not damn their souls for our sake. Even if I tell them the truth they will not
believe me as much as they would you. And so, good lady, for reverence of God
be plain with them and tell the truth, and if they will not agree, let it be between
them, God and the devil; and as for the peril we should be in, I pray God it may
lie on them and not on us. I am very sad and sorry when I think of their attitude.
God guide them and send them rest and peace. f
I am very surprised that they are as concerned about this affair as I gather that
they are, in view of the fact that nothing can be done about it, and that I deserve
better; from any point of view there should be no obstacles to it. Also their honor
does not depend on your marriage, but in their own marriage [i.e., John IIs]; I
pray God send them a marriage which will be to their honor, to Gods pleasure
and to their hearts ease, for otherwise it would be a great pity.
Mistress, I am frightened of writing to you, for I understand that you have
showed the letters that I have sent you before to others, but I beg you, let no one
see this letter. As soon as you have read it, burn it, for I would not want anyone to
see it. You have had nothing in writing from me for two years, and I will not send
you any more: so I leave everything to your wisdom.
Almighty Jesu preserve, keep and give you your hearts desire, which I am sure
will please God. This letter was written with as great difficulty as I ever wrote
anything in my life, for I have been very ill, and am not yet really recovered, may
God amend it.

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 149171, use these prompts to help
students explore the couples relationship
with Margerys parents:
Restate What is Richard surprised about
in lines 149157? Why? Possible answer: He
is surprised that the Pastons do not believe
that he and Margery are engaged, for he and
Margery have been honest with them.
Analyze In what way does Richard show
that he wants to be reconciled to the Pastons, despite their attempts to undermine
his relationship with Margery? Possible answer: Richard shows a conciliatory attitude in
saying that there is no other gentlewoman
alive who I respect more than her [Margaret]
and whom I would be more sorry to displease (lines 163164).

RI 1, RI 6

WRITERS PURPOSE
In order to reach
conclusions about a
writers purpose, you
must make inferences, or
reasonable assumptions
based on evidence
from the text. These
inferences can help clarify
complicated relationships
and events portrayed in
the text. Based on this
paragraph, what can you
infer about the state of
Richard and Margerys
relationship? What
is Margaret Pastons
reaction to it? What
does Richard hope to
accomplish by writing
this letter to Margery?
Explain how you reached
your conclusions.

Synthesize What might Margerys motives


be (1) if she remained loyal to Richard or (2)
if she spurned him and obeyed her parents?
Possible answer: (1) Love for Richard and/or
a desire for independence from her parents
might motivate Margery to remain loyal to
Richard. (2) Fear of her parents or a belief
that she and Richard are not meant to be
might motivate her to spurn him.
READING SKILL

argaret to her oldest son, ohn II


10 September 1469
190

the paston letters

135

for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Comprehension Support Help students fill


out a Sequence Chain to grasp the somewhat confusing series of conflicts concerning
Richards letter from London, first mentioned
in line 120.

Evaluate Character Invite students to discuss


their impressions of Richard Calle, based on
the text of his letter. Is he a romantic, truly in
love with Margery? Is he merely a schemer,
hoping to gain entry into the prominent
Paston family? Is he a bit of both? Allow
students to speculate while grounding their
ideas in textual evidence.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Review with students the bulleted list


of clues to the writers purpose on page
127. Have them refer to these clues
when determining the purpose of the
letter writer.

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Possible answer: Inferences can be made


here on the basis of Richard's recounting
of Margaret's dealings with his messenger
boy and Richard's request to Margery that
she tell her mother the truth. Richard and
Margery are constrained by the ongoing
friction with her family about their relationship. Margaret Paston does not favor
the marriage and does not trust Richard.
Richard hopes Margery will tell her mother
the truth about their relationship and feels
the news is better coming from Margery
than from him.

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RI 1
RI 6

writers purpose

. . . When I heard how she [Margery] had behaved, I ordered my servants that she
was not to be allowed in my house. I had warned her, and she might have taken
heed if she had been well-disposed. I sent messages to one or two others that they

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Model the Skill:

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tiered discussion prompts


In lines 188206, use these prompts to help
students comprehend and interpret the key
points of this letter:
Summarize What news is Margaret giving
John II? Possible answer: Margaret is telling
her son that Margery came back but that
Margaret denied her daughter admission to
the house; instead, Margery has been sent to
stay at Roger Bests lodgings.

200

Interpret What is Margarets tone in this


letter? Possible answer: The tone is angry,
defensive, and self-righteous.

should not let her in if she came. She was brought back to my house to be let in,
and James Gloys told those who brought her that I had ordered them all that she
should not be allowed in. So my lord of Norwich has lodged her at Roger Bests,
to stay there until the day in question; God knows it is much against his will and
his wifes, but they dare not do otherwise. I am sorry that they are burdened with
her, but I am better off with her there than somewhere else, because he and his
wife are sober and well-disposed to us, and she will not be allowed to play the
good-for-nothing there. g
Please do not take all this too hard, because I know that it is a matter close to
your heart, as it is to mine and other peoples; but remember, as I do, that we have
only lost a good-for-nothing in her, and take it less to heart: if she had been any
good, whatever might have happened, things would not have been as they are, for
even if he17 were dead now, she would never be as close to me as she was. . . . You
can be sure that she will regret her foolishness afterwards, and I pray to God that
she does. Please, for my sake, be cheerful about all this. I trust that God will help
us; may he do so in all our affairs.

argaret to ohn II
28 October 1470

T E X T A N A LY S I S

primary sources

RI 9

Possible answer: It seems that total obedience is expected of a daughter and that
continued disobedience is punished by
expulsion from the home.
Extend the Discussion In what ways might
parents in the United States today handle
a situation such as Margerys unfavorable
marriage? Which way of handling things
seems better, and why?

210

. . . Unless you pay more attention to your expenses, you will bring great shame
on yourself and your friends, and impoverish them so that none of us will be able
to help each other, to the great encouragement of our enemies.
Those who claim to be your friends in this part of the world realize in what
great danger and need you stand, both from various of your friends and from
your enemies. It is rumored that I have parted with so much to you that I cannot
help either you or any of my friends, which is no honor to us and causes people
to esteem us less. At the moment it means that I must disperse my household and
lodge somewhere, which I would be very loath to do if I were free to choose. It has
caused a great deal of talk in this town and I would not have needed to do it if I
had held back when I could. So for Gods sake pay attention and be careful from
now on, for I have handed over to you both my own property and your fathers,
and have held nothing back, either for myself or for his sake. . . . h

writers purpose

RI 1
RI 6

Possible answer: Margaret writes because


she wants her son to stop spending so much
money. The complaints may be accurate,
but her description of them may be
exaggerated.

136

Infer Margarets reasons


for writing this letter.
What rumors does she
hope to dispel and why?

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary: Related Vocabulary The italicized text on this page introduces the final
three letters. Teach these related words,
which signal the letters content:

Hypothesize Point out that editors were


responsible for choosing the letters that
appear in this grouping. Have students
discuss what they think are the organizing principles for the grouping. Ask them
to identify similarities and differences from
letter to letter. Also have them suggest the
overall view of the Paston family and of the
Middle Ages that the grouping as a whole
conveys.

struggles, fights to succeed


difficulties, situations that result in trouble
and/or embarrassment
ravages, very bad effects
hardships, conditions that are hard to bear

136

h WRITERS PURPOSE

17. he: Richard Calle.

READING SKILL

Reread lines 188198.


What behavior seems
expected of a daughter?
How is disobedience
punished?

Although the Pastons were considered wealthy, they faced continual struggles. They even
experienced occasional financial difficulties, particularly after the death of John I in
1466. John II, though frequently in London to deal with family legal matters, seems at
times to have paid more attention to his own interests. The Pastons were also affected
by the ravages of warfare and disease. The following three letters deal with some of
their hardships.

Synthesize In 1469, how would Margarets


actions have seemed to most people? How
would her actions seem today? Possible
answer: In 1469, Margaret would have
seemed within her rights as a parent; today,
however, she would seem cruel to shut out
her daughter.

g PRIMARY SOURCES

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ohn II to argaret
April 1471
220

additional teaching
opportunity

Mother, I commend myself to you and let you know, blessed be God, my brother
John is alive and well, and in no danger of dying. Nevertheless he is badly hurt
by an arrow in his right arm below the elbow, and I have sent a surgeon to him,
who has dressed the wound; and he tells me that he hopes he will be healed within
a very short time. John Mylsent is dead. God have mercy on his soul; William
Mylsent is alive and all his other servants seem to have escaped.18 . . .

Credibility of Primary Sources Remind students that when evaluating the credibility of
information in a primary source, they should
always consider an authors purpose for
writing and how these purposes could have
affected the information. For example, in lines
207219, Margaret Paston might well have
exaggerated the direness of her predicament
in her 28 October 1470 letter to John II if she
was strongly motivated to get him to stop
spending money. In contrast, in lines 226237,
John IIs letter to John III is likely credible since
he had no apparent ulterior reason for altering
the information.

ohn II to ohn III


15 September 1471

230

. . . Please send me word if any of our friends or well-wishers are dead, for I
fear that there is great mortality in Norwich and in other boroughs and towns
in Norfolk: I assure you that it is the most widespread plague I ever knew of in
England, for by my faith I cannot hear of pilgrims going through the country
nor of any other man who rides or goes anywhere, that any town or borough in
England is free from the sickness. May God put an end to it, when it please him.
So, for Gods sake, get my mother to take care of my younger brothers and see that
they are not anywhere where the sickness is prevalent, and that they do not amuse
themselves with other young people who go where the sickness is. If anyone has
died of the sickness, or is infected with it, in Norwich, for Gods sake let her send
them to some friend of hers in the country; I would advise you to do the same. I
would rather my mother moved her household into the country. . . .  i

PRIMARY SOURCES
In this letter, what do you
learn about the plague
and what people do to
avoid being stricken?

You might also remind students that when


scholars are in doubt as to the credibility of
information, they often look for corroboration
of facts among other documents from the
time. Discuss the kinds of documents scholars
might seek out to corroborate the information
in the Pastons various letters.
T E X T A N A LY S I S

RI 9
i

primary sources

Possible answer: The reader learns that


the plague is both deadly and widespread.
People try to avoid being stricken by not
going to places where it has struck and by
moving to the country.

selection wrap-up
18. my brother John . . . escaped: John II is describing the Battle of Barnet in the War of the Roses. The
Pastons fought with the Lancastrian faction, which King Edward IVs Yorkist faction defeated.

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137

READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students


have read The Paston Letters, ask them to consider how the concerns of families in the 15th
the paston letters
137
century are similar to and different than the
concerns of families today. Possible answer:
11/22/10
12:05:51 PMThough families today may spend less time
resolving civil disputes, they continue to face
interpersonal conflicts among their members.

for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Develop Reading Fluency Model for students


how to read an excerpt from one of the last
three letters using appropriate expression
based on the content and punctuation of
the letter. Invite students to work in pairs or
small groups to practice reading these letters
to one another with correct expression. Then,
ask students to discuss how the expression
demonstrated by fluent readers enhances the
listeners' understanding of the letters.

Analysis Frame Have students work with


Analysis Frame: Literary Nonfiction to
generate more ideas about the letters. Urge
students to share their insights in class
discussion or in writing about the letters.
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITCopy Masters

Analysis Frame: Literary Nonfiction


pp. D21, D48, D49

CRITIQUE Have students compare and


contrast the styles and personalities of the
individual writers. After completing the After
Reading questions on page 138, have students
revisit their responses and tell whether they
have changed their opinions.
INDEPENDENT READING
Students may also enjoy reading Joan of Arc,
by Mark Twain.

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
For preliminary support of post-reading questions, use these copy masters:

1. Recall What occurred at the Paston family estate of Hellesdon in October 1465?
2. Clarify Why does Margaret Paston consider her daughter Margery a
good-for-nothing?

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

3. Summarize Briefly summarize Margarets message to John II in her letter


of 28 October 1470.

Reading Check p. 113


Primary Sources p. 109
Question Support p. 114
Additional selection questions are provided for teachers on page 103.

answers

Text Analysis
4. Understand Writers Purpose Review the chart you made as you read.
Describe each letter writers purpose on the basis of your inferences. Defend
your conclusions with evidence from the text.
5. Draw Conclusions What conclusions did you draw about each letter writers
personality? In a chart, provide an appropriate adjective to describe each
person. Support your descriptions with evidence from the letters.

RI 1, RI 6, RI 9, L 3

1. The duke of Suffolk sent men to arrest and


threaten people loyal to the Pastons and to
ransack the Paston property.

Family Member

Evidence

Richard Calle
John II

3. Stop spending so much. I have had to move


because of your spending.

6. Analyze Primary Sources What do you learn from these letters about life
in 15th-century England? Comment on what they tell you about the role
property and family played in peoples lives at that time.

Possible answers:

7. Analyze Style These letters have been translated from Middle English into
Modern English, but care was taken to preserve features of their original
style. What do you notice about the language used in the letters? Does the
language seem suited to the context? Explain.

common core focus Understand


Writer's Purpose Purposes and clues will
vary.

5. Margaret: capableshe defends herself.


Richard Calle: put-uponMargaret plots
against him; he is frustrated with Margery.
John II: irresponsiblehis spending has
diminished the family fortune.
6.

Description

Margaret

2. Margery married below her station without


her parents consent.

4.

RI 1 Cite evidence to support


inferences drawn from the
text. RI 6 Determine an authors
purpose in a text, analyzing how
content contributes to the power,
persuasiveness, or beauty of the
text. RI 9 Analyze documents of
historical and literary significance
for their themes, purposes, and
rhetorical features. L 3 Apply
knowledge of language to
understand how language
functions in different contexts.

Text Criticism
8. Critical Interpretations Critics have commented that the Paston letters
should be read for their historical value, not their literary value. Do you
agree? Explain why the letters are or are not literature.

common core focus Primary Sources These letters suggest that questions of
property ownership and family relations
were of utmost importance to people in
15th-century England.

What disturbs your sense of

security?

What are some of the negative results that might occur if you become overly
concerned with losing your sense of security? Include specific examples to
illustrate your point.

138

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

Assess and Reteach


7. The language and138style are formal. Possible
answer to second question: While this period
of time was one of disorder, people used formal language when speaking and writing,
so the language seems suited to the context.

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Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Selection Tests A, B/C pp. 4546, 4748

Reteach
Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com
Reteaching Worksheets on thinkcentral.com:
Reading Lesson 3: Determining Authors
Purpose
Study Skills Lesson 5: Using Primary and
Secondary Sources

138

8. Agree: The letters are not literature because


they are written for a practical purpose.
Disagree: They are literature because the
writing is deeply felt.

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What disturbs your sense of

SECURITY?
Possible answer: Being overly concerned
about losing your sense of security
could cause you to become isolated and
unrealistically fearful. For example, you
might refuse to travel on airplanes for
fear of imagined security threats.

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Wrap-Up: Reflections of Common Life

Literature and the Common Life


By reading autobiographies, such as Margery Kempes, and letters,
such as Margaret Pastons, a reader can learn more intimately about
what life was like during the writers time: in this case, the Middle
Ages. Nonfiction writing brings the lives of its authors to life in the
readers imagination.

Writing to Compare
Comparing two people, places, or things can help you reach a
greater understanding about both of them. Write a comparison
of two of the major figures in the nonfiction selections in the
Reflections of Common Life section, using a chart like the one
below to help you organize your thoughts. Then, select three
of the categories from your chart. What major similarities or
differences do you notice about the two figures based on these
categories? What generalizations can you make about what
their lives might have been like in the Middle Ages based on
these similarities or differences? Include evidence from the two
texts to support your analysis. Organize your essay by category
to build toward your generalization.
Name #1

Name #2

Occupation/Role
Socioeconomic Status

Extension
SPEAKING & LISTENING
Imagine a meeting between
Margery Kempe and Margaret
Paston. What might the two
women discuss? With a partner,
brainstorm some of the topics
you think would come up in a
conversation between the two.
Then choose roles and role-play
their conversation for the class.
You might focus on one topic,
such as family relationships, for
your performance.

W 2a Organize ideas and information so that


each element builds on that which precedes it.
W 2b Develop the topic by selecting facts, concrete
details, quotations, or other information and
examples. W 9 Draw evidence from texts to
support analysis. SL 1a Draw on preparation by
referring to evidence from texts to stimulate a
thoughtful exchange of ideas. SL 1b Work with
peers to set clear goals and establish individual
roles.

Wrap-Up: Reflections of
Common Life
W 2ab Organize ideas and information so that
each element builds on that which precedes it;
develop the topic by selecting facts, concrete
details, quotations, or other information and
examples. W 9 Draw evidence from texts to
support analysis. SL 1ab Draw on preparation
by referring to evidence from texts to stimulate
a thoughtful exchange of ideas; work with peers
to set clear goals and establish individual roles.

Family Relationships
Hardships/Concerns
Joys/Rewards

This Wrap-Up provides students with an opportunity to compare and contrast writers of
medieval England in order to develop a general
understanding of that time and place. Have
students begin by reviewing the writings that
they have read by each author. Use discussion
to remind all students of the major characteristics of each authors life and writing.

Writing to
Compare

Role of Religion in
Life

Have students work in small groups to complete the chart. Instruct them to brainstorm
answers, one row of the chart at a time.
Have each group arrive at a consensus about
points to record, with a group secretary noting the agreed-upon points. To compare and
contrast the characters, encourage lively discussion and allow students to write several
generalizations.
139

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differentiated instruction

12/15/10

Urge students to draw from these charts


as they write their analyses, considering
similarities and differences that they can
support.
7:29:25 PM

Extension
for struggling writers
Comprehension Support
Make sure that students understand the
headings on the chart. Go through the
headings from top to bottom and ask
volunteers at any level of proficiency to
provide brief explanations of each one. For
example, Socioeconomic Status might be
explained as a persons position in society,
having to do with his or her wealth and
social class.

Have students work in groups of mixed


proficiency to complete the chart. To help
students compare and contrast their chosen
nonfiction authors, encourage them to
pause after each line is filled out and state
whether the two authors were mostly alike
or mostly different.

Suggest that students choose a topic from


the headings that run down the left-hand
side of the chart on this page.
Encourage students to return to the two
relevant texts and search for stated or
implied details about the topic.
Have students rehearse their conversations
before performing.

wr apup

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Text
Analysis
Workshop
RL 3 Analyze the impact of the authors choices
regarding how to develop and relate elements of
a story. RL 6 Analyze a case in which grasping
a point of view requires distinguishing what is
directly stated in a text from what is really meant
(e.g., irony). RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of
foundational works of literature, including how two
or more texts from the same period treat similar
themes or topics.

The Medieval Reader


Types of Narratives Help students to create a
chart that distinguishes among the medieval
narratives and contains examples of each
from the unit. Review the characteristics of
each one.

Imagine you are living in London, England, in the year 1398, and you are similar to the
type of person you are now: a student reading and learning about literature. What
would you be reading? As an educated person in the 14th century, what might be
of interest to you?

The Medieval Reader


Included in this workshop:
RL 3 Analyze the impact of the
authors choices regarding how
to develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 6 Analyze a case in
which grasping a point of view
requires distinguishing what is
directly stated in a text from what
is really meant (e.g., irony).
RL 9 Demonstrate knowledge of
foundational works of literature,
including how two or more texts
from the same period treat similar
themes or topics.

ballad: a type of narrative poem that tells a


story and has a regular pattern of rhythm
and rhyme (Barbara Allan, Robin Hood
and the Three Squires, Get Up and Bar
the Door)

By the end of the 14th century,


a typical Londoner who could
read would have been interested
in narrativesa type of writing
that relates a series of events
written in verse. Typical medieval
narratives included ballads,
romances, allegories, and moral
tales. Most of them were religious
in theme, but many others were
Detail of Lydgate and the Canterbury Pilgrims
concerned with love, exemplary
leaving Canterbury (1520)
life and behavior, and political
and societal issues. Although comedy and humor are not something we often
associate with the Middle Ages, the medieval mind had a sophisticated sense
of irony and a taste for comic narratives, which were, in fact, common.
Between 1350 and 1400, a large body of narrative works was produced in
England. These were written in Middle English, a language that had developed
and replaced the use of French, which had been the predominant language
of educated people in Britain. Literacy had become more common, and books
were more widely available, although they were still copied by hand; thus,
educated citizens had access to more literary works. Popular narratives of
the time included Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (page 230) and the King
Arthur romance (page 248), with their themes of chivalry, love, and religious
devotion; William Langlands Piers Plowman (page 124), an allegory that
exposed the corruption of church, state, and society; and Geoffrey Chaucers
groundbreaking work, The Canterbury Tales (page 144). It was Chaucer, with his
sense of humor, style, and realistic characterizations, who overshadowed his
peers and became known to subsequent generations as one of the greatest
poets in the history of English literature.

medieval romance: an adventure tale with


extravagant characters, exotic places, heroic
events, passionate love, and supernatural
forces (Sir Gawain and the Green Knight,
King Arthur legends)
allegory: a narrative in which every character
and event is a symbol that represents an
idea, religious principle, or moral (Piers
Plowman)

Characteristics of Chaucers Style


Chaucer had no illusions about humanity, and yet his works show a compassion
and fondness for human nature with all its faults and idiosyncrasies. Though
The Canterbury Tales went unfinished, it is the work that best exhibits his
unique style, which encompasses a variety of traits.

moral tale: a narrative that illustrates a moral


lesson, such as a fable or an exemplum (The
Pardoners Tale)
Point out that Chaucers The Canterbury
Tales contains nearly every type of medieval
narrative, including romance, allegory, and
moral tale.

Medieval Narratives

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differentiated instruction

Characteristics of
Chaucers Style
Poetic Narrative Point out to students that
The Canterbury Tales is a narrative poem.
Consequently, it contains story elements as
well as poetic elements.

for struggling readers

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Note Taking For students who are unfamiliar with medieval narratives or need help
with note taking, hand out the copy master
at the start of the workshop. Explain to students that they will be learning many terms
in this workshop related to medieval narratives and Chaucers style. Discuss the terms
on this spread, as students record notes on
the copy master.

Note Taking p. 115

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chaucers frame story


Imagery and Figurative Language Chaucer uses sparse
but vivid imagery and figurative language to describe his
characters physical appearance, as in his depiction of the
Summoner: His face on fire, like a cherubin, / For he had
carbuncles.
Irony The contrast between expectation and reality is
known as irony. The ironist seems to be writing with
tongue in cheek, and Chaucer is a master of it. While calling
attention to his characters faults, he also emphasizes
their essential humanity. This gives his writing a tone of
detachment and compassion. Note the irony he uses in his
description of the Doctor, one of the pilgrims described in
The Prologue to The Canterbury Tales.

Yet he was rather close as to expenses


And kept the gold he won in pestilences.
Gold stimulates the heart, or so were told.
He therefore had a special love of gold.
from The Prologue

Characterization A writer develops characters by describing


their physical appearance, making direct statements about
them, and allowing them to express their personalities
through dialogue. In The Canterbury Tales, each of Chaucers
characters is also clearly differentiated by the type of story
he or she tells and the voice in which each tale is told.
Compare these two passages, the first narrated by the
Pardoner, and the second narrated by the Wife of Bath.

Imagery and Figurative Language Remind


students that poets use words in imaginative
ways, often expressing ideas that are not literally true. The Summoners face, for example,
is obviously not on fire. Ask them what this
metaphor means. Possible answer: His face is
bright red because of the carbuncles, or sores.
The frame story is a literary device that joins
together one or more stories within a larger
story, or frame. Frame stories have been
used throughout the world and date back to
antiquity. The Panchatantra, a collection of
Sanskrit fables gathered around 200 b.c., is
an ancient Indian example of a frame story.
Giovanni Boccaccios Decameron (page 208)
is a well-known Italian frame story in which
a collection of stories are told by different
characters.
The Canterbury Tales is one of the most
famous examples of the frame story. In
his innovative use of the device, Chaucer
interwove the frame with the tales. The
plot of the frame involves pilgrims on a
pilgrimage who are challenged to compete
in telling the best tale. Chaucer reveals the
pilgrims personalities not only through their
interactions between tales but also by the
tales they tell. As a result, the frame itself
acts as a long and engaging narrative whole.

Its of three rioters I have to tell


Who, long before the morning service bell,
Were sitting in a tavern for a drink.

Irony Review with students the three kinds


of irony: Verbal irony occurs when someone
states one thing and means another. Situational irony is a contrast between what is expected to happen and what actually happens.
In dramatic irony, the readers know more
than the character or characters do. Ask them
what kind of irony Chaucer uses in the excerpt
about the Doctor. (verbal irony)
Characterization Make sure that students
understand that Chaucers fame derives in
part from his ability to match each pilgrim
with his or her tale, as if no other character
could have told that story.
Close Read
Possible answer: The Doctor seems to place
money above helping people; the Pardoner
seems directed outward, with an interest in
violence and drinking; the Wife of Bath seems
introspective, ironic, and self-effacing.

from The Pardoners Tale

chaucers frame story


Close Read

Others assert we women find it sweet


When we are thought dependable, discreet
And secret, firm of purpose and controlled,
Never betraying things that we are told.
from The Wife of Baths Tale

Point out to students that Chaucers matching


of story and character allows him to achieve
deeper characterization of his pilgrims and
to create additional levels of irony within
each story.

On the basis of these


excerpts, how would you
characterize the narrator
of each tale?

text analysis workshop

7:29:35
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141

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for english language learners


Language: Skill Words Help students use
context and prior knowledge to determine
the meanings of these boldface words:
narrative, writing that tells of an event or
a series of events
figurative language, language that
communicates ideas beyond the literal
meanings of words
characterization, the techniques that
writers use to develop characters

7:29:42 PM

frame story, a framework or structure for


telling several stories within a story

for advanced learners/ap


Character Sketch Encourage students to
create a character sketch of one of Chaucers
pilgrims mentioned on this page, speculating
on what the character is like. Have them
give reasons for their analysis. Ask them to
keep their sketches for comparison after
they read The Canterbury Tales.

text analysis workshop

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8:16:13 AM

The Age of Chaucer

Focus and Motivate


RL 1 Cite textual evidence to
support analysis of what the
text says explicitly. RL 3 Analyze
the impact of the authors
choices regarding how to
develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 4 Analyze the
impact of specific word choices
on tone. RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature.

