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History of Books and Writing
Geoffrey Chaucer

History of Books and Writing
History of Books and Writing

Geoffrey Chaucer
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 9 to 12
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   8.23

     challenging words:    blasphemy, desiren, housbond, odiferous, so-named, sovereynetee, Wommen, cynical, following, matrimonial, seventeenth-century, saucy, frankly, vulgar, prestigious, insight
     content words:    Middle Ages, Geoffrey Chaucer, Canterbury Tales, William Shakespeare, Hundred Years, King Edward III, Phillipa Roet, Tanned Hides, Richard II, King Solomon

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Geoffrey Chaucer
By Colleen Messina

1     Life in the Middle Ages was tough. The nasty black plague killed one in three people. Castles were damp, cold, and drafty. Greedy feudal lords made it impossible for peasants to make ends meet. People threw rubbish in the streets, and cleanliness was rare.
2     However, one epic masterpiece emerged during this harsh period. This spicy spattering of tales shocked the world. Not only did the author write in bold, common English, but he also told honest stories about human experience. Geoffrey Chaucer, author of The Canterbury Tales, ranks as the outstanding English poet before William Shakespeare. He has been called the father of English literature.
3     Chaucer's life remains a bit of a mystery. He was born in London in either 1342 or 1343 to a wealthy wine merchant. His name was French, and it meant "shoemaker." Not much is known about his early life and education, but we know that he could read French, Latin, and Italian. For fun, he probably enjoyed watching the jugglers, acrobats, and musicians that performed in traveling fairs.

Paragraphs 4 to 10:
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History of Books and Writing
             History of Books and Writing

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