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DIMEV 6536
Whilom there was dwelling in my country
Geoffrey Chaucer, the Friar’s Tale of the Canterbury Tales — 364 lines in rhyming couplets.
Author(s): Geoffrey Chaucer
Title(s): Friar’s Tale; Canterbury Tales
Subjects: pilgrims/pilgrimage; summoners; Church corruption
Versification: — couplets — aa



Manuscript Witnesses:
1.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Arch. Selden. B. 14 (SC 3360), ff. 100v-105v
First Lines:
Whilom ther was dwelling in my contre
an erchedekene aman of high degre…
Last Lines:
…and praieth that this sompnour him repente
of his mysdedis or that the fende him hente
Attributed Title: …And next / folwith his tale to angre with the Sompnour (f. 100v); the ffrere (RT); Here endith the ffrere is tale… (f. 105v)
2.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Barlow 20 (SC 6420), ff. 121-125v
First Lines:
Whilom þer was dwellyng in my contre
An Archedeken a man of highe degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth þat þis sompnour hym repente
Of þis mysdede or þat þe fende hym hent
Attributed Title: …& here by gynnyth þe tale (f. 120v); The frere (RT)
3.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 414 (SC 27880), ff. 78v-82v
First Lines:
[W]hilom ther was dwelling in my cuntre
An Archidiacon a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And preyith that thees somonours hem repent
Of their mysdedis or that the fend hem hent
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the ffreris tale (f. 78v)
4.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Bodley 686 (SC 2527), ff. 86v-90v
First Lines:
Whilome ther was dwellyng in my contre
An Erchdeken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth þat thes sumpnours hem repente
Of her misdedis er þat the fende hem hente
Attributed Title: …And here / begynneth hys tale (f. 86); ffrere (RT); Here endeth the ffreres tale… (f. 91)
5.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Hatton Donati 1 (SC 4138), ff. 124-128
First Lines:
Whilom þere was dwelling in my contre
An Archdiacon a man of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth þat þies somnours him repent
Of theire mysdedes or þe fende hem hent
Attributed Title: …And next / biginneth þe ffreres tale of the Somnoure (f. 124); The ffrers tale (RT); Here endeth þe ffreres tale of the Somnoure… (f. 128)
6.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Laud misc. 600 (SC 1476), ff. 95-00v
First Lines:
Whilom þer was duelling in my countre
An Erchediaken aman of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…Twelue quod she ladi seint marie
So wisli helpe me out of care and synne…
Note: III.1606-64 lost (resupplied in the seventeenth century on f. 100).
Attributed Title: HEre begynneth þe freres tale (f. 95); the frere (RT)
7.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Laud misc. 739 (SC 1234), ff. 145v-151
First Lines:
[S]Omtyme there was duellyng in my contre
An Archideken a man of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…And preieth that this sompnour may repente
Of his mysdedis or the fende hym hente
Note: III.1380 omitted.
8.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 141 (SC 14635), ff. 142-147v
First Lines:
Whilom was dwellyng in my contre
An archedecon a man of hye degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that these sompnoures hem repent
Of hur mysdedes or that the fend hem hent
Note: III.1378, 1493-4 omitted; 1427-8 reversed; spurious line follows 1617.
Attributed Title: Here bigynneth the ffreres tale (f. 142); The ffrere (RT)
9.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 149 (SC 14641), ff. 68-70v
First Lines:
Whilom ther was dwellyng in my cuntre
An Archedeken a man of hihe degre…
Last Lines:
…And preieth that this somonour hym repent
Of his mysdede or that the feende hym hent
Note: III.1564 omitted.