RL 1 Cite textual evidence to support analysis of


what the text says explicitly. RL 3 Analyze the
impact of the authors choices regarding how to
develop and relate elements of a story.
RL 4 Analyze the impact of specific word choices on
tone. RL 10 Read and comprehend literature.
L 4 Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown
words. L 5 Demonstrate understanding of
descriptive details. L 6 Acquire and use accurately
general academic and domain-specific words.

did you know?

about the author

held various jobs,


including royal
messenger, justice of the
peace, and forester.

Encourage students to consider why Chaucer


chose to write The Canterbury Tales in
Englishthe language of Englands common
folkrather than in French or Latin.

The Prologue
from The Canterbury Tales

was captured and


held for ransom while
fighting for England in
the Hundred Years War.

portrayed himself as a
foolish character in a
number of works.

notable quote
Full wise is he that can himself know.
Geoffrey Chaucer
Invite students to speculate what the quote
suggests about Geoffrey Chaucer as a critic
of human nature. Possible answer: Chaucer
probably takes an honest view of his characters
weaknesses and hypocrisy.

ecos

Poem by Geoffrey Chaucer Translated by Nevill Coghill


VIDEO TRAILER

KEYWORD: HML12-142A

Meet the Author

Geoffrey Chaucer
Geoffrey Chaucer . . .

Essential Course
of Study

1340?1400

Geoffrey Chaucer made an enormous


mark on the language and literature of
England. Writing in an age when French
was widely spoken in educated circles,
Chaucer was among the first writers to
show that English could be a respectable
literary language. Today, his work is
considered a cornerstone of English
literature.
Befriended by Royalty Chaucer was

born sometime between 1340 and 1343,


probably in London, in an era when
expanding commerce was helping to
bring about growth in villages and cities.
His family, though not noble, was well
off, and his parents were able to place
him in the household of the wife of
Prince Lionel, a son of King Edward
III, where he served as an attendant.
Such a position was a vital means of
advancement; the young Chaucer learned
the customs of
o upper-class life and
came into contact
with influential
co
people. It may
m have been during this
period that Chaucer met Lionels
younger bbrother, John of Gaunt,
would become Chaucers
who w
lifelong patron and a leading
life
political figure of the day.
po
A Knight
K
and a
W
Writer Although

Chaucer
wrote his first
C

important work around 1370, writing


was always a sideline; his primary career
was in diplomacy. During Richard IIs
troubled reign (1377 to 1399), Chaucer
was appointed a member of Parliament
and knight of the shire. When Richard
II was overthrown in 1399 by Henry
Bolingbroke (who became King Henry
IV), Chaucer managed to retain his
political position, as Henry was the son of
John of Gaunt.
Despite the turmoil of the 1380s and
1390s, the last two decades of Chaucers
life saw his finest literary achievements
the brilliant verse romance Troilus
and Criseyde and his masterpiece, The
Canterbury Tales, a collection of verse and
prose tales of many different kinds. At the
time of his death, Chaucer had penned
nearly 20,000 lines of The Canterbury
Tales, but many more tales were planned.
Uncommon Honor When he died in

1400, Chaucer was accorded a rare honor


for a commonerburial in Londons
Westminster Abbey. In 1556, an admirer
erected an elaborate marble monument
to his memory. This was the beginning of
the Abbeys famous Poets Corner, where
many of Englands most distinguished
writers have since been buried.

Author Online
Go to thinkcentral.com. KEYWORD: HML12-142B

Selection Resources
NA_L12PE-u01s31-brProlog.indd

See resources on the Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM and on thinkcentral.com.

RESOURCE MANAGER UNIT 1

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKIT

Plan and Teach, pp. 117124


Summary, pp. 125126*
Text Analysis and Reading
Skill, pp. 127130*
Vocabulary, pp. 131133*

New Word Analysis, p. E8


Character Traits Web, p. D7
Classification Chart, p. B17
INTERACTIVE READER
ADAPTED INTERACTIVE READER

DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION


TESTS
Selection Tests, pp. 4952

* Resources for Differentiation

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142

ELL ADAPTED INTERACTIVE


READER

Also in Spanish

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Video Trailer
TECHNOLOGY
Teacher One Stop DVD-ROM
Student One Stop DVD-ROM
PowerNotes DVD-ROM
Audio Anthology CD
GrammarNotes DVD-ROM
ExamView Test Generator
on the Teacher One Stop

12:14:35
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Go to thinkcentral.com to preview
the Video Trailer introducing this
selection. Other features that support
the selection include
PowerNotes presentation
ThinkAloud models to enhance
comprehension
WordSharp vocabulary tutorials
interactive writing and grammar
instruction

In Haitian Creole and Vietnamese

1/3/11

8:02:49 AM

2/10

Teach

text analysis: characterization


Characterization refers to the techniques a writer uses to develop
characters. In The Prologue, the introduction to The Canterbury
Tales, Chaucer offers a vivid portrait of English society during the
Middle Ages. Among his 30 characters are clergy, aristocrats, and
commoners. Chaucer employs a dramatic structure similar to
Boccaccios The Decameroneach pilgrim tells a tale. Some of
the ways Chaucer characterizes the pilgrims include
description of a characters appearance
examples of a characters speech, thoughts, and actions
the responses of others to a character
the narrators direct, or explicit, comments about a character
As you read, look for details that reveal the character traits,
or consistent qualities, of each pilgrim.

reading strategy: paraphrase


Reading medieval texts, such as The Canterbury Tales, can be
challenging because they often contain unfamiliar words
and complex sentences. One way that you can make sense
of Chaucers work is to paraphrase, or restate information in
your own words. A paraphrase is usually the same length as
the original text but contains simpler language. As you read,
paraphrase difficult passages. Here is an example.
Chaucers Words

Paraphrase

When in April the sweet showers


fall/And pierce the drought of
March to the root, . . . (lines 12)

When the April rains come and end


the dryness of March, . . .

What makes
a great

What makes a great

character?
Creating a great character requires
a sharp eye for detail, a keen
understanding of people, and a brilliant
imaginationall of which Chaucer
possessed. Chaucer populated The
Canterbury Tales with a colorful cast of
characters whose virtues and flaws ring
true even today, hundreds of years later.

CHARACTER?
Introduce the question and invite each
student to name a favorite character from
a novel or short story. What draws them to
each character? Then read the paragraph that
follows and have partners complete the QUICK
WRITE activity.

QUICKWRITE Work with a partner


to invent a character. Start with
an intriguing name. Then come up
with questions that will reveal basic
information about the character, such
as his or her age, physical appearance,
family and friends, job, home, and
personal tastes. Brainstorm possible
answers for the questions. Then circle
the responses that have the best
potential for making a lively character.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

Model the Skill:

characterization
Model for students how to learn about
Chaucer from his actions, based on the
biography on the previous page. Explain
that the biography shows that he was
capable, multitalented, and creative.
GUIDED PRACTICE Ask students what they
can tell about Chaucer from the way his
countrymen treated him at his death.

Name: Bartholomew
Throckmorton

vocabulary in context
The following boldfaced words are critical to understanding
Chaucers literary masterpiece. Try to figure out the meaning
of each word from its context.
1. The refined gentleman always behaved with courtliness.
2. She remained calm and sedately finished her meal.
3. The popular politician was charming and personable.
4. When you save money in a bank, interest will accrue.

1. What is his occupation?


duke
squire to a knight
sea captain
town doctor
grave digger
2. Where does he live?
3.
4.
5.

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

RL 10

Model the Skill:

paraphrase
Write this example on the board:
The thoughtless lass her mother did
distress,
For her extravagance and utter laziness.

5. Does she suffer from heart disease or another malady?


6. She made an entreaty to the king, asking for a pardon.
Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

Model for students how to paraphrase this


example by restating it as follows:
the canterbury tales

12:14:35
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V O C A B 143
ULARY SKILL

vocabulary in context
DIAGNOSE WORD KNOWLEDGE Have all
students complete Vocabulary in Context.
Check their definitions against the following.
accrue (E-krLP) v. to be added or gained; to
accumulate
courtliness (krtPlC-nGs) n. polite, elegant
manners; refined behavior
entreaty (Dn-trCPtC) n. a serious request or plea
malady (mBlPE-dC) n. a disease or disorder; an
ailment

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L4

personable (prPsE-nE-bEl) adj.


pleasing in behavior and appearance
sedately (sG-dAtPlC) adj. in a composed, dignified
manner; calmly

12:14:48 PM

The inconsiderate girl worried her mother


because the girl was lazy and spent too
much money.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Paraphrase p. 129 (for student use


while reading the selection)

PRETEACH VOCABULARY Preteach vocabulary


with this copy master. Read each item aloud.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Study p. 131

the canterbury tales

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RL 1
RL 3

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Practice and Apply


summary
In this narrative poem, 30 pilgrims traveling to
the shrine at Canterbury agree to go together
and tell stories on the way. In The Prologue,
the narrator introduces each member of the
groupa sampling of 14th-century farmers
and townsfolk, laity and clergy, saints and
sinners.

he canterbury tales

Geoffrey Chaucer

The

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading.
Tell them to read The Prologue to learn
about the characters that will narrate
The Canterbury Tales.

background In The Prologue of The Canterbury Tales, a


group gathers at the Tabard Inn in Southwark, a town just south
of London, to make a pilgrimage to the shrine of Saint Thomas
Becket at Canterbury. At the suggestion of the innkeeper, the group
decides to hold a storytelling competition to pass the time as they
travel. The Prologue introduces the sundry folk who will tell the
stories and is followed by the tales themselves24 in all.

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

RL 10

paraphrase

Possible answer: Paraphrase: When Aprils


showers end Marchs drought, and vital rain
bathes the plants roots; when the wind
blows through every woodland and plain
on sprouting plants; and the spring sun
moves into the sign of the Ram; and young
birds singbirds that have hardly slept, as
they are so invigorated; at that time, people
journey to religious shrines; these pilgrims
long to visit the unfamiliar grounds of longgone saints, revered in many places; and
especially from every county of England,
they go down to Canterbury to visit the
shrine of St. Thomas Becket, who helped
them when they were sick.
The improved weather in April inspires
them to leave their homes and undertake a
pilgrimage.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Paraphrase
the passage line by line with them, continuing the chart that appears on the
previous page.
Chaucers Words
. . . and all / The
veins are bathed
in liquor of such
power . . .
(lines 23)

144

Paraphrase
. . . and vital rain
water bathes the
plants roots . . .

prologue

10

15

When in April the sweet showers fall


And pierce the drought of March to the root, and all
The veins are bathed in liquor of such power
As brings about the engendering of the flower,
When also Zephyrus with his sweet breath
Exhales an air in every grove and heath
Upon the tender shoots, and the young sun
His half-course in the sign of the Ram has run,
And the small fowl are making melody
That sleep away the night with open eye
(So nature pricks them and their heart engages)
Then people long to go on pilgrimages
And palmers long to seek the stranger strands
Of far-off saints, hallowed in sundry lands,
And specially, from every shires end
Of England, down to Canterbury they wend
To seek the holy blissful martyr, quick
To give his help to them when they were sick. a

5 Zephyrus (zDfPEr-Es): the Greek god


of the west wind.

8 the Ram: Ariesthe first sign of


the zodiac. The time is mid-April.

13 palmers: people journeying to


religious shrines; pilgrims; strands:
shores.
14 sundry (sOnPdrC): various.
15 shires: countys.
17 martyr: St. Thomas Becket.

a PARAPHRASE

20

144

It happened in that season that one day


In Southwark, at The Tabard, as I lay

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

NA_L12PE-u01s31-Prolog.indd

Restate lines 118. Why does


the group make its pilgrimage
in April?
Illustrations by Teresa Fasolino.

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for struggling readers

Vocabulary Support Use New Word Analysis


to teach these words: seek (line 13), style (line
108), text (line 181), undertake (line 298), draft
(line 335), legal (line 595), notion (line 797).

Have students listen to the Audio Anthology


CD for this selection. Encourage struggling
readers to model their own reading on that
featured in this resource. Direct them to pay
particular attention to the pacing and expression demonstrated by the reader.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

New Word Analysis p. E8

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2/10

Reading Support
This selection on thinkcentral.com includes
embedded ThinkAloud modelsstudents
thinking aloud about the story to model the
kinds of questions a good reader would ask
about a selection.

background
The Pilgrims World No wonder Chaucers
pilgrims gratefully welcomed spring and traveled to thank St. Thomas Becket for rescuing
them from sickness. Winter in 14th-century
England was especially dark, cold, and brutal.
The earths climate was going through a long,
cold period, which has been dubbed the Little
Ice Age. The only heat or light available came
from the sun, the moon, or fire. The Black
Death (13471349) was a recent memory and
a constant worry. There were outbreaks in
1369, 13741375, 1379, and 1390. Medicine was
primitive, and superstition was widespread.
England lost about 40 percent of its population during that century. Food shortages,
which caused hunger and malnutrition,
contributed to the general misery. So, too,
did the Hundred Years War with France and
the Peasants Revolt (1381). The pilgrims had
good cause to hope that their prayers to St.
Thomas might allay some of their suffering.

Analyze Visuals
Activity Compare the picture with the opening to Chaucers Prologue. What details in
the art match those in his text?

12:15:08
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for advanced learners/ap

for advanced learners/ap

Expert Groups Encourage students to


become subject experts by selecting and
researching one of the following topics:

Have students read lines 118 and rewrite


them as a poem using modern day language
and figurative language. Encourage students
to use sensory details and metaphors in their
poems.

the Norman Conquest


14th-century inns

Possible answer: Both depict the showers of


April, the blooming of plant life across the
countryside, and the arrival of hopeful, sunny
days. The painting also shows the Oxford
12:15:18 PM
Cleric, the Squire, the Prioress, the Monk, and
the Knight on horseback and attired in 14thcentury garb, wending their way to a holy
shrine.

Thomas Becket
Encourage students to prepare brief oral or
written reports in order to share their findings.

the canterbury tales

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8:03:16 AM

revisit the big question


25

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 2334, who is the narrator of
this poem? Possible answer: The narrator is
a pilgrim on his way to Canterbury. What is
revealed about his character in this passage?
Possible answer: The passage shows that he is
gregarious, friendly, interested in people, and
a natural leader who convinced everyone to
travel together (lines 3134).

30

35

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

paraphrase

RL 10
40

Possible answer: Paraphrase: Nevertheless, while I am free to do it, before my story


progresses further, it makes sense to explain
their circumstances, a complete description
of each pilgrimas I saw themaccording
to their work and station in life, as well as
what they wore during the trip; and I will
begin with the Knight. The narrator sets
out to describe the full array of pilgrims
traveling to Canterbury: the profession,
social status, and physical appearance of
each one.

45

50

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Go over the


passage line by line with them.

55

Extend the Discussion Why did Chaucer


begin with the Knight?
60

background
Medieval Conflicts A knight in Chaucers
day may very well have witnessed the battles
referred to in lines 5167. Scholars have
argued that these allusions refer to campaigns
in North Africa between 1340 and 1380; to
wars with France between 1345 and 1360;
and to knights campaigns in Lithuania and
Russia (1380s).

146

Ready to go on pilgrimage and start


For Canterbury, most devout at heart,
At night there came into that hostelry
Some nine and twenty in a company
Of sundry folk happening then to fall
In fellowship, and they were pilgrims all
That towards Canterbury meant to ride.
The rooms and stables of the inn were wide;
They made us easy, all was of the best.
And, briefly, when the sun had gone to rest,
Id spoken to them all upon the trip
And was soon one with them in fellowship,
Pledged to rise early and to take the way
To Canterbury, as you heard me say.
But none the less, while I have time and space,
Before my story takes a further pace,
It seems a reasonable thing to say
What their condition was, the full array
Of each of them, as it appeared to me,
According to profession and degree,
And what apparel they were riding in;
And at a Knight I therefore will begin. b
There was a Knight, a most distinguished man,
Who from the day on which he first began
To ride abroad had followed chivalry,
Truth, honor, generousness and courtesy.
He had done nobly in his sovereigns war
And ridden into battle, no man more,
As well in Christian as in heathen places,
And ever honored for his noble graces.
When we took Alexandria, he was there.
He often sat at table in the chair
Of honor, above all nations, when in Prussia.
In Lithuania he had ridden, and Russia,
No Christian man so often, of his rank.
When, in Granada, Algeciras sank
Under assault, he had been there, and in
North Africa, raiding Benamarin;
In Anatolia he had been as well
And fought when Ayas and Attalia fell,
For all along the Mediterranean coast
He had embarked with many a noble host.
In fifteen mortal battles he had been
And jousted for our faith at Tramissene

Language Coach
Roots and Affixes The suffix
-ship can mean someone
entitled to a specific rank
of (lordship), art or skill of
(craftsmanship), or state of
(friendship). Which meaning
applies to fellowship? Give
another example of each use
of -ship.

b PARAPHRASE

Paraphrase lines 3542. What


does the narrator set out to
accomplish in The Prologue?

45 chivalry (shGvPEl-rC): the code of


behavior of medieval knights, which
stressed the values listed in line 46.

51 Alexandria: a city in Egypt,


captured by European Christians in
1365. All the places named in lines
5164 were scenes of conflicts in
which medieval Christians battled
Muslims and other non-Christian
peoples.

64 jousted: fought with a lance in


an arranged battle against another
knight.

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for english language learners
Language Coach
Roots and Affixes
Answer: state of; ladyship, scholarship,
companionship
Have students practice using words with
the suffix -ship in two or three sentences.

146

23 hostelry (hJsPtEl-rC): inn.

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for advanced learners/ap


Research [small-group option] Point out the
various places mentioned in lines 5167. Have
students find these sites on a map. Then have
them research the various battles that took
place at these sites. Allow time for students
to share their findings.

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65

70

75

80

85

90

95

100

105

Thrice in the lists, and always killed his man.


This same distinguished knight had led the van
Once with the Bey of Balat, doing work
For him against another heathen Turk;
He was of sovereign value in all eyes.
And though so much distinguished, he was wise
And in his bearing modest as a maid.
He never yet a boorish thing had said
In all his life to any, come what might;
He was a true, a perfect gentle-knight. c
Speaking of his equipment, he possessed
Fine horses, but he was not gaily dressed.
He wore a fustian tunic stained and dark
With smudges where his armor had left mark;
Just home from service, he had joined our ranks
To do his pilgrimage and render thanks.

65 thrice: three times; lists: fenced


areas for jousting.
66 van: vanguardthe troops
foremost in an attack.
67 Bey of Balat: a Turkish ruler.

T E X T A N A LY S I S
c

He had his son with him, a fine young Squire,


A lover and cadet, a lad of fire
With locks as curly as if they had been pressed.
He was some twenty years of age, I guessed.
In stature he was of a moderate length,
With wonderful agility and strength.
Hed seen some service with the cavalry
In Flanders and Artois and Picardy
And had done valiantly in little space
Of time, in hope to win his ladys grace.
He was embroidered like a meadow bright
And full of freshest flowers, red and white.
Singing he was, or fluting all the day;
He was as fresh as is the month of May.
Short was his gown, the sleeves were long and wide;
He knew the way to sit a horse and ride.
He could make songs and poems and recite,
Knew how to joust and dance, to draw and write.
He loved so hotly that till dawn grew pale
He slept as little as a nightingale.
Courteous he was, lowly and serviceable,
And carved to serve his father at the table.

81 Squire: a young man attending


on and receiving training from a
knight.

There was a Yeoman with him at his side,


No other servant; so he chose to ride.
This Yeoman wore a coat and hood of green,
And peacock-feathered arrows, bright and keen
And neatly sheathed, hung at his belt the while

103 Yeoman (yIPmEn): an attendant


in a noble household; him: the
Knight.

82 cadet: soldier in training.

characterization

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 81102, use these prompts to help students understand the character of the Squire
in relation to the Knight:

88 Flanders and Artois (r-twP) and


Picardy (pGkPEr-dC): areas in what is
now Belgium and northern France.

Connect What does the expression like father, like son mean to you? Possible answer:
The expression suggests that fathers and sons
often share similar characteristics.

93 fluting: whistling.

Analyze Does the expression apply to the


Squire and the Knight? Possible answer:
The Squire displays agility, strength (line 86),
bravery (line 89), and courtesy (line 101), just
like his father. However, he does not have his
fathers experience, though he will acquire it
in time.

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for advanced learners/ap

Visualization Encourage students to try to


visualize each pilgrim. Have students close
their eyes and listen as you read aloud the
description of the Knight. Ask them to recall
specific details. Record these details in the
first column of a two-column chart. Repeat
this procedure with the Squire. Help students
use the chart to compare these two characters.

Allusions Read aloud the Background note


on the previous page to students and have
them reread the side note about Chaucers
allusions to battles in lines 5169. What
assumptions might Chaucers audience
have made, based on these allusions? What
conclusions can be drawn from these allusions about the political situations in Europe,
North Africa, and the Middle East at this
time? What do they suggest about life in
Chaucers time?

12:15:23 PM

Evaluate Which details about the Squire


make him seem real, rather than idealized
like the Knight? Possible answer: The Squire
displays many characteristics of a young,
romantic knight-in-training who wishes to
follow in his fathers footsteps: He has fire
(passion), dedication (lines 8290), and desire
to serve his father (line 102). However, he is
also concerned with his appearance and the
impression he makes. Unlike his father, the
Squire dresses ostentatiously (lines 9192, 95)
and enjoys frivolous pastimes (lines 97100).

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RL 1
RL 3

Possible answer: The Knights actions


reveal that he is a model of chivalry: On the
battlefield, he is brave and successful (lines
5369). Off the battlefield, he is modest,
wise, and genteel (lines 7072). Moreover,
he immediately seeks penance after his
fighting (lines 7980).

77 fustian (fOsPchEn): a strong cloth


made of linen and cotton.

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CHARACTERIZATION
Reread lines 4374. What do
the Knights actions on and off
the battlefield reveal about his
character? Cite details to support
your answer.

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110

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 108121, use these prompts to help students understand Chaucers ironic treatment
of the Yeoman:

115

Connect What would you think if a friend


described somebodys physical characteristics only? Accept all thoughtful responses.
Analyze What information, besides the
Yeomans head resembling a nut (line 111),
suggests that Chaucer does not take this
character seriously? Possible answer: Chaucer describes only his clothing, which seems
to be showy.

120

125

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4
130

courtliness: Have students reread the


passage about the Prioresss courtliness.
Then have students list modern-day behaviors that could be described as courtly.
135

sedately: Have students name synonyms


for the adjective sedate. Possible answers:
composed, dignified, calm

140

T E X T A N A LY S I S

characterization

RL 1
RL 3

Possible answer: The Prioress speaks


French with an inauthentic English intonation. Her table manners are coarse, despite
her efforts to be elegant: She reaches for
meat with her hands, dips her fingers in the
sauce, and eats everything on her plate. The
phrase straining / To counterfeit a courtly
kind of grace (lines 142143) is a clue.

differentiated instruction

145

150

148

For he could dress his gear in yeoman style,


His arrows never drooped their feathers low
And in his hand he bore a mighty bow.
His head was like a nut, his face was brown.
He knew the whole of woodcraft up and down.
A saucy brace was on his arm to ward
It from the bow-string, and a shield and sword
Hung at one side, and at the other slipped
A jaunty dirk, spear-sharp and well-equipped.
A medal of St. Christopher he wore
Of shining silver on his breast, and bore
A hunting-horn, well slung and burnished clean,
That dangled from a baldrick of bright green.
He was a proper forester, I guess.
There also was a Nun, a Prioress,
Her way of smiling very simple and coy.
Her greatest oath was only By St. Loy!
And she was known as Madam Eglantyne.
And well she sang a service, with a fine
Intoning through her nose, as was most seemly,
And she spoke daintily in French, extremely,
After the school of Stratford-atte-Bowe;
French in the Paris style she did not know.
At meat her manners were well taught withal;
No morsel from her lips did she let fall,
Nor dipped her fingers in the sauce too deep;
But she could carry a morsel up and keep
The smallest drop from falling on her breast.
For courtliness she had a special zest,
And she would wipe her upper lip so clean
That not a trace of grease was to be seen
Upon the cup when she had drunk; to eat,
She reached a hand sedately for the meat.
She certainly was very entertaining,
Pleasant and friendly in her ways, and straining
To counterfeit a courtly kind of grace,
A stately bearing fitting to her place,
And to seem dignified in all her dealings. d
As for her sympathies and tender feelings,
She was so charitably solicitous
She used to weep if she but saw a mouse
Caught in a trap, if it were dead or bleeding.
And she had little dogs she would be feeding
With roasted flesh, or milk, or fine white bread.
And bitterly she wept if one were dead

116 dirk: small dagger.


117 St. Christopher: patron saint of
travelers.

120 baldrick: shoulder strap.

122 Prioress: a nun ranking just


below the abbess (head) of a convent.
124 St. Loy: St. Eligius (known as St.
loi in France).

129 Stratford-atte-Bowe: a town


(now part of London) near the
Prioresss convent.
131 at meat: when dining; withal:
moreover.

courtliness (krtPlC-nGs) n.
polite, elegant manners; refined
behavior

sedately (sG-dAtPlC) adv. in a


composed, dignified manner;
calmly
143 counterfeit: imitate.

d CHARACTERIZATION

Reread lines 122145. Which


details suggest that the Prioress
may be trying to appear more
sophisticated than she really is?

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for struggling readers

for english language learners

Satire Remind students that satire is a literary


technique in which ideas, customs, behaviors,
or institutions are ridiculed to point out flaws
in society. As students read, work with them
to find examples of satire within The Canterbury Tales, such as the Nuns efforts at being
sedate.

Vocabulary Support: Multiple-Meaning


Words Point out the multiple-meaning words
on these pages. Help students to use context
to figure out which meaning applies to each
one: bow (line 110), equipment for shooting
arrows; nut (line 111), small, hard fruit from
a tree; bore (line 118), carried; counterfeit
(line 143), imitate; fitting (line 144), suitable;
place (line 144), social position; but (line 148),
only; smart (line 153), hurt; fair (line 158),

148

113 saucy: jaunty; stylish; brace: a


leather arm-guard worn by archers.

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lovely; spread (line 158), [from] one side


to the other; own (line 159), acknowledge;
tricked (line 163), decorated; sort (line 169),
kind; sound (line 187), reasonable; horse
(line 193), to ride a horse.

