The Chaucer Review: An Indexed Bibliography (Vols. 1-30)Return to the Subject List
Fredell, Joel. "Late Gothic Portraiture: The Prioress and Philippa." 23 (1989): 181-91.
Chaucer adds individualizing details to the traditional portrait materials in presenting portraits of each pilgrim in the Canterbury Tales. In presenting this mixture, Chaucer borrows from the medieval tradition of portrait sculpture which likewise included individualizing details. Characterization in the Nun's Priest's Tale shows that the old rhetorical criteria do not apply to what Chaucer wants to do. Furthermore, examining the funeral sculputure of Phillipa of Hainault reminds readers of Chaucer's verbal portrait of the Prioress. The Prioress seems to be trying to make herself a courtly lady as does Philllipa of Hainault.