The stories of storytellers goes on in the centuries. In 1387 Geoffrey Chaucer, father of the English language, wrote The Canterbury Tales.
This work is a collection of stories told by a group of pilgrims from various parts of
. They meet in England London, at the Tabard Inn (tavern = locanda), and choose to continue the journey together as they are all travelling to Canterbury to pray on the shrine (memorial = santuario)of à Beckett. To enjoy (to have pleasure = per passare bene) their time during the journey these pilgrims decide to tell each other (= reciprocamente) stories. The teller (man who tells = colui che racconta) of the best story shall have a free dinner on his return to the inn. Saint Thomas
The collection of Tales has a preface, a Prologue, in which G. Chaucer describes vividly (colourfully = vivacemente) each of the pilgrims, their characteristics and clothes, their qualities and defects.
They represent the complex social reality of the 14th century, from the highest class (knighthood = cavalieri and clergy = clero) to the lowest (middle class and peasants = contadini). Very few pilgrims escape Chaucer’s comic satire, and irony. .
The tales reflect the background, personality and taste of the narrator.
The stories are
24 in all – some are incomplete – and vary from courtly, idealistic romances to comic and farcical anecdotes. Every one gives also a sort of lesson based on real experience.