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DIMEV 2618
In the old days of King Arthur
Geoffrey Chaucer, the Wife of Bath’s Tale of the Canterbury Tales — 408 lines in couplets, with some versions including additional lines.
Author(s): Geoffrey Chaucer
Title(s): Wife of Bath’s Tale; Canterbury Tales
Subjects: pilgrims/pilgrimage; women; Arthur; supernatural; quest
Versification: — couplets — aa



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Arch. Selden. B. 14 (SC 3360), ff. 94v-100
First Lines:
IN the olde dayes of kyng Arthour
of the which bretons speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…and olde & angry nygardis of dispence
god sende hem sone a verry pestilence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: …And folwyng bigynneth hir tale (f. 94v); the wiff of Bathe (RT); Here endith the wiff of Bathe hir tale… (f. 100)
2.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Barlow 20 (SC 6420), ff. 114v-120
First Lines:
In old dayes of Kyng Arthour
Of wiche þat britons spake grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone verray pestilence
Note: III.1034 omitted.
Attributed Title: Of bathe (RT); Here endithe Wif of Bathe… (f. 120v)
3.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 414 (SC 27880), ff. 74-78
First Lines:
[I]N olde dayes of Kyng Arthoure
Of whom that Britons speke gret honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry negardis of her spence
God send hem sone a veraye pestilence
Note: III.945-6 omitted.
Attributed Title: The w wife of Bathis tale (f. 64)
4.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 686 (SC 2527), ff. 81-85v
First Lines:
In the olde dayes of Kyng arthoure
Of which þat Britons speke grete honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardys of dispence
God sende hem sone verray pestellence
Note: III.1088, 1110-17 inserted at foot.
Attributed Title: …And here / begynneth her tale (f. 80v); The Wyfe of Bath (RT); Here endeth the Wyfes tale of Bathe (f. 85v)
5.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Hatton Donati 1 (SC 4138), ff. 119-123v
First Lines:
IN þe olde daies of King Artour
Of which Britones speke grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispense
God sende hem sone verry pestilence
Note: III.899, 1064 omitted.
Attributed Title: …And next / biginneth the tale of þe Wife of Bath (f. 119); The tale of þe wife of Bathe (RT); Here endeth the Wifes tale of Bathe… (f. 123v)
6.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Laud misc. 600 (SC 1476), ff. 89-94v
First Lines:
…þer walkeþ now the limitour him self
In vnder melis and in mornyng…
Last Lines:
…An olde and angrie nygard of dispence
God sende him soon a varrai pestilence
Note: III.857-73 lost; 1031-2 reversed. Fol. 88 is a seventeenth-century replacement leaf.
Attributed Title: þe wif of baþe (RT)
7.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Laud misc. 739 (SC 1234), ff. 140-145
First Lines:
[I]N olde daies of kyng Arthoure
Of which the britones speketh moch honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of expense
God send hem sone verrey pestilence
Note: III.1123-90 lost; 963-4, 988, 1019-20, 1260 omitted.
8.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 141 (SC 14635), ff. 135-141v
First Lines:
IN the olde dayes of kyng arthour
Of wheche that britaynes speke gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde & angri Nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone a very pestylence
Attributed Title: Here bygynneth the Wyfes tale of Bathe (f. 135); The wyfe of Bathe (RT)
9.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 149 (SC 14641), ff. 64v-67v
First Lines:
In the olde daies of kyng Arthoure
Of which that bretons speken greete hounoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone veri pestilence
Note: III.1081 omitted.
Attributed Title: Here begynnith the wif of Bathes tale (f. 64v); the wif of bathe (RT); Here endith the Wif of Bathes tale… (f. 68)
10.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 223 (SC 14714), ff. 136-142
First Lines:
In the olde dayes of kyng arthour
Of which that bretons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone verry pestilence
Attributed Title: …with here tale folwing (f. 136); The wif of bathe (RT); Here endith the tale of the Wif of Bathe… (f. 142)
11.Source: Oxford, Christ Church 152, ff. 83-88
First Lines:
In olde dayes of the kyng Artour
Of which that Britons speken greet honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone verrey pestilence
Note: III.1056, 1198 inserted.
