Geoffrey Chaucer
Geoffrey Chaucer known as the Father of English literature
English literature
English literature is the literature written in the English language, including literature composed in English by writers not necessarily from England; for example, Robert Burns was Scottish, James Joyce was Irish, Joseph Conrad was Polish, Dylan Thomas was Welsh, Edgar Allan Poe was American, J....

, is widely considered the greatest English poet
A poet is a person who writes poetry. A poet's work can be literal, meaning that his work is derived from a specific event, or metaphorical, meaning that his work can take on many meanings and forms. Poets have existed since antiquity, in nearly all languages, and have produced works that vary...

 of the Middle Ages
Middle Ages
The Middle Ages is a periodization of European history from the 5th century to the 15th century. The Middle Ages follows the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 and precedes the Early Modern Era. It is the middle period of a three-period division of Western history: Classic, Medieval and Modern...

 and was the first poet to have been buried in Poet's Corner of Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey
The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is a large, mainly Gothic church, in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom, located just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English,...

. While he achieved fame during his lifetime as an author
An author is broadly defined as "the person who originates or gives existence to anything" and that authorship determines responsibility for what is created. Narrowly defined, an author is the originator of any written work.-Legal significance:...

, philosopher, alchemist
An alchemist is a person who practices alchemy. Alchemist may also refer to:-People and groups:*The Alchemist , a hip hop music producer and rapper*Alchemist , an Australian progressive metal band...

 and astronomer
An astronomer is a scientist who studies celestial bodies such as planets, stars and galaxies.Historically, astronomy was more concerned with the classification and description of phenomena in the sky, while astrophysics attempted to explain these phenomena and the differences between them using...

, composing a scientific treatise on the astrolabe for his ten year-old son Lewis, Chaucer also maintained an active career in the civil service as a bureaucrat
A bureaucracy is an organization of non-elected officials of a governmental or organization who implement the rules, laws, and functions of their institution, and are occasionally characterized by officialism and red tape.-Weberian bureaucracy:...

, courtier
Noble court
The court of a monarch, or at some periods an important nobleman, is a term for the extended household and all those who regularly attended on the ruler or central figure...

 and diplomat
A diplomat is a person appointed by a state to conduct diplomacy with another state or international organization. The main functions of diplomats revolve around the representation and protection of the interests and nationals of the sending state, as well as the promotion of information and...


The lyf so short, the craft so longe to lerne.Th’ assay so hard, so sharp the conquerynge,The dredful joye, alwey that slit so yerne;Al this mene I be love.

Parlement of Foules|Parlement of Foules, l. 1-4

For out of olde feldes, as men seith,Cometh al this new corn fro yeer to yere;And out of olde bokes, in good feith,Cometh al this newe science that men lere.

Parlement of Foules, l. 22-25

Soun is noght but air ybroken,And every speche that is spoken,Loud or privee, foul or fair,In his substaunce is but air;For as flaumbe is but lighted smoke,Right so soun is air ybroke.

The House of Fame|The House of Fame, bk. 2, l. 257-62

For I am shave as neigh as any frere.But yit I praye unto youre curteisye:Beeth hevy again, or elles moot I die.

The Complaint of Chaucer to His Purse, l. 19–21

Ye knowe eek, that in forme of speche is chaungeWithinne a thousand yeer, and wordes thoThat hadden prys, now wonder nyce and straungeUs thinketh hem; and yet they spake hem so,And spedde as wel in love as men now do;Eek for to winne love in sondry ages,In sondry londes, sondry ben usages.

Book 2, l. 22-28

For which he wex a litel red for shame,Whan he the peple upon him herde cryen,That to beholde it was a noble game,How sobreliche he caste doun his yen.Criseyda gan al his chere aspyen,And let so softe it in her herte sinkeThat to herself she seyde, “Who yaf me drinke?”

Book 2, l. 645-651

Or as an ook comth of a litel spir,So thorugh this lettre, which that she hym sente,Encressen gan desir, of which he brente.

Book 2, l. 1335-37

It is nought good a slepyng hound to wake.

Book 3, l. 764

For of fortunes sharp adversiteeThe worst kynde of infortune is this,A man to han ben in prosperitee,And it remembren, whan it passed is.

Book 3, l. 1625-1628

Oon ere it herde, at tothir out it wente.

Book 4, l. 434