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Prologue to The Canterbury Tales

Multiple Choice
Identify the letter of the choice that best completes the statement or answers the question.
 
 
Critical Reading
 

1. 

In “The Prologue” to The Canterbury Tales, Chaucer uses the pilgrimage primarily as a device to
a.
emphasize the characters’ religious aspirations.
b.
frame the stories told by individual characters.
c.
describe the rigors of medieval life.
d.
create a vivid and realistic setting.
 

2. 

The narrator in The Canterbury Tales, is portrayed as
a.
stern and judgmental.
c.
robust and merry.
b.
sophisticated and worldly.
d.
naive and observant.
 

3. 

The narrator in The Canterbury Tales, says he plans to “give account of all their words and dealings, / Using their very phrases as they fell.” For which kind of characterization would an author provide such details?
a.
direct characterization
c.
direct and indirect characterization
b.
indirect characterization
d.
dramatic characterization
 

4. 

Which best describes Chaucer’s attitude toward the Nun in The Canterbury Tales?
a.
amused tolerance
c.
marked scorn
b.
polite detachment
d.
weary reproachfulness
 

5. 

Using the who, what, where, when, why, and how questioning strategy, write the letter of the phrase that best summarizes the meaning of the following passage from “The Prologue” to The Canterbury Tales.
He was an easy man in penance-giving / Where he could hope to make a decent living; / It’s a sure sign whenever gifts are given / To a poor Order that a man’s well shriven, / And should he give enough he knew in verity / The penitent repented in sincerity.
a.
He gave out easy penances and absolution in exchange for gifts.
b.
He gave out easy penances in exchange for gifts wherever he thought he could get gifts out of the confessors.
c.
He gave out easy penances and absolution in exchange for gifts wherever he thought he could get gifts out of the confessors. He knew that if he exacted a large enough price for the sin that the penitent person would truly feel sorry for what he’d done.
d.
He gave out easy penances and absolution in exchange for gifts wherever he thought he could get gifts out of the confessors. He knew that if he exacted a large enough price for the sin that the penitent person would truly feel sorry for what he’d done. In fact, whenever a poor group of friars receives gifts you can be sure that someone has just received absolution for his sins.
 

6. 

In “The Prologue” to The Canterbury Tales,whom do the pilgrims agree to set up as judge over themselves?
a.
the narrator
c.
the Oxford Cleric
b.
the Host
d.
the Sergeant at the Law
 

7. 

What do the following lines from “The Prologue” to The Canterbury Tales suggest about the woman from Bath?
In all the parish not a dame dared stir / Towards the altar steps in front of her
a.
She is a religious fanatic.
c.
She is selfish and arrogant.
b.
She abhors the Christian church.
d.
She disdains the company of women.
 
 
Vocabulary and Grammar
 

8. 

The word commission means to
a.
go on a mission with someone.
c.
give authorization.
b.
found a religious outpost.
d.
plunge ahead.
 

9. 

What verb tense is Chaucer using in the underlined portion of the following passage?
This noble example to his sheep he gave, / First following the word before he taught it, / And it was from the gospel he had caught it.
a.
present tense
c.
past perfect tense
b.
past tense
d.
past progressive tense
 

10. 

Identify the verb tense Chaucer uses in the underlined portion of the following passage from The Canterbury Tales.
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.
a.
past
c.
past progressive
b.
past perfect
d.
present perfect
 



 
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