Attributed Title: …Here bygynneth the the tale of the Wyfe of Bathe (f. 83); here endeth the tale of the Wyf of Bathe… (f. 88)
12.Source: Oxford, Corpus Christi College 198, ff. 110v-115b
First Lines:
[torn]e olde dayes of þe king arthour
Of which þat britons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nyggardes of dispence
God send hem a verray pestilence
Note: III.858-68 partially lost due to tear; 1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Þe goode wyues tale of bathe (f. 110v)
Facsimiles:
Digital Facsimile of Corpus Christi, Oxford MS 198 of the Canterbury Tales” .
13.Source: Oxford, New College 314, ff. 109-115
First Lines:
In olde daies of kyng Artur
Of whiche britons spekith gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardis of dispence
God sende hem sone a foul verye pestilence
Note: III.927-8 reversed; spurious lines follow 1248.
Attributed Title: …and here begynnyth her tale (f. 109); Bathe (RT); Wif of Bathe (RT); Here endith þe tale of þe Wif of the Wif of Bathe… (f. 115)
14.Source: Oxford, Trinity College 49, ff. 85v-91v
First Lines:
IN the olde daies of the kyng Arthure
of whiche that bretonnes speke grete honoure…
Last Lines:
…and olde and angry nygardes in dispence
god sende hem sone a verry pestelence
Note: III.918, 1149, 1198 omitted; 1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Bathe (RT)
15.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Dd.4.24, ff. 76v-81
First Lines:
In the olde dayes of kyng Arthour
Of which that Bretons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry nygardes of despence
God send hem sone verray pestilence
Attributed Title: et incipit fabula vxoris de Bathe (f. 76v); Hic desinit fabula Vxoris de Bathe… (f. 81)
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Cambridge MS. Dd.4.24 of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, Completed by the Egerton MS. 2726 (The Haistwell MS). The Chaucer Society 1st Series, no. 95 (Part 1, issue for 1901) and 96 (Part 2, issue for 1902).
16.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Gg.4.27 (Part 1a), ff. 222v-227v
First Lines:
IN olde dayis of kyng Arthour
Of whiche þat brytons spekyn gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde & angery nygardys of dispence
God sende hem sone verray pestelence
Attributed Title: …Here begynnyt the Wyf of Bathe hire tale (rubric, f. 222); Here endith the wif of Bathe hyre tale… (f. 227v)
Facsimiles:
Parkes, Malcolm B., and Richard Beadle. “Introduction.” Poetical Works. Geoffrey Chaucer. A Facsimile of Cambridge University Library MS Gg.4.27. 3 vols Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1979 (vol. 1); 1980 (vols. 2-3).
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James. The Cambridge MS (University Library, Gg.4.27) of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Chaucer Society Series 1, nos. 4, 10, 17, 28, 33, 40, 52, 66. London: Trübner, 1868-79.
17.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Ii.3.26, ff. 119-124
First Lines:
In olde dayes of Kyng Arthoure
Of which that bretonis speke the honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angre nygardes of dispence
God sende hym full soone a verrey pestilence
Note: III.945, 1234-5 omitted; 1031-2, 1179-80 reversed; 1144 blank; spurious lines follow 1248.
Attributed Title: …And here begynneth hir Tale (f. 119); Wyff of Bathe (RT); Here endeth the Wyff of Bathes tale… (f. 124)
18.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Mm.2.5, ff. 123-127v
First Lines:
In þe olde dayes of þe Kyng Arthoure
Of whiche þat bretouns speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes and dispense
God send hem sone a verrey pestilence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Incipit fabula (f. 123); þe wiffe of bathe (RT); Explicit (f. 127v)
19.Source: Cambridge UK, Fitzwilliam Museum McClean 181 [olim Ashburnham 127], ff. 141v-146
First Lines:
[I]N the olde dayes of kyng Arthur
Of which Bretons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…Ioy after our heuynesse that we not mysse
After this lyfe to come to thy blysse Amen
Note: III.865-82, 1028-21, 1-81, 1125-68, 1187-92, 1259-64 omitted; spurious lines follow 1017, 1082, 1258.
