The Summoner is some one that works for a medieval church; they call people before the ecclesiastical court for their spiritual crimes, like adultery or heresy, the punishment for which can be excommunication (expulsion from the church). The Summoner’s appearance isn’t one of his best traits. He has sores/boils all over his face; narrow eyes like an ostrich; thick eye brows. He doesn’t dress well, drinks too excess. Many suspected the Summoners of taking bribes, seducing young innocent girls. Not only does he have there confidence, but "ful prively a finch eek coude he pul"( Gen Pro line 654). That versus means “ a expression that can mean to trick, but also to suduce a young girl.
The Summoner took bribes, from people that didn’t want to be excommunicated from the church. Guess who benefited from the bribes? The summoner did. Although the Summoner’s conviction that one can avoid excommunication by paying bribes is morally Reprehensible, it is also true. Historians think summoners were not paid enough by the church. They couldn’t pay rent and eat; thus, they had to depend upon bribery to get by.
One of the possibilities the Sommoner is on the journey is because, he got caught taking briberies from the people being excommunicated. So he is on the run, hiding from the church, could be out of a job, because he got caught. Could be hiding on this journey because on of the innocent little girls he seduced talk the authorities/parents, and are after him. Because, he drinks to excessiveness he could have done something wrong. These are all possibilities.
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