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the freres tale how the / devel bare awei the somner (f. 68); fabula (f. 68, margin); here endith the freres tale of the somnour and the devle… (f. 70v)
10.Source: Oxford, Bodleian Library Rawlinson poet. 223 (SC 14714), ff. 143-148
First Lines:
Whilom there was dwellyng in my contre
An Archedeken a man of hiȝe degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth that this sompnour him repente
Of his mysdedes or that the fend han hent
Attributed Title: …And here beginneth his tale folwing (f. 142v); Frater de Apparitore (RT); Here endith the tale of the ffrere… (f. 148)
11.Source: Oxford, Christ Church 152, ff. 88v-93
First Lines:
Whylom ther was dwellyng in my cuntre
An Erchedeken a man of heigh degre…
Last Lines:
…And preieth that this sompnour hym repent
Of his mydede or that the fende hym hente
Attributed Title: …And bygynneth the freris tale (f. 88v); here endith the ffreris tale… (f. 93)
12.Source: Oxford, Corpus Christi College 198, ff. 115bv-120v
First Lines:
Whilom þer was dwellyng in Couentrie
An erchdekne a man of heih degre…
Last Lines:
…And preyeþ þat þis somnour him repente
Of his mysdede or þat þe feend him hente
Attributed Title: her endeþ þe ffrere his tale (f. 120v); ffreres (RT, rubric)
Facsimiles:
Digital Facsimile of Corpus Christi, Oxford MS 198 of the Canterbury Tales” .
13.Source: Oxford, New College 314, ff. 115v-121
First Lines:
Whilom þer was duellyng in my contre
An Archedekyn aman of hiȝ degre…
Last Lines:
…And pray that þe sompnour him repente
Of his mysdedis or that þe devil him hent
Attributed Title: …And begynneth his tale (f. 115v); ffrere (RT); Here endith the ffreris tale… (f. 121)
14.Source: Oxford, Trinity College 49, ff. 92-97v
First Lines:
Whilom ther was dwellyng in my contre
an Erchedeken a man of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…and praijth that this sompnours may hem repente
of hir misdedis or that the deuyl hem hente
Attributed Title: ffrere (RT); Explicit fabula ffratris… (f. 97v)
15.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Dd.4.24, ff. 81v-85v
First Lines:
WHilom there was dwellyng in my contree
An Archedekene a man of hey degree…
Last Lines:
…And preyeth that theise Sompnours hem repent
Of here mysdedis or that the fend hem hent
Attributed Title: Incipit fabula fratris (f. 81v); Hic desinit fabula fratris… (f. 85v)
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. 229-234v
First Lines:
…ffor subtily he hadde his expyayle
That tauȝte hym where hym myȝt a vayle…
Last Lines:
…And panne & al but he wele hym repente
Nay olde stot þat is not myn entente…
Note: III.1299-322, 1631-64 lost; 1491-2 omitted.
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. 124v-128v
First Lines:
Whylome there was dwellyng in my contrey
An Erchdeken aman of highe degree…
Last Lines:
…And pray that the sompner hym repente
Of his mysdedes or that the devyll hym hente
Attributed Title: …And here begynneth his tale (f. 124v); ffrere (RT); Here endeth the ffrerers tale… (f. 128v)
18.Source: Cambridge UK, Cambridge University Library Mm.2.5, ff. 128-132v
First Lines:
Whilom þere was dwellyng in my cuntre
An Archedeken a man of hie degree…
Last Lines:
…And preieth þat þis somnour hym repente
Of his mysdede er þat þe fende hym hente
Attributed Title: Here begynneth þe ffreris tale (f. 128); þe frerys tale (RT); Explicit fabula fratris… (f. 132v)
19.Source: Cambridge UK, Fitzwilliam Museum McClean 181 [olim Ashburnham 127], ff. 147-151v
First Lines:
[W]Hilom þer was dwellynge in my Cuntre
An Erchedekon a man of hiȝe degre…
Last Lines:
…He us kept fro hell þat cursed plase
Now Ihesu lord send us that grace Amen
Note: III.1545-6, 1649-58 omitted; two spurious lines replace 1663-4 (see above).
Attributed Title: The tale of þe ffrere (f. 147); Explicit fabula ffratris (f. 151v, foot)
20.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.3 (582), ff. 61rb-62vb
First Lines:
Whilom ther duelled in my contree
And Archedeacon a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…Hiere may ye se myn ougne dere brothir
The carter spak oon and thouȝt anothir…
Note: III.1569-664 lost.
