George Saintsbury has rightly pointed out that “we perceive in the Canterbury Tales the completion of his command of verse” (George, 129). All the characters in the poem are individuals, reflecting the men and manners of the people of Chaucer’s time. His realistic vision embraces all, rich and poor, bringing out their inmost qualities through careful external descriptions. In this paper I have done an analysis of the “Miller’s Tale”, examining all the characters in it in order to see Chaucer’s attitude to love and sex.
Miller is a down-to-earth man. When the Knight completed his story the Monk wanted to tell his story. But the Miller would not allow him. The host at the inn had doubts about Miller’s skill in narrating a story, and it was also not proper to give Miller the next chance after a Knight who holds respectable place in his society had just finished his noble story. The Miller was badly drunk too. He insisted that he must tell his story. I think here Chaucer cleverly manipulates the plot to escape from the moral responsibility of inserting a bawdy story immediately after narrating one which deals with courtly love. Chaucer is, however, praised for his realistic approach to literature. He believes that all should be given equal place in life and the success of the story lies in variety and contrast, be it moral and immoral. The best narrative devices are, he knows, humor and contrast. Hence, the Miller gets his chance immediately after the Knight. Chaucer is also able to use Miller to challenge the conventions deciding values in life or literature. Therefore, the study of Chaucer’s approach to love and lust reflected through the Miller’s story becomes significant.
Though the Miller’s tale looks like a parody to the story narrated by the Knight, it deals with the serious subjects like marriage, love, and sexual relationships. I think Chaucer likes Alison