Words between the Summoner and the Friar

The Friar laughed when he had heard all this. He said, "If ever I have joy or bliss, 830 Your tale has quite a long preamble, dame!" And when the Summoner heard the Friar exclaim, The Summoner said, "Behold, by God's two arms! See how a meddling friar ever swarms. A fly and friar, good men, will fall into 835 Each dish, into all kinds of matter. You Speak of preambulation? Amble or Go trot, shut up, or go sit down! No more, You're spoiling all our fun, the way you act." The Friar said, "Summoner, is that a fact? 840 Now by my faith, I will, before I'm through, Tell of a summoner such a tale or two That everyone will laugh throughout the place." "Now, Friar, damn your bloody eyes and face!" The Summoner said. "And damn myself as well 845 If two tales, or if three, I do not tell Of friars ere I come to Sittingbourne. And with them I will cause your heart to mourn, For I can see your patience now is gone." Our Host said, "Peace! No more such goings on!" 850 He said, "Now let this woman tell her tale. You act like people who are drunk with ale. Now, madam, tell your tale, for that is best." "I'm ready, sir," she said, "as you request, With license from this worthy Friar here." 855 "Yes, dame," said he, "speak on, you'll have my ear."

The Wife of Bath's Tale | Contents | Title Page