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155

160

165

Or someone took a stick and made it smart;


She was all sentiment and tender heart.
Her veil was gathered in a seemly way,
Her nose was elegant, her eyes glass-grey;
Her mouth was very small, but soft and red,
Her forehead, certainly, was fair of spread,
Almost a span across the brows, I own;
She was indeed by no means undergrown.
Her cloak, I noticed, had a graceful charm.
She wore a coral trinket on her arm,
A set of beads, the gaudies tricked in green,
Whence hung a golden brooch of brightest sheen
On which there first was graven a crowned A,
And lower, Amor vincit omnia.
Another Nun, the secretary at her cell,
Was riding with her, and three Priests as well.

170

175

180

185

190

195

A Monk there was, one of the finest sort


Who rode the country; hunting was his sport.
A manly man, to be an Abbot able;
Many a dainty horse he had in stable.
His bridle, when he rode, a man might hear
Jingling in a whistling wind as clear,
Aye, and as loud as does the chapel bell
Where my lord Monk was Prior of the cell.
The Rule of good St. Benet or St. Maur
As old and strict he tended to ignore;
He let go by the things of yesterday
And took the modern worlds more spacious way.
He did not rate that text at a plucked hen
Which says that hunters are not holy men
And that a monk uncloistered is a mere
Fish out of water, flapping on the pier,
That is to say a monk out of his cloister.
That was a text he held not worth an oyster;
And I agreed and said his views were sound;
Was he to study till his head went round
Poring over books in cloisters? Must he toil
As Austin bade and till the very soil?
Was he to leave the world upon the shelf?
Let Austin have his labor to himself.
This Monk was therefore a good man to horse;
Greyhounds he had, as swift as birds, to course.
Hunting a hare or riding at a fence

revisit the big question

What makes a great


159 span: a unit of length equal
to nine inches. A broad forehead
was considered a sign of beauty in
Chaucers day.
163 gaudies: the larger beads in a
set of prayer beads.

166 Amor vincit omnia (Pmr


wGnPkGt mPnC-E): Latin for Love
conquers all things.

172 dainty: excellent.

176 Prior of the cell: head of a


subsidiary group of monks.
177 St. Benet . . . St. Maur: St.
Benedict, who established a strict set
of rules for monks behavior, and his
follower, St. Maurus, who introduced
those rules into France.

190 Austin: St. Augustine of Hippo,


who recommended that monks
engage in hard agricultural labor.

194 to course: for hunting.

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for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Comprehension Support Direct students to


the side notes for lines 177 and 190. Explain
that these orders were established to correct
abuses within the medieval Catholic Church.
Monks were supposed to live pious lives
dedicated to charitable work and service to
society. Ask students

Allusions [paired option] Have partners


work together to find additional information about medieval monastic orders (Benedictine, Augustinian, Cistercian, Dominican,
and Franciscan) online. Discuss how this
new information changes their reading of
Chaucers text. Ask them how these allusions
help to characterize the Monk. What do they
contribute to Chaucers satire?

What is this Monks primary pastime?


What does the Monk think of the
Benedictine rules?
Does he lead a pious life?

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Discuss In lines 169192, does Chaucer reveal


mostly virtues or flaws in the character of
the Monk? Explain your answer. Possible
answer: Chaucer shows, from the first couplet,
that the Monk is a much- flawed character,
whose overriding interest is hunting. The Monk
ignores and ridicules the rules of his order (lines
177186), shuns studying (lines 188189), and
avoids manual labor (lines 189190).

171 Abbot: the head of a monastery.

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CHARACTER?

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Analyze Visuals
Activity How does the picture support Chaucers description of the Monk?
Possible answer: It shows his preoccupation
with hunting, as well as his horse and many
greyhounds.
VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

personable: Review the definition of


personable with students. Then have them
name and define as many words as they
can with the root person. Possible answers:
persona: voice or character representing
the speaker or narrator in a literary work;
personage: a person of distinction; personal:
private; personality: distinctive traits of
a particular person; personnel: people
employed in a business

200

205

T E X T A N A LY S I S

characterization

RL 1
RL 3

210

Possible answer: The Monk is a s


portsman, shallow, self-indulgent, and
materialistic. The narrator specifically pokes
fun at the Monks worldly pastimes and
appetites. He is far from being a humble
and scholarly servant of God in the mold of
St. Benedict, St. Maur, or St. Augustine.

215

Extend the Discussion Is Chaucers satire


of the Monk gently witty, mildly abrasive,
or bitterly critical? Explain.

revisit the big question

220

150

Was all his fun, he spared for no expense.


I saw his sleeves were garnished at the hand
With fine grey fur, the finest in the land,
And on his hood, to fasten it at his chin
He had a wrought-gold cunningly fashioned pin;
Into a lovers knot it seemed to pass.
His head was bald and shone like looking-glass;
So did his face, as if it had been greased.
He was a fat and personable priest;
His prominent eyeballs never seemed to settle. e
They glittered like the flames beneath a kettle;
Supple his boots, his horse in fine condition.
He was a prelate fit for exhibition,
He was not pale like a tormented soul.
He liked a fat swan best, and roasted whole.
His palfrey was as brown as is a berry.
There was a Friar, a wanton one and merry,
A Limiter, a very festive fellow.
In all Four Orders there was none so mellow,
So glib with gallant phrase and well-turned speech.
Hed fixed up many a marriage, giving each
Of his young women what he could afford her.
He was a noble pillar to his Order.
Highly beloved and intimate was he
With County folk within his boundary,
And city dames of honor and possessions;
For he was qualified to hear confessions,

personable (prPsE-nE-bEl)
adj. pleasing in behavior and
appearance
e

CHARACTERIZATION
List three character traits of the
Monk. In what ways does the
narrator appear to poke fun at
him?

211 palfrey (plPfrC): saddle horse.


212 Friar: a member of a religious
group sworn to poverty and living
on charitable donations; wanton
(wJnPtEn): playful; jolly.
213 Limiter: a friar licensed to beg
for donations in a limited area.
214 Four Orders: the four groups
of friarsDominican, Franciscan,
Carmelite, and Augustinian.
222 confessions: church rites in
which people confess their sins to
clergy members. Only certain friars
were licensed to hear confessions.

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 212222, what character traits
does the Friar appear to have in common with
the Monk? Possible answer: The Friar, like the
Monk, does not seem inclined toward a life of
poverty or charity. He, too, is a festive fellow
(line 213), who enjoys his fun. Given his interest
in hearing confessions from women of means,
a material life of the coin appears to be of
greater concern than a life of the cloth.

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differentiated instruction
for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Characterization To help students better


understand the Monks shortcomings as a religious person, ask them to brainstorm words
and phrases that they associate with poverty,
such as poor, hungry, humble circumstances.
Make sure that they understand that the
Monk is supposed to lead a life of poverty.
Then have them compare the Monk with
the words they brainstormed. Repeat with
the Friar.

Similes [small-group option] Have small


groups identify and analyze the similes
describing the Monk in lines 200211. Then
discuss the effect of Chaucers piling up of
such similes. What was his purpose in selecting graphic and humorous images? Is he
entirely serious? How do these similes serve
his satiric purpose? How would the passage
be different without them?

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225

230

235

240

245

250

255

260

265

Or so he said, with more than priestly scope;


He had a special license from the Pope.
Sweetly he heard his penitents at shrift
With pleasant absolution, for a gift.
He was an easy man in penance-giving
Where he could hope to make a decent living;
Its a sure sign whenever gifts are given
To a poor Order that a mans well shriven,
And should he give enough he knew in verity
The penitent repented in sincerity.
For many a fellow is so hard of heart
He cannot weep, for all his inward smart.
Therefore instead of weeping and of prayer
One should give silver for a poor Friars care.
He kept his tippet stuffed with pins for curls,
And pocket-knives, to give to pretty girls.
And certainly his voice was gay and sturdy,
For he sang well and played the hurdy-gurdy.
At sing-songs he was champion of the hour.
His neck was whiter than a lily-flower
But strong enough to butt a bruiser down.
He knew the taverns well in every town
And every innkeeper and barmaid too
Better than lepers, beggars and that crew, f
For in so eminent a man as he
It was not fitting with the dignity
Of his position, dealing with a scum
Of wretched lepers; nothing good can come
Of commerce with such slum-and-gutter dwellers,
But only with the rich and victual-sellers.
But anywhere a profit might accrue
Courteous he was and lowly of service too.
Natural gifts like his were hard to match.
He was the finest beggar of his batch,
And, for his begging-district, paid a rent;
His brethren did no poaching where he went.
For though a widow mightnt have a shoe,
So pleasant was his holy how-dye-do
He got his farthing from her just the same
Before he left, and so his income came
To more than he laid out. And how he romped,
Just like a puppy! He was ever prompt
To arbitrate disputes on settling days
(For a small fee) in many helpful ways,
Not then appearing as your cloistered scholar
With threadbare habit hardly worth a dollar,

225 shrift: confession.

tiered discussion prompts


230 well shriven: completely
forgiven through the rite of
confession.

151

Connect Think of news stories about corruption that you have seen or heard. What
do you think of people who abuse their
power? Accept all thoughtful answers.

231 verity: truth.

Analyze In what ways is the Friar corrupt?


Possible answer: He uses his position to gain
money; he spends his money on drinking and
gifts for women; he does not associate with
the poor or unfortunate members of society.

237 tippet: an extension of a hood or


sleeve, used as a pocket.

240 hurdy-gurdy: a stringed musical


instrument, similar to a lute, played
by turning a crank while pressing
down keys.

Evaluate Is the Friar more corrupt than


the Monk? Explain your answer. Possible
answer: Though both are corrupt, the
wanton Friars past and his abuse of
power are particularly loathsome.

PARAPHRASE
Restate lines 237246. How
does the Friar spend the money
he earns through hearing
confessions?

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

252 victual (vGtPl): food.

accrue (E-krLP) v. to be added or


gained; to accumulate

265 settling days: days on which


disputes were settled out of court.
Friars often acted as arbiters in
the disputes and charged for their
services, though forbidden by the
church to do so.

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for struggling readers

for english language learners

Authors Perspective Through his narrator,


Chaucer makes his ideas, values, feelings, and
beliefs known. Have students think about
these questions: What are Chaucers feelings
about the Monk and the Friar? What seem
to be his personal beliefs about how a monk
and a friar should behave? What values does
Chaucer reveal through these characters?

Vocabulary Support: Related Vocabulary


Point out words related to the rite of confession in lines 222232: confessions (line 222),
declarations of guilt; absolution (line 226),
forgiveness of sins; penance (line 227),
an expression of sorrow for sin; penitent
(line 232), sorry; repented (line 232), asked
forgiveness. Explain that confession is a
sacrament, or holy ritual, in the Roman Catholic
Church. The Friar should not be carrying out
this rite to make money.

RL 10

paraphrase

Possible answer: Paraphrase: He kept his


pocket stuffed with hairpins and pocketknives to give to attractive girls. He sang
confidently and loudly, because he had a
good voice and played the lute. At musical
events he surpassed everyone. Though his
neck was as a white as a lily, it was strong
enough to knock over a brute. He was
familiar with the bars of every town, as well
as the bartenders and barmaidsmuch
more familiar than he was with lepers, beggars, and others of that sort. The Friar buys
hairpins and pocket-knives for girls. He also
spends his money at inns and taverns.

261 farthing: a coin of small value


used in England until recent times.

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In lines 237263, use these prompts to help


students understand Chaucers satiric commentary on the Friar:

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Go over the


passage line by line with them.
12:15:29 PM

VOCABULARY

own the word

accrue: Tell students that the connotation


of accrual tends to be financial. Bank
accounts accrue interest; companies can
accrue profits. Employees may accrue
benefits, such as paid time off or vacation,
in their jobs.

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L4

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270

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

paraphrase

RL 10
275

Possible answer: Paraphrase: He discussed


his opinions and actions in great seriousness, especially his monetary success: He
believed that the shipping routes between
England and Holland should be policed; and
he described himself as an expert at selling
foreign currency. He was so clever and so
well versed in administering loans, bargaining, and negotiating, that nobody knew he
was in debt. Even so, he was a good person,
though, honestly, I dont know his name.
Students mat say that the Merchant is not
a sucessful businessman; although the
Merchant is well-dressed, convincing, and
seemingly intelligent, he is in debt.

280

285

290

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Go over the


passage line by line with them.
295

revisit the big question

300

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 295318, what words give the
reader clues to the Clerics character? Possible
answer: The words sober (line 299), unworldly
(line 302), earnestly (line 311), formal (line 315),
respectful (line 315), lofty (line 316), and moral
(line 317) tell the reader that the Cleric is devoted to his studies to become a priest.

305

310

152

differentiated instruction

But much more like a Doctor or a Pope.


Of double-worsted was the semi-cope
Upon his shoulders, and the swelling fold
About him, like a bell about its mold
When it is casting, rounded out his dress.
He lisped a little out of wantonness
To make his English sweet upon his tongue.
When he had played his harp, or having sung,
His eyes would twinkle in his head as bright
As any star upon a frosty night.
This worthys name was Hubert, it appeared.
There was a Merchant with a forking beard
And motley dress; high on his horse he sat,
Upon his head a Flemish beaver hat
And on his feet daintily buckled boots.
He told of his opinions and pursuits
In solemn tones, he harped on his increase
Of capital; there should be sea-police
(He thought) upon the Harwich-Holland ranges;
He was expert at dabbling in exchanges.
This estimable Merchant so had set
His wits to work, none knew he was in debt,
He was so stately in administration,
In loans and bargains and negotiation.
He was an excellent fellow all the same;
To tell the truth I do not know his name. g
An Oxford Cleric, still a student though,
One who had taken logic long ago,
Was there; his horse was thinner than a rake,
And he was not too fat, I undertake,
But had a hollow look, a sober stare;
The thread upon his overcoat was bare.
He had found no preferment in the church
And he was too unworldly to make search
For secular employment. By his bed
He preferred having twenty books in red
And black, of Aristotles philosophy,
Than costly clothes, fiddle or psaltery.
Though a philosopher, as I have told,
He had not found the stone for making gold.
Whatever money from his friends he took
He spent on learning or another book
And prayed for them most earnestly, returning
Thanks to them thus for paying for his learning.

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282 Flemish: from Flanders, an area


in what is now Belgium and northern
France.

287 Harwich-Holland ranges:


shipping routes between Harwich
(hBrPGj), a port on Englands east
coast, and the country of Holland.
288 exchanges: selling foreign
currency at a profit.

g PARAPHRASE

Paraphrase lines 284294.


Is the Merchant a successful
businessman? Why or why not?
295 Cleric: a student preparing for
the priesthood.

301 preferment: advancement.

305 Aristotles philosophy: the


writings of Aristotle, a famous Greek
philosopher of the fourth century b.c.
306 psaltery (slPtE-rC): a stringed
instrument.
307308 Though a philosopher . . .
gold: The philosophers stone
supposedly turned metals into gold.

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for advanced learners/ap


beaver hat
forking beard

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Character Traits Web p. D7

buckled boots

Merchant
pretentious
self-important

152

281 motley: multicolored.

unit 1: the anglo-saxon and medieval periods

for struggling readers


Visualization Read the description of the
Merchant aloud. Ask students to recall specific
details about this character and to record
them in a Character Traits Web. Repeat this
procedure with the Cleric, the Sergeant at the
Law, and the Franklin.

270 double-worsted (wMsPtGd): a


strong, fairly costly fabric made from
tightly twisted woolen yarn; semicope: a short cloak.

phony

Text Structure The Cleric appears shortly


after the Friar and the Monk, with whom
he differs greatly. Ask groups of students to
discuss Chaucers presentation of the Cleric in
The Prologue. What effect does it have on
the contrast between these different figures?
How would the effect have been different
if the Cleric had appeared before the two
other characters? Ask students whether or
not Chaucer made a wise structural decision.
Encourage them to give their reasons.

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315

320

325

330

335

340

345

350

355

His only care was study, and indeed


He never spoke a word more than was need,
Formal at that, respectful in the extreme,
Short, to the point, and lofty in his theme.
A tone of moral virtue filled his speech
And gladly would he learn, and gladly teach.

h CHARACTERIZATION

Reread lines 295318. In what


ways does the Oxford Cleric
differ from the Monk and the
Friar? Cite details.

A Sergeant at the Law who paid his calls,


Wary and wise, for clients at St. Pauls
There also was, of noted excellence.
Discreet he was, a man to reverence,
Or so he seemed, his sayings were so wise.
He often had been Justice of Assize
By letters patent, and in full commission.
His fame and learning and his high position
Had won him many a robe and many a fee.
There was no such conveyancer as he;
All was fee-simple to his strong digestion,
Not one conveyance could be called in question.
Though there was nowhere one so busy as he,
He was less busy than he seemed to be.
He knew of every judgment, case and crime
Ever recorded since King Williams time.
He could dictate defenses or draft deeds;
No one could pinch a comma from his screeds
And he knew every statute off by rote.
He wore a homely parti-colored coat,
Girt with a silken belt of pin-stripe stuff;
Of his appearance I have said enough.

319 Sergeant at the Law: a lawyer


appointed by the monarch to serve
as a judge.

There was a Franklin with him, it appeared;


White as a daisy-petal was his beard.
A sanguine man, high-colored and benign,
He loved a morning sop of cake in wine.
He lived for pleasure and had always done,
For he was Epicurus very son,
In whose opinion sensual delight
Was the one true felicity in sight.
As noted as St. Julian was for bounty
He made his household free to all the County.
His bread, his ale were finest of the fine
And no one had a better stock of wine.
His house was never short of bake-meat pies,
Of fish and flesh, and these in such supplies
It positively snowed with meat and drink
And all the dainties that a man could think. i

341 Franklin: a wealthy landowner.

153

characterization

324 Justice of Assize: a judge who


traveled about the country to hear
cases.
325 letters patent: royal documents
commissioning a judge.
328 conveyancer: a lawyer
specializing in conveyances (deeds)
and property disputes.
329 fee-simple: property owned
without restrictions.

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 319337, use these prompts to help
students understand the Sergeant at the Law:
Connect Have you ever known anyone
who seemed to be all talk and no action?
Accept all responses.

334 King Williams time: the reign


of William the Conqueror.

Analyze To what extent does the Sergeant


at the Law seem to be all talk and no action?
Possible answer: He could talk a fine game
of law (lines 333337), so he had made good
money and won respect, but he wasnt nearly
as productive as he seemed (lines 331332).

336 screeds: documents.

Evaluate Would you want to hire the Sergeant at the Law? Why or why not? Most
students will say that they would not want
to hire the Sergeant at Law. Though the
Sergeant gives the appearance of wisdom
and discretion (lines 320323), the narrator
questions these credentials (line 323). The
Sergeant appears to be busy, but is less busy
than he seemed to be (lines 331332).

343 sanguine (sBngPgwGn): cheerful


and good-natured.

346 Epicurus very son: someone


who pursues pleasure as the chief
goal in life, as the ancient Greek
philosopher Epicurus was supposed
to have recommended.
349 St. Julian: the patron saint of
hospitality; bounty: generosity.

CHARACTERIZATION
What does the narrator state
directly about the Franklin in
lines 341356?

T E X T A N A LY S I S

i
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for english language learners

Characterization [paired option] Point out


that Chaucer often summed up his characters
briefly, as in He lived for pleasure and had
always done, / For he was Epicurus very son
(lines 345346). Why might Chaucer have
done so? Ask partners to try to find one or
two summaries that characterize each of the
pilgrims so far. Have students keep a log of
each characters summary to recall later and
to compare with other students summaries.

Vocabulary: Related Words Point out words


related to the law in lines 325337. Explain
that many are multiple-meaning words, often
used in other ways: judgment (line 333), legal
ruling; case (line 333), court case or legal
action; crime (line 333), an act that violates
the law; defenses (line 335), legal arguments;
deeds (line 335), legal documents; statute
(line 337), law.

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characterization

153

RL 1
RL 3

Possible answer: The Franklin has


a white beard and rosy complexion (lines
342343). He lives for pleasure (line 345),
especially for fine food and drink
(lines 344356).

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RL 1
RL 3

Possible answer: Unlike the Monk


and the Friar, the Oxford Cleric is poor, thin,
and shabby in appearance. Moreover, the
cleric is learned, devout, and concerned with
others.

320 St. Pauls: the cathedral of


London, outside which lawyers met
clients when the courts were closed.

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T E X T A N A LY S I S

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revisit the big question

360

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 37188, why did Chaucer
group these five charactersHaberdasher,
Dyer, Carpenter, Weaver, and Carpet-maker
together? Possible answer: Their grouping
suggests that these characters are so similar
that there was, perhaps, no need to distinguish
among them in this overview.

365

370

375

380

385

390

395

According to the seasons of the year


Changes of dish were ordered to appear.
He kept fat partridges in coops, beyond,
Many a bream and pike were in his pond.
Woe to the cook unless the sauce was hot
And sharp, or if he wasnt on the spot!
And in his hall a table stood arrayed
And ready all day long, with places laid.
As Justice at the Sessions none stood higher;
He often had been Member for the Shire.
A dagger and a little purse of silk
Hung at his girdle, white as morning milk.
As Sheriff he checked audit, every entry.
He was a model among landed gentry.
A Haberdasher, a Dyer, a Carpenter,
A Weaver and a Carpet-maker were
Among our ranks, all in the livery
Of one impressive guild-fraternity.
They were so trim and fresh their gear would pass
For new. Their knives were not tricked out with brass
But wrought with purest silver, which avouches
A like display on girdles and on pouches.
Each seemed a worthy burgess, fit to grace
A guild-hall with a seat upon the dais.
Their wisdom would have justified a plan
To make each one of them an alderman;
They had the capital and revenue,
Besides their wives declared it was their due.
And if they did not think so, then they ought;
To be called Madam is a glorious thought,
And so is going to church and being seen
Having your mantle carried, like a queen.
They had a Cook with them who stood alone
For boiling chicken with a marrow-bone,
Sharp flavoring-powder and a spice for savor.
He could distinguish London ale by flavor,
And he could roast and seethe and broil and fry,
Make good thick soup and bake a tasty pie.
But what a pityso it seemed to me,
That he should have an ulcer on his knee.
As for blancmange, he made it with the best.
There was a Skipper hailing from far west;
He came from Dartmouth, so I understood.

154

365 Sessions: local court


proceedings.
366 Member for the Shire: his
countys representative in Parliament.
368 girdle: belt.
369 Sheriff: a royal tax collector.
370 landed gentry (jDnPtrC): wellborn, wealthy landowners.
371 Haberdasher: a seller of hats and
other clothing accessories.
373374 livery . . . guild-fraternity:
uniform of a social or religious
organization.

379 burgess (brPjGs): citizen of a


town.

382 alderman: town councilor.

388 mantle: cloak.

397 blancmange (blE-mnjP): a thick


chicken stew with almonds.
399 Dartmouth (drtPmEth): a port
in southwestern England.

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Point out that several professions named in The Prologue have become
proper names in English, including Knight
(and Knightly), Priest (and Priestly), Merchant,
Franklin, Dyer, Carpenter, Weaver, and Cook
(and also Reeve and Miller). Ask students to
name professions, current or outdated, that
have become common surnames in their
primary language.

Historical Perspective Ask students to


consider what the group of tradesmenthe
Haberdasher, Dyer, Carpenter, Weaver, and
Carpet-makersuggests about Englands
growing middle class and material wellbeing at the end of the 14th century. Have
them write a brief report on this topic. Allow
time for students to share their findings with
the class.

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400

405

410

415

420

425

430

435

440

He rode a farmers horse as best he could,


In a woolen gown that reached his knee.
A dagger on a lanyard falling free
Hung from his neck under his arm and down.
The summer heat had tanned his color brown,
And certainly he was an excellent fellow.
Many a draft of vintage, red and yellow,
Hed drawn at Bordeaux, while the trader snored.
The nicer rules of conscience he ignored.
If, when he fought, the enemy vessel sank,
He sent his prisoners home; they walked the plank.
As for his skill in reckoning his tides,
Currents and many another risk besides,
Moons, harbors, pilots, he had such dispatch
That none from Hull to Carthage was his match.
Hardy he was, prudent in undertaking;
His beard in many a tempest had its shaking,
And he knew all the havens as they were
From Gottland to the Cape of Finisterre,
And every creek in Brittany and Spain;
The barge he owned was called The Maudelayne.
A Doctor too emerged as we proceeded;
No one alive could talk as well as he did
On points of medicine and of surgery,
For, being grounded in astronomy,
He watched his patient closely for the hours
When, by his horoscope, he knew the powers
Of favorable planets, then ascendant,
Worked on the images for his dependent.
The cause of every malady youd got
He knew, and whether dry, cold, moist or hot;
He knew their seat, their humor and condition.
He was a perfect practicing physician.
These causes being known for what they were,
He gave the man his medicine then and there.
All his apothecaries in a tribe
Were ready with the drugs he would prescribe
And each made money from the others guile;
They had been friendly for a goodish while.
He was well-versed in Aesculapius too
And what Hippocrates and Rufus knew
And Dioscorides, now dead and gone,
Galen and Rhazes, Hali, Serapion,
Averroes, Avicenna, Constantine,
Scotch Bernard, John of Gaddesden, Gilbertine.

402 lanyard (lBnPyErd): a cord worn


as a necklace.

In lines 421438, use these prompts to help


students better understand the Doctor:

406 vintage: wine.


407 Bordeaux (br-dIP): a region of
France famous for its wine.

Connect What characteristics do you associate with doctors today? Student responses
should reflect an understanding that todays
doctors, whose primary concern is with their
patients health, are well-trained scientists
and practitioners.

414 Hull . . . Carthage: ports in


England and in Spain. The places
named in lines 414419 show that
the Skipper is familiar with all the
western coast of Europe.

Analyze How was a doctor in Chaucers


day different from contemporary doctors?
Possible answer: Doctors had extensive
training in the four humors and astrology,
considered pseudoscience today; they relied
heavily on the ancient Greeks; medicine was
primitive by contemporary standards.

416 tempest: violent storm.

background

424 astronomy: astrology.

malady (mBlPE-dC) n. a disease


or disorder; an ailment
430 dry, cold, moist . . . hot: in
medieval science, the four basic
qualities that were thought to
combine to form both the four
elements of the world (fire, air,
water, and earth) and the four
humors of the human body.
435 apothecaries (E-pJthPG-kDrQCz):
druggists.