Attributed Title: The tale of þe Wyfe of Bath (f. 141v)
20.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.3 (582), ff. 58vb-61ra
First Lines:
In olde daies of King Arthour
Of wich Bretons speke gret honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry & nigardes of dispence
God send hem sone veri pestilence
Note: III.1089-90 reversed; 1094 follows 1096.
Attributed Title: A tale of the wif of Bathe (f. 58va)
21.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.15 (595), ff. 135-141
First Lines:
IN olde days of Kynge Arthur
Of whiche Britons speketh grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angre nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone a foule verey pestilence
Note: III.1049-115 lost; 927-8 reversed; spurious lines follow 1248.
Attributed Title: …and begynneth hir tale (f. 135); Here endeth the tale of the Wyf of Bathe… (f. 141)
22.Source: London, British Library Addit. 5140, ff. 102v-110
First Lines:
In olde days of the kyng Artour
Of whom that Britons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry and nygardes of dispence
Y pray god sende hem a verray pestilence
Attributed Title: & incipit ffabula eiusdem (f. 102v); Wyf of Bathe (RT); Explicit fabula Vxoris de Bathe… (f. 110)
23.Source: London, British Library Addit. 35286 [olim Ashburnham 125], ff. 62v-68
First Lines:
In olde dayes of Kyng arthour
of which that britons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone verry pestilence
Note: III.890 omitted.
Attributed Title: …Here bigynneth the the Wifes tale of bathe (f. 62v); The Wif of bathe (RT); Here endeth the Wifes tale of bathe… (f. 68)
Editions:
Horobin, Simon. “A Transcription and Study of British Library MS Additional 35286 of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales.” Diss. Univ. of Sheffield, 1997.
24.Source: London, British Library Egerton 2726 [olim Haistwell], ff. 89v-94v
First Lines:
In old daies of kyng Arthour
Of which þat bretons speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angrie nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone verray pestilence
Note: III.1091-2, 1129-30 reversed.
Attributed Title: Et incipit fabula eiusdem vxoris (f. 89v); Hic desinit fabula vxoris de Bathe… (f. 94v)
25.Source: London, British Library Egerton 2863 [olim Norton, post Compton Hall], ff. 87-91v
First Lines:
…Hadde in his hous a lusty bacheler
þat on a day come ridynge fro þe ryver…
Last Lines:
…And eke I pray ihesu schorte here lyues
That wil nat be gouerned by here wuyes…
Note: III.857-82, 1263-4 lost; 1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: The wyf Of bathe (RT)
26.Source: London, British Library Egerton 2864 [olim Ingilby, post Compton Hall], ff. 92-97v
First Lines:
In olde dayes of the kyng Artour
Of whom that Britons speke gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry and nygardes of dispence
I pray god sende hem a verray pestilence
Attributed Title: Incipit fabula vxor de Bathe (f. 92, margin); The wyff of bathe (RT); Hic desinit fabula vxor de Bathe… (f. 97v)
27.Source: London, British Library Harley 1239, ff. 88-91
First Lines:
IN þe olde days of kyng Arthour
Of wych þat brythens spake gret honowr…
Last Lines:
…& olde & Angry nygard of dyspence
God send hem sone a wery pestylence
Note: III.900, 1057, 1144 omitted; 875-6 reversed.
Attributed Title: Here þe gud Wyfe of Bath endyth (f. 91)
28.Source: London, British Library Harley 1758, ff. 97v-102
First Lines:
IN the olde daies of the kyng Arthour
Of whiche that Bretouns spekyn gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde & angrie nygarde of dispence
God sende hem sone a verray pestilence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed. A blank space of approximately ten lines between the explicit for the Wife of Bath᾿s Tale and the Friar’s Prologue.
