Three Chaucer Studies: I. Chaucerian Problems: Especially the Petherton Forestership and the Question of Thomas Chaucer

Three Chaucer Studies: I. Chaucerian Problems: Especially the Petherton Forestership and the Question of Thomas Chaucer

Three Chaucer Studies: I. Chaucerian Problems: Especially the Petherton Forestership and the Question of Thomas Chaucer

Three Chaucer Studies: I. Chaucerian Problems: Especially the Petherton Forestership and the Question of Thomas Chaucer

Excerpt

The studies assembled in this volume were begun as report assignments in my Chaucer Seminary at New York University.In suggesting these subjects for investigation I was aware, of course, that the problems involved had long engaged the attention of Chaucer students, but I believed it was still possible to secure additional information by approaching them from a new angle instead of along the beaten thoroughfare.Highways are convenient for wayfarers in the field of literary history, but if we are to gain further knowledge it is necessary now and then to leave the high road and break a path through the thicket.

The first of these studies would be mathematically described as an ellipse instead of a circle, since it concerns itself with the biographies of two persons, Geoffrey and Thomas Chaucer.This is due to the fact that it began as an investigation of certain theories put forward in 1930 by Professor Langhans.It was impossible without examining the life histories of both men to test the assumptions upon which these theories were based. After refuting without difficulty the contention of Langhans that the maiden name of Chaucer's wife was Philippa Chaucer and that the date of their marriage was 1374, Mr.Krauss proceeded to investigate Langhans's supposition that the Geoffrey Chaucer who held the appointment as forester of North Petherton was another person than the poet.The question of the Petherton forestership involves both Geoffrey and . . .

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