439444 Aesculapius
(DsQkyE-lAPpC-Es) . . . Gilbertine:
famous ancient and medieval
medical experts.

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tiered discussion prompts

155

Medieval Medicine The treatment of the


four humors, referred to in lines 429434, was
central to medieval medicine. The belief in the
four humors (or bodily fluids) evolved from
Greek philosophy. The dominance of one of
the four fluids was thought to determine temperament. The fluids were blood (resulting in
a sanguine, or lively temperament), phlegm
(resulting in a phlegmatic or unemotional
temperament), yellow bile, or choler, (resulting
in a choleric, or angry temperament), and black
bile (resulting in a melancholy temperament).
The four humors were sometimes matched
up with the four seasons, the four ages of
mankind, the four compass directions, and
even to the four Evangelists. Medieval doctors
attempted to bring the four humors into balance using diet, medicine, and bloodletting.

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VOCABULARY

own the word


for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Comprehension Support Remind students


that travel by ship in the 14th century was
slow and dangerous. Help students locate on
a map the places mentioned in the Skippers
description: Dartmouth, England (line 399);
Bordeaux, France (line 407); Hull, England
(line 414); Carthage, on the north coast of
Africa (line 414); Gotland, probably in southern Sweden (line 418); Cape of Finisterre,
western Spain (line 418); and Brittany, France
(line 419).

Verbal Irony [paired option] Review with


students that verbal irony occurs when somebody states one thing but means another.
Then have partners find and explain examples of verbal irony in the description of the
Skipper. Discuss the purpose and effect of
Chaucers verbal irony. How does it support
his satire?

malady: Have students name common


maladies that they might suffer from during
the course of a year. Then have them write
a sentence naming one common malady
and what steps they could take to remedy
it. Possible answers: common cold, flu, sore
throat, fatigue, sprained ligaments, sore
muscles; remedies depend upon the malady

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Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The doctors reliance on
astrological signs, pictured on the window,
reveals how 14th-century medicine differed
from modern medicine.

Analyze Visuals
What does this image
reveal about the ways in
which a medieval doctors
practice differed from
that of a modern doctor?

revisit the big question

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 455484, is the Wife of Bath a
round or flat character? Possible answer: The
Wife of Bath is a round character: She is interesting, worldly, personable, capable, amorous,
self-important, and materialistic. Why does the
narrator describe her as worthy in two lines
(455 and 469)? Possible answer: The narrator
wants to make it clear that he thinks well of
her, despite her shortcomings.

445

450

455

background
Clothing in the Middle Ages The Wife of
Bath must have been a woman of considerable means. Most medieval people wore only
hand-me-downs. Old clothing was mended,
sold, or cut up and reused to make new
garments. The expensive clothes of the upper
classes were treated as valuable property.

460

465

470

156

differentiated instruction

In his own diet he observed some measure;


There were no superfluities for pleasure,
Only digestives, nutritives and such.
He did not read the Bible very much.
In blood-red garments, slashed with bluish grey
And lined with taffeta, he rode his way;
Yet he was rather close as to expenses
And kept the gold he won in pestilences.
Gold stimulates the heart, or so were told.
He therefore had a special love of gold.
A worthy woman from beside Bath city
Was with us, somewhat deaf, which was a pity.
In making cloth she showed so great a bent
She bettered those of Ypres and of Ghent.
In all the parish not a dame dared stir
Towards the altar steps in front of her,
And if indeed they did, so wrath was she
As to be quite put out of charity.
Her kerchiefs were of finely woven ground;
I dared have sworn they weighed a good ten pound,
The ones she wore on Sunday, on her head.
Her hose were of the finest scarlet red
And gartered tight; her shoes were soft and new.
Bold was her face, handsome, and red in hue.
A worthy woman all her life, whats more
Shed had five husbands, all at the church door,
Apart from other company in youth;
No need just now to speak of that, forsooth.

446 superfluities (sLQpEr-flLPG-tCz):


excesses.

450 taffeta (tBfPG-tE): a stiff, smooth


fabric.
452 pestilences: plagues.

455 Bath: a city in southwestern


England.

458 Ypres (CPprE) . . . Ghent (gDnt):


Flemish cities famous in the Middle
Ages for manufacturing fine wool
fabrics.
461 wrath (rBth): angry.
463 ground: a textured fabric.

466 hose: stockings.

470 all at the church door: In


medieval times, a marriage was
performed outside or just within the
doors of a church; afterwards, the
marriage party went inside for mass.
472 forsooth: in truth; indeed.

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for struggling readers

What were her shoes and hose like?

for advanced learners/ap

Visualization The description of the Wife of


Bath is graphic. Have students listen as you
reread it. Challenge them to answer these
questions:

What problem did she have with her teeth?

Imagery [small-group option] Chaucer is often detailed in his description of the pilgrims
clothing. Have students identify the clothing
of each character in The Prologue. Have
groups research the clothing worn by different social classes in the 14th century. Then
discuss what these descriptions tell about
the pilgrims. How does Chaucer use clothing
to define the characters social and economic
status?

What did her mantle hide?

How did the Wife of Bath react to anybody


who tried to go up the altar steps before
she did?
What did she wear on her head on Sundays?
What did she wear on her head while riding?

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475

480

485

490

495

500

505

510

515

And she had thrice been to Jerusalem,


Seen many strange rivers and passed over them;
Shed been to Rome and also to Boulogne,
St. James of Compostella and Cologne,
And she was skilled in wandering by the way.
She had gap-teeth, set widely, truth to say.
Easily on an ambling horse she sat
Well wimpled up, and on her head a hat
As broad as is a buckler or a shield;
She had a flowing mantle that concealed
Large hips, her heels spurred sharply under that.
In company she liked to laugh and chat
And knew the remedies for loves mischances,
An art in which she knew the oldest dances. j
A holy-minded man of good renown
There was, and poor, the Parson to a town,
Yet he was rich in holy thought and work.
He also was a learned man, a clerk,
Who truly knew Christs gospel and would preach it
Devoutly to parishioners, and teach it.
Benign and wonderfully diligent,
And patient when adversity was sent
(For so he proved in much adversity)
He hated cursing to extort a fee,
Nay rather he preferred beyond a doubt
Giving to poor parishioners round about
Both from church offerings and his property;
He could in little find sufficiency.
Wide was his parish, with houses far asunder,
Yet he neglected not in rain or thunder,
In sickness or in grief, to pay a call
On the remotest, whether great or small,
Upon his feet, and in his hand a stave.
This noble example to his sheep he gave
That first he wrought, and afterwards he taught;
And it was from the Gospel he had caught
Those words, and he would add this figure too,
That if gold rust, what then will iron do?
For if a priest be foul in whom we trust
No wonder that a common man should rust;
And shame it is to seelet priests take stock
A shitten shepherd and a snowy flock.
The true example that a priest should give
Is one of cleanness, how the sheep should live.

473476 Jerusalem . . . Rome . . .


Boulogne (bL-lInP), St. James of
Compostella and Cologne (kE-lInP):
popular destinations of religious
pilgrimages in the Middle Ages.

480 wimpled: with her hair and


neck covered by a cloth headdress.
481 buckler: small round shield.

T E X T A N A LY S I S
j

500 sufficiency: enough to get by on.

In lines 490516, use these prompts to help


students understand the significance of the
Parson:

501 asunder: apart.

Connect What qualities make you respect


and trust somebody? Accept any thoughtful
answer.

505 stave: staff.

Analyze Do the Parsons traits show him


to be trustworthy? Explain your answer.
Possible answer: The Parsons kindness, moral
rectitude, generosity, conscientiousness, and
diligence show that he is trustworthy.

507 wrought (rt): worked.


509 figure: figure of speech.

Synthesize What point is Chaucer making


through the Parson? Possible answer: He is
making the point that the clergy should be
above reproach in their behavior and spotless
models to the people they serve.

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for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Comprehension Support Make sure that


students understand the religious metaphor of a clergyman as the shepherd of his
congregationthe flockand the wolf as
a representation of evil, sin, and temptation
(lines 514524). Then ask these questions:

Compare and Contrast Ask students to


compare the Parson with other religious
figures in The Prologue, such as the Prioress,
the Monk, the Friar and the Cleric. Ask groups
of students to research Chaucers life. How
are his religious beliefs and the beliefs of
the time reflected in these characters? Have
students write a short essay on this topic.

Which lines state the danger faced by


a flock?

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RL 1
RL 3

tiered discussion prompts

157

Which lines state the shepherds job?

characterization

Possible answer: The Wife of Bath is


a superlative weaver; she wears stylish and
expensive clothes; she has been married
five times; and she has traveled to many
important pilgrim sites, including three
visits to Jerusalem.

490 clerk: scholar.

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CHARACTERIZATION
Reread lines 455486. Which
details help define the Wife of
Bath as a worldly woman?

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520

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

paraphrase

RL 10
525

Students paraphrases should include all


the main ideas and supporting details of
lines 515524. Possible paraphrase for lines
515524: A parsons behavior should be pure
and set an example for those he leads. A
parson should not hire someone else to do
his work and leave his followers in trouble
or without proper guidance. Nor should
he run to London to earn easy money by
performing funeral services for the wealthy.
Nor should he become involved in some
private group, allowing someone else to
take over and mislead his followers. He
should be a committed leader, not just a
worker for hire.

530

535

540

The Parson gives money to the poor, pays


calls to the parishioners whenever they need
him, and provides a fine example to all.
545

T E X T A N A LY S I S

characterization

RL 1
RL 3

550

Possible answer: Both are pious, hardworking, peace-loving, honest, and charitable;
neither is materialistic; neither is guided by
self-interest or greed.

555

He did not set his benefice to hire


And leave his sheep encumbered in the mire
Or run to London to earn easy bread
By singing masses for the wealthy dead,
Or find some Brotherhood and get enrolled.
He stayed at home and watched over his fold
So that no wolf should make the sheep miscarry.
He was a shepherd and no mercenary. k
Holy and virtuous he was, but then
Never contemptuous of sinful men,
Never disdainful, never too proud or fine,
But was discreet in teaching and benign.
His business was to show a fair behavior
And draw men thus to Heaven and their Savior,
Unless indeed a man were obstinate;
And such, whether of high or low estate,
He put to sharp rebuke, to say the least.
I think there never was a better priest.
He sought no pomp or glory in his dealings,
No scrupulosity had spiced his feelings.
Christ and His Twelve Apostles and their lore
He taught, but followed it himself before.
There was a Plowman with him there, his brother;
Many a load of dung one time or other
He must have carted through the morning dew.
He was an honest worker, good and true,
Living in peace and perfect charity,
And, as the gospel bade him, so did he,
Loving God best with all his heart and mind
And then his neighbor as himself, repined
At no misfortune, slacked for no content,
For steadily about his work he went
To thrash his corn, to dig or to manure
Or make a ditch; and he would help the poor l
For love of Christ and never take a penny
If he could help it, and, as prompt as any,
He paid his tithes in full when they were due
On what he owned, and on his earnings too.
He wore a tabard smock and rode a mare.
There was a Reeve, also a Miller, there,
A College Manciple from the Inns of Court,
A papal Pardoner and, in close consort,

158

517 set his benefice (bDnPE-fGs) to


hire: pay someone to perform his
parish duties for him.

k PARAPHRASE

Restate lines 515524. In what


ways does the Parson serve the
members of his parish?

536 scrupulosity (skrLQpyE-lJsPG-tC):


excessive concern with fine points of
behavior.

CHARACTERIZATION
Compare the Plowman with
his brother, the Parson. What
character traits do they seem
to share?

555 tabard smock: a short loose


jacket made of a heavy material.
556 Reeve: an estate manager;
557 Manciple: a servant in charge
of purchasing food; Inns of Court:
London institutions for training law
students; 558 Pardoner: a church
official authorized to sell people
pardons for their sins.

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Role Models Have students examine the
Parson and the Plowman as idealized Christians. To what extent do the other pilgrims
fall short of the high standards set by these
role models?

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560

565

570

575

580

585

590

595

600

A Church-Court Summoner, riding at a trot,


And finally myselfthat was the lot.

559 Summoner: a layman with the


job of summoning sinners to church
courts.

The Miller was a chap of sixteen stone,


A great stout fellow big in brawn and bone.
He did well out of them, for he could go
And win the ram at any wrestling show.
Broad, knotty and short-shouldered, he would boast
He could heave any door off hinge and post,
Or take a run and break it with his head.
His beard, like any sow or fox, was red
And broad as well, as though it were a spade;
And, at its very tip, his nose displayed
A wart on which there stood a tuft of hair
Red as the bristles in an old sows ear.
His nostrils were as black as they were wide.
He had a sword and buckler at his side,
His mighty mouth was like a furnace door. m
A wrangler and buffoon, he had a store
Of tavern stories, filthy in the main.
His was a master-hand at stealing grain.
He felt it with his thumb and thus he knew
Its quality and took three times his due
A thumb of gold, by God, to gauge an oat!
He wore a hood of blue and a white coat.
He liked to play his bagpipes up and down
And that was how he brought us out of town.

561 stone: a unit of weight equal to


14 pounds.

The Manciple came from the Inner Temple;


All caterers might follow his example
In buying victuals; he was never rash
Whether he bought on credit or paid cash.
He used to watch the market most precisely
And got in first, and so he did quite nicely.
Now isnt it a marvel of Gods grace
That an illiterate fellow can outpace
The wisdom of a heap of learned men?
His mastershe had more than thirty then
All versed in the abstrusest legal knowledge,
Could have produced a dozen from their College
Fit to be stewards in land and rents and game
To any Peer in England you could name,
And show him how to live on what he had
Debt-free (unless of course the Peer were mad)
Or be as frugal as he might desire,
And make them fit to help about the Shire

Review lines 570575. Notice


how Chaucer uses similes,
or comparisons, to create
a remarkably vividand
unflatteringportrait of
the Miller.

159

GRAMMAR
AND STYLE

L5

Analyze Descriptive Details Discuss these


similes with students: a tuft of hair / Red
as the bristles in an old sows ear (lines
571572); His nostrils were as black as they
were wide (line 573); His mighty mouth
was like a furnace door (line 575).

576 wrangler (rBngPglEr): a loud,


argumentative person; buffoon
(bE-fLnP): a fool.
577 in the main: for the most part.

581 thumb of gold: a reference to


a proverb, An honest miller has a
golden thumbperhaps meaning
that there is no such thing as an
honest miller.

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Remind them


that a simile uses like or as in the comparison. Then have them find like or as in each
comparison and explain the two things
that are being compared.

585 Inner Temple: one of the Inns


of Court.

Extend the Discussion What other similes


does Chaucer use to describe the Miller?

revisit the big question

What makes a great


594 his masters: the lawyers that
the Manciple feeds.
595 abstrusest: most scholarly and
difficult to understand.
597598 stewards . . . Peer: estate
managers for any nobleman.

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m GRAMMAR AND STYLE

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 585604, what words best
describe the Manciples character? Possible
answer: Cautious, clever, and frugal. Which
lines state Chaucers opinion of the Manciple
most clearly? Possible answer: Now isnt it a
marvel of Gods grace / That an illiterate fellow
can outpace / The wisdom of a heap of learned
men? (lines 591593)

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for english language learners


Vocabulary: Outdated Forms Point out
that some words in this translation are not
commonly used in modern American English, such as bade (line 544), commanded;
buckler (line 574), small shield; victuals (line
587), food; Shire (line 602), a county [of
Great Britain]. Then have students reread
the lines, substituting a modern synonym for
each word.

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In any legal case there was to try;


And yet this Manciple could wipe their eye.

revisit the big question

605

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 605640, what traits and
habits have helped the Reeve grow rich? Possible answer: The Reeve is a crafty and capable
manager (lines 612614); he has been entrusted
with the management of his masters livestock
(lines 615617); he stays on top of collections
(lines 618622); he knows a good bargain and
can manage his money (lines 628630); he
is also a fine carpenter (lines 631632). Does
Chaucer seem to have any reservations about
this character? Possible answer: Chaucers
opening words describe the Reeve as temperamental; Chaucer also says that he is feared like
the plague (line 623) by everyone under him,
suggesting that the Reeve is probably not compassionate or kind, but a bully and a stickler.

610

615

620

625

The Reeve was old and choleric and thin;


His beard was shaven closely to the skin,
His shorn hair came abruptly to a stop
Above his ears, and he was docked on top
Just like a priest in front; his legs were lean,
Like sticks they were, no calf was to be seen.
He kept his bins and garners very trim;
No auditor could gain a point on him.
And he could judge by watching drought and rain
The yield he might expect from seed and grain.
His masters sheep, his animals and hens,
Pigs, horses, dairies, stores and cattle-pens
Were wholly trusted to his government.
He had been under contract to present
The accounts, right from his masters earliest years.
No one had ever caught him in arrears.
No bailiff, serf or herdsman dared to kick,
He knew their dodges, knew their every trick;
Feared like the plague he was, by those beneath.
He had a lovely dwelling on a heath,
Shadowed in green by trees above the sward.
A better hand at bargains than his lord,

604 wipe their eye: outdo them.


605 choleric (kJlPE-rGk): having a
temperament in which yellow bile
predominates, and therefore prone
to outbursts of anger.
608 docked: clipped short.

611 garners: buildings for


storing grain.

617 government: authority.

620 in arrears: with unpaid debts.


621 bailiff: farm manager; serf: farm
laborer.

625 sward: grassy plot.

Analyze Visuals
Activity How does the picture support
Chaucers description of the Reeve?
Possible answer: It shows the neat, well-kept
farm he managed and his shorn hair, cropped
above his ears, as well as the confident bearing
one might expect from the prosperous Reeve.

160

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for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Help students use


context to figure out the meaning of these
expressions: Feared like the plague (line 623),
feared [him] terribly; as I heard tell (line 637),
I was told; No wonder (line 659), It is not
surprising.

Historical Perspective [small-group option]


Both the Manciple and the Reeve are 14thcentury success stories. Though illiterate,
the Manciple has outpaced men of greater
learning, while the Reeve has grown rich and
tucked away a treasure, despite his start as a
carpenter. What does Chaucer suggest about
mobility in medieval English society through
these two characters? What traits seem to be
essential for such success? How does Chaucer,

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of nobler stock, view the nouveau riche of his


day? Have groups discuss these questions and
report their findings to the class.

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630

635

640

645

650

655

660

665

670

He had grown rich and had a store of treasure


Well tucked away, yet out it came to pleasure
His lord with subtle loans or gifts of goods,
To earn his thanks and even coats and hoods.
When young hed learnt a useful trade and still
He was a carpenter of first-rate skill.
The stallion-cob he rode at a slow trot
Was dapple-grey and bore the name of Scot.
He wore an overcoat of bluish shade
And rather long; he had a rusty blade
Slung at his side. He came, as I heard tell,
From Norfolk, near a place called Baldeswell.
His coat was tucked under his belt and splayed.
He rode the hindmost of our cavalcade.
There was a Summoner with us at that Inn,
His face on fire, like a cherubin,
For he had carbuncles. His eyes were narrow,
He was as hot and lecherous as a sparrow.
Black scabby brows he had, and a thin beard.
Children were afraid when he appeared.
No quicksilver, lead ointment, tartar creams,
No brimstone, no boracic, so it seems,
Could make a salve that had the power to bite,
Clean up or cure his whelks of knobby white
Or purge the pimples sitting on his cheeks.
Garlic he loved, and onions too, and leeks,
And drinking strong red wine till all was hazy.
Then he would shout and jabber as if crazy,
And wouldnt speak a word except in Latin
When he was drunk, such tags as he was pat in;
He only had a few, say two or three,
That he had mugged up out of some decree;
No wonder, for he heard them every day.
And, as you know, a man can teach a jay
To call out Walter better than the Pope.
But had you tried to test his wits and grope
For more, youd have found nothing in the bag.
Then Questio quid juris was his tag.
He was a noble varlet and a kind one,
Youd meet none better if you went to find one.
Why, hed allowjust for a quart of wine
Any good lad to keep a concubine
A twelvemonth and dispense him altogether!
And he had finches of his own to feather:
And if he found some rascal with a maid

tiered discussion prompts


633 stallion-cob: a thickset, shortlegged male horse.

161

Situational Irony [paired option] Review


with students that situational irony contrasts
what is expected to happen with what actually does happen. Then have partners find
and explain examples of situational irony in
The Prologue, such as

Interpret Is the Summoners appearance


a reflection of his character? Explain your
answer. Possible answer: The Summoners
unattractive appearance is a reflection of his
unattractive character. As a church official,
he sells favors for wine and drinks too much.

642 cherubin (chDrPE-bGnQ): a type


of angelin the Middle Ages often
depicted with a fiery red face.
643 carbuncles (krPbOngQkElz): big
pimples, considered a sign of lechery
and drunkenness in the Middle Ages.
647648 quicksilver . . . boracic
(bE-rBsPGk): substances used as skin
medicines in medieval times.

Evaluate Does Chaucer judge characters by


the way they look? Possible answer: Chaucer
sometimes exaggerates a characters unpleasant physical features to serve as a kind
of emblem of their corruption and sin.

650 whelks (hwDlks): swellings.

656 tags: brief quotations.

658 mugged up: memorized.

660 jay: a bird that can be taught


to mimic human speech without
understanding it.

664 Questio quid juris (kwDsPtC-I


kwGd yMrPGs): Latin for The
question is, What part of the law (is
applicable)?a statement often
heard in medieval courts.

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Recall What specific details describe the


Summoners appearance? Possible answer:
He is described as having pimples on his face,
scabby eyebrows, and a thin beard. Children
are frightened of his appearance.

638 Norfolk (nrPfEk): a county in


eastern England.

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In lines 641669, use these prompts to help


students understand how the Summoners
appearance is linked to his character and to
Chaucers satire:

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The Monk, whom one expects to live a


pious, simple life devoted to other people,
instead loves hunting and fancy clothing.
Discuss the purpose and effect of Chaucers
situational irony. How does it support his
satire?

The Summoner, whose job is to summon


sinners to the church courts, is himself a
lecher and a drunk.

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revisit the big question

675

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 689734, in what ways is the
Pardoner like the Summoner? Possible answer:
Like the Summoner, the Pardoner is physically
and morally repugnant, another greedy and
corrupt church official who has sold his office.
How does Chaucer differentiate the character
of the Summoner from the Pardoner? Possible
answer: He looks different: The Summoner
has bulging eyes (line 704) and light blond
hair hanging down his back in rat-tails (lines
695699); he is also fashion-conscious (lines
699703). Unlike the Pardoner, the Summoner
is unmanly, with no beard and a high voice
(lines 708711).

680

685

690

695

700

705

710

715

162

differentiated instruction
for struggling readers
Classification [small-group option] Chaucer
describes a broad cross-section of people
from 14th-century England. Invite students
to consider ways of grouping the pilgrims: for
example, by professions; men and women;
laity and priests; or as round and flat, rich and
poor, educated and uneducated, or moral and
immoral characters. Which groupings are
most useful? Which help us to better understand Chaucers world? Have groups fill out

162

He would instruct him not to be afraid


In such a case of the Archdeacons curse
(Unless the rascals soul were in his purse)
For in his purse the punishment should be.
Purse is the good Archdeacons Hell, said he.
But well I know he lied in what he said;
A curse should put a guilty man in dread,
For curses kill, as shriving brings, salvation.
We should beware of excommunication.
Thus, as he pleased, the man could bring duress
On any young fellow in the diocese.
He knew their secrets, they did what he said.
He wore a garland set upon his head
Large as the holly-bush upon a stake
Outside an ale-house, and he had a cake,
A round one, which it was his joke to wield
As if it were intended for a shield.
He and a gentle Pardoner rode together,
A bird from Charing Cross of the same feather,
Just back from visiting the Court of Rome.
He loudly sang, Come hither, love, come home!
The Summoner sang deep seconds to this song,
No trumpet ever sounded half so strong.
This Pardoner had hair as yellow as wax,
Hanging down smoothly like a hank of flax.
In driblets fell his locks behind his head
Down to his shoulders which they overspread;
Thinly they fell, like rat-tails, one by one.
He wore no hood upon his head, for fun;
The hood inside his wallet had been stowed,
He aimed at riding in the latest mode;
But for a little cap his head was bare
And he had bulging eye-balls, like a hare.
Hed sewed a holy relic on his cap;
His wallet lay before him on his lap,
Brimful of pardons come from Rome, all hot.
He had the same small voice a goat has got.
His chin no beard had harbored, nor would harbor,
Smoother than ever chin was left by barber.
I judge he was a gelding, or a mare.
As to his trade, from Berwick down to Ware
There was no pardoner of equal grace,
For in his trunk he had a pillow-case
Which he asserted was Our Ladys veil.

673 Archdeacons curse:


excommunicationan official
exclusion of a person from
participating in the rites of the
church. (An archdeacon is a high
church official.)

681 duress (dM-rDsP): compulsion by


means of threats.
682 diocese (dFPE-sGs): the district
under a bishops supervision.
685686 the holly-bush . . . alehouse: Since few people could read
in the Middle Ages, many businesses
identified themselves with symbols.
Outside many taverns could be
found wreaths of holly on stakes.

690 Charing Cross: a section


of London.

696 flax: a pale grayish yellow fiber


used for making linen cloth.

701 wallet: knapsack.

705 holy relic: an object revered


because of its association with a
holy person.

711 gelding (gDlPdGng): a castrated


horsehere, a eunuch.
712 Berwick (bDrPGk) . . . Ware: towns
in the north and the south of England.
715 Our Ladys veil: the kerchief of
the Virgin Mary.

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Classification Charts to illustrate these groupings. Allow time for students to share and
compare their findings.
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Comprehension Support Direct students
attention to the side notes related to holy
relics (lines 705, 715, 716, 717718). Make sure
that they understand that all of these relics
are fakes, which the Summoner uses to fool
people and to cheat them out of their money.
Explain that he probably passes the pigs
bones (line 720) off as the bones of a saint or
other religious person.

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720

725

730

735

740

745

750

755

760

He said he had a gobbet of the sail


Saint Peter had the time when he made bold
To walk the waves, till Jesu Christ took hold.
He had a cross of metal set with stones
And, in a glass, a rubble of pigs bones.
And with these relics, any time he found
Some poor up-country parson to astound,
In one short day, in money down, he drew
More than the parson in a month or two,
And by his flatteries and prevarication
Made monkeys of the priest and congregation. n
But still to do him justice first and last
In church he was a noble ecclesiast.
How well he read a lesson or told a story!
But best of all he sang an Offertory,
For well he knew that when that song was sung
Hed have to preach and tune his honey-tongue
And (well he could) win silver from the crowd.
Thats why he sang so merrily and loud.
Now I have told you shortly, in a clause,
The rank, the array, the number and the cause
Of our assembly in this company
In Southwark, at that high-class hostelry
Known as The Tabard, close beside The Bell.
And now the time has come for me to tell
How we behaved that evening; Ill begin
After we had alighted at the Inn,
Then Ill report our journey, stage by stage,
All the remainder of our pilgrimage.
But first I beg of you, in courtesy,
Not to condemn me as unmannerly
If I speak plainly and with no concealings
And give account of all their words and dealings,
Using their very phrases as they fell.
For certainly, as you all know so well,
He who repeats a tale after a man
Is bound to say, as nearly as he can,
Each single word, if he remembers it,
However rudely spoken or unfit,
Or else the tale he tells will be untrue,
The things pretended and the phrases new.
He may not flinch although it were his brother,
He may as well say one word as another.
And Christ Himself spoke broad in Holy Writ,
Yet there is no scurrility in it,

716 gobbet: piece.


