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55 Important Geoffrey Chaucer Quotes From The 'Father Of English Literature'

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Geoffrey Chaucer is a well respected author.

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Geoffrey Chaucer is famous for writing 'The Canterbury Tales', but also became famous as an author for composing the scientific book with his son, 'A Treatise of Astrolabe'.

Apart from 'The Canterbury Tales', Geoffrey Chaucer was the author and poet of other works like 'The Book Of The Duchess', 'The House Of Fame', 'The Legend Of Good Women', and 'Troilus Criseyde'. Even though he is known as the father of English Literature or the father of English Poetry and 'The Canterbury Tales' author, he was also a bureaucrat, courtier, diplomat, author, and parliament member.

Geoffrey Chaucer is one of the first English authors and poets who made it a norm to read and write in English instead of French or Latin. Geoffrey Chaucer led a good life as an author, as the papers that have survived so far document. Many of his contemporary authors like Pearl Poet and William Langland's works are lost or not documented well. Since Geoffrey Chaucer worked for the King, we can find his complete works as an author called the Chaucer Records from 1357.  It is widely believed that Geoffrey Chaucer studied law at the Inner Temple and followed it with an illustrious career as a government officer holding various positions throughout his life.

If you like these Geoffrey Chaucer quotes, you can also read William Faulkner quotes and John Milton quotes.
 

Best Geoffrey Chaucer Quotes

Geoffrey Chaucer married Philippa (Pan) de Roet, and they had four children. Although, the detailed records are not available with regards to his personal life. Some Geoffrey Chaucer love quotes from his works as an author and poet are mentioned below along with the quotes from 'The Canterbury Tales' prologue. Which Geoffrey Chaucer quote is your favorite?

The works of Geoffrey Chaucer are still popular.

1. “What is better than wisdom? Woman. And what is better than a good woman? Nothing.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

2. “The life so brief, the art so long in the learning, the attempt so hard, the conquest so sharp, the fearful joy that ever slips away so quickly - by all this I mean love, which so sorely astounds my feeling with its wondrous operation, that when I think upon it, I scarce know whether I wake or sleep.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

3. “And gladly wolde he lerne, and gladly teche.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

4. “How potent is the fancy! People are so impressionable; they can die of imagination.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

5. “Time and tide wait for no man.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

6. “You are the cause by which I die.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, ‘Knight’s Tale’.

7. “Patience is a conquering virtue.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

8. “If gold rusts, what then can iron do?”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

9. “The greatest scholars are not usually the wisest people.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

10. “Purity in body and heart May please some--as for me, I make no boast. For, as you know, no master of a household Has all of his utensils made of gold; Some are wood, and yet they are of use.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

11. “Love will not be constrain’d by mastery. When mast’ry comes, the god of love anon Beateth his wings, and, farewell, he is gone. Love is a thing as any spirit free.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

12. “Yet do not miss the moral, my good men. For Saint Paul says that all that’s written well Is written down some useful truth to tell. Then take the wheat and let the chaff lie still.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

13. “He was as fresh as is the month of May.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

14. “The guilty think all talk is of themselves.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

15. “Women desire six things: They want their husbands to be brave, wise, rich, generous, obedient to wife, and lively in bed.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

16. “Whoso will pray, he must fast and be clean, and fat his soul, and make his body lean.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

17. “Filth and old age, I’m sure you will agree, are powerful wardens upon chastity.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

18. “By nature, men love newfangledness.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

19. “For there is one thing I can safely say: that those bound by love must obey each other if they are to keep company long. Love will not be constrained by mastery; when mastery comes, the God of love at once beats his wings, and farewell he is gone. Love is a thing as free as any spirit; women naturally desire liberty, and not to be constrained like slaves; and so, do men, if I shall tell the truth.”

-  Geoffrey Chaucer.

20. “Truth is the highest thing that man may keep.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

21. “If a man really loves a woman, of course he wouldn’t marry her for the world if he were not quite sure that he was the best person she could possibly marry.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

22. “Mercy surpasses justice.”

-  Geoffrey Chaucer.

23. “We little know the things for which we pray.”

-  Geoffrey Chaucer.

24. “In April the sweet showers fall and pierce the drought of March to the root, and all the veins are bathed in liquor of such power as brings about the engendering of the flower.”

-  Geoffrey Chaucer.

25. “For I am shave as neigh as any frere.

But yit I praye unto youre curteisye:

Beeth hevy again, or elles moot I die.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Complaint Of Chaucer To His Purse'.

26. “Of harmes two the lesse is for to cheese.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'Troilus And Criseyde'.

27. “He was a verray, parfit gentil knyght.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

28. “For him was lever han at his beddes hed

A twenty bokes, clothed in black or red,

Of Aristotle, and his philosophie,

Than robes riche, or fidel, or sautrie.

But all be that he was a philosophre,

Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

29. “For gold in phisike is a cordial;

Therefore he loved gold in special.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

30. “For May wol have no slogardie a-night.

The seson priketh every gentil herte,

And maketh him out of his slepe to sterte.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

Chaucer Quotes From 'The Canterbury Tales'

Geoffrey Chaucer was an author and poet who was greatly influenced by the medieval Italian poets during one of his visits to the region. It is known that he used the forms and stories from it. Here are some more interesting 'The Canterbury Tales' quotes and middle English quotes.  

Geoffrey Chaucer's writing style was heavily influenced by Italian poets.

31. “Every honest miller has a golden thumb.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

32. “If no love is, O God, what fele I so? And if love is, what thing and which is he? If love be good, from whennes cometh my woo? If it be wikke, a wonder thynketh me”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

33. “I am right sorry for your heavinesse.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

34. “Death is the end of every worldly pain.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

35. “Certain, when I was born, so long ago, Death drew the tap of life and let it flow; And ever since the tap has done its task, And now there’s little but an empty cask.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

36. “Blessed be god that I have wedded fyve! Welcome the sixte, whan that evere he shal.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

37. “All good things must come to an end.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

38. “Youth may outrun the old, but not outwit.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

39. “The devil can only destroy those who are already on their way to damnation.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

40. “Many small make a great.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

41. “First he wrought, and afterward he taught.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

42. “Woe to the cook whose sauce has no sting.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

43. “By God, if women had written stories,

As clerks had within here oratories,

They would have written of men more wickedness

Than all the mark of Adam may redress.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, ‘The Wife Of Bath’s Prologue And Tale’.

44. “I will eviscerate you in fiction. Every pimple, every character flaw. I was naked for a day; you will be naked for eternity.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

45. “And gladly wolde he lerne, and gladly teche.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

46. “That field hath eyen, and the wood hath ears.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

47. “They demen gladly to the badder end.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

48. “That well by reason men it calls may

The daisie, or els the eye of the day,

The emprise, and floure of floures all.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Legend Of Good Women'.

49. “There’s never a new fashion but it’s old.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

50. “And she was fair as is the rose in May.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

51. “Forbid us something, and that thing we desire.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

52. “It is not all gold that glareth.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer.

53. “A faithful servant is more diligent in keeping your goods safe than is your own wife, because she will claim a half part of your worth all her life.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

54. “No empty handed man can lure a bird.”

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

55. 'But Christ's lore and his apostles twelve, He taught and first he followed it himself.'

- Geoffrey Chaucer, 'The Canterbury Tales'.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly quotes for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for [Geoffrey Chaucer], then why not take a look at Alexander Pope quotes, or [T.S. Eliot quotes].

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