Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Chaucer's Church: A Dictionary of Religious Terms in Chaucer

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Chaucer's Church: A Dictionary of Religious Terms in Chaucer

Article excerpt

Edward E. Foster and David H. Carey, Chaucer's Church: A Dictionary of Religious Terms in Chaucer (Aldershot: Ashgate, 2002). xii + 149 pp. ISBN 0-7546-0674-0. $59.95. An undoubted labour of love, albeit an expensive one, which envisions readers of Chaucer turning to a single source to search out answers for particular ecclesiastical points or passages which interest or puzzle them, Chaucer's Church seeks to 'provide clear, concise and reliable explanations of every term Chaucer uses that has a religious, liturgical, or ecclesiastical meaning' (emphasis added). The difficulty with this brief is that terms which Chaucer did not actually 'use' figure hardly at all. Thus although the Bible is everywhere cited, the editors have not left themselves an opening to describe the difficulties which attend upon its interpretation, and important and contemporary churchmen, like Cardinal Adam Easton, OSB, vital for understanding the second Nun's Tale, must go unlisted. …

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