717718 when he . . . took hold: a
reference to an incident in which
Jesus extended a helping hand to
Peter as he tried to walk on water
(Matthew 14:2931).

R E A D I N G STR ATEG Y

Paraphrase the description of the


Pardoner in lines 712726. How
exactly does he earn a living?

163

RL 10

paraphrase

Possible answer: Paraphrase: There wasnt


a better pardoner from the north to the
south of England, for he had a pillowcase
that he claimed was Marys veil. He also
possessed a piece of fabric which he claimed
came from the sail (of the boat) that Peter
used when he tried walking on water, and
Jesus came to his rescue. Also, he had a
metal cross with stones and a glass with
pigs bones. He used these relics to fool the
naive populace of country parishes, where
he could make more money in a day than
their parson could make in a month or two.
Using flattery and lies, he made fools of the
priest and his congregation. The Pardoner
earns his living by selling pardons from
Rome and fake relics to poor, uneducated
country folk.

739 The Bell: another inn.

745756 The narrator apologizes in


advance for using the exact words of
his companions.

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Go over the


passage line by line with them.
Extend the Discussion What examples
of verbal irony does the Pardoners introduction contain?

759 broad: bluntly; plainly.


760 scurrility (skE-rGlPG-tC): vulgarity;
coarseness.

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n PARAPHRASE

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Comprehension: Text Structure Point out
that the first part of The Prologue, which
introduces the pilgrims, ends with line 734.
The next section explains the Hosts role in
the storytelling arrangement. The end of
The Prologue also serves as a kind of transition to the actual storytelling by individual
pilgrims.

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Analyze Visuals
Activity Compare the picture with Chaucers
description of the Host in lines 769774. What
details in the art match those in the text?
Possible answer: The art illustrates Chaucers
assertion that the Host served the finest food
imaginable (line 769). It also shows his wide
girth and manly bearing.

revisit the big question

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
Discuss In lines 767779, what words does
Chaucer use to describe the Host, the innkeeper of The Tabard? Possible answer: striking (line 771); no finer burgess in Cheapside
(line 774); Bold in . . . speech, wise (line 775);
manly (line 776); merry-hearted (line 777).
What actions of this character does Chaucer
also describe? Possible answer: He shows the
Host serving wonderful food and drink, speaking openly but tactfully, and discussing a variety of subjects. What do the Hosts own words
reveal about him? Possible answer: The Hosts
words reveal that he is inventive and fun-loving
and that he has mastered the art of making
everyone feel welcome. His words, along with
his actions and Chaucers description, illustrate
that he is a near-perfect host.

765

770

775

780

785

164

And Plato says, for those with power to read,


The word should be as cousin to the deed.
Further I beg you to forgive it me
If I neglect the order and degree
And what is due to rank in what Ive planned.
Im short of wit as you will understand.

761 Plato (plAPtI): a famous


philosopher of ancient Greece.

Our Host gave us great welcome; everyone


Was given a place and supper was begun.
He served the finest victuals you could think,
The wine was strong and we were glad to drink.
A very striking man our Host withal,
And fit to be a marshal in a hall.
His eyes were bright, his girth a little wide;
There is no finer burgess in Cheapside.
Bold in his speech, yet wise and full of tact,
There was no manly attribute he lacked,
Whats more he was a merry-hearted man.
After our meal he jokingly began
To talk of sport, and, among other things
After wed settled up our reckonings,
He said as follows: Truly, gentlemen,
Youre very welcome and I cant think when
Upon my word Im telling you no lie
Ive seen a gathering here that looked so spry,
No, not this year, as in this tavern now.
Id think you up some fun if I knew how.
And, as it happens, a thought has just occurred

767 Host: the innkeeper of


the Tabard.

772 marshal in a hall: an official in


charge of arranging a noblemans
banquet.
774 Cheapside: the main business
district of London in Chaucers day.

780 settled up our reckonings: paid


our bills.

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for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Help students use


context to figure out the meaning of these
expressions: Upon my word (line 783), I swear
that; God speed (line 789), [Have] a prosperous journey; while the time (line 792), pass
the time; at any rate (line 806), anyway;
fullest measure of (lines 817818), the largest
amount of; the most.

Interpret Allusion [paired option] Have


students discuss the allusion to Platos
aphorism, The word should be as cousin to
the deed (line 762). What does the narrator
mean? Point out that a cousin is not the
closest relationship. How would the saying
be different if it were The word should be as
brother to the deed? Is the narrator being
ironic? Allow time for partners to share their
interpretations.

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790

795

800

805

810

815

820

825

To please you, costing nothing, on my word.


Youre off to Canterburywell, God speed!
Blessed St. Thomas answer to your need!
And I dont doubt, before the journeys done
You mean to while the time in tales and fun.
Indeed, theres little pleasure for your bones
Riding along and all as dumb as stones.
So let me then propose for your enjoyment,
Just as I said, a suitable employment.
And if my notion suits and you agree
And promise to submit yourselves to me
Playing your parts exactly as I say
Tomorrow as you ride along the way,
Then by my fathers soul (and he is dead)
If you dont like it you can have my head!
Hold up your hands, and not another word.
Well, our opinion was not long deferred,
It seemed not worth a serious debate;
We all agreed to it at any rate
And bade him issue what commands he would.
My lords, he said, now listen for your good,
And please dont treat my notion with disdain.
This is the point. Ill make it short and plain.
Each one of you shall help to make things slip
By telling two stories on the outward trip
To Canterbury, thats what I intend,
And, on the homeward way to journeys end
Another two, tales from the days of old;
And then the man whose story is best told,
That is to say who gives the fullest measure
Of good morality and general pleasure,
He shall be given a supper, paid by all,
Here in this tavern, in this very hall,
When we come back again from Canterbury. o
And in the hope to keep you bright and merry
Ill go along with you myself and ride
All at my own expense and serve as guide.
Ill be the judge, and those who wont obey
Shall pay for what we spend upon the way.
Now if you all agree to what youve heard
Tell me at once without another word,
And I will make arrangements early for it.

790 St. Thomas: St. Thomas Becket,


to whose shrine the pilgrims are
traveling.

794 dumb: silent.

Language Coach
Multiple Meanings Submit
has several meanings: (1) to
yield to someone elses power,
(2) to present for review, (3) to
present as an opinion. Which
meaning applies in line 798?
Which meaning applies in this
sentence? I will submit my
article to the school newspaper.

807 bade him: asked him to.

165

Historical Perspective Have students discuss


the Hosts proposal and ask these questions.
Why did the Host make this proposal?
What does it suggest about 14th-century
pilgrimages?
Is any irony intended?
Why did Chaucer place the proposal at the
end of The Prologue, rather than at the
beginning?

RL 4

tone

Demonstrate tone for students by saying


a statement using two different attitudes,
or tonesone in a jovial tone, and one in
a serious tone.

RL 4

o TONE

In literature, tone refers to the


attitude a writer takes toward
a subject or character. A writer
can communicate tone through
diction, choice of details, and
direct statements of his or her
opinion. Tone can be serious,
playful, admiring, mocking,
or objective. How would you
describe Chaucers tone toward
his characters throughout The
Prologue? Why do you think he
portrays his characters this way?

Possible answer: Chaucers tone is generally


restrained and detached. He likely uses this
tone to allow for subtle jokes to be inserted
in the descriptions of the pilgrims.

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for advanced learners/ap

Pilgrims Identities Did Chaucer base his


pilgrims on real-life individuals from his day?
Scholars have researched and debated this
question for years. Unfortunately, no records
exist of Chaucers personal revelations on
the subject, so his readers may never know
for sure. The pilgrim who has been identified with the greatest certainty is the Host.
The Cook refers to him as Herry Bailly in the
Cooks Prologue. Some scholars think that
an innkeeper named Henri Bayliff lived in
Southwark, the location of Chaucers Tabard
Inn. Bayliffs name appears in various rolls and
records from the 1370s and 1380s.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

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background

Why did Chaucer choose to have the Host


make this proposal?
Could any other pilgrim have suggested the
contest?

12:15:44 PM

for english language learners


Language Coach
Multiple Meanings Answers: (1), (2)
Ask volunteers to speak aloud sentences
that include the word submit. Then, ask the
class to correctly identify the meaning used
in each sentence.

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830

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

835

entreaty: Ask students what entreaty the


Pilgrims make to the Host. Possible answer:
that the Host become their Governor. Then
have students write several sentences that
show an understanding of the differences
among entreaty, request, and demand.
Possible answer: My brother Mark requested
that I help him with his homework; at the
same time my parents demanded that I get
off the phone and finish my chores. I made
an entreaty to my history teacher to allow
me extra time on my essay because I had
been sick.

840

845

850

855

T E X T A N A LY S I S

characterization

Of course we all agreed, in fact we swore it


Delightedly, and made entreaty too
That he should act as he proposed to do,
Become our Governor in short, and be
Judge of our tales and general referee,
And set the supper at a certain price.
We promised to be ruled by his advice
Come high, come low; unanimously thus
We set him up in judgment over us.
More wine was fetched, the business being done;
We drank it off and up went everyone
To bed without a moment of delay. p
Early next morning at the spring of day
Up rose our Host and roused us like a cock,
Gathering us together in a flock,
And off we rode at slightly faster pace
Than walking to St. Thomas watering-place;
And there our Host drew up, began to ease
His horse, and said, Now, listen if you please,
My lords! Remember what you promised me.
If evensong and matins will agree
Lets see who shall be first to tell a tale.
And as I hope to drink good wine and ale
Ill be your judge. The rebel who disobeys,
However much the journey costs, he pays.
Now draw for cut and then we can depart;
The man who draws the shortest cut shall start.

entreaty (Dn-trCPtC) n. a serious


request or plea

p CHARACTERIZATION

Examine the way the pilgrims


respond to the Host in lines
830841. What type of person
do you think would appeal to so
many?
843 cock: rooster (whose cry rouses
people from sleep).

846 St. Thomas watering-place: a


brook about two miles from London.

850 If evensong and matins (mBtPnz)


will agree: if what you said last night
is what you will do this morning.
(Evensong and matins are evening
and morning prayer services.)

855 draw for cut: draw lots.

RL 1
RL 3

Possible answer: The Host is likely to be


friendly, fun-loving, charismatic, fair, honest,
and generous.

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read The Prologue of The Canterbury
Tales, ask them to make a generalization about
the characters that will narrate The Canterbury Tales. Possible answers: These characters
come from a wide cross-section of 14th-century
society. Their backgrounds, occupations, and
character traits are very diverse.
CRITIQUE
Ask students which pilgrims are most
memorable. Encourage them to explain
their responses.
After completing the After Reading questions on page 167, have students revisit
their responses and tell whether they have
changed their opinions.
INDEPENDENT READING
Students may also enjoy reading The Arabian
Nights, translated by Husain Haddawy.

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for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Develop Reading Fluency Have students


work in pairs to practice reading lines 830
856 to each other. Encourage students to
work together to clarify the pronunciations
of difficult words before reading. As one
student reads the text, instruct the other
student to listen and then summarize what
the first has read. When both students
have finished reading the text, ask them
to discuss how fluent reading allowed for
improved comprehension of the material.

Simile [paired option] Have students analyze the extended simile in lines 842844.
What is Chaucer comparing? Is the simile
serious or humorous? What light does it
cast on the Host and on the pilgrims? Then
have them compare this simile with the
religious metaphor in lines 514524. Allow
time for partners to share their findings.

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
1. Recall When and where does The Prologue take place?
2. Recall What event or circumstance causes the characters to gather?
3. Summarize What plan does the Host propose to the characters?

Text Analysis
4. Analyze Characterization Throughout the selection, Chaucer uses physical
detailseyes, hair, clothingto help develop his characters. Choose
three pilgrims and describe how their outward appearances reflect their
personalities.

RL 1 Cite textual evidence to


support analysis of what the
text says explicitly. RL 3 Analyze
the impact of the authors
choices regarding how to
develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 4 Analyze the
impact of specific word choices
on tone. RL 6 Analyze a case
in which grasping a point of
view requires distinguishing
what is directly stated in a
text from what is really meant
(e.g., irony). RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature.

5. Identify Irony Much of the humor of The Prologue is based on irony, the
discrepancy between what appears to be true and what actually is true.
Explain the irony in each of the following character portraits:
the Nun Prioress

the Merchant

the Skipper

the Doctor

For preliminary support of post-reading


questions, use these copy masters:
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Reading Check p. 134


Characterization p. 127
Question Support p. 135
Additional selection questions are
provided for teachers on page 121.

answers

1. The Prologue takes place in April at the


Tabard Inn in Southwark.
2. The characters gather for a pilgrimage
to the shrine of St. Thomas Becket in
Canterbury.

6. Draw Conclusions Review what you paraphrased as you read the selection.
Describe the narrators personality and values.
7. Examine Satire A writer who pokes fun at behaviors and customs with the
intent of improving society is creating satire. Review the descriptions of the
Monk and the Friar in lines 169279. What aspects of the medieval church
does Chaucer satirize through these characters?

3. The Host proposes a contest in which each


Pilgrim tells two stories on the way to
Canterbury and two more on the way back;
the winner will receive a free dinner.

8. Interpret Tone In literature, tone refers to the attitude a writer takes toward
a subject or character. Tone can be serious, playful, admiring, mocking, or
objective. Review lines 455486. What is Chaucers tone toward the Wife
of Bath? Cite specific words and phrases to support your answer.

Possible answers:
4.

Text Criticism
9. Critical Interpretations In 1809, the English poet and artist William Blake
made the following observation: Chaucers pilgrims are the characters
which compose all ages and nations. . . . Some of the names or titles are
altered by time, but the characters themselves forever remain unaltered. Do
you agree or disagree that Chaucers characters seem timeless and universal?
Support your opinion with details from the text and your own experiences.

What makes a great

character?

Which of Chaucers characters do you like best? Which character traits make
this character appealing to you?

the canterbury tales

7. Chaucer
167satirizes their worldliness, materialism, and hypocrisy and by extension any
churchmen with those traits. Both indulge
in worldly pleasures. Neither serves those
in need.

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8. Though Chaucer gently mocks the Wife


of Baths pride and her excesses in clothing and husbands, he generally admires
her, using words such as worthy, bold, and
handsome to describe her.
9. Chaucers pilgrims seem timeless. His
stories of the corruption, hypocrisy, greed,
and pretense of the Sergeant at the Law,

RL 1, RL 3, RL 4, RL 6, RL 10

167

the Merchant, the Friar, the Monk, the 1/8/11


Summoner, and the Pardoner are similar
to current stories about failures of trust in
business, politics, and the clergy. So, too,
the faith and charity of the Parson, Cleric,
and Plowman have parallels in the humble
clergy of today.

What makes a great

CHARACTER?
thoughtful responses.

Accept all

12:07:44 PM

common core focus Characterization Answers will vary, but they may include
these descriptions: Squire: appearance20
years old, curly hair, strong, short, embroidered gown; personalityyoung, romantic.
Reeve: appearanceold, choleric, closeshaven, skinny; personality: exacting,
shrewd; excellent manager. Summoner:
appearancecarbuncles, narrow eyes,
scabby brows; personalitydespicable;
cheater and blackmailer.

5. The Nun Prioress wishes to seem sophisticated; her poor French, table manners, and
jewelry suggest otherwise. The Skipper
seems to be a skilled, prudent, and unpretentious seaman, but he is capable of theft
and violence. The Merchant is well dressed
and well versed at trade, but he is in debt.
The Doctor knows everything about medieval medicine, but he is motivated by love
of gold rather than the desire to help others.
6.

common core focus Paraphrase The narrator is intelligent, wellread, and religious; he is a keen observer of
the faults and strengths of others; he is humorous and humane. He esteems humility,
simplicity, generosity, the Gospel and the
Golden Rule; he despises pretension, greed,
hypocrisy, materialism, and corruption.

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Vocabulary in Context

answers
Vocabulary in Context

vocabulary practice

word list

Use the details from The Prologue and your understanding of the boldfaced
words to help you choose the answer to each question.

accrue

vocabulary practice

courtliness
entreaty

1. Which of these characters shows the most courtliness?

1. (b) Knight

4. (a) Nun Prioress

2. Which of these characters seems the most personable?

2. (a) Squire

5. (a) Friar

3. What does the Doctor believe can cause a malady?

3. (b) body humors

6. (c) Host

4. Which of these characters tries the most to behave sedately?

malady
personable
sedately

5. Which character has seen money accrue in his savings?

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

6. To whom do the pilgrims make an entreaty about judging the story contest?

Vocabulary Practice p. 132

academic vocabulary in writing

academic vocabulary in writing

concept

Suggest that students begin by sketching a


rough outline or graphic organizer to represent
the structure of The Prologue. As students
begin to write and revise their work, they
should focus on correctly incorporating academic vocabulary terms into their writing.

vocabulary strategy:
words from french

L4, L 6

Direct students attention to the structural


similarities of the Old French roots and the
contemporary English terms. Discuss with
them how the original meanings of the roots
relate to the definitions of the contemporary
words.
3. personable

2. malady; malade

4. entreaty

parallel

section

structure

Chaucer characters embody abstract concepts like greed and vanity, yet remain
fully-realized, three-dimesional characters. Using at least two additional
Academic Vocabulary words, write about how the structure of The Prologue
allows Chaucer to give such a complete picture of the pilgrims.

vocabulary strategy: words from french


French has contributed words to English since the French-speaking Normans
invaded England in 1066. A huge number of our Latin words actually come
from Latin by way of Old French. Knowing the French origins of a word can help
you understand its meanings. For example, knowing that parley comes from the
French parler, which means to speak, will tell you that a parley is a conference.

L 4 Determine or clarify
the meaning of unknown
words. L 6 Acquire and use
accurately general academic and
domain-specific words.

PRACTICE Based on the word list to the right and the following word bank,
respond each item below:
Old French Root
malady

personable

entreaty

court

accrue

1. The words accretion and ________ both contain the core


meaning of the Old French word acreu. What is that core
meaning? __________

Answers:
1. accrue; increased

culture

Original Meaning

acreu

increased

entraiter

to deal with, beseech

malade

sick

persone

person

2. The core meaning of the English word ___________ can be found in the Old
French word for sick. What is that word? _______________

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Strategy p. 133

3. If the Normans had not invaded England in 1066, we might not say a friendly
individual is ____________.

Interactive
Vocabulary

4. Although it did not survive into Modern French, the Old French word entraiter survives in English in the form of __________.

Go to thinkcentral.com.
KEYWORD: HML12-168

Interactive Vocabulary
Keywords direct students to a WordSharp
tutorial on thinkcentral.com or to other types
of vocabulary practice and review.

168

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differentiated instruction

Assess and Reteach


Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS
Selection Tests A, B/C pp. 4950, 5152
Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Invite students who


speak Latin-based languages to name words
in their native languages that contain the
prefix mal-.

Vocabulary Practice: Challenge Ask partners


to do a word search to find additional words
with the mal- prefix, such as maladroit,
malfeasance, and malingerer. Have them
use five words with the prefix to write
descriptions of five make-believe characters.

12:07:46 PM

Reteach
Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com

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11:02:55 AM

The Age of Chaucer

Teach

from The

Pardoners Tale
from The Canterbury Tales
Poem by Geoffrey Chaucer
Translated by Nevill Coghill

What has the


power to

RL 3, RL 4, RL 6, RL 10

corrupt?

text analysis: exemplum


An exemplum is a short anecdote or story that illustrates a
particular moral point. Developed in the late Middle Ages, this
literary form was often used in sermons and other didactic
literature. One famous example is Chaucers The Pardoners
Tale, which focuses on the subject of greed. As you read the
selection, pay attention to the actions of the characters and to
the narrators description of his own practices.

In the introduction to his tale, the


Pardoner states, Radix malorum est
cupiditas, which is Latin for The love of
money is the root of all evila passage
from the Bible. The expression suggests
that the desire for riches often seduces
people into abandoning their moral
principles. Today, as in Chaucers time,
greed and other elements of human
weakness often trigger grave acts of
corruption.

Review: Irony

reading skill: predict


When you predict, you make guesses about what will happen
next in a story based on text clues and your own prior
knowledge. Predicting helps you become engaged in the story
and motivates you to read on. To make predictions about The
Pardoners Tale, use the following strategies:
Note foreshadowing, or hints about future plot events.
Think about the words, actions, and personalities of the three
rioters to predict their behavior throughout the story.
As you read, record your predictions and any helpful text clues
in a chart like the one shown. Later, complete the chart by
explaining the actual outcomes of the storys events.
Predictions

Text Clues

The rioters will


experience trouble.

The tavern boy warns


them about the plague.

DISCUSS With a small group of


classmates, list several examples of
corruption. Discuss the factors that
you think prompted people to commit
corrupt acts. Compare your conclusions
with those of other groups.
Examples of Corruption
1. Corporate scandals

RL 3 Analyze the impact of the authors choices


regarding how to develop and relate elements of
a story. RL 4 Analyze the impact of specific word
choices on tone. RL 6 Analyze a case in which
grasping a point of view requires distinguishing
what is directly stated in a text from what
is really meant (e.g., irony). RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature. L 4d Verify the preliminary
determination of the meaning of the word.
L 6 Acquire and use accurately general academic
and domain-specific words.

What has the power to

CORRUPT?
Introduce the question and discuss the following paragraph. Then ask students to help you
create a corruption scale that runs from 1
to 10. Have volunteers place on the scale the
various forms of corruption that they have
listed. Encourage them to keep this scale in
mind during the DISCUSS activity.

2.

Outcomes

3.
4.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

Model the Skill: exemplum


To model the analysis of an exemplum,
explain to students the moral lessons in
old tales such as The Goose that Laid the
Golden Egg and King Midas.

vocabulary in context
To see how many vocabulary words you already know,
substitute a different word for each boldfaced term.
1. The miser demonstrated his avarice by amassing coins.
2. She used harsh words to castigate his awful behavior.

GUIDED PRACTICE Ask students to identify


additional examples of stories or tales with
a moral lesson.

3. The two enemies came together for a secret parley.


Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

the canterbury tales

169
READING SKILL

RL 10
NA_L12PE-u01s32-brPardon.indd

V O C A B 169
ULARY SKILL

vocabulary in context
Have all students complete Vocabulary in
Context. Check their definitions against the
following.
avarice (BvPE-rGs) n. greed
castigate (kBsPtG-gAtQ) v. to criticize
parley (prPlC) n. a discussion or a conference

12/15/10

L4

PRETEACH VOCABULARY Use the copy


master to help students predict meanings.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Study p. 151

7:30:06 PM

Model the Skill: predict


Write this example on the board:
Mark was driving to Morrisville to visit
friends, when a news flash broke on the
radio: A flood washed out the Morrisville Dam. Emergency crews are evacuating residents by boat.
Model for students how to make a prediction
about what Mark will do next. Explain that,
based on text clues and prior knowledge, you
can guess that he will probably turn around,
go home, and try to reach his friends.

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Practice and Apply


The

summary

pardoners prologue
Geoffrey Chaucer

In this poem, the corrupt Pardoner explains


that he preaches his tale of avarice to frighten
peasants into giving him money: To wit, three
violent youths vow to murder Death for killing
their friend. They meet a mysterious old man
who directs them to a tree, where, he says,
they will find Death. Instead, they discover
gold, which they plan to take and hide that
night. During a trip to town, the youngest
rioter plots to poison the others, while the
two left behind plan to murder him. Thus, the
two rioters stab the youngest, then drink his
poisoned wine and die as well.

background In the medieval church, a pardoner was a


clergy member who had authority from the pope to grant
indulgencescertificates of forgivenessto people who
showed great charity. In practice, however, many pardoners
such as Chaucers pilgrimwere unethical and sold their
certificates to make money for the church or themselves.

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read The Pardoners Prologue to learn
about the nature of corruption and deceit.

10

Discuss In lines 1622, in what way is the


Pardoners choice of the topic of avarice for his
tale a sign of his corruption? Possible answer:
The Pardoner is telling a sermon about greed,
and his sole motive is greed. The topic itself
makes poor people more willing to give up their
money. His ulterior motive in choosing this
topic is a sign of his corruption.

15

20

My lords, he said, in churches where I preach


I cultivate a haughty kind of speech
And ring it out as roundly as a bell;
Ive got it all by heart, the tale I tell.
I have a text, it always is the same
And always has been, since I learnt the game,
Old as the hills and fresher than the grass,
Radix malorum est cupiditas. . . .
I preach, as you have heard me say before,
And tell a hundred lying mockeries more.
I take great pains, and stretching out my neck
To east and west I crane about and peck
Just like a pigeon sitting on a barn.
My hands and tongue together spin the yarn
And all my antics are a joy to see.
The curse of avarice and cupidity
Is all my sermon, for it frees the pelf.
Out come the pence, and specially for myself,
For my exclusive purpose is to win
And not at all to castigate their sin.
Once dead what matter how their souls may fare?
They can go blackberrying, for all I care! . . .

Analyze Visuals
What details in this image
reflect the Pardoners description
of his preaching?

8 Radix malorum est cupiditas


(rPdGks m-lrPEm DstQ
kL-pGdPG-tsQ): Latin for The love of
money is the root of all evil
(1 Timothy 6:10).
10 mockeries: false tales.

avarice (BvPE-rGs) n. greed


17 pelf: riches.
18 pence: pennies.

castigate (kBsPtG-gAtQ) v. to
criticize

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

avarice: Read the definition of avarice


aloud to students. Then have them name
common antonyms. Possible answers:
generosity, charitableness, benevolence
castigate: Tell students that the connotation of castigate is to criticize severely,
to berate. Have them name words that
carry similar meaning, but that have less
intensity. Possible answers: scold, chasten

READING SKILL

RL 10

predict

Possible answer: The characters will commit


some error or crime related to greed and
meet with a suitable ending.

