Study Guide

The Canterbury Tales: The Miller's Tale Lines 125-198

By Geoffrey Chaucer

Lines 125-198

Lines 125-162

  • The narrator gives us an extensive description of Alisoun's character. (For more on this portrait, see the "Character Analysis" section.)

Lines 163-198

  • One day when John is away in a nearby town, Nicholas decides to seduce Alisoun.
  • He grabs her butt and tells her that unless she grants him her love, he will die.
  • Alisoun leaps away from him and declares that she will not kiss him.
  • She threatens to scream unless Nicholas leaves her alone.
  • Nicholas asks Alisoun to grant him mercy, pleading with her to have sex with him.
  • Alisoun relents and grants Nicholas her "love" (probably meaning sex).
  • She warns Nicholas that her husband is jealous. The two of them must be very careful and secretive about the affair; otherwise she will be punished.
  • Nicholas agrees to wait until John is not around to have sex with Alisoun again.
  • He pats her butt and kisses her some more.
  • Nicholas plays his harp.