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Word Count: 2,450
In the late 14th century the Church elected three popes and were in a state of chaos After the papacy had been moved from Rome to Avignon and back again the Church had divided loyalties along with a divided papacy At the end of the hundred years war clearly divided nations generated a sense of patriotism that before now was only seen in the Catholic Church during the crusades The Plague left the Church devastated After the plague the Church halted the expansion into the countryside leaving the corrupted clergy out in the field In turn looking for more land to conquer and farm city rulers expanded out into these clerical thin lands The result of these factors a divided papacy a lost sense of patriotism and the corrupt clergy of the Church lead to much needed reform at the end of the 14th century Not only the church however needed to be reformed according to Chaucer Chaucer believed that the European people in general were moving away from his ideal a universal society following the church Chaucer also could see the decline in the church and knew that too was part of the problem In Geoffrey Chaucers The Canterbury Tales Chaucer uses the satyr of the churchs corruption and the symbolism of moving from general disorder back to a united holy church in order to express the need for a cleansing penance of and return to the church Chaucer satirizes the church and the clergys corruption to demonstrate the state disorder chaos and greed the church is in One of the pilgrims we meet it The Canterbury Tales is the Pardoner He is a man commissioned by the pope to forgive sins and sell certain holy relics and although he has what appears to be an official letter one is lead to believe that in fact his is a fake Before his tale the Pardoner tells a story on the outlook of his life
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