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Chaucer Geoffrey Quizzes, Trivia and Puzzles
Chaucer Geoffrey Quizzes, Trivia

Geoffrey Chaucer Trivia

Geoffrey Chaucer Trivia Quizzes

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Geoffrey Chaucer is only recognised by many people as the author of 'The Canterbury Tales', but that was only one of the books written by the man often called the Father of English Literature, the first poet to be buried in Poets' Corner in Westminster Abbey. He was not only an author and philosopher, but he also gained a reputation in astronomy, and had an active career in the civil service.
11 Geoffrey Chaucer quizzes and 110 Geoffrey Chaucer trivia questions.
  Let's Get General With Geoffrey   best quiz  
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Here is a quiz that explores Geoffrey Chaucer's "General Prologue" from "The Canterbury Tales". Please bear in mind that this quiz focuses solely on Chaucer's perceptions of Christianity during the 14th century and is in no way an ongoing belief. Enjoy!
Average, 10 Qns, poshprice, Feb 04 09
Recommended for grades: 11,12
858 plays
  Thisbe - One of Chaucer's "Good" Women   best quiz  
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Here is a quiz that explores the myth of "Pyramus and Thisbe", as told by Geoffrey Chaucer in his "Legend of Good Women". All interesting information is based on my own research for my university dissertation. Good luck.
Tough, 10 Qns, poshprice, Jan 28 09
380 plays
  Antiques Roadshow editor best quiz   great trivia quiz  
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Students of "The Canterbury Tales" unearthed a video proving that another roadshow visited the "Roadshow" when the famous television program stopped in Canterbury, circa 1381 AD. Who and what appeared on this landmark broadcast? Let's go to the tape ...
Tough, 10 Qns, shorthumbz, May 03 14
Recommended for grades: 11,12
shorthumbz gold member
670 plays
  The Canterbury Tales-The Basics    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
This won't be easy, unless you've read at least the General Prologue. I tried to keep the questions general, and the choices as obvious as I could. I just hope you go away a little better Jeopardy player. How do they know all that stuff? Quizzyland!
Average, 10 Qns, dagney, Dec 16 09
2777 plays
  The Canterbury Pilgrims    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
How much do you know about the pilgrims described in Geoffrey Chaucer's "The Prologue to the Canterbury Tales?"
Average, 10 Qns, giraffeluver3, Jun 03 06
1461 plays
  A Test on the Tales   popular trivia quiz  
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
A quiz for those who have read the Prologue and a reasonable selection of the tales.
Average, 10 Qns, skylarb, Jul 09 03
Recommended for grades: 11,12
1556 plays
  The Merchant's Tale    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
The classic tale by Geoffrey Chaucer.
Average, 10 Qns, cerealqueen, Jul 05 08
404 plays
  Which Pilgrim from "The Canterbury Tales" am I?    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Can you work out which characters on Chaucer's famous fictional pilgrimage to Canterbury are describing themselves? Spellings for questions and answers are in modern English.
Average, 10 Qns, Plumbus, Jul 17 05
Recommended for grades: 11,12
Plumbus gold member
1438 plays
  Cliffy's Tales of Canterbury    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Hi! I used the Cliff Notes version of "Canterbury Tales" to write this quiz, hence the title of the quiz.
Average, 10 Qns, pennie1478, Jan 28 12
pennie1478 gold member
295 plays
  The Canterbury Tales Quiz Challenge    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Here is a fun quiz on the stories and pilgrims in Chaucer's "The Canterbury Tales."
Tough, 10 Qns, Acj2011, Jan 28 12
414 plays
trivia question Quick Question
What is the name of the woman William falls for?

From Quiz "A Knight's Tale"

  "The Canterbury Tales" Trivia    
Multiple Choice
 10 Qns
Hopefully this will challenge your knowledge of "The Canterbury Tales" and introduce you if you aren't familiar with the work.
Tough, 10 Qns, LuckyLulu27, Dec 14 10
995 plays
Related Topics
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Geoffrey Chaucer Trivia Questions

1. What was the profession of Perkin Reveler in "The Cook's Tale"?

From Quiz
Cliffy's Tales of Canterbury

Answer: Apprentice cook

Perkin Reveler was an apprentice cook who was fired for bad conduct. Perkin joined forces with another man of bad conduct and they were bad together. FYI, Roger, the cook, who was telling the tale never finished it. Some believe Chaucer stopped the tale because it wasn't going to be merry.

