The Canterbury Tales . English 12 Mrs. Smith . The Author . Geoffrey Chaucer (1343-1400) He was a son of a merchant, a page in a royal house, soldier, diplomat, and royal clerk.
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In all literature there is NOTHING that comes close to the Prologue. It is “the concise portrait of an entire nation, high and low, old and young, male and female, lay and clerical, learned and ignorant, rogue and righteous, land and seas, town and country, but without extremes” – The Canterbury Tales (penguin)
Almost every tale ends with a piece of wisdom or moral to the story.
No one knows WHY he started writing them. It may have come from his own participation in a pilgrimage to Canterbury.
A pilgrimage is a long journey to a shrine or holy site, taken by people who wish to express their devotion.
Just as the people on the pilgrimage come from all walks of life, the tales encompass all of medieval literature– romance, comedy, rhyme, prose, etc.