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the tale of the Wif of Bathe (f. 97v); The Wif of Bathe (RT); Here endith the goode wifes tale of Bathe (f. 102)
29.Source: London, British Library Harley 7334, ff. 97v-102v
First Lines:
In olde dayes of þe Kyng Arthour
Of which þat britouns speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry nygardes of despense
God send hem sone verray pestilence
Note: III.1213-14 reversed.
Attributed Title: Narrat (f. 97v, margin); The Wyf Of Bathe (RT); Here endith þe Wif of Bathe hir tale… (f. 102v)
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Harleian MS 7334 of Chaucer’s ‘Canterbury Tales’. Chaucer Society 73. London: Trübner, 1885.
30.Source: London, British Library Harley 7335, ff. 72v-74v
First Lines:
[I]n olde dayes of the Kyng Artour
Of which that Britons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone verrey pestilence
Note: III.939-1210 lost.
31.Source: London, British Library Lansdowne 851, ff. 97-102
First Lines:
IN þe olde daies of þe kinge Arthoure
Of whiche þat bretons speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde Angrye nigard in dispence
God send hem sone a verrei pestelence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Incipit fabula vxoris de Bathonia (f. 97); þe wif of Baþe (RT); Explicit fabula Matrone vxoris de Bathonia… (f. 102)
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Lansdowne Manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Chaucer Society Series 1, nos. 7, 13, 20, 36, 43, 55, 69. London: Trübner, 1868-79.
32.Source: London, British Library Royal 17 D.XV, ff. 136v-143
First Lines:
[torn]n þe olde dayes of kynge Arthoure
[torn]f whiche þat brytouns speke grete honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and Angrye Nygarde of dispence
God sone hym sende a verreye pestylence
Note: III.1159 inserted in margin; 1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: …& begynnyth her tale (f. 136v); Here endith the tale of the Wyf of Bathe… (f. 143)
33.Source: London, British Library Royal 18 C.II, ff. 115-120
First Lines:
In olde daies of kyng Artour
Of whiche þe Britouns spekeþ moche honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardeye of expence
God sende hem sone verrey pestilence Amen
Note: III.963-4, 1019-20, 1124, 1260 omitted.
Attributed Title: The Wyf of Bathe (RT)
34.Source: London, British Library Sloane 1685, ff. 114v-119v
First Lines:
[torn]N þe olde dayes of kynge Arthour
Of whiche bretons speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And whan þe knyȝt saweȝ alle þis
That sho so fayre and so yonge also…
Note: III.1252-64 lost; 857-91 partially lost due to tear; 1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: …[torn]nneth the tale (f. 114v); The Wyf Of Bathe (RT)
35.Source: London, British Library Sloane 1686, ff. 132-138v
First Lines:
IN the olde daies of king Arthour
Of which that bretons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry and nygard and dispence
God sende hem sone a verry pestilence
Note: III.1144 omitted; 1239-40 reversed.
Attributed Title: …And here begynneth her tale folowyng (f. 132); Tale off the wiff of bathe (RT); Here endith the tale of the Wyf of Bathe… (f. 138v)
36.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales Peniarth 392 D [‘Hengwrt’], ff. 68v-73v
First Lines:
IN tholde dayes of the kyng Arthour
Of which that Britons speken greet honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem soone verray pestilence
Note: III.899 omitted.
Attributed Title: Here bigynneth the tale / of the Wyf of Bathe (f. 68v); The Wyf of Bathe (RT); Here endeth the Wyues tale of Bathe (f. 73v)
Facsimiles:
Ruggiers, Paul G., ed. The Canterbury Tales. Geoffrey Chaucer. A Facsimile of the Hengwrt Manuscript, with Variants from the Ellesmere Manuscript. Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma, and Folkestone: Wm. Dawson, 1979.
Stubbs, Estelle, ed. The Hengwrt Chaucer Digital Facsimile (CD-ROM). Leicester, England: Scholarly Digital Editions, 2000.
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Hengwrt Manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Chaucer Society Series 1, nos. 3, 9, 27, 39, 51, 71. London: Trübner, 1868-79.
