The Squire's Tale Essay

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The Squire's Tale

The Squire's tale ends two lines into its third section, and

following this abrupt termination is the "wordes of the Frankeleyn to the

Squier." The Franklin praises the young Squire's attempt at a courtly

romance and says that he wishes his own son was more like the Squire. This

is followed by the "wordes of the Hoost to the Frankeleyn." Many critics

believe that the words of the Franklin to the Squire are intended as an

interruption of the tale that threatens to go on far too long. However, I

believe the words of the Franklin to the Squire were not meant to be an

interruption at all. There are four main reasons why I believe the passage

was not meant to be an
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However, interrupting someone in the middle of his speech would be

something a person with gentillesse would be hesitant to do. The arguments

that the Franklin's actions were rescuing the Squire from an "awkward

predicament" (Specht 154) in which his tale was threatening to go on far

too long point out that in such a scenario the Franklin's actions would be

a "masterpiece of tact" (Spearing, 7). I would argue with this theory for

two reasons. First of all, the Squire gives no indication he wishes to be

"rescued." In his tale at the end of telling of Canace and the magic ring,

he proceeds to say he will tell how the other three gifts affected the

lives of other characters. Clearly the Squire could have cut his story

short then if he had been so inclined. Therefore I do not think it is fair

to claim the Franklin was "rescuing" the Squire. Secondly, if the Franklin

were indeed interrupting the Squire to end his story, he could have

apologized for interrupting. Obviously the Squire has not completed his

tale, he has just announced he has three more parts and is two lines into

the telling of the next section. For the Franklin to begin speaking at

this point he would clearly be interrupting the Squire. To preserve

gentillesse it would be necessary for him to apologize for the break in.

One or two lines saying he was sorry to interrupt
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