170

25

170

And thus I preach against the very vice


I make my living out ofavarice. a
And yet however guilty of that sin
Myself, with others I have power to win
Them from it, I can bring them to repent;
But that is not my principal intent.

a PREDICT

The Pardoner convinces people


to buy certificates of forgiveness
by reciting his moral stories.
What can you predict about the
characters and events of the tale
he will tell?

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for struggling readers

Literary Forms Invite English language


learners to share examples of fables or
stories from their cultures that teach a moral
or lesson. Ask them to identify the values
that these exemplum teach. Lead the class
in a discussion about the similarities and
differences that they observe in these tales
across cultures.

Have students listen to the Audio Anthology


CD for this selection. Encourage students
to practice reading aloud along with this
resource to improve reading fluency.

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background
Christianity in the Late Middle Ages Through
the Middle Ages, England remained tied to
the Catholic Church. From the 12th century on,
the church worked hard to raise the quality
of the clergy, especially on the parish level,
hoping to teach Christian principles to the
laity. There was a strong emphasis on piousness, prayer, and good works. By Chaucers
day, local clergy were more educated and more
dutiful than ever. Even so, abuses remained
widespread. Unscrupulous church associates,
like the Pardoner, continued to prey upon ignorant people, selling fake relics and promising
to cleanse sins or cure sickness. In the 14th
century, the outcry against church abuses
grew angrier and more radical with the chaos
of war and plague. The papacy, in particular,
was the subject of harsh criticism. Avignon, in
todays southern France, was a papal city. The
political conflict between England and France
led to a rupture in the church. The power of
popes to make appointments at all levels of
the churchthe Pardoner might be a case in
pointwas another source of resentment.

Analyze Visuals
Possible answer: The Pardoners pious look
reflects the gravity of his false preaching.
The peasants giving him money reflects his
success in telling lies.

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Vocabulary Support Use New Word Analysis


to teach these words: principal
(line 28), job (line 40), register (line 92), consent
(line 157), section (line 292), occur (line 329).

Create a Ballad Instruct students to identify


a character trait or flaw that interests them.
Then, ask them to use The Pardoners Prologue as a model for composing their own
ballad about a character or characters that
illustrates their chosen character trait or flaw.
Encourage students to craft a plot for their
poems that shows how these traits or flaws

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

New Word Analysis p. E8

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affect the lives of their characters. When


students have completed their ballads, invite
them to read their work aloud to the class.

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30

revisit the big question

What has the power to

CORRUPT?

35

Discuss In lines 5057, why does the Pardoner


admit his own corruption? Possible answer:
The Pardoner wants the other pilgrims to acknowledge that, despite the fact that he is immoral (line 55), he can still tell a moral tale (line
56). One criterion for winning the storytelling
contest is that it must be entertaining; the
other is that it must have a strong moralthe
fullest measure of good morality and general
pleasure (The Prologue, lines 817818). The
Pardoner does not want to lose the contest
because of his depraved character. His admission contributes to the irony.

40

45

50

T E X T A N A L Y S I S : Review

irony

Possible answer: The Pardoner tells his


moral stories not to help sinners but to help
himself. Hes greedy and wishes to scare
people into buying his indulgences and
relics.

55

Covetousness is both the root and stuff


Of all I preach. That ought to be enough.
Well, then I give examples thick and fast
From bygone times, old stories from the past.
A yokel mind loves stories from of old,
Being the kind it can repeat and hold.
What! Do you think, as long as I can preach
And get their silver for the things I teach,
That I will live in poverty, from choice?
Thats not the counsel of my inner voice!
No! Let me preach and beg from kirk to kirk
And never do an honest job of work,
No, nor make baskets, like St. Paul, to gain
A livelihood. I do not preach in vain.
Theres no apostle I would counterfeit;
I mean to have money, wool and cheese and wheat
Though it were given me by the poorest lad
Or poorest village widow, though she had
A string of starving children, all agape. b
No, let me drink the liquor of the grape
And keep a jolly wench in every town!
But listen, gentlemen; to bring things down
To a conclusion, would you like a tale?
Now as Ive drunk a draft of corn-ripe ale,
By God it stands to reason I can strike
On some good story that you all will like.
For though I am a wholly vicious man
Dont think I cant tell moral tales. I can!
Heres one I often preach when out for winning. . . .

33 yokel: rustic.

39 kirk: church.

41 St. Paul: a follower of Jesus Christ


who made baskets and tents.
43 counterfeit: imitate.

b IRONY

Review lines 3947. Why does


the Pardoner tell his moral
stories? Explain how his motive
is ironic, or different from what
you might have expected.

55 vicious: immoral; depraved.

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Review the definition of irony: a contrast between what
one expects to happen and what does
happen, between the way things appear
and the way they really are.

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Character Analysis [paired option] The
Pardoners self-examination in lines 3357 is
most revealing. Have students reread and
discuss this personal analysis. After groups
finish their discussion, ask them to create a
back story, explaining why the Pardoner
has come to his present state. Invite them
to share their ideas with the class.

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tiered discussion prompts

The

60

65

70

75

80

85

90

In lines 6786, use these prompts to help


students understand the significance of the
tavern-knaves warning:

pardoners tale

Its of three rioters I have to tell


Who, long before the morning service bell,
Were sitting in a tavern for a drink.
And as they sat, they heard the hand-bell clink
Before a coffin going to the grave;
One of them called the little tavern-knave
And said Go and find out at oncelook spry!
Whose corpse is in that coffin passing by;
And see you get the name correctly too.
Sir, said the boy, no need, I promise you;
Two hours before you came here I was told.
He was a friend of yours in days of old,
And suddenly, last night, the man was slain,
Upon his bench, face up, dead drunk again.
There came a privy thief, they call him Death,
Who kills us all round here, and in a breath
He speared him through the heart, he never stirred.
And then Death went his way without a word.
Hes killed a thousand in the present plague,
And, sir, it doesnt do to be too vague
If you should meet him; you had best be wary.
Be on your guard with such an adversary,
Be primed to meet him everywhere you go,
Thats what my mother said. Its all I know.

58 rioters: rowdy people; revelers.

The publican joined in with, By St. Mary,


What the child says is right; youd best be wary,
This very year he killed, in a large village
A mile away, man, woman, serf at tillage,
Page in the household, childrenall there were.
Yes, I imagine that he lives round there.
Its well to be prepared in these alarms,
He might do you dishonor. Huh, Gods arms!
The rioter said, Is he so fierce to meet?
Ill search for him, by Jesus, street by street.
Gods blessed bones! Ill register a vow!

82 publican: innkeeper; tavern


owner.

6162 hand-bell . . . grave: In


Chaucers time, a bell was carried
beside the coffin in a funeral
procession.

76 Bubonic plague killed at least a


quarter of the population of Europe
in the mid-14th century.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

86 page: boy servant.

EXEMPLUM
Many characters in moral stories
are allegorical that is, they
stand for abstract ideas, such as
virtue and beauty. Identify the
allegorical character presented
in lines 7289. Who fears
him? Why?

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Character Ask students which words best describe the Pardoner. Encourage them to explain
each choice. Help them to find textual support.
List their responses in a Character Traits Web.

Character Traits Web p. D7

Pardoner

untruthful
greedy

moneyhungry
corrupt

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Reread and


paraphrase with them the description of
Death in lines 7278.
Extend the Discussion What aspect of
death does this personification capture?

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for english language learners


Vocabulary: Outdated Forms Remind students
that some words in this translation are not
commonly used in modern American English,
such as look spry (line 64), hurry; By St. Mary
(line 82), I swear upon the name of St. Mary;
Huh, Gods arms! (line 89), Im not worried,
with the army of God [an exclamation offer-

ing or claiming to represent the army of God];


Gods blessed bones! (line 92), I swear by the
bones of Jesus. Have students reread the
lines, substituting the modern version for each
outdated form.

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RL 3

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for struggling readers

selfish

exemplum

Possible answer: The allegorical character


is Death. The tavern-knave, the innkeeper,
and the townspeople are all afraid of death
because the plague has struck and taken
many lives.

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immoral

Synthesize What event do the words of the


boy and the innkeeper foreshadow? Possible
answer: Their warnings foreshadow a brush
with death, especially if the rioters are not
vigilant and careful, as the tavern-knave and
innkeeper have advised.

72 privy (prGvPC): hidden; secretive.

173

vicious

Analyze What adds credibility to the boys


words? Possible answer: The innkeeper supports the boys view that the rioters should be
wary (line 83).

63 tavern-knave (nAv): a serving boy


in an inn.

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Connect Have you ever received a warning


that you did not heed? How does that help
you predict what will happen to the rioters?
Students should understand that because the
rioters do not heed the tavern-knaves warning, something bad will happen.

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95

100

READING SKILL

RL 10

predict

Possible answer: Chaucer emphasizes the


rioters drunkenness, anger, impulsiveness,
overconfidence, and violent language. They
will likely turn on each other.

105

Extend the Discussion Why dont the rioters fear death? Do young people tend to
believe that nothing can hurt them?

110

tiered discussion prompts

115

In lines 108132, use these prompts to help


students understand the significance of the
old man in this tale:
Recall How do the rioters treat the poor old
man? Possible answer: The rioters show him
no respect and even threaten to harm him.

120

Analyze What does the rioters treatment


of the old man reveal about them? Possible
answer: Their mistreatment of the old man
underscores their crudeness, recklessness, and
lack of judgment.
Evaluate Why is the character of the old
man included in this tale? Possible answer:
He is a foil to the rioters, representing the wisdom of old age. What purposes do the story
of his life and his views about death serve?
Possible answer: They serve as a cautionary
tale to the reckless rioters who are searching
for Death: The old man has also been searchingfor a young person to trade youth for
his old age. The old mans search has been
fruitless. His pleas for death have also gone
unanswered. The old mans example suggests that people have no control over death.
Any effort to gain control is as pointless as
trying to trade old age for youth.

174

125

130

174

Here, chaps! The three of us together now,


Hold up your hands, like me, and well be brothers
In this affair, and each defend the others,
And we will kill this traitor Death, I say!
Away with him as he has made away
With all our friends. Gods dignity! Tonight!
They made their bargain, swore with appetite,
These three, to live and die for one another
As brother-born might swear to his born brother.
And up they started in their drunken rage
And made towards this village which the page
And publican had spoken of before.
Many and grisly were the oaths they swore,
Tearing Christs blessed body to a shred;
If we can only catch him, Death is dead! d
When they had gone not fully half a mile,
Just as they were about to cross a stile,
They came upon a very poor old man
Who humbly greeted them and thus began,
God look to you, my lords, and give you quiet!
To which the proudest of these men of riot
Gave back the answer, What, old fool? Give place!
Why are you all wrapped up except your face?
Why live so long? Isnt it time to die?

d PREDICT

What qualities of the three men


does Chaucer emphasize in
lines 93107? Predict what will
happen to them based on these
text clues.

109 stile: a stairway used to climb


over a fence or wall.

The old, old fellow looked him in the eye


And said, Because I never yet have found,
Though I have walked to India, searching round
Village and city on my pilgrimage,
One who would change his youth to have my age.
And so my age is mine and must be still
Upon me, for such time as God may will.
Not even Death, alas, will take my life;
So, like a wretched prisoner at strife
Within himself, I walk alone and wait
About the earth, which is my mothers gate,
Knock-knocking with my staff from night to noon
And crying, Mother, open to me soon!
Look at me, mother, wont you let me in?
See how I wither, flesh and blood and skin!
Alas! When will these bones be laid to rest?
Mother, I would exchangefor that were best
The wardrobe in my chamber, standing there

129 The old man addresses the earth


as his mother (recall the familiar
expressions Mother Earth and
Mother Nature).

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Comprehension: Text Structure Explain to
students that although The Pardoners Tale
is written in poetic form, it contains dialogue.
Have students identify places where dialogue
begins and ends, naming each speaker; for
example: rioter, lines 9098; rioters, line 107;
old man, line 112; proud rioter, lines 114116;
old man, lines 118148.

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Vocabulary: Outdated Forms Point out additional outdated forms on pages 174175:
away with him (line 97), send him away; kill
him; made away with (lines 9798), taken
away, killed; made towards (line 103), went
towards; alas (line 124), unfortunately;
Whence (line 137), from which source; holy
writ (line 141), holy writing; whither (line
148), to what place.

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135

140

145

So long, for yours! Aye, for a shirt of hair


To wrap me in! She has refused her grace,
Whence comes the pallor of my withered face.
But it dishonored you when you began
To speak so roughly, sir, to an old man,
Unless he had injured you in word or deed.
It says in holy writ, as you may read,
Thou shalt rise up before the hoary head
And honor it. And therefore be it said
Do no more harm to an old man than you,
Being now young, would have another do
When you are oldif you should live till then.
And so may God be with you, gentlemen,
For I must go whither I have to go.

135 shirt of hair: a rough shirt made


of animal hair, worn to punish
oneself for ones sins.

142 hoary: gray or white with age.

Analyze Visuals
Activity How does the picture of the old man
support the Pardoners description of him?
Possible answer: The picture shows that he is
indeed ancient, but also dignified.

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Research Allegorical Characters [small-group
option] Remind students that stories such as
The Canterbury Tales contain allegorical characters. The tavern-knave and the old man
are two examples. Have students find other
stories that contain allegorical characters.
Have students choose a story, read it, and
deliver a brief report on it, explaining what
each character stands for.

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150

155

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

exemplum

Possible answer: The gambler seems to


be an evil character. He shows nothing
but contempt for the old man. He insults
him, threatens him (lines 150 and 155), and
accuses him of working for Death (lines 154,
157158).

160

165

Extend the Discussion How do the words


of the gambler resonate with the old
mans reminder that Thou shalt rise up
before the hoary head / And honor it
(lines 142143)?

170

175

T E X T A N A L Y S I S : Review

180

irony

Possible answer: One might expect the


rioters to discover a frightful person, beast,
or other personification of Death under the
tree. Instead, they find gold.

185

Extend the Discussion What might the


old man know that the rioters do not?
190

176

differentiated instruction
for struggling readers
Visualization The scene at the tree is graphic.
Encourage students to try to visualize it. Have
them close their eyes and listen as you read
aloud lines 167182. Ask them to recall specific
details.

176

By God, the gambler said, you shant do so,


You dont get off so easy, by St. John!
I heard you mention, just a moment gone,
A certain traitor Death who singles out
And kills the fine young fellows hereabout.
And youre his spy, by God! You wait a bit.
Say where he is or you shall pay for it,
By God and by the Holy Sacrament!
I say youve joined together by consent
To kill us younger folk, you thieving swine! e

Well, sirs, he said, if it be your design


To find out Death, turn up this crooked way
Towards that grove, I left him there today
Under a tree, and there youll find him waiting.
He isnt one to hide for all your prating.
You see that oak? He wont be far to find.
And God protect you that redeemed mankind,
Aye, and amend you! Thus that ancient man.
At once the three young rioters began
To run, and reached the tree, and there they found
A pile of golden florins on the ground,
New-coined, eight bushels of them as they thought.
No longer was it Death those fellows sought,
For they were all so thrilled to see the sight,
The florins were so beautiful and bright,
That down they sat beside the precious pile.
The wickedest spoke first after a while.
Brothers, he said, you listen to what I say.
Im pretty sharp although I joke away.
Its clear that Fortune has bestowed this treasure
To let us live in jollity and pleasure.
Light come, light go! Well spend it as we ought.
Gods precious dignity! Who would have thought
This morning was to be our lucky day? f
If one could only get the gold away,
Back to my house, or else to yours, perhaps
For as you know, the gold is ours, chaps
Wed all be at the top of fortune, hey?
But certainly it cant be done by day.
People would call us robbersa strong gang,
So our own property would make us hang.
No, we must bring this treasure back by night
Some prudent way, and keep it out of sight.

EXEMPLUM
To best illustrate a moral point,
characters in an exemplum are
usually good or evil. To which
category does the gambler seem
to belong? Cite evidence from
lines 149158 to support your
response.

169 florins: coins.

178 Fortune here means fate.

IRONY
Reread lines 167182. In what
way is the discovery the rioters
make ironic, or different from
what you had anticipated?

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Figurative Language Remind students that


personification is a literary technique in which
an object, animal, or idea takes on human
qualities. Help them to identify examples
of personification in The Pardoners Tale
(such as Death, Mother Earth, and Fortune).
Encourage them to explain how each one is
described in the tale.

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Personification [paired option] Have students
explain how personification works within
The Pardoners Tale. How does it support
Chaucers purpose and meaning? In what way
would the tale be different without the use of
personification?

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195

200

And so as a solution I propose


We draw for lots and see the way it goes;
The one who draws the longest, lucky man,
Shall run to town as quickly as he can
To fetch us bread and winebut keep things dark
While two remain in hiding here to mark
Our heap of treasure. If theres no delay,
When night comes down well carry it away,
All three of us, wherever we have planned. g
He gathered lots and hid them in his hand
Bidding them draw for where the luck should fall.
It fell upon the youngest of them all,
And off he ran at once towards the town.

205

210

215

220

225

230

As soon as he had gone the first sat down


And thus began a parley with the other:
You know that you can trust me as a brother;
Now let me tell you where your profit lies;
You know our friend has gone to get supplies
And heres a lot of gold that is to be
Divided equally amongst us three.
Nevertheless, if I could shape things thus
So that we shared it outthe two of us
Wouldnt you take it as a friendly act?

196 keep things dark: act in secret,


without giving away what has
happened.

READING SKILL

Reread lines 183200. How do


you think the three men will
react to the challenge of sharing
their treasure?

Well, said his friend, you see that we are two,


And two are twice as powerful as one.
Now look; when he comes back, get up in fun
To have a wrestle; then, as you attack,
Ill up and put my dagger through his back
While you and he are struggling, as in game;
Then draw your dagger too and do the same.
Then all this money will be ours to spend,
Divided equally of course, dear friend.
Then we can gratify our lusts and fill

177

own the word

revisit the big question

What has the power to

Language Coach

CORRUPT?

Fixed Expressions Many verbs


take on a special meaning
when followed by a particular
preposition. An example of this
type of xed expression is bring
about. Reread lines 219220: to
bring the thing about means
to cause the thing. Use bring
about in another sentence.

Discuss In lines 207229, is the rioters corruption surprising? Possible answer: The rioters
have shown themselves to be untrustworthy
thieves without conscience. The plot to gang up
on and kill one of the brothers is no surprise.

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Interpreting Dialogue Refer students to lines


212214. Ask them to discuss the wickedest
rioters various motives. Why is he turning
against the youngest (line 203) rioter? Does
he dislike the youngest rioter? Why did the
Pardoner call him the wickedest (line 175)?
Suggest that, going forward, students pay
attention to how Chaucer subtly characterizes
each of the three rioters through their words.

Vocabulary Support Point out the multiplemeaning words on pages 176177. Help
students use context clues to figure out the
meaning of each word: chaps (line 185), fellows; friends; draw (lines 193 and 202), pick;
lots (lines 193 and 201), objects used to determine something by chance; Bidding (line 202),
requesting; profit (line 208), advantage;
shape (line 212), manipulate; influence.

for english language learners


Language Coach
Fixed Expressions Sample response: Spring
will bring about many changes.
Encourage students to write two sentences
that use the words bring and about. The
first sentence should use the two words
independently, while the second sentence
should include them together as a fixed
expression.

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L4

parley: Tell students that a parley is generally a discussion between opponents. In


what way is this conversation a parley?
Possible answer: The two men are not
friends; they are in fact opponents, one trying to rob the others.

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VOCABULARY

But how? the other said. He knows the fact


That all the gold was left with me and you;
What can we tell him? What are we to do?
Is it a bargain, said the first, or no?
For I can tell you in a word or so
Whats to be done to bring the thing about.
Trust me, the other said, you neednt doubt
My word. I wont betray you, Ill be true.

predict

Possible answer: The men will probably


turn on each other. Each will want to keep
the gold for himself.

parley (prPlC) n. a discussion or


a conference

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g PREDICT

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235

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

exemplum

240

Possible answer: The youngest rioter thinks


only of the gold coins, without consideration for the mortal sin he plans to commit.
245

revisit the big question

What has the power to

CORRUPT?

250

Discuss In lines 243259, how does the youngest rioters level of corruption compare to that
of his friends? Possible answer: The youngest
rioter seems to be every bit as corrupt as his
friends.

255

260

265

270

178

differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Language Coach

RL 4

Multiple Meanings Answer: Act of preparing


Invite students to identify additional
examples of words that use the suffix -ion
to change words from verbs to nouns in
the manner described. For each example
provided, ask students to evaluate the noun
and consider whether it carries an additional
special meaning.

178

The day with dicing at our own sweet will.


Thus these two miscreants agreed to slay
The third and youngest, as you heard me say.
The youngest, as he ran towards the town,
Kept turning over, rolling up and down
Within his heart the beauty of those bright
New florins, saying, Lord, to think I might
Have all that treasure to myself alone!
Could there be anyone beneath the throne
Of God so happy as I then should be? h
And so the Fiend, our common enemy,
Was given power to put it in his thought
That there was always poison to be bought,
And that with poison he could kill his friends.
To men in such a state the Devil sends
Thoughts of this kind, and has a full permission
To lure them on to sorrow and perdition;
For this young man was utterly content
To kill them both and never to repent.

233 dicing: gambling with dice.


234 miscreants (mGsPkrC-Ents):
evildoers; villains.

h EXEMPLUM

Which details in lines 236242


tell you that greed is the subject
of this moral story?
243 Fiend: the Devil; Satan.

249 perdition: damnation; hell.

And on he ran, he had no thought to tarry,


Came to the town, found an apothecary
And said, Sell me some poison if you will,
I have a lot of rats I want to kill
And theres a polecat too about my yard
That takes my chickens and it hits me hard;
But Ill get even, as is only right,
With vermin that destroy a man by night.
The chemist answered, Ive a preparation
Which you shall have, and by my souls salvation
If any living creature eat or drink
A mouthful, ere he has the time to think,
Though he took less than makes a grain of wheat,
Youll see him fall down dying at your feet;
Yes, die he must, and in so short a while
Youd hardly have the time to walk a mile,
The poison is so strong, you understand.
This cursed fellow grabbed into his hand
The box of poison and away he ran
Into a neighboring street, and found a man
Who lent him three large bottles. He withdrew
And deftly poured the poison into two.

RL 4

Language Coach
Multiple Meanings Usually,
the suffix -ion turns a verb
into a noun meaning act or
state of (verb + -ing). But
many -ion words also have
special meanings. Preparation
(line 260) means something
prepared (like medicine). Give
a more general meaning of
preparation.

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178

for advanced learners/ap


Analyze Messages The stated lesson of The
Pardoners Tale is The love of money is the
root of all evil. However, another lesson the
exemplum teaches is that every man is like
the company he is wont to keep (Euripides).
Ask students how the rioters might affect each
others behavior. What can you infer about
the character of the rioters friend who was
taken by Death? Have students write a brief
character sketch of the rioters friend. Instruct

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them to keep in mind the characters of the


three rioters.

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275

280

285

290

295

300

305

310

315

He kept the third one clean, as well he might,


For his own drink, meaning to work all night
Stacking the gold and carrying it away.
And when this rioter, this devils clay,
Had filled his bottles up with wine, all three,
Back to rejoin his comrades sauntered he. i

READING SKILL
i

Why make a sermon of it? Why waste breath?


Exactly in the way theyd planned his death
They fell on him and slew him, two to one.
Then said the first of them when this was done,
Now for a drink. Sit down and lets be merry,
For later on therell be the corpse to bury.
And, as it happened, reaching for a sup,
He took a bottle full of poison up
And drank; and his companion, nothing loth,
Drank from it also, and they perished both.
There is, in Avicennas long relation
Concerning poison and its operation,
Trust me, no ghastlier section to transcend
What these two wretches suffered at their end.
Thus these two murderers received their due,
So did the treacherous young poisoner too. j
O cursed sin! O blackguardly excess!
O treacherous homicide! O wickedness!
O gluttony that lusted on and diced! . . .
Dearly beloved, God forgive your sin
And keep you from the vice of avarice!
My holy pardon frees you all of this,
Provided that you make the right approaches,
That is with sterling, rings, or silver brooches.
Bow down your heads under this holy bull!
Come on, you women, offer up your wool!
Ill write your name into my ledger; so!
Into the bliss of Heaven you shall go.
For Ill absolve you by my holy power,
You that make offering, clean as at the hour
When you were born. . . . That, sirs, is how I preach.
And Jesu Christ, souls healer, aye, the leech
Of every soul, grant pardon and relieve you
Of sin, for that is best, I wont deceive you.
One thing I should have mentioned in my tale,
Dear people. Ive some relics in my bale

predict

Possible answer: They will probably all


come to bad endings. The two with treasure
plan to kill the youngest (lines 223229),
while the youngest plans to poison the two
with treasure (lines 250251).

290 Avicennas (BvQG-sDnPEz) long


relation: a medical text written by
an 11th-century Islamic physician;
it includes descriptions of various
poisons and their effects.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

EXEMPLUM
Moral stories usually have
straightforward plots, where
events happen in quick
succession. In what way does
the storys conclusion fit this
pattern?

304 bull: an official document from


the pope.

exemplum

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 280289, use these prompts to help
students evaluate the ending of the Pardoners
tale:
Connect Have you ever seen a movie in
which villains come to a terrible ending?
What was your reaction? Accept all
responses.

311 leech: physician.

315 relics in my bale: Relics are the


remains of a saintbones, hair, or
clothing. In medieval times, many
relics were counterfeit.

Analyze How does the rioters end support


the lesson that the desire for money is the
root of evil? Possible answer: The rioters evil
ways are driven by their desire for gold. They
all meet terrible ends because of their greed.

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for struggling readers

for advanced learners/ap

Develop Reading Fluency Have students


work in small groups to take turns reading
aloud the stanzas in lines 269313. Direct
them to pay particular attention to punctuation and grammar of the poetry in order to
read it fluently. As each student completes a
stanza, ask his or her fellow group members
to work together to summarize the stanza
based on their peers reading. Allow students
to provide constructive feedback for improving the fluency of one anothers reading.

Point of View Have students discuss the


importance of the Pardoners point of view to
the story. How would the tale have been different if told by a more pious, honest pilgrim
or by a layperson not involved in the church?

12:19:31 PM

Evaluate Do the rioters get what they


deserve? Possible answer: Yes; each of the
murderers is murdered himself. Their punishment seems fitting and just.

the canterbury tales

179

RL 3

Possible answer: The events leading to


the storys conclusion happen quickly: The
youngest rioter poisons the wine, but the
other rioters stab him before they drink the
wine. Then the two drink the tainted wine
and die.