Attributed Title: Hiere beginneth the ffrere a tale (f. 61rb)
21.Source: Cambridge UK, Trinity College R.3.15 (595), ff. 141v-147
First Lines:
Whylome there was dwellynge in my countre
An Archydeken aman of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And pray that the sompnour hym repent
Of his mysdedes or that the deuyl hym hent
Note: III.1527-30 omitted.
Attributed Title: …And here begynneth his tale (f. 141v); Here endith the ffreris tale… (f. 147)
22.Source: London, British Library Addit. 5140, ff. 111-117
First Lines:
Whilom ther was dwellyng in my contre
An Archedekene a man of hyh degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that this sompnour may repent
Of his mys deedys or the feende him hent
Note: III.1435-8, 1526 omitted.
Attributed Title: & incipit fabula eiusdem (f. 110v); ffrere (RT); Explicit fabula ffratris… (f. 117)
23.Source: London, British Library Addit. 35286 [olim Ashburnham 125], ff. 68v-73v
First Lines:
Whilome ther was dwellyng in my cuntre
An Erchedeken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And preyeth that this sompnour him repente
Of his misdede or that the feend him hente
Attributed Title: …Here bygynneth the ffreres tale (f. 68v); the frere (RT); Here endeth the ffreres tale… (f. 73v)
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. 95v-100
First Lines:
Whilom there was dwellyng in my cuntree
An Archedeken a man of high degree…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that thise Somnours hem repent
Of her mysdedes or that the fend hem hent
Note: III.1443-4 omitted; 1653-4 reversed.
Attributed Title: Hic Incipit fabula fratris (f. 95); Hic desinit fabula ffratris… (f. 100)
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).
25.Source: London, British Library Egerton 2863 [olim Norton, post Compton Hall], ff. 92-95v
First Lines:
…Thus seide oure oost & late him telle his tale
Now tellth forþ & lete þe sompnour gale…
Last Lines:
…Where þat sompnours han here heritage
And god þat made after his ymage…
Note: III.1299-1334; 1643-4 lost; 1609-15 omitted.
Attributed Title: The ffrere (RT)
26.Source: London, British Library Egerton 2864 [olim Ingilby, post Compton Hall], ff. 99-103
First Lines:
[W]hylom ther was dwellyng in myn contre
An Archidekene a man of hih degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that this sompnour may repente
Of his mysdeedis or the fend hym hente
Note: III.1435-8, 1526 omitted; 1485 inserted in margin.
Attributed Title: The ffrere (RT); Hic desinit fabula ffratris (f. 103, margin)
27.Source: London, British Library Harley 1758, ff. 102v-106v
First Lines:
WHilom ther was dwellyng in my contre
An Erchedekene a man of hye degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth that this Somnour maie hym repente
Of his mysdede or that the fende hym hente
Note: Large blank space between the end of the Friar’s Tale and the Summoner’s Prologue.
Attributed Title: …and begynneth the tale (f. 102v); The ffrere (RT); Here endith the ffreris tale (f. 106v)
28.Source: London, British Library Harley 7333, ff. 73ra-74rb
First Lines:
…ffor to somyn an old wif horrible
ffeynyng a cause for he wold her bridell…
Last Lines:
…And prey that the sompnour him Repente
Of his mysdedes or that the devil him hent
Note: III.1299-376 lost; 1527-30 omitted.
29.Source: London, British Library Harley 7334, ff. 103-108
First Lines:
Whilom þer was duellyng in my countre
An erchedeken a man of gret degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth þat oure sompnour him repente
Of his mys dede er þat þe fend him hente
Note: III.1295-6 follow 1308.
