The Criyng and the Soun: Chaucer Audio Files

The Chaucer Metapage Audio Files

These are links to web pages with excerpts from Chaucer’s works read by professors. The main purpose of these recordings is to help students improve their pronunciation of Chaucer’s Middle English. The emphasis is on accuracy of pronunciation, according to the most current scholarly thinking, though you will notice some individual variation among the readers. For an introduction to Chaucer’s phonetics, grammar and vocabulary on the Harvard Chaucer site, including sound files of individual words for illustration, click here.

Compact Disks of complete texts of individual works by Chaucer can be purchased from The Chaucer Studio Web Site. An excellent book, including a cassette tape, on how vocal performance can affect the interpretation of Chaucer’s characters is Betsy Bowden’s Chaucer Aloud: The Varieties of Textual Interpretation (Philadelphia: U. of PA Press, 1987). See also Alan Gaylord’s article “Reading Chaucer: What’s Allowed in ‘Aloud’,” Chaucer Yearbook, I (1992): 87-109.

These sound files are in MP3 format (or WAV format or both). The text in the edition being used by the reader accompanies the sound file on each web page. When the audio begins, users can scroll down to follow along as they listen.

From The Canterbury Tales

From Troilus and Criseyde

From the Dream Visions

From The Legend of Good Women and the Short Poems