Geoffrey Chaucer, the Critical Heritage

By Derek Brewer | Go to book overview

examining one single text of the Canterbury Tales, which, though relatively a good one, is manifestly full of errors. A comparison of several of the better manuscripts would enable us to speak with much more accuracy and confidence. Tyrwhitt’s arbitrary text may very frequently be used to clear up, both in this and in other particulars, the much superior manuscript published by Wright. Still the question whether an e was pronounced would often be one of much delicacy (as the previous question whether it actually existed is sometimes one of great difficulty), and not to be determined by counting syllables on the fingers. No supposition is indeed more absurd than that Chaucer, a master poet for any time, could write awkward, halting, or even unharmonious verses. It is to be held, therefore, that when a verse is bad, and cannot be made good anyway as it stands, then we have not the verse that Chaucer wrote. But with regard to the particular point upon which we are now engaged, it would often be indifferent, or nearly so, whether a final e is absolutely dropped, or lightly glided over. Then again, as not a few grammatical forms were most certainly written both with and without this termination, the fuller form would often slip in where the other would be preferable or necessary, much depending on the care, the intelligence, or the good ear of the scribe. Very often the concurrence of an initial vowel, justifying elision, with a doubtful final e, renders it possible to read a verse in two ways or more; and lastly, hundreds of verses are so mutilated or corrupted that no safe opinion can be based upon them. Such verses as these ought plainly not to be used either to support or impugn a conclusion; neither ought the general rules which seem to be authorized by the majority of instances be too rigorously applied to the emendation of verses that cannot be made, as they stand, to come under these rules.


13.

WALTER SAVAGE LANDOR, CREATURES LIKE OURSELVES

1863

Walter Landor (1775-1864), poet in Latin and English, miscellaneous writer and quarreller, was educated at Trinity College, Oxford. He expresses clearly a

-123-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Geoffrey Chaucer, the Critical Heritage
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 512

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.