The glories of spring call thirty pilgrims out for an outing to Canterbury. The April pilgrimage quickly turns from a religious expedition into a raucous road trip as the travelers clash over identity and ideology. For the chance to win a free meal, the sojourners compete in a storytelling contest. Humble parson, noble knight, bourgeois miller, sensual nun, and others take turns exercising their eloquence and speaking their minds. Rich and poor, religious and secular, woman and man, straight and gay: every pilgrim gets an equal chance to win.
(Fiction, 1478 ; repr., Penguin Classics, 2005)