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Geoffrey Chaucer Biography

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Riverside Chaucer - Geoffrey Chaucer

Riverside Chaucer - Geoffrey Chaucer

Houghton Mifflin Company

Geoffrey Chaucer Birth & Youth:

Geoffrey Chaucer was born in the early 1340s (ca. 1343) to John Chaucer, a vintner and deputy to the king's butler. As a boy, he was a page to the Countess of Ulster.

Geoffrey Chaucer Death:

Geoffrey Chaucer died on October 25, 1400. Chaucer's body is buried in the Poet's Corner of Westminster Abbey. In 1555, a monument was erected to Chaucer.

Geoffrey Chaucer Marriage:

Around 1365-1366, Chaucer married Philippa Roet, the eldest daughter of Sir Paon de Roet, a Flemish knight. Philippa was also the sister of John of Gaunt's third wife, Katherine Swynford. Philippa died in 1387.

Geoffrey Chaucer Achievements:

Geoffrey Chaucer's works are often categorized in three chronological divisions: the French period (to 1372), the Italian period (1372-1385), and the English period (1387-1400).

French period: The principal work of this period is "Book of Duchess" (1369).

Italian period: Works from this period include "The House of Fame" (1379-1384), "The Parliament of Fowls" (1377-1382), "Troilus and Criseyde" (1382-1385), and "The Legend of Good Women" (1384?-1386).

Geoffrey Chaucer's Greatest Achievement: "The Canterbury Tales":

Geoffrey Chaucer wrote "The Canterbury Tales" between 1387 and 1400. It's a collection of stories about pilgrims on their way to Canterbury, although the full scope of the work seems not to have been fully realized. Some 48 hand-written manuscripts have been passed down in handwritten manuscripts, and the two tales that each of the pilgrims were supposed to tell were never completed.

Geoffrey Chaucer Professions:

Geoffrey Chaucer lived a full life: in court, in the army, and beyond. He started off as a page, but was then a valet. He served with Edward III's invading army. While he was with the army, Chaucer was taken prisoner, and ransomed. Later, in 1374, he was appointed comptroller of the customs for the Port of London. Chaucer was appointed justice of the peace for Kent; he was elected to the Parliament; and then, he was the Deputy Forster in Somerset.

Geoffrey Chaucer Quotes from "The Canterbury Tales":

"Whanne that April with his shoures sote
The droughte of March hath perced to the rote."
- "Prologue"

"Min be the travaille, and thin be the glorie."
- "The Knight's Tale"

"Loke who that is most vertuous alway,
Prive and apert, and most entendeth ay
To do the gentil dedes that he can,
And take him for the gretest gentilman."
- "The Wife of Bath's Tale"

"Full wise is he that can himselven knowe."
- "The Monk's Tale"

Geoffrey Chaucer Quotes from "Troilus & Criseyde":

"Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese."
- Book 2

"He helde about him alway, out of drede,
A world of folke."
- Book 3

"One eare it heard, at the other out it went."
- Book 4

"Go, little booke! go, my little tragedie!"
- Book 5

Geoffrey Chaucer Brief Biography:

(ca. 1343-1400) British writer. Geoffrey Chaucer has been called "father of English literature," and he was certainly one of the most famous writers in British literature, known for his Canterbury Tales.

With Chaucer's connections, he traveled around the world. And, with his experiences in court and in the army, he had plenty of material for some of his most well-known works.

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