299 The Pardoner is now addressing


his fellow pilgrims.

179

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RL 10

288 nothing loth: not at all


unwilling.

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PREDICT
What do you think will happen
to the three men? Support your
response with clues from the
text.

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revisit the big question


320

What has the power to

CORRUPT?
Discuss In lines 326340, in what way does
the Pardoner reveal his corruption in the end?
Possible answer: He continues his usual pitch
and tries to sell his pardons to the pilgrims who
have just heard his tale. Is the Pardoner being
serious or facetious at this point? Possible
answer: Though he may hope that his tale will
have the same effect on the pilgrims that it
does on yokel minds, the Pardoner knows that
it probably wont.

325

330

335

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read the selection, ask them to consider why Chaucer decides to have a corrupt
narrator relate this tale? Possible answers:
Chaucer suggests that even those that warn of
the dangers of corruption may be guilty of it
themselves.

340

And pardons too, as full and fine, I hope,


As any in England, given me by the Pope.
If there be one among you that is willing
To have my absolution for a shilling
Devoutly given, come! and do not harden
Your hearts but kneel in humbleness for pardon;
Or else, receive my pardon as we go.
You can renew it every town or so
Always provided that you still renew
Each time, and in good money, what is due.
It is an honor to you to have found
A pardoner with his credentials sound
Who can absolve you as you ply the spur
In any accident that may occur.
For instancewe are all at Fortunes beck
Your horse may throw you down and break your neck.
What a security it is to all
To have me here among you and at call
With pardon for the lowly and the great
When soul leaves body for the future state!
And I advise our Host here to begin,
The most enveloped of you all in sin.
Come forward, Host, you shall be the first to pay,
And kiss my holy relics right away.
Only a groat. Come on, unbuckle your purse!

319 shilling: a coin worth twelve


pence.

330331 The Pardoner reminds the


other pilgrims that death may come
to them at any time.

340 groat: a silver coin worth four


pence.

CRITIQUE
Did the Pardoner succeed in telling a tale
that gives the full measure / Of good
morality and general pleasure (The
Prologue to The Canterbury Tales, lines
817818)?
After completing the After Reading questions on page 177, have students revisit their
responses and tell whether they have
changed their opinions.
INDEPENDENT READING
Students may also enjoy reading The Alchemist, by Paulo Coelho.

differentiated instruction
for struggling readers
Understand Cause and Effect Help students
to fill out a cause-and-effect chain that
illustrates the relationships between events
in The Pardoners Tale.

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1. Rioters learn that Death has


taken their friend.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Cause

Effect
2. Rioters vow to find and kill
death.

Cause-and-Effect Chain pp. B16, B39


Cause
Effect
3. Rioters come upon Old Man.

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Theme [small-group option] Point out to students that The Pardoners Tale deals with a
number of themes: Life is short; death comes
to all; avoid bad friends; heed the wisdom of
elders. Have groups discuss these themes
and identify others. Ask them to consider
how these themes tie in with a larger question that occupied Chaucer: How can people
lead good lives? Allow time for students to
share their findings.

Cause

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After Reading

Practice and Apply

Comprehension
1. Recall What event prompts the three rioters to seek Death?

For preliminary support of post-reading questions, use these copy masters:

RL 3 Analyze the impact of the


authors choices regarding how
to develop and relate elements
of a story. RL 6 Analyze a case
in which grasping a point of
view requires distinguishing
what is directly stated in a
text from what is really meant
(e.g., irony). RL 10 Read and
comprehend literature.

2. Clarify In what way is their discovery at the old tree unexpected?


3. Summarize Describe the events that directly lead to their deaths.

Text Analysis
4. Examine Predictions Look back at your list of predictions and text clues.
Were you able to correctly anticipate everything that happened, or were you
surprised by how some events developed?

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Masters

Reading Check p. 154


Exemplum p. 147
Question Support p. 155
Additional selection questions are
provided for teachers on page 141.

5. Compare and Contrast Characters A foil is a character who provides a striking


contrast to other characters. In what way does the old man serve as a foil to
the three rioters?
6. Analyze Exemplum For each convention
of medieval exemplum listed in the
chart shown, provide an example from
The Pardoners Tale. In what way is
this literary form in keeping with the
Pardoners occupation?

Conventions of Medieval
Exemplum

answers

1. When Death takes their friend, the rioters


seek revenge.

Examples

2. The rioters are looking for Death; instead


they find gold under the tree.

virtuous or evil characters


tightly structured plot events

3. The older rioters conspire to kill their youngest mate. The youngest rioter pours poison
into wine meant for the other two.

allegorical or symbolic figures

7. Make Judgments About Irony Chaucer


a distinct moral or lesson
is widely admired for his skillful use of
ironythe discrepancy between what appears to be true and what actually
is true. There are three main types of irony. Verbal irony occurs when a
character says one thing but means another. Situational irony occurs
when a character or reader expects one thing to happen but something
else actually happens. Dramatic irony occurs when the reader or audience
knows something that a character does not know. For each type of irony,
provide an example from The Pardoners Tale. How essential is irony to the
meaning of the story?

Possible answers:
4.

8. Historical Context During the mid-14th century, the Black Deatha massive
epidemic of the bubonic plagueswept through Asia and Europe. In
Europe alone, one-quarter of the population died. In what ways might these
circumstances have made people vulnerable to the tricks of the Pardoner and
other unscrupulous clergymen?

6.

corrupt?

What theme, or central message, about corruption do you think Chaucer


conveys in this story? How does it still hold true today?

the canterbury tales

8. Christians
181 would have feared dying without forgiveness for their sins, as doing so
would have meant eternal damnation.
The outbreak of the plague would have
led many to seek forgiveness in the form of
indulgences. They might also have looked
to the supposed power of his relics to keep
them healthy.

common core focus Predict Students are likely to be surprised by the rioters
discovery under the tree and perhaps by the
manner of the rioters deaths.

5. Unlike the rioters, the old man is calm,


sober, and respectful; he understands that
human beings have no control over death.

Text Criticism

What has the power to

RL 3, RL 6, RL 10

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What has the power to

CORRUPT?
Possible answer: Chaucer seems to
suggest that greed lies at the heart
of much corruption. It is greed that
drives the corrupt behavior of both the
Pardoner and the characters in his tale.
This theme applies to todays headlines
about corruption and greed within large
corporations.

12:08:39 PM

common core focus Exemplum


Evil characters: the rioters; Structured
events: the murders and death of the rioters; Symbolic figures: Death, Mother Earth,
Fortune, Old Age; Moral: The love of money
is the root of all evil. The Pardoners occupation involves the selling of indulgences, or
certificates of forgiveness. It seems appropriate for him to offer a tale with an explicit
moral concerned with the subject of greed.

7. Verbal irony: The Pardoner makes a speech


at the end of the selection, when he tries
to sell forgiveness; by his earlier admission,
he doesnt believe in the churchs teachings
about sin, forgiveness, and damnation.
Situational irony: The rioters expect to find
Death under the tree; instead they find
gold, which leads to their death.
Dramatic irony: The reader is aware that
the older rioters have conspired against the
youngest.
Answers will vary. Sample answer: Through
the use of irony, Chaucer uncovers the hypocrisy of the Catholic Church, the Pardoner,
and the rioters. Thus, irony is essential to
the story.

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Vocabulary in Context

answers
Vocabulary in Context

vocabulary practice

word list

Indicate why each statement below is true or false. Use your knowledge of the
boldfaced words and the context in which they appear to help you answer.

avarice

vocabulary practice

1. Counting your money all the time may be a sign of avarice.

1. true

2. Wise teachers castigate good behavior.

2. false

3. A parley might lead to peace between warring factions.

3. true

castigate
parley

academic vocabulary in writing

RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

concept

Vocabulary Practice p. 152

academic vocabulary in writing


Suggest that students sketch a simple flow
chart to represent the structure of the selection. Then, encourage them to identify
examples from contemporary culture that
follow a similar structure, such as films, television programs, or online media.

vocabulary strategy:
the prefix -mal

L 4d, L 6

Guide students to identify and clarify the


meanings of the roots for each word included
in the organizer. Ask students to consider how
the prefix -mal works in tandem with these
root meanings to form the definition of each
term. Then, encourage students to use the root
meanings as clues to identify the discipline to
which each word belongs.

2. malnutrition; medical

parallel

section

structure

Would people today be taken in by the Pardoners performance? Examine the


structure of The Pardoners Tale in this section. Then, write a description of a
similar cautionary tale in todays culture. Use at least one Academic Vocabulary
word in your response.

vocabulary strategy: the prefix malIn line 8 of The Pardoners Prologue (page 170), the Pardoner quotes a Biblical
L 4d Verify the preliminary
verse in Latin: Radix malorum est cupiditas. . . . (The love of money is the root
determination of the meaning
of a word. L 6 Acquire and use
of all evil . . . ) You may recognize the word malorum. It gives us a prefix to many
accurately general academic and
English words across many content areas: the prefix mal-, meaning bad or
domain-specific words.
wrong. To understand the meaning of words that start with mal-,
use context clues as well as your knowledge of the prefix.
malfeasance
malaria
PRACTICE Answer each question in a complete sentence that uses
a word from the word web. Then tell in what discipline (medical or
mallegal, for example) each word is more likely to be used. Use your
knowledge of the prefix mal- to help you, and consult a dictionary
malnutrition
malaise
if necessary.
malpractice
1. What might a bad doctor be guilty of?
2. What might happen if a person does not get enough food?
3. What disease might a mosquito carry?
4. What physical condition might develop from chronic pain?
5. What act might result in imprisonment?

Answers:
1. malpractice; legal or medical

culture

Find a technical definition for one or more of the terms above using a specialized
dictionary, such as a medical or legal dictionary. These can be found in libraries
reference shelves or online databases. Share your definition with the class.

Interactive
Vocabulary
Go to thinkcentral.com.
KEYWORD: HML12-182

3. malaria; medical
4. malaise; medical
5. malfeasance; legal
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Strategy p. 153

Assess and Reteach


Assess
DIAGNOSTIC AND SELECTION TESTS

Selection Tests A, B/C pp. 5354, 5556


Interactive Selection Test on thinkcentral.com

Reteach

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for advanced learners/ap

Vocabulary Support Ask speakers of


Romance languages whether the words
in the chart appear in their languages as
well. If so, what meanings do they have?
Invite students to name other words with
French origins in their native languages.

Vocabulary Practice: Challenge Ask students


to write a travel letter, using all the words in
the chart.

12:08:41 PM

Level Up Online Tutorials on thinkcentral.com

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The Age of Chaucer

Teach

The Wife of Baths Tale


from The Canterbury Tales
Poem by Geoffrey Chaucer
Translated by Nevill Coghill

Do men

understand

RL 3, RL 5

women?

text analysis: narrator


The narrator of a story is the character or voice that relates
the storys events to the reader. Many narrators have distinct
personalities that are revealed through the subject matter,
tone, and language of their stories. In this selection, the
narrator is the Wife of Bath, one of the most charismatic
characters in The Canterbury Talesand, arguably, in all of
English literature. As you read, notice what she reveals about
herself and medieval society in her lively tale.

Many jokes suggest that when it comes


to emotional responses and attitudes
toward relationships, men and women
might as well be from different planets.
But is there really such a gulf between
the sexes? In The Wife of Baths Tale,
a man becomes motivated to gain
understanding of women when his life
is at stake.

reading skill: analyze structure


The Canterbury Tales has a sophisticated structure, or
organization. The collection features a frame storya
story that surrounds and binds together one or more different
narratives in a single work. The main story about the
pilgrimage serves this purpose. It unifies 24 unrelated tales
and provides a rationale for the entire collection.
In the interludes between the pilgrims tales, the characters
often argue with one another. Within the tales, narrators
sometimes digress in their storytelling. Both types of
interruptions contribute to the poems overall meaning and its
aesthetic impact. Use a chart like the one shown to keep track
of these breaks in narration.

QUICKWRITE Are the differences


between the sexes fundamental
or superficial? Write one or two
paragraphs in response to this
question. Include examples to support
your opinion.

RL 3 Analyze the impact of the authors choices


regarding how to develop and relate elements of
a story or drama. RL 5 Analyze how an authors
choices concerning how to structure specific parts
of a text contribute to its overall structure and
meaning as well as its aesthetic impact. W 3b Use
dialogue to develop experiences, events, and/or
characters. L 4 Determine or clarify the meaning of
unknown words. L 5 Demonstrate understanding
of figurative language. L 6 Acquire and use
accurately general academic and domain-specific
words.

Do men UNDERSTAND
women?
Introduce the question and discuss with students.
Suggest that students keep this discussion in
mind as they do the QUICKWRITE activity.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

Interruptions

Reasons

The Pardoner interrupts the Wife


of Bath (lines 1-6).

The previous discussion has made


him afraid to marry.

Model the Skill: narrator


Write this example on the board:
The Ant and the Grasshopper is a silly
old fable: A deluded grasshopper wastes
his days fiddling and singing, while
industrious ants do nothing but work.
To my mind, the grasshopper had a great
summer, and hell savor it all winter long.

vocabulary in context
The boldfaced words help convey the wit and charm of the
Wife of Bath. Use context clues to guess the meaning of each.
1. implore someone for a favor 4. bequeath a legacy
2. cackle like a crone

5. everyday temporal concerns

3. the kings sovereignty

6. rebuke someone for a mistake

Model for students how to interpret what


a narrator reveals by pointing out that this
narrator favors instant gratification over
hard work.

Complete the activities in your Reader/Writer Notebook.

183

READING SKILL
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V O C A B183U L A R Y S K I L L

vocabulary in context
Have all students complete Vocabulary in
Context. Check their definitions against the
following:
bequeath (bG-kwCthP) v. to leave in a will; to
pass down as an inheritance
crone (krIn) n. an ugly old woman
implore (Gm-plrP) v. to plead; to beg
rebuke (rG-byLkP) v. to criticize
sovereignty (sJvPEr-Gn-tC) n. rule; power
temporal (tDmPpEr-El) adj. of the material
world; not eternal

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PRETEACH VOCABULARY Use the


following copy master to help students
predict word meanings.
RESOURCE MANAGERCopy Master

Vocabulary Study p. 171

L4

12:15:49 PM

RL 5

Model the Skill: analyze

structure
Model for students how to analyze structure by pointing out some types of interruptions that occur in the Wife of Baths
Tale: speaking to or answering another pilgrim; having a disagreement with another
pilgrim; being reminded of another story
and digressing to tell it.

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Practice and Apply


summary
In the prologue to her tale, the Wife of Bath
promises a tale about marital strife. She
goes on to tell of a knight who is sentenced
to death but offered a reprieve if he discovers what women desire most. At the end of
a fruitless search, an ugly old woman gives
him the answer: Women desire sovereignty
over their husbands. In return for the answer,
the knight must marry her. He does so with
whining and insults. After a long rebuttal, she
offers him a choice: beauty or fidelity. The
knight lets his wife decide, whereupon she
is transformed into a beauty who promises
loyalty as well.

The

Geoffrey Chaucer

read with a purpose


Help students set a purpose for reading. Tell
them to read The Wife of Baths Prologue to
explore views about gender roles in Chaucers
time.

10

15

20

T E X T A N A LY S I S

The Pardoner started up, and thereupon


Madam, he said, by God and by St. John,
Thats noble preaching no one could surpass!
I was about to take a wife; alas!
Am I to buy it on my flesh so dear?
Therell be no marrying for me this year!
You wait, she said, my storys not begun.
Youll taste another brew before Ive done;
Youll find it doesnt taste as good as ale;
And when Ive finished telling you my tale
Of tribulation in the married life
In which Ive been an expert as a wife,
That is to say, myself have been the whip.
So please yourself whether you want to sip
At that same cask of marriage I shall broach.
Be cautious before making the approach,
For Ill give instances, and more than ten.
And those who wont be warned by other men,
By other men shall suffer their correction,
So Ptolemy has said, in this connection.
You read his Almagest; youll find it there. a

3 noble preaching: In the passage


preceding this excerpt, the Wife of
Bath has spoken at length about her
view of marriage.

15 cask: barrel; broach: tap into.

20 Ptolemy (tJlPE-mC): a famous


astronomer, mathematician, and
geographer of ancient Egypt.

RL 3

narrator

Possible answer: The Wife of Bath offers


the opinion that the Pardoner should be
careful about marrying. She bases her
opinion on her significant experience with
marriage.
IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Remind students that the Wife of Bath has had five
husbands. Then paraphrase lines 1012
and 1617: And after Im done telling you
my story about strife in marriage (lines
1012); be careful before you marry, keeping
in mind my examples (lines 1617).

revisit the big question

Do men UNDERSTAND
women?
Discuss In lines 2225, what understanding of
women does the Pardoner hope to gain from
the Wife of Baths tale? Possible answer: He
hopes to gain some practical knowledge about
marriage, based on experience.

184

wife of baths prologue

25

30

184

Madam, I put it to you as a prayer,


The Pardoner said, go on as you began!
Tell us your tale, spare not for any man.
Instruct us younger men in your technique.
Gladly, she said, if you will let me speak,
But still I hope the company wont reprove me
Though I should speak as fantasy may move me,
And please dont be offended at my views;
Theyre really only offered to amuse. . . .

a NARRATOR

In lines 721, the narrator


introduces the subject of her
talemarriage and its many
difficulties. What personal
opinions and experiences does
she also reveal?

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners

for struggling readers

Define Concepts Review with English Language Learners the meanings of concepts
important to this selection such as marriage,
sovereignty, beauty, and fidelity. Encourage
volunteers to offer written or oral definitions for these concepts. You may also invite
students to create illustrations that show the
meanings of these terms visually.

Have students listen to the Audio Anthology


CD for this selection. Encourage students to
utilize this resource to mimic the correct pronunciation of difficult words and passages, as
well an appropriate pace at which to read.

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background
Education and Literacy in the Middle Ages
Chaucer died about a half-century before the
invention of movable type. Nevertheless,
literacy was very slowly becoming more widespread in the 14th century. The main reasons
were economic and bureaucratic: people
depended more and more on written records.
Property transactions and agricultural production, for example, were often recorded. So too,
were wills, surveys, deeds, and other financial
dealings. Readers held a great advantage over
those who could not read. Illiterate farmers
might find themselves at the mercy of corrupt
officials. The number of schools increased and
universities were established. Even so, most
people in England were unable even to sign
their names. Among women, no more than
one percent could read in Chaucers day. The
Wife of Bath, with her extensive knowledge,
was an anomaly. Chaucers educated audience
would have been well aware of this fact.

Analyze Visuals
Activity Does the picture of the Wife of Bath
reflect the personality of the character as
revealed in the text?
Possible answer: The art, like the text, suggests
a charismatic woman who commands attention and interest, and who is self-possessed,
self-confident, lively, and mischievous.

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Vocabulary Support Use New Word Analysis


to teach these words: approach (line 16),
require (line 82), feature (line 136), guarantee
(line 190), display (line 251), conclude (line 347),
estate (line 375).

Background Discuss with students the concept of the battle of the sexes. Ask students
to explain the meaning of this phrase, and
identify familiar contexts in which it is used.
Encourage students to think about the roles
of men and women during the 15th century
and today. Guide them to consider ways in
which these roles have changed, as well as
ways in which they have remained the same.

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

New Word Analysis p. E8

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The

35

40

45

50

READING SKILL

analyze structure

55

RL 5

Possible answer: The Wife of Bath describes


friars in unflattering terms: She says that
they are everywhere (lines 3945) and
facetiously suggests that their ubiquity has
caused the demise of fairies (line 46). Furthermore, she charges that they break their
vows of chastity and prey upon women.

60

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Call on a


volunteer to summarize the Wife of Baths
explanation about why there are no fairies.

65

70

revisit the big question

Do men UNDERSTAND
women?
Discuss In lines 5764, how does the opening
of the Wife of Baths tale illustrate an extreme
case of a man who has no understanding of
women? Possible answer: The knight dominates the maiden by brute force, ignoring her
entreaties.

186

186

wife of baths tale

When good King Arthur ruled in ancient days


(A king that every Briton loves to praise)
This was a land brim-full of fairy folk.
The Elf-Queen and her courtiers joined and broke
Their elfin dance on many a green mead,
Or so was the opinion once, I read,
Hundreds of years ago, in days of yore.
But no one now sees fairies any more.
For now the saintly charity and prayer
Of holy friars seem to have purged the air;
They search the countryside through field and stream
As thick as motes that speckle a sun-beam,
Blessing the halls, the chambers, kitchens, bowers,
Cities and boroughs, castles, courts and towers,
Thorpes, barns and stables, outhouses and dairies,
And thats the reason why there are no fairies.
Wherever there was wont to walk an elf
Today there walks the holy friar himself
As evening falls or when the daylight springs,
Saying his matins and his holy things,
Walking his limit round from town to town.
Women can now go safely up and down
By every bush or under every tree;
There is no other incubus but he,
So there is really no one else to hurt you
And he will do no more than take your virtue. b
Now it so happened, I began to say,
Long, long ago in good King Arthurs day,
There was a knight who was a lusty liver.
One day as he came riding from the river
He saw a maiden walking all forlorn
Ahead of him, alone as she was born.
And of that maiden, spite of all she said,
By very force he took her maidenhead.
This act of violence made such a stir,
So much petitioning to the king for her,
That he condemned the knight to lose his head
By course of law. He was as good as dead
(It seems that then the statutes took that view)
But that the queen, and other ladies too,

35 mead: meadow.

42 motes: specks of dust.


43 bowers: bedrooms.

45 thorpes: villages; outhouses:


sheds.
47 wherever . . . elf: wherever an elf
was accustomed to walk.

51 limit: the area to which a friar


was restricted in his begging for
donations.
54 incubus (GnPkyE-bEs): an evil spirit
believed to descend on women.

b ANALYZE STRUCTURE

In the frame story of The


Canterbury Tales, the Wife
of Bath and the Friar have
an ongoing quarrel. In what
way does the Wife of Baths
digression in lines 3956 reflect
this dispute?
6364 of that maiden . . .
maidenhead: in spite of the maidens
protests, he robbed her of her
virginity.

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Analyze Metaphor [small-group option] Ask
a volunteer to reread and paraphrase the
metaphor in lines 5456. Then have group
members discuss these questions: Is the Wife
of Baths fantasy about the demise of fairies
just an excuse for her grave accusation? What
other purposes does the fantasy serve? To
what extent does this metaphor foreshadow
the premise of her tale? What does it reveal
about her wit?

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Analyze Visuals
Activity Compare the queen in this illustration
with that of the Wife of Bath.
Possible answer: In both illustrations, the
women have expensive clothing and the same
regal pose; both project confidence.

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 5786, use these prompts to help students evaluate the queens reprieve:
Connect Do you think that punishments
should fit the crimes committed? Accept all
thoughtful answers.

Implored the king to exercise his grace


So ceaselessly, he gave the queen the case
And granted her his life, and she could choose
Whether to show him mercy or refuse.
75

80

85

90

implore (Gm-plrP) v. to plead;


to beg

The queen returned him thanks with all her might,


And then she sent a summons to the knight
At her convenience, and expressed her will:
You stand, for such is the position still,
In no way certain of your life, said she,
Yet you shall live if you can answer me:
What is the thing that women most desire?
Beware the axe and say as I require.
If you cant answer on the moment, though,
I will concede you this: you are to go
A twelvemonth and a day to seek and learn
Sufficient answer, then you shall return.
I shall take gages from you to extort
Surrender of your body to the court. c

VOCABULARY

own the word

T E X T A N A LY S I S
87 gages: pledges.

Sad was the knight and sorrowfully sighed,


But there! All other choices were denied,

NARRATOR
Review lines 5788. What
characteristics of the Wifes
narrative style appear in the
storys introduction?

187

for struggling readers


confident

interesting
Wife of Bath

bossy

humorous
witty

187

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Vocabulary: Multiple-Meaning Words Point


out the multiple-meaning words on this
spread. Help students use context to define
each word: courts (line 44), courtyards;
springs (line 49), rises from; comes out of;
liver (line 59), one who lives; stir (line 65),
commotion; course (line 68), rule; exercise (line 71), use; put into effect; case (line
72), legal action; might (line 75), strength,
power; will (line 77), bidding; stand (line 78),
remain.

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for english language learners


lively

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Character Traits Web p. D7

narrator

Possible answer: Her style here is straightforward and to the point. She states the
knights crime and its effects plainly, without any embarrassment.

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Character Ask students which words best


describe the Wife of Bath. Encourage them to
explain each choice. Help them to find textual
support. List their responses in a Character
Traits Web.

L4

implore: Reread the definition of implore


to students. Then have them name words
with similar meanings, but that carry less
intensity. Possible answers: ask, request

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Analyze Is the kings decision, that the


knight should die for his crime, fair? Some
students may say that the knights crime is
so heinous that he should die; others may
protest that he does not deserve such a harsh
punishment, as he did not kill anyone.

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And in the end he chose to go away


And to return after a year and day
Armed with such answer as there might be sent
To him by God. He took his leave and went.
95

100

105

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

narrator

110

Possible answer: The Wife of Bath suggests


that women can be won over with flattery.
Her comments on this topic show that she
is honest about her personal weaknesses for
flattery and pampering. She likes them both.

115

revisit the big question

120

Do men UNDERSTAND
women?
Discuss In lines 101124, the knight finds many
different opinions on understanding womens
one desire. What are they? Possible answer:
women want wealth (line 101), treasure (line
101), honor (line 102), fun (line 102), pleasure
(line 102), clothing (line 103), many husbands
(line 104), pampering (line 106), flattery (lines
106110), freedom (line 112), a lack of criticism
(lines 113120), and the trust of others, even if
its not deserved (lines 121127).

