Quotes from book
The Canterbury Tales

The Canterbury Tales

The Canterbury Tales is a collection of 24 stories that runs to over 17,000 lines written in Middle English by Geoffrey Chaucer between 1387 and 1400. In 1386, Chaucer became Controller of Customs and Justice of Peace and, in 1389, Clerk of the King's work. It was during these years that Chaucer began working on his most famous text, The Canterbury Tales. The tales are presented as part of a story-telling contest by a group of pilgrims as they travel together from London to Canterbury to visit the shrine of Saint Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. The prize for this contest is a free meal at the Tabard Inn at Southwark on their return.


Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„the greatest scholars are not usually the wisest people“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Reeve's Tale, l. 134
The Canterbury Tales
Variant: The gretteste clerkes been noght wisest men.
Source: The Complete Poetry and Prose

Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„What is this world? what asketh men to have?“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Knight's Tale, IV, 1919 - 1921
The Canterbury Tales
Context: What is this world? what asketh men to have?
Now with his love, now in his colde grave
Allone, withouten any compaignye.

Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„Taketh the fruit, and let the chaff be still.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Nun's Priest's Tale, l. 672-677
The Canterbury Tales
Context: But yet that holden this tale a folly,
As of a fox, or of a cock and hen,
Taketh the morality, good men.
For Saint Paul saith that all that written is,
To our doctrine it is y-writ, ywis;
Taketh the fruit, and let the chaff be still.

Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„Thanne is it wysdom, as it thynketh me,
To maken vertu of necessity,“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Knight's Tale, lV 2177 - 2186
The Canterbury Tales
Context: p>What maketh this, but Juppiter the kyng,
That is prince and cause of alle thyng
Convertynge al unto his propre welle
From which it is deryved, sooth to telle,
And heer-agayns no creature on lyve
Of no degree availleth for to strive.Thanne is it wysdom, as it thynketh me,
To maken vertu of necessity,
And take it weel, that we may nat eschue;
And namely, that to us alle is due.</p

Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„This world nys but a thurghfare ful of wo,
And we been pilgrymes, passynge to and fro“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Knight's Tale, lV, 1990 - 1992
The Canterbury Tales
Context: 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 photo

„Ech man for hymself, ther is noon other.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Knight's Tale, l. 1181-1182
The Canterbury Tales
Context: And therfore, at the kynges court, my brother,
Ech man for hymself, ther is noon other.

Geoffrey Chaucer photo

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Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„But all thing which that shineth as the gold
Ne is no gold, as I have herd it told.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Chanones Yemannes Tale, l. 16430
Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919), Canterbury Tales

Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„The proverbe saith that many a smale maketh a grate.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

Persones Tale
Bartlett's Familiar Quotations, 10th ed. (1919), Canterbury Tales

Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„The gretest clerkes ben not the wisest men.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Reeve's Tale, l. 4051
The Canterbury Tales

Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„He was a verray, parfit gentil knyght.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

General Prologue, l. 72
The Canterbury Tales

Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo
Geoffrey Chaucer photo

„So was hire joly whistle wel ywette.“

—  Geoffrey Chaucer, book The Canterbury Tales

The Reeve's Tale, l. 4153
The Canterbury Tales

„Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetuer adipiscing elit. Etiam egestas wisi a erat. Morbi imperdiet, mauris ac auctor dictum.“

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