Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Pardoner's Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer

Three drunken and debauched men set out from a pub to find and kill Death, whom they blame for the death of their friend, and all other people that previously have died. An old man they brusquely query tells them they can find death at the foot of a tree. When the men arrive at the tree, they find a large amount of gold coins and forget about their quest to kill Death. The three men draw straws to see who among them should fetch wine and food while the other two wait under the tree. The two men who stay behind secretly plot to kill the other one when he returns, while the one who leaves for the town poisons some of the wine with rat poison. When he returns with the food and drink, the other two kill him and drink the poisoned wine — also dying as a result. Thus all three do find 'death' under the tree.

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