Sunday, 20 September 2009

Bawdy Balladeers!

From his visit to Italy in 1378 Chaucer brought back copies of Boccaccio's two great poems, Filostrato and Tesida, which he subsequently translated and paraphrased. Looking over the whole body of Chaucer's work it is possible to see just how profound Boccaccio's influence was. The themes used in Tesida appear in Anelida and Arcite, the Parlement of Foules, Troilus and Criseyde and The Knight's Tale. Filostrato also provides material for Troilus. The structure of the Canterbury Tales itself would seem to indicate that Boccaccio’s own Decameron cycle was also known to Chaucer. And the one is just as bawdy as the other!


  1. Hallo Ana,
    Got your comment on my blog, left yesterday I think. I am as tough as old boots but as you say it is wearing. I am sorting out my comment moderation on the MyT site now as the comments are filled with a load of stuff from people who I think are actually chimps on a bad batch of whizz. Just put another up on my blog if you have a moment and I am DEFINITELY going to spend a couple of hours at least on here tonight after Kat has gone to bed. Been busy as standby Nanny.

  2. Duckham, it will wear the boots out completely if you are not careful, tough as they are, and that would be a real pity. Have a look at the two pieces I have posted on that site under the "My Telegraph" heading. It will give you an insight into my own strategy. There are a lot of bitter and stupid old tossers there, people who like nothing better than to break someone down. There are also one or two multiple identities, so be careful. It's a snake-pit, sweetie. :-)

    Thanks, Harry. :-)

  3. Yes, Boccaccio's DECAMERON is raucus. Though Chaucer is more likely to have brought back oral remembrances of the poems rather than the texts in book form, as we know them.