Blake, Norman F., ed. The Canterbury Tales. Edited from the Hengwrt Manuscript. York Medieval Texts, second series. London: Edward Arnold, 1980.
Stubbs, Estelle, ed. The Hengwrt Chaucer Digital Facsimile (CD-ROM). Leicester, England: Scholarly Digital Editions, 2000.
37.Source: Alnwick Castle, Duke of Northumberland MS 455, ff. 99-104
First Lines:
In old dayis of kyng Arthur
Of wich that bretons speken gret honoure…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry nygard of dispence
God send hem sone a verry pestelence
Note: III.1051-4, 1134 omitted; 1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Here begynnyth the Wyffe of Bathe hir tale (f. 99); Here endith the Wyff of Bathe hire tale… (104v)
38.Source: Glasgow, Glasgow University Library Hunterian 197 (U.1.1), ff. 50ra-52ra
First Lines:
IN olde dayes of þe kyng Arthour
Of whiche þat bretons speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone verray pestilence
Attributed Title: Ad huc de fabula (f. 50ra); The Wif of Bathe (RT); Here endeth the tale of þe wyf of Bathe… (f. 52ra)
39.Source: Holkham Hall, Earl of Leicester MS 667, ff. 55rb-57vb
First Lines:
IN olde dayes of the kinge Arthoure
Of which the britons speke much honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of expence
God send hem sone verrey pestilence
Note: III.963-4, 1019-20 omitted.
40.Source: Lichfield, Lichfield Cathedral Library 29, ff. 119-124v
First Lines:
IN olde dayes of the kyng Arthour
Of which þat Britons speken such honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry and nygard of dispence
God sende hem sone a verray pestilence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Here begynneth þe tale of the Wyf of Bathe (f. 119, rubric); The wyf Of Bathe (RT); Thus endeth þe tale of þe Wyf of Bathe… (f. 124v, rubric)
41.Source: Lincoln, Lincoln Cathedral Library 110, ff. 102v-108
First Lines:
IN olde daies of kyng artour
Of þat bretons spak gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And oolde and angri nygardis of dispence
God sende hem sone veri pestilence
Attributed Title: The Wyf of Bathe (RT); Here endith the wyues tale of bathe… (f. 108)
42.Source: London, Royal College of Physicians 388 (13), ff. 143-149v
First Lines:
IN old daies of kyng Arthur
Of whom Bretons speken grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And old and angry and nygardis of dispence
God send hem soone a verray pestilence
Note: III.1307-8 follow 1294.
Attributed Title: Incipit ffabula vxoris de Bath (f. 143); Explicit ffabula (f. 149v)
43.Source: Manchester, John Rylands Library Eng. 113 [olim Hodson 39], ff. 64-67v
First Lines:
In olde dayes of kyng Arthour
Of whom þat Bretons speke grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone a verray pestilence
Note: III.1163-4, 1255-6 omitted.
Attributed Title: et incipit fabula eiusdem uxoris (f. 64); Incipit fabula Vxoris / de Bathe (f. 64, margin); Wyfe of Bathe (RT); Explicit fabula vxoris de Bathe… (f. 67v)
44.Source: Petworth House, Lord Leconfield MS 7, ff. 141-146v
First Lines:
In þe olde dayes of þe king arthoure
Of which þat bretons speken gret hohonour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygard & dispence
God sende hem sone a verrey pestilence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: ffabula (f. 141, margin); The Wyff Of Bath (RT); Thus endeþ þe tale of þe wif of bath… (f. 146v, rubric)
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Petworth MS of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Chaucer Society Series 1, nos. 6, 12, 19, 35, 42, 54, 68. London: Trübner, 1868-79.
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. Autotype Specimens of the Chief Chaucer MSS, Part II. Chaucer Society Series 1, no. 56. London: Trübner, 1876.
