Middle English Pronunciation Pages

For Dr. McDonald's History of The English Language Class

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Canterbury Tales

General Prologue

Lines 1-18

Whan that Aprille, with his shoures soote,                                        &

The droghte of March hath perced to the roote                                &

 And bathed every veyne in swich licour,                                           &

Of which vertu engendred is the flour;                                                &

Whan Zephirus eek with his swete breeth                                           &

Inspired hath in every holt and heeth                                                   &

The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne                                            &

Hath in the Ram his halfe cours yronne,                                                &

And smale foweles maken melodye,                                                   &

That slepen al the nyght with open eye-                                                &

So priketh hem Nature in hir corages-                                                  &

Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages                                            &

And palmeres for to seken straunge strondes                                        &

To ferne halwes, kowthe in sondry londes;                                            &

And specially, from every shires ende                                                    &

Of Engelond, to Caunturbury they wende,                                              &

The hooly blisful martir for the seke                                                        &

That hem hath holpen, whan that they were seeke.                                  &



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