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‘And gret wel Chaucer whan ye mete’

Chaucer’s Earliest Readers, Addressees and Audiences

Sebastian Sobecki


This article will attempt to take stock of what we know about Chaucer’s earliest audiences, that is, about uses of and references to his work made during his lifetime. Relevant new research on manuscript use and ownership has been included in the case of Thomas Hoccleve and the scrivener Thomas Spencer. In addition to various named addressees of Chaucer’s works – Peter Bukton, Henry Scogan and Philip de la Vache – this brief survey lists contemporary references to Chaucer and his works in the poetry of John Gower, Eustache Deschamps, John Clanvowe and Thomas Usk.