Canterbury Tales

The Miller

Get to know The Miller!

  • The Miller's occupation was to work in a mill. The Mills was an invention in the era and was build to pump water and grind grain.
  • The need for this occupation was highly needed in this time period for survival. Farming was a big need in this time period. Without them there will be no one to pump water and grind grain. There would be no farming, no crops.
  • The Miller's social standing was ranked 3rd in power after the lord manor and the parish priest, though he was considered immoral low class.
  • The Miller's day to day life would most likely be going to work in the mills to pump water and grind grains.
  • Some of the details that Chaucer does not include about the Miller is that he works in the mills, working there is a hard task and comes with many hours of work.
  • A modern day occupation that might correspond to The Miller could be working in a steel mill company because working in a steel mill company is a hard task and requires many hours of work just like working in the mills. So it'll be something he is use to, common hours and amount of work that is done.

Examination of Text

The Miller

¨The Miler was a chap of sixteen stone, a great stout fellow big in brawn and bone. He did well out of them, for he could go and win the ram at any wrestling show. Broad, knotty and short shouldered, he would boast, he could heave any door off hinge and post, or take a run and break it with his head. His beard, like any so or fox, was red and broad as well, as though it were a spade; And at its very tip, his nose displayed a wart on which there stood a tuft of hair red as the bristles in an old sow's ear. His nostrils were as black as they were wide. He had a sword and buckler at his side, his mighty mouth was like a furnace door. A wrangler and buffoon, he had a store of tavern stories, filthy in the main. His was a master-hand at stealing grain. He felt it with his thumb and thus he knew its quality and took three times his due --- A thumb of gold, by God, to gauge an oat! He wore a hood of blue and a white coat. He liked to play his bagpipes up and down and that was how he brought us out of town.¨
The Miller was a larger and stronger man than the rest. He had a long beard that was really red and sharp. His nose was full of long hairs and also had a wart with hair on the tip of his nose. He carried a sword and a buckler at his side at all times. He had a foul mouth, stole a lot. He would take 3 times of grain than he was told to. He also always wore a blue hood and a white coat. He loved to play his bagpipes as a hobby.



  • Lines 562-577 & lines 582 describes The Miller's physical appearance
  • Lines 575 & 577-581 describes The Miller's personality
  • Specific words that help to my understanding of how the Miller is, are ¨...his mighty mouth was like a furnace door.--- A wrangler and buffoon... His was a master-hand at stealing grain. He felt it with his thumb and thus he knew its quality and took three times his due...¨
  • Variations of Middle to Modern English
  • - Nones - Stones

    - N'ould - Could

    - Sowè's- Sow's

    - Blackè - Black

    - Wearèd - Wore

Analysis of the Passage

Chaucer's opinion of the Miller would be that he is a feared person because of his size and strength. He is a thief with a foul mouth and because everyone fears him, no one says anything about him being a thief (lines 562-567 & 575-580).

Chap: Man or Boy.

Spade: A sturdy digging tool having a thick handle and heavy, flat blade that can be pressed in the ground with a foot.

Sixteen- stone: 224 pounds.

Buckler: A small or round shield, carried or worn on the arm.

Stout: Bulky in figure, thickset or corpulent.