Attributed Title: Narrat (f. 103); The ffreres Tale (RT); Here endith þe frere his tale… (f. 108)
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. 75-80v
First Lines:
[W]hilome ther was dwellyng in my cuntree
An Erchedeken a man [illegible]ght degree…
Last Lines:
…And preieth that this sompnour hym repente
Of his mysdede or that the feende hym hente
31.Source: London, British Library Lansdowne 851, ff. 102v-106v
First Lines:
WHilom þere was dwelinge in myne contre
An Archedeken aman of hihe degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieþ þat þis somnour him repent
Of his mesedede ar þat þe fende him hent
Attributed Title: Incipit fabula (f. 102v); þe ffrere (RT); Explicit fabula… (f. 106v)
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. 143v-148
First Lines:
Whylom þere was dwellenge in my Contre
An archedecon A Man of hyghe degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayethe þat this Sompnoure hym repente
Of his Mysdede Ar þat the ffende hym hente
Note: III.1450-1511 lost.
Attributed Title: …And / begynnyth the Tale of the frere (f. 143v); Here endithe the tale of the ffrere… (f. 148)
33.Source: London, British Library Royal 18 C.II, ff. 120v-124v
First Lines:
Som tyme þere was dwellyng in my contre
An erchedekne aman of hye degre…
Last Lines:
…And pray þat þis sompnour may repente
Of his mysdedys or þe fend him hente Amen
Note: III.1380 omitted.
Attributed Title: …And begynneth the tale (f. 120v); The ffrere (RT)
34.Source: London, British Library Sloane 1685, ff. 115-124v
First Lines:
…He hade a Somnour redy to his hande
A [slyer (smudged)] boy was none in Engelonde…
Last Lines:
…And preythe þat þis Sompnour hym repent
Of hys mysdede or þe fende hym hent
Note: III.1299-330 lost; 1337-8 reversed.
Attributed Title: The ffrere (RT); Here endethe þe ffreres tale… (f. 124v)
35.Source: London, British Library Sloane 1686, ff. 139-145
First Lines:
WHilom there was dwellyng in my contre
And Archedeken a man of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth that this sompnour him repent
Of his mysdede or that the fende hym hent
Note: III.1306, 1332 inserted at foot.
Attributed Title: …And here begynneth his tale folowyng (f. 138v); Tale off the ffrere (RT); Here endethe the ffreres tale… (f. 145v)
36.Source: Aberystwyth, National Library of Wales Peniarth 392 D [‘Hengwrt’], ff. 74-78v
First Lines:
WHilom ther was dwellynge in my contree
An Erchedekne a man of hy degree…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that this Somnours hem repente
Of hir mysdedes er that the feend hem hente
Note: The latter portions of III.1310-20 are added by a second hand (over damaged portion of parchment?).
Attributed Title: …and bigynneth his tale (f. 74); The ffrere (RT); Here endeth the ffreres tale… (f. 78v)
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, f. 105-109v
First Lines:
Whilom was dwellyng in my contre
An Archedeken a man of hiȝe degre…
Last Lines:
…And prey þat the Sompnoure may hym repent
Of his mysdede or that the fende hym hent
Attributed Title: And here begynnyth the ffrere his tale (f. 105); Here endith the ffrere his tale (f. 109v)
38.Source: Glasgow, Glasgow University Library Hunterian 197 (U.1.1), ff. 52rb-54ra
First Lines:
WHilom þere was duellyng in my contree
An Archedekne a man of high degree…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth þat þis Somnour may hym repente
Of his mysdedes or þe fende hym hente
Note: III.1314 left partially blank.
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the tale of the ffrere (f. 52rb); The Tale of the ffrere (RT); the ffrere (RT); Here endeth the tale of the ffrere… (f. 54ra)
39.Source: Holkham Hall, Earl of Leicester MS 667, ff. 73va-75vb
First Lines:
Somtyme there was dwelling in my cuntre
An arche deken a man of high degree…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that this sumpnoure may repente
Of his mysdedes er the fende him hente
40.Source: Lichfield, Lichfield Cathedral Library 29, f. 126-129v
First Lines:
…Than that þis somnour knewe a slye lecchour
Or auoutour or a paramour…
Last Lines:
…And praieth þat þis somnour may him repente
Of his misdede or þat þe fend him hente
Note: III.1299-370 lost; resupplied on a seventeenth-century leaf.
