Canterbury Tales: Here Follow the Words of the Franklin

Author: Geoffrey Chaucer  | Date: 1380

HERE FOLLOW THE WORDS OF THE FRANKLIN

TO THE SQUIRE, AND THE WORDS OF THE

HOST TO THE FRANKLIN

In faith, sir squire, you have done well with it,

And openly I praise you for your wit,"

The franklin said, "Considering your youth,

So feelingly you speak, sir, in good truth!

In my opinion, there is none that’s here

In eloquence shall ever be your peer,

If you but live; may God give you good chance

And in all virtue send continuance!

For, sir, your speech was great delight to me.

I have a son, and by the Trinity

I’d rather have, than twenty pounds in land,

Though it were right now fallen to my hand,

He were a man of such discretion shown

As you, sir; fie on what a man may own,

Unless the man have virtue therewithal.

I’ve checked my son, and yet again I shall,

For he toward virtue chooses not to wend;

But just to play at dice, and gold to spend,

And lose all that he has, is his usage.

And he would rather talk with any page

Than to commune with any gentle wight

From whom he might, learn courtesy aright."

"A straw for courtesy!" exclaimed our host;

"What, franklin? Gad, sir, well you know, I trust,

That each of you must tell us, at the least,

A tale or two, or break his sworn behest."

"I know it," said the franklin; "I am fain,

And pray you all, you do not me disdain,

Though to this man I speak a word or two."

"Come, tell your tale, sir, without more ado."

"Gladly, sir host," said he, "I will obey

Your will, good host; now hearken what I say.

For I’ll not be contrary in any wise,

At least so far as my wit shall suffice;

I pray to God that it may please you; rough

Though it may be, I’ll know ’tis good enough.

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Chicago: Geoffrey Chaucer, Canterbury Tales: Here Follow the Words of the Franklin Original Sources, accessed March 5, 2021, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=BMSU28C8K6LTLS5.

MLA: Chaucer, Geoffrey. Canterbury Tales: Here Follow the Words of the Franklin, Original Sources. 5 Mar. 2021. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=BMSU28C8K6LTLS5.

Harvard: Chaucer, G, Canterbury Tales: Here Follow the Words of the Franklin. Original Sources, retrieved 5 March 2021, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=BMSU28C8K6LTLS5.