45.Source: Austin, University of Texas, Humanities Research Center HRC Pre-1700 MS 143 [olim Deene Park; post Cardigan-Brudenell, sold Sotheby’s, Feb. 1959], ff. 75-80
First Lines:
In olde days of kynge Arthoure
Of whom that Brutons speken grete honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry Nigardes of dispence
God sende them sone a verrey pestilence
Note: III.1163-4, 1255-6 omitted; spurious line follows 1239.
Attributed Title: Et hic incipit fabula Vxoris de Bathe (f. 75); Wife of Bathe (RT); Hic desinit fabula vxoris de Bathe… (f. 80)
46.Source: Chicago, IL, University of Chicago Library 564 [olim Ashburnham 126, post McCormick], ff. 134-141
First Lines:
In þe olde dayes of King Arthoure
Of which þat britaynes speken gret honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone a verry pestilence
47.Source: New York, Pierpont Morgan Library M249 [olim Ashburnham 124, post Compton Hall], ff. 117v-122v
First Lines:
In olde dayes of kyng Arthour
Of whiche that Britons speken such honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry and nygard of dispence
God sende hem sone a verray pestilence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: …Here begyneth the tale of the Wyf of Bathe (f. 117); The wyf Of Bathe (RT); Thus endeth the tale of þe Wyf of Bathe… (f. 122v)
48.Source: Philadelphia, Rosenbach Museum and Library 1084/1 [olim Rosenbach 157; prior Phillipps 8137], ff. 89v-94v
First Lines:
In the olde dayes of kynge Arthour
Of whyche that bretouns speken greet honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry and nygardes of dispence
God send hem sone a verry pestelence
Note: III.1031-2 reversed.
Attributed Title: Here bygynneth the Wyffes tale of Bathe (f. 89v); The Wyff of Bathe (RT); Here endeþ þe Wyfes tale of baþe… (f. 94v)
49.Source: Princeton, Princeton University Library 100 [olim Helmingham Hall], ff. 87-91v
First Lines:
In old dayis of Kyng Arthure
Of wich the brytons speke grete honoure…
Last Lines:
…And take yeur aventure of þe repeyre
That be to yeur house because of me…
Note: III.1226-64 lost; 1031-2 omitted.
Attributed Title: …And here begynnyth she her tale (f. 87); Bathe (RT)
50.Source: San Marino, CA, Henry Huntington Library EL 26.C.9 [‘Ellesmere’], ff. 72-76
First Lines:
IN tholde dayes of Kyng Arthour
Of which that Britons speken greet honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem soone verray pestilence
Attributed Title: …And / bigynneth hir tale (f. 72); Wyf of Bathe (RT); Heere endeth the Wyues tale of Bathe (f. 76, foot)
Facsimiles:
The Ellesmere Chaucer Reproduced in Facsimile. 2 vols. Preface by Alix Egerton. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1911.
Hanna, Ralph, ed. The Ellesmere Chaucer Reproduced in Facsimile. 2 vols. Manchester: Manchester UP, 1911. Preface by Alix Egerton repr. as The Ellesmere Manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales: A Working Facsimile. Intro. Hanna; Cambridge: D. S. Brewer, 1989.
Woodward, Daniel, and Martin Stevens, eds. The New Ellesmere Chaucer Facsimile (Huntington MS EL 26 C 9). Tokyo: Yushodo, and San Marino, CA: Huntington Library, 1995: Now available in part online: http://dpg.lib.berkeley.edu/webdb/dsheh/heh_brf?CallNumber=El+26+C+9.
Editions:
Furnivall, Frederick James, ed. The Ellesmere Manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales. Chaucer Society Series 1, nos. 2, 8, 16, 26, 32, 38, 50, 70. London: Trübner, 1868-79.
51.Source: Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale angl. 39, ff. 42rb-44va
First Lines:
IN the olde dayes of King Arthure
of which þat bretouns spak gret honour…
Last Lines:
…and old and angry nygardes of dispence
god sende hem sone a verray pestilence
Note: III.875-6 reversed.
