“Chaucer! Bright day-star of our English song—

Blest Patriarch of England’s minstrelsy!
Enduring honours unto thee belong;
And all our bards must homage pay to thee,
As father of their strains. In darkest days 5
Of Albion’s ignorance, thou didst sing the lays
That will not die until the ‘crack of doom’
For thou hadst love for Nature and the true,
And well the worth of honest Wycliff knew,
And how priests’ traffick’d for the basest ends 10
Pity it is that, ere thou found the tomb
A shelter from all harms, thy truth should be
The cause of bondage and of poverty
To thee, who number’d Petrarch ‘mongst thy friends.”

George Markham Tweddell as –
Peter Proletarius
[This poem introduced a chapter on John Gower (Gower the Moral) in Tweddell’s book The Bards and Authors of Cleveland and South Durham 1872  p. 39 which can be downloaded from the Tweddell Hub here

And there’s another chapter on Gower (that builds on Tweddell) here in W H Burnett’s Old Cleveland – which can also be downloaded here

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