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GEOFFREY CHAUCER
English poet
(c. 1340 - 1400)
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Abstinence is approved of God.
      - [Abstinence]

By nature, men love newfangledness.
      - [Novelty]

Forbid us something, and that thing we desire.
      - [Forbidden]

He that loveth God will do diligence to please God by his works, and abandon himself, with all his might, well for to do.
      - [Goodness]

He was a shepherd and no mercenary,
  And though he holy was and virtuous,
    He was to sinful men full piteous;
      His words were strong, but not with anger fraught;
        A love benignant he discreetly taught.
          To draw mankind to heavenly gentleness
            And good example was his business.
      - [Clergymen]

It is but waste to bury them preciously.
      - [Funerals]

Mincing she was, as is a wanton colt,
  Sweet as a flower and upright as a bolt.
      - [Coquette]

Nature, the vicar of the Almighty Lord.
      - [Nature]

Of all the floures in the mede,
  Than love I most these floures white and rede,
    Soch that men callen daisies in our toun.
      - [Daisies]

One ear it heard, at the other out it went.
      - [Ears]

Roses were sette of sweete savour,
  With many roses that thei here.
      - [Roses]

That well by reason men it call may
  The daisie, or els the eye of the day,
    The emprise, and floure of floures all.
      - [Daisies]

The busy lark, the messenger of day.
      - [Larks]

The firste vertu, sone, if thou wolt leere,
  Is to restreyne and kepe wel thy tonge;
    Thus lerne childen whan that they been yonge.
      - [Tongue : Virtue]

The smiler with the knife under his cloak.
      - [Smiles]

To maken virtue of necessity.
      - [Necessity]

Truth is the highest thing that man may keep.
      - [Truth]

We little know the things for which we pray.
      - [Prayer]

With emptie hands men may no haukes lure.
      - [Proverbs]

Experience, though non auctoritee
  Were in this world, is right ynough to me
    To speke of wo that is in mariage. . . .
      - Canterbury Tales--The Wife of Bath's Prologue
        [Marriage]

And then the wren gan scippen and to daunce.
      - ascribed to Court of Love (l. 1,372)
        [Wrens]

O little booke, thou art so unconning,
  How darst thou put thyself in prees for dred?
      - Flower and the Leaf (l. 591),
        (generally accepted as written by a fifteenth century lady admirer of Chaucer)
        [Books]

Your eyen two will slay me suddenly,
  I may the beauty of them not sustain,
    So woundeth it throughout my herte kene.
      - Merciles Beaute [Love]

Habit maketh no monke, ne wearing of guilt spurs maketh no knight.
      - Testament of Love (bk. II),
        (Thomas Usk, Chaucer's contemporary, is generally accepted as author)
        [Appearance]

Every honest miller has a golden thumb.
      - The Canterbury Tales, old saying [Gold]


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