In Flanders, at the height of a black plague, three young men sit in an inn, eating and drinking far beyond their power and swearing oaths that are worthy of damnation. The revelers mark the passing of a coffin and ask who has died. A servant tells them that the dead man was a friend who was stabbed in the back the night before by a thief called Death. The young revelers, thinking that Death might still be in the next town, decide to seek him out and slay him.On the way, the three men meet an old man who explains that he must wander the earth until he can find someone willing to exchange youth for old age. He says that not even Death will take his life. Hearing him speak of Death, the revelers ask where they can find Death, and the old man directs them to a tree at the end of the lane. The revelers rush to the tree and find eight bushels of gold
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old man, Pardoner, cheaply pious story, young revelers