Attributed Title: The ffrere (RT); Thus endeth the freres tale… (f. 129v, rubric)
41.Source: Lincoln, Lincoln Cathedral Library 110, ff. 108v-113
First Lines:
SUmtyme þer was dwellinge in my cuntre
An erchedekene aman of hiȝ degre…
Last Lines:
…And preieth þat þese sompnours hem repente
Of hir mysdedis or þe fend hem hente
Note: III.1653-4 reversed.
Attributed Title: the ffrere (RT); Thus endiþ þe ffreris tale of þe Sompnour… (f. 113)
42.Source: London, Royal College of Physicians 388 (13), ff. 150v-156v
First Lines:
WHilom ther was dwellyng in my contre
An Archedeken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…As praieth that this sompnour hym Repente
Of his mysdedis er that the fiend hym hente
Attributed Title: Incipit ffabula (f. 150v); Explicit ffabula… (f. 156v)
43.Source: Manchester, John Rylands Library Eng. 113 [olim Hodson 39], ff. 67v-70v
First Lines:
Whilom þer was dwellyng in my Contre
An archdiakene a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth þat þe Sompnours hem repente
Of here mysdedis or þe ffende hem hente
Note: III.1545-6, 1549-50, 1561-2, 1571-2, 1593-4 omitted; 1653-4 reversed.
Attributed Title: Explicit fabula ffratris… (f. 70v); ffabula ffratris (f. 67v, margin); ffrere (RT)
44.Source: Petworth House, Lord Leconfield MS 7, ff. 147-152
First Lines:
Whilom þer was dwelling in my contre
An Archedeken a man of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…And preieþ þat þis somnour hym repent
Of his mysdede er þat þe fende hym hent
Attributed Title: …And here begynneþ þe ffreres tale (f. 147); The ffreres Tale (RT); Thus endeþ þe frere his tale… (f. 152)
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. 80v-84v
First Lines:
Whilom there was dwellyng in my Contre
An Archedeaken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth that the Sompnours them repent
Of there mysdedes or the fende them shent
Note: III.1370, 1545-6, 1549-50, 1561-2, 1571-2, 1593-4 omitted; 1563-4 reversed.
Attributed Title: Incipit fabula ffratris (f. 80v); ffrere (RT); Hic desinit fabula ffratris (f. 84v, foot)
46.Source: Chicago, IL, University of Chicago Library 564 [olim Ashburnham 126, post McCormick], ff. 141v-147v
First Lines:
Whilom was dwelling in my contree
An archedecon a man of hey degree…
Last Lines:
…And preyeth þat þese sompnours hem repent
Of here mysdedes or þat þe fend hem hent
Note: III.1378, 1493-4 omitted; 1427-8 reversed; spurious line follows 1617.
47.Source: New York, Pierpont Morgan Library M249 [olim Ashburnham 124, post Compton Hall], ff. 123-128
First Lines:
Whilom ther was dwellyng in my cuntre
An Erchedekene a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth that this somnour may hym repente
Of his mysdede or þat the feend hym hente
Attributed Title: …And here bigynneth þe tale of þe ffrere (f. 123); The ffrere (RT); Here endeth the ffreres tale… (f. 128)
48.Source: Philadelphia, Rosenbach Museum and Library 1084/1 [olim Rosenbach 157; prior Phillipps 8137], ff. 95-99v
First Lines:
Whylom ther was dwellynge in my contre
An archedeken a man of hyȝ degre…
Last Lines:
…And prey that the somnour hym repente
Of hys mysdede er that the fende hym hente
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the ffrerys tale (f. 95); The ffrerys Tale (RT); Here endeth þe prologe the ffreris tale… (f. 99v)
49.Source: Princeton, Princeton University Library 100 [olim Helmingham Hall], ff. 92-98
First Lines:
WHylom ther dwelt at home in my contre
An Archdekyn aman of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And prey that the Sompnoure hym repent
Of his mysdedis or that the devil hym hent
Note: III.1265-90 lost.
