The Canterbury Tales: The Miller's Tale
by Geoffrey Chaucer
The Canterbury Tales: The Miller's Tale Love Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Line). We used the line numbering found on Librarius's online edition.
Under his tonge a trewe-love he beer,
For therby wende he to ben gracious.
A "trewe-love" is the leaf of a plant that was thought to bring good fortune in love. It's typical of Absolon to pull out all the stops in his courtship.
Wel litel thenken ye upon my wo,
That for youre love I swete ther I go.
It's a common tactic for a lover in a medieval romance to claim that he is physically ill from his beloved's refusal to grant him a cure for his suffering. In employing it here, Absolon aligns himself with those heroes.
No wonder is thogh that I swelte and swete,
I moorne as doth a lamb after the tete.
Y-wis lemman, I have swich love-longinge,
That lyk a turtel trewe is my moorninge.
Absolon's comparison of himself to animals is interesting given the story's tendency to compare Alisoun to them, too. Those prior animal comparisons, which parodied the traditional way heroines were described, make it difficult for us to take these seriously.