The Canterbury Tales: The Wife of Bath's Prologue
by Geoffrey Chaucer
The Canterbury Tales: The Wife of Bath's Prologue Lines 401-436 Summary
- Yet these accusations actually made my husband happy, because he believed that it was my love that produced such extreme jealousy.
- I told him that I only went out at night to spy on his mistresses.
- In this way I had great happiness.
- All this cleverness is given to women at birth.
- Deceit, weeping, and spinning are the tools God gave to women.
- Of one thing I boast: I always got the better of my husbands somehow, whether by deception, force, or continual complaining.
- Namely, my husbands had bad luck in bed: there I complained and refused to have sex with them.
- I would not stay in bed if I felt my husband try to embrace me, unless he had somehow paid me. At that point I would allow him to have sex with me.
- Therefore, I tell every man: win what you can, for everything is for sell. With empty hands, men lure no hawks.
- For wealth, I would endure my husband's lust and pretend to feel the same.
- Yet, in old men, I never really had delight. That's why I complained so much.
- Even if the pope came to dinner, I wouldn't stop criticizing my husband.
- I swear, I gave as good as I got. I can truly say I don't owe my husband any words that I haven't already said to him.
- I mad it so that my husbands would rather give in to me, than remain arguing.
- Though my husband might be roaring mad, in the end he'd lose the fight.
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