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Geoffrey Chaucer (1343 – 1400)

English author, poet, philosopher, bureaucrat, and diplomat.
Geoffrey Chaucer
This noble ensample to his shepe he yaf,
That first he wrought, and afterwards he taught.
Chaucer quotes
Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese.
Who so shall telle a tale after a man,
He moste reherse, as neighe as ever he can,
Everich word, if it be in his charge,
All speke he never so rudely and so large;
Or elles he moste tellen his tale untrewe,
Or feinen thinges, or finden wordes newe.

Chaucer Geoffrey quotes
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.
Chaucer Geoffrey
I am right sorry for your heavinesse.
Geoffrey Chaucer quotes
Eke wonder last but nine deies never in toun.
Geoffrey Chaucer
Whan that Aprill with his shoures soote
The droghte of March hath perced to the roote,
And bathed every veyne in swych licour
Of which vertu engendred is the flour;
Whan Zephirus eek with his sweete breeth
Inspired hath in every holt and heeth
The tendre croppes, and the yonge sonne
Hath in the Ram his halve cours yronne,
And smale foweles maken melodye,
That slepen al the nyght with open ye
(So priketh hem nature in hir corages);
Thanne longen folk to goon on pilgrimages.
Chaucer Geoffrey quotes
What is this world? what asketh men to have?
Now with his love, now in his colde grave
Allone, withouten any compaignye.
Ther n' is no werkman whatever he be,
That may both werken wel and hastily. 4
This wol be done at leisure parfitly.
Chaucer Geoffrey
But Cristes lore, and his apostles twelve,
He taught; but first he folwed it himselve.
Geoffrey Chaucer
Love is a thyng as any spirit free.
Wommen, of kynde, desiren libertee,
And nat to been constreyned as a thral;
And so doon men, if I sooth seyen shal.

Geoffrey Chaucer quotes
It is nought good a slepyng hound to wake.
Geoffrey Chaucer
And for ther is so gret diversite
In Englissh and in writyng of oure tonge,
So prey I God that non myswrite the,
Ne the mysmetre for defaute of tonge;
And red wherso thow be, or elles songe,
That thow be understonde, God I biseche!
Chaucer quotes
Ful weel she soong the service dyvyne,
Entuned in hir nose ful semely,
And Frenssh she spak ful faire and fetisly,
After the scole of Stratford atte Bowe,
For Frenssh of Parys was to hire unknowe.
Chaucer Geoffrey
Of studie took he most cure and most hede.
Noght o word spak he more than was nede,
And that was seyd in forme and reverence,
And short and quik, and ful of hy sentence.
Souninge in moral vertu was his speche,
And gladly wolde he lerne, and gladly teche.
Chaucer Geoffrey quotes
Ther nis no werkman, whatsoevere he be,
That may bothe werke wel and hastily.
Geoffrey Chaucer
This world nys but a thurghfare ful of wo,
And we been pilgrymes, passynge to and fro;
Deeth is an ende of every worldly soore.
Geoffrey Chaucer quotes
O yonge fresshe folkes, he or she,
In which that love up-groweth with your age,
Repeyreth hoom fro worldly vanitee,
And of your herte up-casteth the visage
To thilke God that after his image
Yow made, and thynketh al nis but a faire
This world, that passeth sone as floures faire.
Geoffrey Chaucer
Certes, they been lyk to houndes, for an hound whan he comth by the roser, or by other bushes, though he may nat pisse, yet wole he heve up his leg and make a contenaunce to pisse.
Chaucer Geoffrey
For of fortunes sharp adversitee
The worst kynde of infortune is this,
A man to han ben in prosperitee,
And it remembren, whan it passed is.

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