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The Canterbury Tales: The Miller's Tale

The Canterbury Tales: The Miller's Tale

by Geoffrey Chaucer

Absolon Timeline and Summary

  • Absolon first sees Alisoun among the other wives of the parish church and immediately falls for her.
  • We learn that Absolon is a fastidious parish clerk with a penchant for the arts and a disgust for farting.
  • Absolon begins his courtship of Alisoun by singing love songs outside her window. He sends her gifts and takes a role in a local play in an attempt to impress her.
  • Absolon inquires about John's whereabouts and learns that no one has seen him all day long.
  • He resolves to court Alisoun again, saying that his mouth is itchy (which he takes as a sign it needs to be kissed), and that he recently had a dream about a feast, both of which he interprets as meaning he's about to get lucky.
  • Absolon positions himself at Alisoun's window and begs for her love. When she refuses, he asks for just a kiss.
  • Absolon kisses Alisoun's bare butt when she sticks it out the window to play a joke on him.
  • Angry, Absolon borrows a poker from the nearby blacksmith.
  • He returns to Alisoun's window and, thinking it's Alison, brands Nicholas with the hot poker.

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