At the completion of the tale of Saint Cecilia

At the completion of the tale of Saint Cecilia - At the...

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Unformatted text preview: At the completion of the tale of Saint Cecilia, a Canon, riding a dilapidated old hack, and his Yeoman, on an even worse hack, ride up to the pilgrims. The Host welcomes them and asks whether either has a tale to tell. The Yeoman answers immediately that his master knows much about mirth and jollity, and then he begins to tell the secrets of their trade and all he knows about alchemy. Seeing that the Yeoman plans to tell everything, the Canon slips away in shame. The first part of the Yeoman's tale is autobiographical: He explains that once he had good clothes and a comfortable living, that he and the Canon are alchemists, and that he is so in debt because their attempts at alchemy always fail. He then tries to explain their occupation, their failed attempts at alchemy, and their elusive search for the Philosopher's Stone. The tale itself comprises the second alchemy, and their elusive search for the Philosopher's Stone....
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