Date of Award

Spring 5-18-2012

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Dr. Kevin Marti and Dr. Robert Shenk

Second Advisor

Dr. Daniel Doll


An analysis of both the placement and the philosophical connections between The Tale of Melibee and The Parson’s Tale suggests that a highly individual spiritual philosophy is being presented within The Canterbury Tales. This philosophy is exemplified via an analysis of both the role of The Tale of Melibee within the work, and the manner in which it is historically developed. The highest form of individual spirituality is revealed within The Tale of Melibee, through the spiritual developments occurring within the character Melibeus and his wife Prudence. This development serves to unify the exemplified extremes of satire and spirituality presented throughout the work, as well as to illustrate the manner in which the individual human being develops his or her own individual spirituality through an active engagement with life, which in turn promotes a unity of the aforementioned extremes.


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