| Quote #1
A wys womman wol bisye hire evere in oon
This is the first of the Wife's pronouncements about what a wise woman ought to do, or does. Most of these pronouncements are, like this one, concerned with teaching women how to place themselves in a position of greater power in a relationship. Here the Wife advises that it's always better to make a man fall in love with you so that you can use his love to gain power over him.
| Quote #2
Now herkneth how I bar me proprely:
The Wife's address to "ye wyse wyves" is curious, given the fact that there are no other married women in the company of pilgrims (all the other women on pilgrimage are nuns). This is a moment where the imaginary setting gives way to the poem's knowledge of itself as a poem, addressed to a wider audience that probably includes wives.
| Quote #3
For half so boldely can ther no man
This is not the last time the Wife will refer to the antifeminist stereotype of women as expert liars. Her emphasis upon this is puzzling given her desire to make believable arguments. Doesn't her insistence that all women are great liars undermine her credibility a bit?