125

130

188

He knocked at every house, searched every place,


Yes, anywhere that offered hope of grace.
What could it be that women wanted most?
But all the same he never touched a coast,
Country or town in which there seemed to be
Any two people willing to agree.
Some said that women wanted wealth and treasure,
Honor, said some, some Jollity and pleasure,
Some Gorgeous clothes and others Fun in bed,
To be oft widowed and remarried, said
Others again, and some that what most mattered
Was that we should be cosseted and flattered.
Thats very near the truth, it seems to me;
A man can win us best with flattery.
To dance attendance on us, make a fuss,
Ensnares us all, the best and worst of us. d
Some say the things we most desire are these:
Freedom to do exactly as we please,
With no one to reprove our faults and lies,
Rather to have one call us good and wise.
Truly theres not a woman in ten score
Who has a fault, and someone rubs the sore,
But she will kick if what he says is true;
You try it out and you will find so too.
However vicious we may be within
We like to be thought wise and void of sin.
Others assert we women find it sweet
When we are thought dependable, discreet
And secret, firm of purpose and controlled,
Never betraying things that we are told.
But thats not worth the handle of a rake;
Women conceal a thing? For Heavens sake!
Remember Midas? Will you hear the tale?
Among some other little things, now stale,
Ovid relates that under his long hair
The unhappy Midas grew a splendid pair
Of asss ears; as subtly as he might,
He kept his foul deformity from sight;

106 cosseted (kJsPG-tGd): pampered.

d NARRATOR

What is the narrators opinion


of flattery in lines 101110?
Consider what this view
suggests about her personality.

115 ten score: 200.


117 but she will: who will not.

120 void of sin: sinless.

127 Midas: a legendary king of


Phrygia, in Asia Minor.
129 Ovid (JvPGd): an ancient Roman
poet whose Metamorphoses is a
storehouse of Greek and Roman
legends. According to Ovid, it was
a barber, not Midass wife, who told
the secret of his donkeys ears.

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Vocabulary: Outdated Forms Remind students that some words in this translation
are outdated, such as: took his leave (line 94),
said a formal goodbye; oft (line 104), often; she will kick (line 117), she will protest;
save for (line 133), except for; hold fast (line
155), persist; ere (line 170), before. Have
students reread the lines, substituting the
modern version for each outdated form.

Synthesize [small-group option] Remind


students of the Notable Quote they discussed
before reading The Prologue: Full wise is
he that can himself know. Encourage students to debate whether or not the Wife of
Bath seems to know herself well. Ask them
to provide textual support for their arguments. Within this context, they might take
a closer look at the Wife of Baths comment
that women can be won over easily by flattery. Is she being ironic?

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135

140

145

150

155

160

165

170

175

Save for his wife, there was not one that knew.
He loved her best, and trusted in her too.
He begged her not to tell a living creature
That he possessed so horrible a feature.
And sheshe swore, were all the world to win,
She would not do such villainy and sin
As saddle her husband with so foul a name;
Besides to speak would be to share the shame.
Nevertheless she thought she would have died
Keeping this secret bottled up inside;
It seemed to swell her heart and she, no doubt,
Thought it was on the point of bursting out.
Fearing to speak of it to woman or man,
Down to a reedy marsh she quickly ran
And reached the sedge. Her heart was all on fire
And, as a bittern bumbles in the mire,
She whispered to the water, near the ground,
Betray me not, O water, with thy sound!
To thee alone I tell it: it appears
My husband has a pair of asss ears!
Ah! My hearts well again, the secrets out!
I could no longer keep it, not a doubt.
And so you see, although we may hold fast
A little while, it must come out at last,
We cant keep secrets; as for Midas, well,
Read Ovid for his story; he will tell. e
This knight that I am telling you about
Perceived at last he never would find out
What it could be that women loved the best.
Faint was the soul within his sorrowful breast,
As home he went, he dared no longer stay;
His year was up and now it was the day.

133 save: except.

147 sedge: marsh grasses.


148 bumbles in the mire: booms in
the swamp. (The bittern, a wading
bird, is famous for its loud call.)

READING SKILL
e

analyze structure

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Have them fill


out a chart like the one on page 183.
Character Trait

189

Interruptions
Ovid relates that
under his long hair
(line 129)

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Summarize Ask students to summarize the


events of the Midas tale, as told by the Wife
of Bath. Possible answer: King Midas hid his
donkey ears from everyone except his wife.
His wife swore that she would never tell, but
keeping the secret proved so painful that she
finally ran to a marsh and whispered it to the
water; afterwards, she felt much better.

Make Predictions/Research [paired option]


Ask partners to predict the ending of the
Midas tale. If they are already familiar with
the story, ask them to write down the ending in as much detail as possible. Then have
students research the ending on the Internet.
How close were their predictions or recollections of the ending? Invite them to share their
findings with the class.

Reasons
To show her literary knowledge

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RL 5

Possible answer: The Wife of Bath digresses


to tell the story of King Midas and his
wife. This interruption serves the purpose
of building suspense and of showing her
literary knowledge and worldliness. It also
provides comic relief from a story about a
debauched male who must find out what
women want in order to avoid a death
sentence. Finally, it is a humorous way of
acknowledging to her mostly male audience that women arent perfect, either.

As he rode home in a dejected mood


Suddenly, at the margin of a wood,
He saw a dance upon the leafy floor
Of four and twenty ladies, nay, and more.
Eagerly he approached, in hope to learn
Some words of wisdom ere he should return;
But lo! Before he came to where they were,
Dancers and dance all vanished into air!
There wasnt a living creature to be seen
Save one old woman crouched upon the green.
A fouler-looking creature I suppose
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ANALYZE STRUCTURE
Reread lines 128158. In what
way does the Wife of Bath
digress, or wander, from her
story about the knight? Explain
what purpose this interruption
might serve.

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revisit the big question


180

Do men UNDERSTAND
women?
Discuss In lines 181216, according to the old
woman, what is the key to an understanding
of women? Possible answer: A woman wants
power over her husband.

185

VOCABULARY

own the word

L4

190

crone: Read the definition of crone to


students. Then have them suggest physical and personality attributes that would
suggest that an elderly woman is a crone.
Possible answers: frumpy, grumpy, illtempered, unattractive, unkempt, does not
take care of self

195

sovereignty: Remind students that in


their study of history and government,
they have been introduced to the term
sovereignty. A sovereign nation is one
that has the right, authority, and power to
govern itself. What rights do people have
that might be described as sovereign? Possible answers: the right to control oneself,
the right to make individual decisions such
as how and where to live

200

205

210

215

190

Could scarcely be imagined. She arose


And said, Sir knight, theres no way on from here.
Tell me what you are looking for, my dear,
For peradventure that were best for you;
We old, old women know a thing or two.

179 peradventure: perhaps.

Dear Mother, said the knight, alack the day!


I am as good as dead if I cant say
What thing it is that women most desire;
If you could tell me I would pay your hire.
Give me your hand, she said, and swear to do
Whatever I shall next require of you
If so to do should lie within your might
And you shall know the answer before night.
Upon my honor, he answered, I agree.
Then, said the crone, I dare to guarantee
Your life is safe; I shall make good my claim.
Upon my life the queen will say the same.
Show me the very proudest of them all
In costly coverchief or jewelled caul
That dare say no to what I have to teach.
Let us go forward without further speech.
And then she crooned her gospel in his ear
And told him to be glad and not to fear.

181 alack the day: an exclamation


of sorrow, roughly equivalent to
Woe is me!

They came to court. This knight, in full array,


Stood forth and said, O Queen, Ive kept my day
And kept my word and have my answer ready.

199 in full array: in all his finery.

There sat the noble matrons and the heady


Young girls, and widows too, that have the grace
Of wisdom, all assembled in that place,
And there the queen herself was throned to hear
And judge his answer. Then the knight drew near
And silence was commanded through the hall.

202 heady: giddy; impetuous.

crone (krIn) n. an ugly old


woman

194 coverchief: kerchief; caul (kaul):


an ornamental hairnet.

197 gospel: message.

203 grace: gift.

The queen gave order he should tell them all


What thing it was that women wanted most.
He stood not silent like a beast or post,
But gave his answer with the ringing word
Of a mans voice and the assembly heard:
My liege and lady, in general, said he,
A woman wants the self-same sovereignty
Over her husband as over her lover,
And master him; he must not be above her.

213 liege (lCj): lord.

sovereignty (sJvPEr-Gn-tC) n. rule;


power

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Comprehension: Text Structure Point out


that the speakers in the tale change quickly
in some sections. Help them to find places
where dialogue begins and ends. Ask them
to identify each speaker, such as the old
woman, lines 176180; knight, lines 181184;
old woman, lines 185188; knight, line 189; old
woman, lines 190196; knight, lines 200201
and 213218; all the ladies, line 221; old woman,
lines 224233; knight, lines 234237.

Interpret Context [paired option] How did


the knight know that the old womans answer
would please the queen and her ladies? Ask
students to review the various answers that
the knight rejected (lines 101124) and suggest
reasons why. Is his final choice satisfying,
humorous, or ironic? Allow time for partners
to share and compare their ideas.

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That is your greatest wish, whether you kill


Or spare me; please yourself. I wait your will.

220

225

230

235

240

245

250

255

In all the court not one that shook her head


Or contradicted what the knight had said;
Maid, wife and widow cried, Hes saved his life!

background

And on the word up started the old wife,


The one the knight saw sitting on the green,
And cried, Your mercy, sovereign lady queen!
Before the court disperses, do me right!
Twas I who taught this answer to the knight,
For which he swore, and pledged his honor to it,
That the first thing I asked of him hed do it,
So far as it should lie within his might.
Before this court I ask you then, sir knight,
To keep your word and take me for your wife;
For well you know that I have saved your life.
If this be false, deny it on your sword!
Alas! he said, Old lady, by the Lord
I know indeed that such was my behest,
But for Gods love think of a new request,
Take all my goods, but leave my body free.
A curse on us, she said, if I agree!
I may be foul, I may be poor and old,
Yet will not choose to be, for all the gold
Thats bedded in the earth or lies above,
Less than your wife, nay, than your very love!
My love? said he. By heaven, my damnation!
Alas that any of my race and station
Should ever make so foul a misalliance!
Yet in the end his pleading and defiance
All went for nothing, he was forced to wed.
He takes his ancient wife and goes to bed.

235 behest (bG-hDstP): promise.

244 race and station: family and rank.


245 misalliance (mGsQE-lFPEns): an
unsuitable marriage.

Now peradventure some may well suspect


A lack of care in me since I neglect
To tell of the rejoicing and display
Made at the feast upon their wedding-day.
I have but a short answer to let fall;
I say there was no joy or feast at all,
Nothing but heaviness of heart and sorrow.
He married her in private on the morrow
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The Economics of Knighthood Knighthood


was on the wane in the age of Chaucer. The
number of knights had dropped from about
five thousand in 1100 a.d. to about eleven
hundred in the year 1300. The problem: The
cost of knighthood was so high. Equipment
especially armor and horseswas very
expensive. In the 12th century, knights were
members of a military order that included
peasants as well as nobles. By Chaucers day,
most knights were aristocrats, the only class
who could afford the cost of knighthood. The
status attached to knighthood had more
to do with greatness of wealth than with
abundance of chivalry. Ask students to keep
this information in mind as they consider the
knights reaction to the status of his prospective wife, the old lady (lines 244245 and 277).

191

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12:16:48 PM

for struggling readers


Character Ask students which words best
describe the Knight. Encourage them to explain each choice. Help them to find textual
support. List their responses in an Open
Mind diagram.

lusty liver,
ungrateful,
mean, angry,
self-centered

BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Open Mind p. D9

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And all day long stayed hidden like an owl,


It was such torture that his wife looked foul.
READING SKILL
260

analyze structure

RL 5

Possible answer: The Wife of Baths digression serves several purposes: It builds suspense; it offers some humor, as the knights
wedding night is not enjoyable, but a fitting
punishment for a man who mistreats
women; and finally it clarifies the fact that
the Wife of Baths neglect (line 250) was
intentional. This is ironic, as there was no
need to explain; the pilgrims certainly know
that the Wife of Bath, who is an engaging
storyteller, is setting them up for another
turn of events.

265

270

275

VOCABULARY

own the word

Great was the anguish churning in his head


When he and she were piloted to bed;
He wallowed back and forth in desperate style.
His ancient wife lay smiling all the while;
At last she said, Bless us! Is this, my dear,
How knights and wives get on together here?
Are these the laws of good King Arthurs house?
Are knights of his all so contemptuous?
I am your own beloved and your wife,
And I am she, indeed, that saved your life;
And certainly I never did you wrong.
Then why, this first of nights, so sad a song?
Youre carrying on as if you were half-witted.
Say, for Gods love, what sin have I committed?
Ill put things right if you will tell me how.
Put right? he cried. That never can be now!
Nothing can ever be put right again!
Youre old, and so abominably plain,
So poor to start with, so low-bred to follow;
Its little wonder if I twist and wallow!
God, that my heart would burst within my breast!

L4

Is that, said she, the cause of your unrest?

280

bequeath: Have students write the answers


to these questions. What possessions do
they have that they might like to bequeath
to friends and to family? What possessions
might they like their family members to
bequeath to them?

Yes, certainly, he said, and can you wonder?

285

290

295

192

I could set right what you suppose a blunder,


Thats if I cared to, in a day or two,
If I were shown more courtesy by you.
Just now, she said, you spoke of gentle birth,
Such as descends from ancient wealth and worth.
If thats the claim you make for gentlemen
Such arrogance is hardly worth a hen.
Whoever loves to work for virtuous ends,
Public and private, and who most intends
To do what deeds of gentleness he can,
Take him to be the greatest gentleman.
Christ wills we take our gentleness from Him,
Not from a wealth of ancestry long dim,
Though they bequeath their whole establishment
By which we claim to be of high descent.

ANALYZE STRUCTURE
Consider why the Wife of Bath
speaks directly to the other
pilgrims in lines 249258.
What effect might this digression
have on her audience?
260 piloted: led. (In the Middle
Ages, the wedding party typically
escorted the bride and groom to
their bedchamber.).
261 wallowed (wJlPId): rolled
around; thrashed about.

Language Coach
Roots A words root contains
its core meaning. The root of
abomination, -omin, means
omen, or sign. Abominable
means disgusting, like a
bad omen. How does this
information help you understand
the meaning of abominably (line
276) and ominous?

bequeath (bG-kwCthP) v. to leave


in a will; to pass down as an
inheritance

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differentiated instruction
for english language learners
Vocabulary: Idioms Point out examples of
idiomatic expressions on this page. Help
students use context to determine the meaning of each one: all the while (line 262), the
whole time; carrying on (line 271), behaving
in an excited, foolish way; put things right
(line 273), correct the problem; Its little wonder (line 278), its no surprise; set right (line
282), correct the problem; cared to (line 283),
wanted to.

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for english language learners


Language Coach
Roots Answer: Abominably must mean
disgustingly; ominous must mean like a
bad omen.
Direct students to use both abonimably
and ominous in a sentence that describes
a contemporary scenario. For example,
students might describe a person behaving
abonimably at a social gathering.

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tiered discussion prompts


In lines 282300, use these prompts to help
students understand the Wife of Baths observations about gentility:
Analyze According to the Wife of Bath, what
gives a man the distinction of being a great
gentleman? Possible answer: Virtuous deeds,
rather than high birth, make a great gentleman.

300

305

310

315

Synthesize Why does the old lady feel it


necessary to explain her ideas about gentility
to the knight? Possible answer: The knight
has been treating the old lady rudely because
she is not high born, rather than showing her
gratitude for saving his life. The old ladys
instructive comments illustrate why she
believes that the knight is no gentleman.

Our fathers cannot make us a bequest


Of all those virtues that became them best
And earned for them the name of gentlemen,
But bade us follow them as best we can.

Analyze Visuals

Thus the wise poet of the Florentines,


Dante by name, has written in these lines,
For such is the opinion Dante launches:
Seldom arises by these slender branches
Prowess of men, for it is God, no less,
Wills us to claim of Him our gentleness.
For of our parents nothing can we claim
Save temporal things, and these may hurt and maim.
But everyone knows this as well as I;
For if gentility were implanted by
The natural course of lineage down the line,
Public or private, could it cease to shine
In doing the fair work of gentle deed?
No vice or villainy could then bear seed.
Take fire and carry it to the darkest house
Between this kingdom and the Caucasus,

302 Dante (dnPtA): a famous


medieval Italian poet. Lines 304306
refer to a passage in Dantes most
famous work, The Divine Comedy.

193

310 gentility (jDn-tGlPG-tC): the quality


possessed by a gentle, or noble,
person.

Analyzing Character Development [smallgroup option] Have students consider what


the knight has learned so far. They might keep
in mind these questions: What was the knight
like at the beginning of the tale? How does he
treat the old lady who is now his wife? What
does this show about his character? Has he
absorbed the meaning of his answer to the
queens question? Have students use a Character Traits and Textual Evidence chartor

VOCABULARY

own the word

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12:16:49 PM

a graphic organizer of their own designto


illustrate the knights development. Ask them
to share their findings with the class.
BEST PRACTICES TOOLKITTransparency

Character Traits and Textual Evidence p. D6

Character Traits
Quote: There was a
knight who was a lusty
liver. (line 59)
Quote: Nothing can ever
be put right again!
Youre old and so abominaably plain. (lines 275276)

Explanation: He
had great zest and
lascivious tastes.
Explanation: He
judges his own wife
by her outward
appearance.

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temporal: Tell students that the word temporal comes from the Latin word tempus,
which means time, and that temporal is
sometimes defined as limited by time.
Have students write a sentence that shows
an understanding of the word temporal.

316 Caucasus (kPkE-sEs): a region of


western Asia, between the Black and
Caspian seas.

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for advanced learners/ap

Possible answer: The knight is turned away


from the old woman and has a disgusted look
on his face. The old woman has her hand on
the knights shoulder. Her face and her posture
suggest that she is fond of him.

temporal (tDmPpEr-El) adj. of the


material world; not eternal

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Activity Based on the illustration, how does


the knight feel about the old woman? How
does she feel about him?

301 Florentines: the people of


Florence, Italy.

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320

tiered discussion prompts


In lines 322358, use these prompts to help
students understand the old womans
motivations:
Recall Why does the old woman launch
into a speech against the knight? Possible
answer: The knight mourns his situation and
insults the old woman. He berates her for her
ugliness and low class.

325

330

Analyze What arguments does the old


woman use to put the knight to shame?
Possible answer: She repeats that noble
deeds, rather than high birth, are signs of
gentility, and that poverty is neither shameful nor bad.

335

Synthesize Why does the old womans


speech (lines 285394) go on for so long?
Possible answer: The old woman is very angry, hurt, and annoyed by the knights crude,
ungrateful behavior toward her; she seems
to be at wits end. Perhaps she wants to give
the knight one last chance to change.

340

345

350

355

194

And shut the doors on it and leave it there,


It will burn on, and it will burn as fair
As if ten thousand men were there to see,
For fire will keep its nature and degree,
I can assure you, sir, until it dies.
But gentleness, as you will recognize,
Is not annexed in nature to possessions.
Men fail in living up to their professions;
But fire never ceases to be fire.
God knows youll often find, if you enquire,
Some lording full of villainy and shame.
If you would be esteemed for the mere name
Of having been by birth a gentleman
And stemming from some virtuous, noble clan,
And do not live yourself by gentle deed
Or take your fathers noble code and creed,
You are no gentleman, though duke or earl.
Vice and bad manners are what make a churl.

324 professions: beliefs; ideals.

327 lording: lord; nobleman.

334 churl (chrl): low-class person;


boor.

Gentility is only the renown


For bounty that your fathers handed down,
Quite foreign to your person, not your own;
Gentility must come from God alone.
That we are gentle comes to us by grace
And by no means is it bequeathed with place.
Reflect how noble (says Valerius)
Was Tullius surnamed Hostilius,
Who rose from poverty to nobleness.
And read Boethius, Seneca no less,
Thus they express themselves and are agreed:
Gentle is he that does a gentle deed.
And therefore, my dear husband, I conclude
That even if my ancestors were rude,
Yet God on highand so I hope He will
Can grant me grace to live in virtue still,
A gentlewoman only when beginning
To live in virtue and to shrink from sinning.

341 Valerius (vE-lrPC-Es): Valerius


Maximus, a Roman writer who
compiled a collection of historical
anecdotes.
342 Tullius (tOlPC-Es) surnamed
Hostilius (hJ-stGlPC-Es): the third king
of the Romans.
344 Boethius (bI-CPthC-Es): a
Christian philosopher of the Dark
Ages; Seneca (sDnPG-kE): an ancient
Roman philosopher, writer, teacher,
and politician.

As for my poverty which you reprove,


Almighty God Himself in whom we move,
Believe and have our being, chose a life
Of poverty, and every man or wife,
Nay, every child can see our Heavenly King
Would never stoop to choose a shameful thing.

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differentiated instruction
for advanced learners/ap
Literary Allusions [paired option] The Wife
of Baths Tale is full of many literary allusions, especially in the old womans rebuttal to the knight. She mentions Dante (line
302), Valerius (line 341), Boethius (line 344),
Seneca (lines 344 and 360), and Juvenal (line
368). Ask students how these allusions help
to characterize both the old woman and
the Wife of Bath. Ask why the old womans
rebuttal contains so many allusions and what

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they reveal about her. Then have partners


each research one or two of the allusions and
report their findings to the class. How does
this information help students understand
the text?

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360

365

370

375

380

385

390

395

No shame in poverty if the heart is gay,


As Seneca and all the learned say.
He who accepts his poverty unhurt
Id say is rich although he lacked a shirt.
But truly poor are they who whine and fret
And covet what they cannot hope to get.
And he that, having nothing, covets not,
Is rich, though you may think he is a sot.
True poverty can find a song to sing.
Juvenal says a pleasant little thing:
The poor can dance and sing in the relief
Of having nothing that will tempt a thief.
Though it be hateful, poverty is good,
A great incentive to a livelihood,
And a great help to our capacity
For wisdom, if accepted patiently.
Poverty is, though wanting in estate,
A kind of wealth that none calumniate.
Poverty often, when the heart is lowly,
Brings one to God and teaches what is holy,
Gives knowledge of oneself and even lends
A glass by which to see ones truest friends.
And since its no offense, let me be plain;
Do not rebuke my poverty again.

revisit the big question

366 sot: fool.

368 Juvenal (jLPvE-nEl): an ancient


Roman satirist.

Discuss In lines 346388, is the old woman


helping the knight to gain an understanding
that goes beyond what women most desire?
Explain. Possible answer: The old woman is
helping him to understand what makes a good
man: a person who is dignified in his actions
and manners and is respectful of others.

375 wanting in estate: lacking in


grandeur.

VOCABULARY

376 calumniate (kE-lOmPnC-AtQ):


criticize with false statements;
slander.

own the word

rebuke (rG-byLkP) v. to criticize

rebuke: Have students list the reasons


Juvenal cites for not rebuking poverty.
Possible answers: nothing to steal, great
incentive to a livelihood, brings one closer to
God and teaches what is holy, gives knowledge of self, provides a way to judge friends

Lastly you taxed me, sir, with being old.


Yet even if you never had been told
By ancient books, you gentlemen engage,
Yourselves in honor to respect old age.
To call an old man father shows good breeding,
And this could be supported from my reading.
You say Im old and fouler than a fen.
You need not fear to be a cuckold, then.
Filth and old age, Im sure you will agree,
Are powerful wardens over chastity.
Nevertheless, well knowing your delights,
I shall fulfil your worldly appetites. g
You have two choices; which one will you try?
To have me old and ugly till I die,
But still a loyal, true, and humble wife
That never will displease you all her life,
Or would you rather I were young and pretty

390 cuckold (kOkPEld): a husband


whose wife is unfaithful.

T E X T A N A LY S I S

g NARRATOR

In lines 285394, the old woman


offers a lengthy rebuttal to the
knights complaints. Why might
the narrator place her focus
on the old woman and not the
knight at this point in the story?

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for struggling readers

Comprehension Support: Allusions Direct


students attention to the brief side notes,
explaining each allusion in the old womans
rebuttal to the knight (lines 301, 302, 316, 341,
342, 344, and 368). Remind them that an allusion is a reference to a famous person, place,
event, or work of literature. If necessary,
elaborate on the side notes to give students a
better understand of the text.

Develop Reading Fluency Have students


work in small groups to practice choral reading of the stanzas on this page. Encourage
group members to work together to identify
difficult or confusing passages and clarify
specific words, phrases, and punctuation that
prove challenging. After students have finished reading this material once, encourage
them to read again, focusing the second time
on reading with emphasis and expression.

narrator

12:16:52 PM

the canterbury tales

195

RL 3

Possible answer: The narrator focuses on


the old woman because she is the only one
who can deliver the moral of the tale; the
knight has proven by his actions and
behavior that he is still churlish and
mean-spirited. Only the old woman has
something to teach, while the knight still
has much to learn.

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389 fen: marsh.

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Do men UNDERSTAND
women?

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400

405

410

415

T E X T A N A LY S I S

RL 3

narrator

420

Possible answer: The Wife of Baths attitude


toward controlling or miserly husbands is
negative and hostile: She asks that Jesus cut
short the lives of controlling husbands (lines
437438) and that God cause miserly husbands to die of pestilence (lines 439440).

425

IF STUDENTS NEED HELP . . . Reread and


help students paraphrase lines 437438
and 439440.

430

Extend the Discussion What does the


Wife of Baths tale suggest about her own
marriages?
435

selection wrapup
READ WITH A PURPOSE Now that students
have read The Wife of Baths Prologue, ask
them whether the Wife of Bath was ahead
of her time or behind the times with regard
to her attitude toward gender roles. Possible
answers: The Wife of Bath was ahead of her
time, as she spoke out against mens control of
womens lives in her 14th-century society.
CRITIQUE

440

196

And chance your arm what happens in a city


Where friends will visit you because of me,
Yes, and in other places too, maybe.
Which would you have? The choice is all your own.

400 chance your arm: take your


chance on.

The knight thought long, and with a piteous groan


At last he said, with all the care in life,
My lady and my love, my dearest wife,
I leave the matter to your wise decision.
You make the choice yourself, for the provision
Of what may be agreeable and rich
In honor to us both, I dont care which;
Whatever pleases you suffices me.

Language Coach

And have I won the mastery? said she,


Since Im to choose and rule as I think fit?
Certainly, wife, he answered her, thats it.
Kiss me, she cried. No quarrels! On my oath
And word of honor, you shall find me both,
That is, both fair and faithful as a wife;
May I go howling mad and take my life
Unless I prove to be as good and true
As ever wife was since the world was new!
And if tomorrow when the suns above
I seem less fair than any lady-love,
Than any queen or empress east or west,
Do with my life and death as you think best.
Cast up the curtain, husband. Look at me!
And when indeed the knight had looked to see,
Lo, she was young and lovely, rich in charms.
In ecstasy he caught her in his arms,
His heart went bathing in a bath of blisses
And melted in a hundred thousand kisses,
And she responded in the fullest measure
With all that could delight or give him pleasure.
So they lived ever after to the end
In per