1387 - Chaucer, Geoffrey - Canterbury Tales
|Title||The Canterbury Tales|
|Mentions||Squire's Yeoman; [portrait perhaps inspired by Robin Hood]|
By Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2014-08-18. Revised by Henrik Thiil Nielsen, 2021-01-07.
A Yeman hadde he [the Knight] and servantz namo
At that tyme, for hym liste ride so,
And he was clad in cote and hood of grene.
A sheef of pecok arwes, bright and kene,
Under his belt he bar ful thriftily,
(Wel koude he dresse his takel yemanly:
His arwes drouped noght with fetheres lowe)
And in his hand he baar a myghty bowe.
A not heed hadde he, with a broun visage.
Of wodecraft wel koude he al the usage.
Upon his arm he baar a gay bracer,
And by his syde a swerd and a bokeler,
And on that oother syde a gay daggere
Harneised wel and sharp as point of spere;
A Cristopher on his brest of silver sheene.
A horn he bar, the bawdryk was of grene;
A forster was he, soothly, as I gesse.
"A Yeoman ranked in service next above a 'garson' or groom. The term was later loosely applied to small landholders, some of whom had considerable substance. The Ellesmere MS. has no picture of the Yeoman since he tells no tale. It is conjectured that Chaucer intended to rewrite for him the Tale of Gamelyn, found in a number of MSS. of the Canterbury Tales.
101 he, namely the Knight, who was accompanied by the Yeoman as well as the Squire.
104 For references to the use of peacock-feathered arrows see, besides Skeat's note, E. S. Krappe in MLN, XLIII, 176.
107 On drooping feathers Manly refers to Ascham's Toxophilus, ed. Arber, London, 1868, 128-33.
115 Small images of the saints were worn as talismans, and Christopher was the patron saint of foresters."
namo] no more.
takel] "gear; weapons; especially arrows".
not heed] "head with hair cut short"
bracer] "arm-guard (in archery)"
sheene] bright, shining.
Chaucer's portrait of the Knight's Yeoman is often considered to be inspired by the Robin Hood figure.
- Not included in Dobson, R. B., ed.; Taylor, J., ed. Rymes of Robyn Hood: an Introduction to the English Outlaw (London, 1976), pp. 293-11.
- Not included in Sussex, Lucy, compil. 'References to Robin Hood up to 1600', in: Knight, Stephen. Robin Hood: A Complete Study of the English Outlaw (Oxford, UK; Cambridge, Massachusetts: Blackwell, 1994), pp. 262-88.
- Chaucer, Geoffrey; Robinson, Fred Norris, ed. The Complete Works of Geoffrey Chaucer. Second Edition (London; Oxford, 1974), pp. 1-265; see p. 18, ll. 101-17.
- General Prologue, ll. 101-17. Chaucer, Geoffrey; Robinson, Fred Norris, ed. The Complete Works of Geoffrey Chaucer. Second Edition (London; Oxford, 1974), p. 18.
- Chaucer (1974), pp. 937, 955, 958, 965, 982, 983.