His heed was balled, that shoon as any glas,
And eek his face, as he hadde been enoynt.
He was a lord ful fat and in good poynt;
His eyen stepe, and rollynge in his heed,
That stemed as a forneys of a leed…
A fat swan loved he best of any roost.
– Geoffrey Chaucer
The Canterbury Tales, General Prologue. In contrast to other monks who are thin because they work hard and fast regularly, the Monk is described as fat with plenty of flesh on him and bald with bulging eyes. A sign that eats well and often, and doesn’t work too hard. He is said to love a fat swan better than any roast. The Monk is a greedy man with an appetite, not just for fine food, but for all kinds of worldly things and pursuits, including hunting and fine clothes.