Whan that Aprill with his shoures soote

When April with its sweet-smelling showers
Has pierced the drought of March to the root,
And bathed every vein (of the plants) in such liquid
By the power of which the flower is created;
When the West Wind also with its sweet breath,
In every holt and heath, has breathed life into
The tender crops, and the young sun
Has run its half course in Aries,
And small fowls make melody,
Those that sleep all the night with open eyes
(So Nature incites them in their hearts),
Then folk long to go on pilgrimages,
And professional pilgrims (long) to seek foreign shores,
To (go to) distant shrines, known in various lands;
And specially from every shire’s end
Of England to Canterbury they travel,
To seek the holy blessed martyr,
Who helped them when they were sick.

~Geoffrey Chaucer, The Canterbury Tales

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