This work offers for the first time facing-page translations of many of the lesser known court poems of Geoffrey Chaucer in their original Middle English and in Modern English. This work should appeal to scholars interested in Chaucer and poetry. The modernization of Chaucer's verse to date has been restricted largely to the longer poems such as "The Canterbury Tales" and "Troilus and Criseyde". While these works demonstrate Chaucer's mastery of the epic and narrative forms, it is in the court poems that we hear what is closer to the actual voice of Chaucer speaking to his contemporaries. The introduction discusses the "complaint," a popular medieval genre that Chaucer often used in his verse, sometimes with a straight face, sometimes not. Providing these poems in both their original Middle English and in Modern English, this work will be an attractive addition to the library of any scholar interested in Chaucer and the poetry of his time.
James Dempsey is currently an Adjunct Professor in the Department of the Humanities and Arts at Worcester Polytechnic Institute and in the Department of English at Clark University where he teaches courses in journalism, writing, and literature. He is also active in the field of journalism, having been a newspaper columnist for twenty years and winning awards from the Associated Press and United Press International.
Preface by Patrick J.M. Quinn; Introduction; An ABC to the Virgin Mary; The Complaint to Pity; A Complaint to His Lady; The Complaint of Mars; To Rosemound; Womanly Noblesse; To His Scribe, Adam; Lack of Steadfastness; The Former Age; Fortune; Truth; Gentilesse; The Complaint of Venus; Envoy to Scogan; Envoy to Bukton; Complaint to His Purse; Against Inconstant Women; Complaynt D'Amours; Merciless Beauty; A Ballade of Complaint; Proverbs; Anelida and Arcite; Notes; Bibliography; Index.