The Nun

BY Skye Sims


A Nun is someone who is known to be "married to God" The ceremony was sort of like a wedding in a sense, the Nun must wear a wedding crown or headdress. Nuns could not marry anyone other than God, so they devote themselves to prayer, study and helping the poor. Most nuns were doctors or nurses too.

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Need for Nuns

The Middle Age revolved around religion. Nuns are very religious people who do nothing but worship God, pray to God and live for God. Nuns are also doctors , which are highly needed during the medieval time due to all the fighting, diseases ect.

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Social Standing

Nuns along with monks were very important in society, they held a lot of political power. They were seen as links between men and God.

The Roman Catholic church was the largest unifying organization in medieval Europe. The church and clergy affected everyone no matter what rank or social class they were apart of.

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Daily life of a Nun

Based on 3 main vows:

- Vow of Poverty

- Vow of Chastity

- Vow of Obedience

Medieval nuns chose to leave their normal lives for a strict routine of life in the nunnery or covent they belong to. Nuns were dedicated to worship, reading or working in the nunnery or covent. Along with attending the church, nuns spent hours a day in silent prayer or meditation.

Types of Jobs :

- Washing and Cooking for the monastery

- Farming

- Providing medical care

- Educating novices

- Making Clothes

- Illuminating Manuscripts

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Chaucer didn't include:

Chaucer was very judgemental of the Nun, he describes her as very good looking and well mannered BUT a Nun is not supposed to care about those sorts of things- VANITY. Chaucer pointed out how the Nun spoke french so well , without using slang. But the language of the church is Latin so she must care about education since she spoke French so fluently. All of these things are things that a Nun should not be focused on. The reason Chaucer goes on and on about how well mannered the Nun is, or how educated is, is because acting this way is wrong for a Nun. A good Nun should have been modest, had to have poverty, and pity, but Chaucer's Nun doesn't have these characteristics.

Lines 124-146 in the book

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Modern Day Occupation

The modern day occupation for a medieval Nun , is a Nun. Nuns still exist to this day but aren't very common. Nuns jobs have most likely been changed or modernized even though they still devote themselves to God, Prayer and Helping those in need.

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Part 2

Examination of the Text:

A Nun was with them on their journey,

She was well mannered and happy.

She had the perfect manners,

Her name was Madam Eglantyne.

She sang beautifully through her nose,

She spoke french extremely well,

She was highly educated.

She had very good table manners,

worked hard not to spill her food.

She was very neat during eating and after.

She was very entertaining,

She was caring and elegant.

She had a soft nose and grey eyes,

small, soft red mouth,

and a perfect forehead.

Her cloak had a coral design on the arm,

She had another nun with her,

along with three priests.

Which lines describe her physical appearance?

Lines 156- 165

Which lines describe her personality?

Lines 145-153

- Throughout whole text but dominant in 145-153

5 words to help understand the character?

Elegant Line- 156

Dignified Line: 145

Tender Hearted Line: 146

Well Mannered Line: 131

Graceful Line: 161

Spelling Variations:

Hadde - Had

Erly- Early

Ryse- Rise

Wey- Way

Felawshipe- Fellowship

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Part 3

Chaucers Opinion:

I believe that chaucer is very judgemental of the Nun. She doesnt act like a Nun, she is well- mannered, well- educated and as he describes beautiful. A Nun should not act like this, yet she does and he makes her seem prideful of it- which is one of the 7 deadly sins. She is Vain.

Supporting Lines and Words:

Line 128 - She spoke daintly in french, extreamly, after the school of Stratford-atte-Bowe.

She cared about her education.

Line 131 - At meat her manners were well taught withal.

She tried very hard to have her manners perfect

Understanding of the Vocabulary:

Ram - Aries, first sign of the Zodiac- mid April.

Martyr- Person who is killed due to their belief or religion.

Hallowed- Honored as Holy

Hostelry- Inn (Hotel)

Solicitous- Eager or anxious to do something.

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