Geoffrey Chaucer was born sometime between 1340 and 1345, most likely in London. He was the son of a successful wine merchant. In 1357, he became page to Edward III's daughter-in-law. The king then sent him on diplomatic missions abroad. On his journeys he would have seen the works of foreign authors such as Dante.
Chaucer held many positions. He was controller of London Customs, MP for Kent, a justice of the peace and clerk of the king's works in charge of royal building work, under Edward III and Richard II. In addition to this he also wrote many poems. His most famous work of all is without doubt The Canterbury Tales. Historical records of Chaucer disappear around 1400 and this is the presumed date of his death. He was buried in Westminster Abbey, the first person in Poets’ Corner.
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