2. During the 14th century, what type of institution had the greatest influence over the people of England?

From Quiz Let's Get General With Geoffrey

Answer: The Church

Geoffrey Chaucer's "General Prologue" presents a highly realistic representation of society during the 14th century. The change that was taking place in values, and the behaviour of the people is vividly depicted, leading to genuine concern for the state of society as a whole. Based loosely on the form of estates satire, which was traditionally used by medieval satirists in their criticism of society, Chaucer's "General Prologue" conveys the manifestation of deceit, corruption, and the growing tendency to sin. During a time when the Church was the institution with the greatest influence over the people, the question of morality is certainly brought to the forefront. Society is continually compared against the strict ideals of the Church, which results in criticism of those who ignore its moral superiority. However such criticism is also aimed at many of the Church's own representatives, which complicates the matter.

3. Which collection of stories is "The Merchant's Tale" a part of?

From Quiz The Merchant's Tale

Answer: The Canterbury Tales

Written by Chaucer in the 14th Century, "The Canterbury Tales" is a collection of stories contained inside a frame tale and told by various pilgrims on a pilgrimage from Southwark to Canterbury.

4. What is the name of the inn where the narrator meets all of the pilgrims?

From Quiz The Canterbury Pilgrims

Answer: The Tabard

"Befell that, in that season, on a day In Southwark, at the Tabard, as I lay Ready to start upon my pilgrimage" This is where it all began...

5. "The Canterbury Tales" consisted of 22 complete stories, but how many were originally planned?

From Quiz A Test on the Tales

Answer: 120

The tales were to be told by each of 30 pilgrims, two on the way to Becket's tomb, and two on the return journey. Two additional tales were begun but never completed.

6. How many people are going on the pilgrimage to Canterbury?

From Quiz "The Canterbury Tales" Trivia

Answer: 30

There are nine and twenty pilgrims, plus the Host (who doesn't tell any tales).

7. The obvious first question...Who wrote The Canterbury Tales?

From Quiz The Canterbury Tales-The Basics

Answer: Geoffery Chaucer

Chaucer was born c. 1340 and died in 1400.

8. What genre is "The Knight's Tale?"

From Quiz The Canterbury Tales

Answer: Romance

"The Knight's Tale" tells of the tragic love story between the two knights, Arcite and Palamon, and their yearnings for the beautiful Emily, princess of Athens.

9. What did the knight do to his fourteen year old daughter to keep her away from the lying blackguard named Claudius in "The Physician's Tale"?

From Quiz Cliffy's Tales of Canterbury

Answer: The knight killed his daughter

The knight decapitated his fourteen year old daughter to keep her away from the lying blackguard Claudius. The town judge imprisoned the knight for murder, but the town citizens knew of the lie that forced the knight to kill his daughter and forced the judge into prison. The knight was released and had Claudius exiled. FYI, 'The Physician's Tale' told in "The Canterbury Tales" resembles Jean de Meun's 'Roman de la Rose'.

10. According to Chaucer, why aren't Pyramus and Thisbe married?

From Quiz Thisbe - One of Chaucer's "Good" Women

Answer: Neither of their fathers would allow it

Chaucer starts by telling the tale of two young lovers; the "yonge man was called Piramus/ Tysbe hight the maide", and she was "the fayreste/ That estward" dwelled, and he was of "al that lond oon of the lustyeste". Both "in love ylyke sore they brente" and there "myghte have ben bytwixe hem maryage", only "that here fadres nolde it nat assente". Indeed it is their fathers who prevent the lovers from marrying, and thus sets their tragic tale in motion. For passion has an important role in Chaucer's legend of "Thisbe". Privately "som tyme yit they mette/ By sleyghte" to speak "of here desyr". For as "wry the glede and hotter is the fyr/ Forbede a love, and it is ten so wod". Thus at odds with the orders of her parents and companions, (for "non of alle hyre frendes myght it lette"), Thisbe continued to meet with Pyramus in secret.

11. How old is the character of January?

From Quiz The Merchant's Tale

Answer: 60

He is described as a 60-year-old knight from the town of Pavie, in Lombardy.

