Geoffrey Chaucer, English author and poet

Geoffrey Chaucer, English author and poet

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Credit: BRITISH LIBRARY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Geoffrey Chaucer (c.1343-1400), English author and poet. Chaucer was born in London, but little is known of his early life. He worked as a courtier and diplomat and travelled across western Europe before settling into a life of service at court. He is best known for 'The Canterbury Tales' (1387-1400), a collection of stories told by fictional pilgrims on the road to Canterbury Cathedral. He also wrote the essay 'A Treatise on the Astrolabe', the oldest English work describing this key astronomical instrument. This illuminated 16th-century manuscript page from 'Portrait and Life of Chaucer' includes his coat of arms (top left) and flowers and the year 1402 (top right).

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