Boccaccio was born in 1313 and grew up in Florence, Italy. He apprenticed as a banker at his father's bank but decided not to become a banker. He went to law school but decided not to become a lawyer, either. He preferred to spend his time in school studying literature, and that turned out to be time well spent. Boccaccio finally decided that his true vocation was writing, and he became one of the most renowned writers of the Italian Renaissance.

One of his most important influences was that other great humanist of the Renaissance, Petrarch. Reading Petrarch's poetry was an inspiration to Boccaccio.

Boccaccio was also involved in the government of his city. His favorite mission must have been when he was sent to greet Petrarch on his visit to Florence and also to entertain Petrarch as a guest at his house during the visit.

Boccaccio wrote many types of literature. He wrote reference works. He wrote biographies, including one about the poet Dante. He also wrote poems and novels.

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