[Cross-references included at the bottom of the page]


389. BAIRD, JOSEPH L. "Law and the Reeve's Tale." Neuphilologische Mitteilungen 70 (1969):679-83.

Identifies three legal references in Reeve's Tale through which Chaucer ironically plays the old Mosaic law against the new Christian law, private law against public law, and Continental law against English law.

390. BREWER, DEREK S. "The Reeve's Tale and the King's Hall, Cambridge." Chaucer Review 5 (1971):311-17. Reprinted in Tradition and Innovation in Chaucer (London: Macmillan Press, 1982), pp. 73-79.

Argues that manuscript evidence does not negate the identification of "S(c)oler Halle" of the Reeve's Tale with King's Hall, Cambridge. Correlations between details of the tale and fourteenth-century ideas of King's Hall exemplify how Chaucer permeates his fiction with "local supporting realism."

391. BURBRIDGE, ROGER T. "Chaucer's Reeve's Tale and the Fabliau Le meunier et les .II. clers." Annuale Medievale 12 (1971):30-36.

Compares Chaucer's Reeve's Tale to two analogues (versions of Le meunier et les .II. clers) to show how he improved the drama and comedy of the plot by sharpening motive and detail and how he shaped it to the Reeve's desire to "quit" the Miller.

392. DELANY, SHEILA. "Clerks and Quitting in the Reeve's Tale." Mediaeval Studies 29 (1967):351-56.

Argues that the fluid social status of medieval clerks helps explain their frequent appearance and ironic function in fabliaux, especially Chaucer's Reeve's Tale. In the tale, the "almost-bourgeois Simkin" believes John and Aleyn to be his social inferiors--a source of humorous irony to the aristocratic audience who regarded them as his superiors.

393. FRANK, ROBERT W., Jr. "The Reeve's Tale and the Comedy of Limitation." In Directions in Literary Criticism: Contemporary Appoaches to Literature. Edited by Stanley Weintraub and Philip Young. University Park: Pennsylvania State University, 1973, pp. 53-69.

Analyzes the character, plot, and style of Reeve's Tale, identifying the nature of its comedy. Rich style and thematic focus on the notion of space combine with simple plot and direct characterization to produce an uproarious expose of pretentions in conflict with simple necessities.

394. FRIEDMAN, JOHN BLOCK. "A Reading of Chaucer's Reeve's Tale." Chaucer Review 2 (1967):8-19.

Identifies patterns of animal imagery in Reeve's Tale and sketches their exegetical backgrounds, describing how they set the "moral tone" of this tale of man's "ungoverned passions," especially pride, wrath, and lust. Images of the runaway horse, peacock, magpie, and pig dominate the tale.

395. GARBATY, THOMAS J. "Satire and Regionalism: The Reeve and His Tale." Chaucer Review 8 (1973):1-18.

Demonstrates through contemporary demographics and dialects that Chaucer's dialectical play in Reeve's Tale is a double-layered joke: the Reeve mimics "a provincial dialect in his own barbarous jargon." Compare Tolkien (entry 399).

396. GRENNEN, JOSEPH E. "The Calculating Reeve and His Camera obscura." Journal of Medieval and Renaissance Studies 14


Suggests a variety of academic jokes in Reeve's Tale which heighten the gown's victory over the town in the main plot. Chaucer may have originally written the work for an academic audience who would have been knowledgeable enough to catch the jokes involving Symkyn's physiogomic snub-nose, Scholastic distinctions, and optics.

397. LANCASHIRE, IAN. "Sexual Innuendo in the Reeve's Tale." Chaucer Review 6 (1972):159-70.

Discusses the complex network of puns of Reeve's Tale, not available in Chaucer's apparent source. Sexual connotations of flour, milling or grinding, and horsemanship color the action of the narrative, contributing to the retributive punishment of Symkyn.

398. OLSON, GLENDING. "The Reeve's Tale as a Fabliau." Modern Language Quarterly 35 (1974):219-30.

Disagrees with readings of Reeve's Tale that emphasize the teller's vengeance, demonstrating the poem's similarity to French fabliaux. Since Chaucer is the first to present this genre from a lower-class perspective, we should not expect a complex tale-teller relationship; the tale's "craft, wit, satire...and morality" are enough.

399. TOLKIEN, J.R.R. "Chaucer as Philologist: The Reeve's Tale." Transactions of the Philological Society, 1934, pp. 1-70.

Examines the northern dialect features of Chaucer's Reeve's Tale, documenting the sensitivity with which Chaucer created a fictional dialect, its historical accuracy, and linguistic sophistication. Comments upon the phonological, morphological and semantic particulars of each feature of the literary dialect. Compare Garbaty (entry 395).

See also entries 56, 141, 216, 240, 257, 260, 285, 290, 490. For sources and analogues: 252, 308-09, 313; relations to other tales: 277, 279, 282, 376.

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