What do you think of when you think of a "pilgrimage"? What kind of pilgrimage are Chaucer's pilgrims on, do you think?
In a broad sense, students may be familiar with pilgrimages as journeys to sacred places that the religious are obligated to undertake.
In Chaucer's time, many Christian pilgrimages were not what they used to be, and writers regularly scorned and satirized them. What had begun as arduous journeys to Jerusalem taken up to atone for sins had become shorter jaunts to nice locales. Travel was becoming much easier in Chaucer's time, and so "professional pilgrims" arose who went on journeys and came back with mementos, tall tales, and the same great esteem that was...
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