Attributed Title: …Here begynnyth the ffrere his tale (f. 92); ffrere (RT); Here endith th ffrere his tale… (f. 98)
50.Source: San Marino, CA, Henry Huntington Library EL 26.C.9 [‘Ellesmere’], ff. 76v-80v
First Lines:
Whilom ther was dwellynge in my contree
An Erchedekene a man of heigh degree…
Last Lines:
…And prayeth þat thise somonours hem repente
Of his mysdedes er þat the feend hem hente
Attributed Title: Heere bigynneth the freres tale (f. 76v); ffrere (RT); Heere endeth the ffreres tale (f. 80v)
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. 44vb-46vb
First Lines:
Uhilom þer was duellyng in my cuntre
an archdeken a man of hye degre…
Last Lines:
…and pray we that þise sommonours hem repent
of her mysdedid er that þe fend hem hent
Note: Spurious lines follow III.1470.
Attributed Title: & consequenter narrat fabulam (f. 44vb); Explicit fabula fratris… (f. 46vb)
52.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library, Takamiya Deposit 22 [olim Sion College, Arc. L 40 2/E 23], ff. 57-64v
First Lines:
Whylom þere was dwellyng in my contre
an Eersedeken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…and preyeth þat þese sompnours hem repent
of hir misdedis ar þat þe fende hem hent
Note: III.1491-2 omitted.
53.Source: New Haven, Yale University, Beinecke Library, Takamiya Deposit 24 [olim Chatsworth, Duke of Devonshire], ff. 86-90v
First Lines:
Whilom ther was duelling in my contre
An Archedeken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieth that these Sompnours hem repent
Of her misdedes or the fende hem hent
Note: III.1443-4 omitted; 1653-4 reversed.
Attributed Title: Hic Incipit fabula ffratris (f. 86); ffabula ffratris (RT); Hic desinit fabula ffratris… (f. 90v)
54.Source: Geneva, Bibl. Bodmer, Geneva 48 [olim Rosenbach 156, prior Phillipps 8136], ff. 87v-92v
First Lines:
Whilom þer was duelling in my cuntree
An Archdiacon a man of hie degre…
Last Lines:
…And praieþ þat þees somnouris hem repent
Of their misdedis or þat þe fend hem hent
Note: III.1336, 1526 omitted.
Attributed Title: The ffreris tale (f. 87v, rubric)
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. 152v-158v
First Lines:
[W]Hilom ther was duellyng in my contre
An archedekyn a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And pray that the sompnour hym repente
Of his mysdedis or that the deuyl hym hent
Note: III.1527-30 omitted.
Attributed Title: …And here begynneth his tale (f. 152v); Here endith the Freris tale… (f. 159)
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.8-t.5v
First Lines:
[W]Hylom ther was dwellyng in my contre
An archedekyn a man of hygh degre…
Last Lines:
…And praye that the sompnour hym repente
Of hys mysdedys or that the deuyl hym hent
Attributed Title: Here begynneth the freris Tale (sig. s.8v); The Freris Tale (RT); Here endyth the freris tale (sig. t.5v)
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. v.6v-aa.4
First Lines:
[W]hylom ther was duellyng in my countree
An archedeken a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And pray the sompnoure him repent
Of his mysdedis or the the deuyl him hent
Attributed Title: …And begynneth his tale (sig. v.6); The Freres Tale (RT); Here endith the Freres tale (sig. aa.4)
4.Source: STC 5085. Chaucer, Geoffrey, Canterbury Tales, Westminster, W. de Worde, 1498 , sig. h.4rb-h.6rb
First Lines:
[W]hylom there was dwellyng in my contre
An Archedekyn a man of high degre…
Last Lines:
…And pray that the sompnour hym repente
Of his mysdedys or that the deuyll hym hent
Attributed Title: …Here begynneth the freres tale (sig. h.4); The freres tale (RT); Here endyth the freres tale (sig. h.6va)