The tournament in the Knight's Tale : A contemporary scene



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This thesis investigates the extent to which Chaucer incorporated medieval scenes, customs, and beliefs in the tournament in the Knight's Tale. Following a brief summary of the early origins and subsequent development of tournaments, Chaucer's tournament is compared with those staged In France and England near the close of the fourteenth century. The extended preliminary and concluding festivities, shown in Froissart's Chronicles to be an integral part of all tournaments, are included, and the comparisons are intended to reflect the faithfulness with which Chaucer followed the contemporary order of events. The development of arms and armor is summarized. The wide variety of arms displayed by Chaucer's knights included all of the types invented and subsequently modified in the preceding centuries; this variety was characteristic of the fourteenth century. [...]