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Where Does the Knight Fit In? What is the Role of Fustian Tunic?

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In Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Knight’s Tale, the author introduces the Knight in the General Prologue. He is described as an honorable man with high morals. The Knight is a man of high social status, although his appearance and manners are unpretentious. The fustian tunic serves as a metaphor for his humble and hard-working personality and his military background.

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In The Knight’s Tale by Geoffrey Chaucer, The Knight first appears in the General Prologue. He is described as a man of honor and dignity. It is also mentioned that among all the pilgrims, he has the highest social status. The narrator also informs readers that he has traveled to many countries and is a veteran of several crusades. In some countries, he has earned a reputation as a brave knight, in others as a fierce warrior. The bottom line is that the term in The Knight’s Tale used to describe his reputation has contextual meaning.

The role of the fustian tunic or, in other words, the function of its mentioning is to emphasize the personal qualities of the Knight. The fustian tunic is made of rough and heavy cloth. Moreover, it is stained with rusty from his chain mail. It is obvious that the nobility or other knights would not wear it. The fustian tunic shows that the Knight is down to earth and devoid of arrogance.

Interestingly, at the time of Geoffrey Chaucer, robes made from fustian were a common type of clothing among priests and women.

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1. IvyPanda. "Where Does the Knight Fit In? What is the Role of Fustian Tunic?" November 23, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/q/where-does-the-knight-fit-in-what-is-the-role-of-fustian-tunic/.


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IvyPanda. "Where Does the Knight Fit In? What is the Role of Fustian Tunic?" November 23, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/q/where-does-the-knight-fit-in-what-is-the-role-of-fustian-tunic/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Where Does the Knight Fit In? What is the Role of Fustian Tunic?" November 23, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/q/where-does-the-knight-fit-in-what-is-the-role-of-fustian-tunic/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'Where Does the Knight Fit In? What is the Role of Fustian Tunic'. 23 November.

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