This is a paper on the basic life of Geoffrey Chaucer, and the fundamental concepts of his composition "The Canterbury Tales".

Essay by kstyleCollege, UndergraduateA, December 2002

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Goeffrey Chaucer was a significant writer in the late 1300's who's pre-Shakespearean works marked him as the most influential and predominant author/poets in his time. Although most of his life was dedicated to his career, his latest and most reputable piece of literature, The Canterbury Tales, has managed to secure a place in literary history.

Most of Geoffrey Chaucer's life was spent looking to advance his political career. He served in the army, as a member of the house of Elizabeth, Countess of Ulster, and was appointed comptroller of the customs and subsidy of wool, skins, and tanned hides for the Port of London. He also served as yeoman of the king, and was listed as one of the king's esquires. Chaucer then continued with his diplomatic career by conducting various military negotiations, which eventually influenced his work dealing with people like Dante, Petrarch, and Boccaccio. Finally, he was appointed a justice of the peace and knight of the shire for Kent.

Chaucer's first published work was The Book of the Duchess, a poem of over 1,300 lines, which he allegedly wrote for the Duchess of Lancaster and was published in 1370. However, during most of his life, he was mainly concerned with his diplomatic and political advancement; Chaucer's only major work during this time was Hous of Fame, a poem of around 2,000 lines, which was never completed. After being accused and pardoned from charges of rape, writing for Chaucer was used as an escape from the harsh reality and degree of stress in his hectic life. His works at this time included Parlement of Foules, a poem of 699 lines. Chaucer's next work was one that he translated into English first-hand called Troilus and Criseyde, which was an 8,000 line poem set beside the events of the...