12. What brother of a parson is described in Chaucer's prologue to "The Canterbury Tales" as one who pays his tithes "ful faire and well"?

From Quiz A Test on the Tales

Answer: Plowman

The Plowman also lives "in pees and perfit charitee." The Plowman and his brother the Parson are two of Chaucer's most positive characters. The monk is a "manly man" with a lust for hunting. The Pardoner is a charlatan who passes off pig's bones as Saint's relics, and the Friar is something of a womanizer.

13. How many tales will each pilgrim tell, there and back?

From Quiz "The Canterbury Tales" Trivia

Answer: 4 & four

They are each going to tell two tales there and two tales on the way back. Whoever tells the best tale wins dinner, paid for by the rest of the group.

14. Several travelers (pilgrims) set off on a pilgrimage to whose Shrine, and where is it located?

From Quiz The Canterbury Tales-The Basics

Answer: Thomas a Becket, Canterbury

They set off from the Tabbard Inn, in Southwark, 29 in all. The pilgrims would listen to each other tell tales along the trip there and back. The best tale teller earns a free dinner.

15. Who is presented as the most honest and moral of Chaucer's pilgrims?

From Quiz Let's Get General With Geoffrey

Answer: The Parson

Despite the immorality that is apparent amongst the clergy, hope manifests itself in the form of the Parson, who is presented as an almost Christ-like figure. Although materially poor, he is spiritually empowered, for "riche he was" of both "hooly thoght and werk". Moreover "Wyd was his parish, and houses far asonder", and yet "he lafte not for reyne or thonder/ In siknesse and in meschief to visíte" the "ferthest in his parisshe, smal and great". His impatience with "any persone obstinat" seems to be his only flaw, for "Cristes love, and his apostles twelve" he taught, but "ferst he folwed it himselve". Yet for every trap that Chaucer's Parson has avoided, there are thousands that have fallen into them, and in light of this, the goodness of Chaucer's Parson only serves to heighten the unruliness that is present in everybody else. For in the "General Prologue" he is the only individual that completely measures up to the strict Christian ideal, which is something even the Church itself does not.

16. What type of physical structure prevented Pyramus and Thisbe from being able to touch each other, and yet still enabled them to communicate?

From Quiz Thisbe - One of Chaucer's "Good" Women

Answer: A wall

The wall which divides the two lovers is highly significant: This wal, which that bitwixe hem bothe stod, Was clove a-two, ryght from the cop adoun, Of olde tyme of his fundacioun; Chaucer uses the stone wall as a symbol of division, which causes the lovers to curse it for refusing to "cleve or fallen al a-two". For the "wikkede wal" itself is flawed in its structure. As a result, its "clyfte", although "narw and lyte", enables passion to penetrate obstructions. Although the wall is a cause of separation, it is also simultaneously a source for union. Thus the "colde wal they wolden kysse of ston,/ And take here leve and forth they wolden gon". To add to this, it also provides a channel for speech, enabling the "swote soun of other to receyve". This is how the relationship is sustained, for over a "longe tyme they wroughte in this manere". The wall is highly significant. It unites them through separation, for as an obstruction the wall only serves to increase their passion, which is also allowed to transfer itself onto the other side of the stone.

17. One of January's brothers is called Justinus. What is the name of his other brother?

From Quiz The Merchant's Tale

Answer: Placebo

January asks Justinus and Placebo for their advice on marriage. The two brothers have differing views - Placebo encourages January to get married whereas Justinus suggests that he does not marry. January decides to take Placebo's advice.

18. The Knight is travelling with his son, an amourous youth. What is he called by the narrator?

From Quiz The Canterbury Pilgrims

Answer: The Squire

"With him there was his son, a youthful squire, A lover and a lusty bachelor, With locks well curled, as if they'd laid in press." Seems quite different from his father.

19. Do you want to buy one of my holy relics along with that certificate of absolution hot from Rome? Some people say they're just pig's bones but don't believe a word they say.

From Quiz Which Pilgrim from "The Canterbury Tales" am I?

Answer: The pardoner

Left until nearly the end of 'The General Prologue', the pardoner is one of the least appealing portraits: a greasy haired, high-voiced con-artist who was totally unscrupulous.

20. This pilgrim's tale contains the characters Nicholas and Absolon.

From Quiz A Test on the Tales

Answer: The Miller's

This is a rather off-color story involving a naïve carpenter, his wife, and her suitors.

