The Nun s Priest s Tale
The tale told by the Nun s Priest is a fable or story with animals as the main characters and usually ends with a moral of some sort. This tale takes place on the farm of and old, poor widow. All that she posses can be summed up in a few lines. It is among her possessions that we find the rooster Chanticleer, who s crowing is more precise than any clock and a voice that was jollier than any church organ.
The tale is told from the point-of-view of Chanticleer. One night he has the dream of a fox pursuing him and killing him. When he wakes, his wife, Lady Pertelote tries to convince him that it was just a dream and that it has no meaning.
Chanticleer argues with Pertelote and produces a tale of his own. This is the tale of two young travelers who in search of lodging must separate. One of the travelers found a bed in a farmer s barn, the other in a lodge of some type. In the night, one of the travelers hears his friend in a dream calling out for help. He says that he is to be murdered for his money and his body is to be hidden in a dung cart at the west end of town. In the morning, the man goes in search of is friend and discovers him dead in exact location that he learned from his dream. Chanticleer uses this story to try and prove to Pertelote that dream have meaning.
The fox enters the scene the next morning as the hens and Chanticleer come down from their roost to feed and relax in the sun. The fox waits and watches Chanticleer and the hen s for a good bit of the day from a nearby cabbage patch. However, right before he is about to crow, Chanticleer catches a glimpse of the fox and silences himself. The fox sensing that his meal maybe lost quickly comes up with a new scheme to trick Chanticleer. He instantly claims to be friendly and means no harm towards Chanticleer. He then uses flattery on Chanticleer, convincing him that the fox came only to hear his beautiful voice and how he had been waiting so long to hear it, this tricks Chanticleer into lowering his guard, it is at that moment that the fox strikes and runs with the almost lifeless body of Chanticleer towards the woods. The widow hears the hens outside and begins to pursue the fox.
Knowing that his death is almost imminent, Chanticleer does some quick thinking for himself. In a last attempt to save himself, Chanticleer convinces the fox to turn around and taunt his pursuers. The moment that he opens his mouth, Chanticleer escapes and flies into the trees.
The moral to this fable is to not believe everything that is said to you. This exemplifies the character of the Nun s Priest. He is a cunning man who will use any means possible to get something that he desires. And if caught, he will use the same skill of speech to rid himself of the problem.