Pardoner refers to members of the clergy. However, this hero personifies evil and meanness. He is not interested in anything except money, for which he is ready for anything. He can even commit the vilest deeds and sins.
Such a vocation as a questor has become one of the most odious. It alone could characterize a whole era, clearly showing the deceit and greed of the church. Describing Pardoner, Chaucer spared neither the church nor its ministers. They are only pretended to be well-behaved. In fact, they are thirsting for wealth and pleasure.
The Pardoner is a member of the emerging middle class of the Middle Ages. He is from the clergy. Yet, the author separates him from this social class’s heroes. Thus, the author shows how this hero descended.
Pardoner sells indulgences not to help people but to profit. Even though this hero preaches against greed, he practices it. Pardoner deceived many people by selling fake indulgences and relics. The poet also says that he, like a real impostor, always has different things. For example, bones of supposedly sacred origin, which he shows people. Pardoner knows how to fool believers. This hero skillfully preached to persuade to offerings quickly. The author, using literary means and techniques, condemns all actions of Pardoner. Thus, the Pardoner personifies negative qualities, although he belongs to the clergy.