21. "The Nonnes Preestes Tale" is an example of what?

From Quiz "The Canterbury Tales" Trivia

Answer: beast fable

A beast fable is an animal fable that has a moral. An exemplum displays some kind of moral, a miraculum displays some kind of miracle, and Romantic tales generally involve knights and chivalry.

22. As the pilgrims left Southwark, they were led out of town by the Miller. What instrument was he playing?

From Quiz The Canterbury Tales-The Basics

Answer: Bagpipes

Ironically, the Reeve, the anthithesis of the Miller, was the last in the line.

23. After Phoebus heard of his wife's affair in "The Manciple's Tale", what did he do to the crow who told him of the affair?

From Quiz Cliffy's Tales of Canterbury

Answer: Phoebus had the crow's voicebox removed and feathers replaced

Chaucer remarked that the moral to "The Manciple's Tale" is that repeating scandal is a dangerous business. Chaucer took "The Manciple's Tale" from Ovid's "Metamorphosis".

24. Where do Pyramus and Thisbe arrange to meet in order to run away?

From Quiz Thisbe - One of Chaucer's "Good" Women

Answer: At Ninus' tomb

Pyramus and Thisbe agree "to mete in o place at o tyde"; they "sette mark" where "kyng Nynus was grave under a tre". Incidentally Ninus (the male founder of Babylon), is Semiramis' (the current ruler of Babylon) husband. Therefore the lovers actually fail in their attempts to escape the civic structures of their home town, for Ninus' tomb is a clear reminder of its constraint.

25. January becomes blind in the course of the poem. Which character decides to grant his sight back?

From Quiz The Merchant's Tale

Answer: Pluto

Pluto and Proserpina argue - Pluto condemns women's morality and decides that he will grant January his sight back. In defence of women, Proserpina grants May the ability to talk her way out of the situation.

26. Which pilgrim "was known as Madam Eglantine"?

From Quiz The Canterbury Pilgrims

Answer: The Prioress

"There was also a nun, a prioress, Who, in her smiling, modest was and coy; Her greatest oath was but "By Saint Eloy!" And she was known as Madam Eglantine." Interestingly enough, the Prioress is not known as 'the nun,' even though she is one. There is a separate nun.

27. Which pilgrim's tale is based on one of Boccaccio's courtly romances?

From Quiz A Test on the Tales

Answer: The Knight's

It is based on his "Il Teseida." Boccaccio wrote a collection of short stories called the "Decameron." Chaucer also modeled his "Troilus and Criseide" on a work by Boccaccio.

28. Who told the first tale?

From Quiz The Canterbury Tales-The Basics

Answer: The Knight

He told a tale of ideal, chivalrous love. The perfect 14th century romantic story that audiences loved, today we call them 'chick flicks'.

29. When the miller told his story in "The Miller's Tale", what body part did he say that Alison stuck out the window for her unwanted suitor to kiss?

From Quiz Cliffy's Tales of Canterbury

Answer: Bottom

Absalan fell in love with Alison, but she didn't return his feelings. One night, Absalan went to Alison's home to get a kiss from her. Alison was with another man in her room. When Absalan called out to her for a kiss, Alison thought it would be funny to stick her bottom out the window. Absalan kissed her bottom and then recoiled in disgust and shame. That same night, Absalan returned with a hot poker to get revenge on Alison. Absalan again called out to Alison for a kiss. This time Alison's lover, Nicolas, stuck his bottom out the window for Absalan to kiss. Instead of a kiss, Absalan pressed the hot poker against Nicolas' bottom and branded him. FYI, The miller was drunk at the time he told this story and it became Chaucer's most disliked tale.

30. What frightens Thisbe while she is waiting for Pyramus?

From Quiz Thisbe - One of Chaucer's "Good" Women

Answer: A lioness

While Thisbe is waiting for Pyramus, she sees a "wilde leonesse" come "out of the wode", "with blody mouthe, of strangling of a beste/ To drinken of the welle, ther as she sat". Fearing for her life, "in a cave with dredful foot she sterte", and "her wimpel leet she falle". Once the "leonesse hath dronke her fille", "right anoon the wimpel gan she finde" and "with her blody mouth hit al to-rente", before disappearing back "to the wode her wey than hath she nome".

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