The Canterbury Tales was a book written by Geoffrey Chaucer during the 14th century. Barbara Wright was extremely fond of it but Ian Chesterton had never read it. In 1400, Chaucer entrusted Barbara and the First Doctor with the safe keeping of the manuscript. At the Tabard Inn in London, Barbara performed recitations of the tales. This improved the inns trade and earned Chaucer the goodwill of its patrons.
The Doctor had Adam, a servant of Chaucer, take the manuscript to Wales to be copied. Chaucer had concerns about Adam's reliability, but the Doctor was confident, based on history, that this endeavour would be successful. (AUDIO: The Doctor's Tale)