The Chaucer Review: An Indexed Bibliography (Vols. 1-30)Return to the Subject List
Brown, Emerson, Jr. "The Merchant's Tale: Why is May Called 'Mayus'?" 2 (1968): 273-77.
The masculine name "Mayus" for the female protagonist suggests a theme of healing in the pear-tree episode. Damyan is named for St. Damian, known for healing various illnesses, including blindness. In the tale, Damyan is the agent for January's healing, thus suggesting that there might be other references to healing as well. May was the month associated with healing.