Attributed Title: Hic narrat ffabulam suam vxor de / bathe hoc modo sequente (f. 42rb); Explicit fabula vxoris de bathe… (f. 44va)
52.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library, Takamiya Deposit 22 [olim Sion College, Arc. L 40 2/E 23], ff. 48-56
First Lines:
IN olde dayes of kyng arture
of whiche þat bretons speken gret honour…
Last Lines:
…and olde and angry nygardys of dispence
god sende hem som verry pestilence silence
53.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library, Takamiya Deposit 24 [olim Chatsworth, Duke of Devonshire], ff. 80v-85v
First Lines:
In olde daies of King Arthour
Of wich that Britons speke gret honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angri nigardes of dispence
God send hem sone verri pestilence
Note: III.1091-2, 1129-30 reversed.
Attributed Title: And hiere beginneth a tale of the wif / of Bathe as is here aftirward remembred (f. 80v); Vxor de Bathe (RT); Hic desinit fabula vxoris de Bathe… (f. 85v)
54.Source: Geneva, Bibl. Bodmer, Geneva 48 [olim Rosenbach 156, prior Phillipps 8136], ff. 81v-87
First Lines:
IN olde daies of king Arthure
Of whom þe Britons speke gret honoure…
Last Lines:
…And old and Angry negardis of spence
God send hem sone veray pestilence
Note: III.1032 omitted.
Attributed Title: The tale of the wif of Bathe (rubric, f. 81v)
Facsimiles:
Digital Facsimile of Cologny, Fondation Martin Bodmer, Cod. Bodmer 48” .



Print Witnesses:
1.Source: STC 5082. Chaucer, Geoffrey, Canterbury Tales, [Westminster, William Caxton, 1476] , ff. 145-152
First Lines:
[I]N olde dayes of king Artur
Of whiche britous spekith gret honour …
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardis of dispence
God sende hem sone a foul verry pestilence
Note: III.927-8 reversed; spurious lines after 1248.
Attributed Title: …And here begynnyth her tale (f. 145); Here endith the tale of the wyf of bathe… (f. 152)
Facsimiles:
Bordalejo, Barbara, ed. Caxton’s Canterbury Tales: The British Library Copies. Leicester: Scholarly Digital Editions, 2003.
2.Source: STC 5083. Chaucer, Geoffrey, Canterbury Tales, [Westminster], W. Caxton, [1483] , sigs. s.2v-s.7v
First Lines:
[I]In olde dayes of kyng Artur
Of whyche brytons speke grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardys of dyspence
God sende hem sone a verry pestilence
Note: Spurious lines follow 1248.
Attributed Title: Here begynnyth the Wyf of Bathes tale (sig. s.2v); The Wyf of Bathes tale (RT); Here endyth the tale of the wyf of bathe… (sig. s.7v)
Facsimiles:
The Canterbury Tales (a facsimile of the Pepys copy of Caxton’s Second Edition). London: Cornmarket Reprints in association with Magdalene College, Cambridge, 1972.
Bordalejo, Barbara, ed. Caxton’s Canterbury Tales: The British Library Copies. Leicester: Scholarly Digital Editions, 2003.
3.Source: STC 5084. Chaucer, Geoffrey, Canterbury Tales, R. Pynson, [1492] , sigs. t.7-v.5v
First Lines:
[I]n olde of kyng Arthoure
Of whiche Britons speke grete honoure…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes in dispence
God sende them sone a verry pestilence
Attributed Title: …and here begynneth her Tale (sig. t.7); The wyf of Bathes Tale (RT); Here endith the tale of the Wyf of Bathe… (sig. v.5v)
4.Source: STC 5085. Chaucer, Geoffrey, Canterbury Tales, Westminster, W. de Worde, 1498 , sigs. h.1va-h.3vb
First Lines:
[I]N olde dayes of kynge artur
Of whyche brytons speke grete honour…
Last Lines:
…And olde and angry nygardes of dispence
God sende hem sone a very pestylence
Attributed Title: …And begynneth her tale (sig. h.1va); The wyf of bathes tale (RT); Here endith the tale of the / wyf of (sig. h.3vb)