How far do you agree with the view that the Pardoner is portrayed by Chaucer in the Tale as wholly bad?

This is my answer to a Section A question based on The Pardoner's Tale for AQA. It received 40/40 marks. I thought it would be useful to upload since a lot of people struggle with answering questions based on this text.

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How far do you agree with the view that the Pardoner is portrayed by Chaucer in
the Tale as wholly bad?

In the Pardoner's Tale, Chaucer portrays the Pardoner to be a 'bad' character by reasserting
two of his most dislikeable traits: his arrogance and his vanity. Indeed, many of…

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clever. The latter point demonstrates his arrogance in that he simply knows he can get away
with manipulating insignificant stories to make the pilgrims feel bad and cough up money for
his own gain. Even biblical stories are exaggerated to an extent, for example, the story of
Lot in the…

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An alternative view of the Pardoner can be that he values honesty, despite the fact that his
work demands dishonesty. This may seem contradictory, since dishonesty is the foundation
of his relic-selling routine, however, it is a necessary part of the routine. His sermons are
after all an act, and…

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