Monty Python co-founder Terry Jones's last major project was this Canterbury Tales app

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Very cool. I’m a fan of the Canterbury Tales, and the tradition of frame tale narratives in general.

Pier Paolo Passolini was a fan as well, filming (NSFW) adaptations of The Decameron, The Thousand and One Nights, and The Canterbury Tales. I found the latter with English subtitles on YouTube—it’s worth watching!

The penultimate scene with Satan farting people out of his butt is very Pythonesque (IMO), and I bet Terry Jones saw it and loved it.


A knight ther was, and that a worthy man,
That fro the tyme that he first bigan,
To ryden out, he loved chivalrye,
Trouthe and honour, and shouteth “Ni!”

(Please oh please let it be so!)


So cool, thank you!

Jumping back to Old English (from Middle), years ago I got to see a bit of this, and it was wonderful:

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Saw this and was reminded of Dan Simmons “Hyperion Cantos”.

Especially if you are a Doctor Who fan.

I had to memorize a fairly large chunk of the Prologue when I was in school. Just now I tried to see how much of it I remember: exactly two three five lines.


Well. That brings tears to my eyes. He started out as a poetry scholar, and left it, because it seemed to him strange to get worked-up over ancient arguments about poetry. But later in life he returns to share his joy in the material. That is so cool.

Also, this app is very nice. I can see using it in my linguistics course to help students see/hear/feel the changes in the pronunciation of English. Sweet.

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I’m still kicking myself for never shooting off a BIG question long ago to Terry Jones via his website (where he was very accessible and engaged when posted). It is generally well-known that he loved the humor of Jacques Tati’s alter-ego character, Monsieur Hulot. The Hulot films are usually very quiet, but punctuated here and there with comedic sound effects. I got curious enough several years ago to get the “Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday” dvd. In there is a very inventive (and cleverly ‘choreographed’) sequence that has M. Hulot move through a room with a riding crop sticking out of his back pocket, and with the final ‘gag’ in the sequence involving the crop being accidently plucked with a funny little bwing! sound. Now, Jones was one of the directors of ‘Holy Grail’, and I’m positive that that Hulot sequence (its quietness broken by the bwing!) informed Jones when doing the Prince Herbert (held prisoner in the tower) scene in ‘Holy Grail’; there was a long period of silence, near the end of which Prince Herbert (played by Jones) tied a note to an arrow and bwing! shot it out the tower’s open window. I believe Jones not only fashioned the scene as an homage to M. Tati, but as a bit of a jab at the other MP members who – according to Jones – didn’t share his passion for Tati. I’m 99% certain. 100% would have been great.


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