CHARACTER OF PRIORESS
The character of Prioress is perhaps one of the best ever conceived and delineated in English poetry. the Prioress is a complex, ironical, mild satirical and a bit humorous description of a woman who likes to be considered a lady than anything else. She is a type of a woman who is an epicure but she is portrayed as an individual with her meticulous habits in eating, her courtly manners as well as tenderness of her heart. she is keen on her manners and modest in her behaviour. actually, her character represents the monastic and Ecclesiastical orders. if we go through the political and religious history of England in the Middle Ages, we see that the corruption of the church was the burning issue of that day, Chaucer, like other reformists dedicated his literary carrier to highlighting the corruption in every field of society and tried to minimize it with the help of his satirical and ironical poetry. the religious class to which she belonged needed a reformation, so he used Prioress to allude to the basic faults prevailing in that particular community. she is an example of corrupt and non-religious clergy who exposes the mundane attitude and materialistic approach of her religious class. in short, the character of Prioress is an amalgamation of hypocrisy, diplomacy, and above all pretension.
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In the end, one can see that the portrait of Prioress is presented with subtle irony, mild satire and elegant humour. much of the phraseology that colours her portrait is taken deliberately from medieval romance. her sparkling eyes her small soft mouth, her beautifully broad forehead. Her shapely nose all these attributes are conventional in the description of medieval heroines. moreover, the writer puts before us the different sides of Prioress, her noble as well as her over formal traits. she is in fact presented realistically typifying the traits of contemporary Prioress. in short it could be concluded that Prioress character plays a very important role in unfolding the vices and foibles prevalent in the religious community.