Literary Analysis of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight The selection of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight follows the basic format of the adventure. The author emphasizes communion to show the loyalty and community between King Arthur and his knights. The symbolism behind the relationship between Sir Gawain to humans and the Green Knight to the merciful God further shows the relations of this medieval romance to the Bible. The opening scene in the story shows the Green Knight disrupting the acts of communion between King Arthur and his knights. These acts of communion symbolize the togetherness, community, and even touch the basis of loyalty, which is supported by the selfless act of Sir Gawain putting his life in danger for his king. The Green Knight’s disrupting the acts of life-giving by, indecently, threatening to take the king’s life in a challenge. “And so all I ask of this court is a Christmas game.”(L. 63). The pauses in-between the Green Knight’s addresses shows how the knights …show more content…
“And she pressed the sash upon him and begged him to take it, and Gawain did…” (L. 233-234). He gives in to the temptation unlike the merciful god and Jesus. He hides the sash, but the Red Lord/ The Green Knight knows of his gift. When the time comes for Gawain’s strike to be on him, the Green knight tells him that he knows of the sash and feels pity and for the Knight, for he is just a human and values his life. The Biblical God shows mercy to the human race in the bible and offers them many signs of his love and mercy in his stating to reconciliation and prayer for mercy. The relationship of the biblical, merciful God to The Green knight and Sir Gawain to the human race is exemplified in the analysis, as well and the relationship between the acts of communion with the acts of loyalty, selflessness, and
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Sir Gawain’s knighthood to the core is tested, going through a multitude of tests to see just how chivalrous he truly is. In the fantastical medieval romance poem, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, the main character, Sir Gawain embarks on a journey which helps him grow and improve
The main theme of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is the journey to maturity of Gawain, the hero. During the passage, Gawain goes through three tests on his development. First, Gawain shows courage and resourcefulness when he volunteers to take the Green Knight’s challenge instead of Arthur doing so. Second, Gawain shows authority, self-restraint, and integrity when he denies the sexual endeavours of the lady of the house. Lastly, Gawain shows bravery when he faces death by keeping his meeting with the Green
Although Sir Gawain does not want to take the Green Knight’s challenge, he honorable takes the place of King Arthur and lies about his worth. The Green Knight arrives carrying an axe and holly, symbolizing peace and war, but tells them that he “travel[s] in peace and seek[s] no trouble” (12). Despite saying that he wants no trouble, he proposes a game involves one strike with his axe by whoever is brave enough for another done by him a year later. The court is baffled by his request, and when no one speaks up to take the Green Knights challenge, he ridicules them by conveying that “all the pageantry and power of the Round Table made nothing by the words of one man” (13). After the Green Knight finishes mocking the Knights of the Round Table, Arthur boldly takes the challenge until Sir Gawain politely requested to take his place.
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, whose author is unknown, is an Arthurian Romance/Epic that holds a degree of Christian symbolism. These Christian symbols are intermixed with Britannic Pagan traditions and themes in order to appeal more to the common British people at the time of the early Christianization of Britain. This can be supported by the stories of kings being created in the earlier centuries throughout history. In this particular story, this symbolism is important since all the knights of King Arthur’s Court were supposed to follow a certain chivalrous code of conduct, whether present in the courts or away on some other venture. The chivalric code being the embodiment of Christian virtue and valor, which was expected to be personified
During the Medieval times chivalry was one of the most important characteristics a knight could display. Chivalry was viewed as a moral obligation that involved bravery, honor, respect, and gallantry. Knights were expected to uphold this code or face social consequences for any infractions, with punishments ranging from humiliation to termination of their knighthood. “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” presents the struggles knights faced with honoring the chivalrous code at all times. Sir Gawain, while imperfect, exhibits qualities expected of knights and embodies the internal struggle between honoring the chivalrous code and giving into selfish desires.
In the lines above it is seen that the Green Knight’s head had completely been severed yet he remains unshaved, it is clear now that Gawain has been deceived. Gawain continues to keep his word even though his journey is lonely and dangerous. “ […] Sir Gawain, Gods servant, on his grim quest, passing long dark nights unloved and alone […] With no friends
Sir Gawain shows loyalty and humility when he makes the decision of honoring the promise he made with the Green Knight. This humility drives him to set off to pursue the Green Knight to honor the pact they agreed on. On his arrival at the Green chapel, he calls the Green Knight who emerges to greet him and to fulfill the terms of the contract (Cathell). Sir Gawain presents his neck voluntarily to the Green Knight who feigns two blows (Cooke 4). This is a commitment and a sign of piety that Gawain manifests.
In response to the taunting of the Green Knight, Sir Gawain says, "I shied once: no more. You have my word," (272-273). Gawain, like all natural man, shied away once from the Knight's sword as a defensive reflex, but he quickly shakes off any cowardice and announces to the Green Knight that he was caught in a moment of doubt. From there he goes to say that he ultimately is no coward, but rather a noble and courageous knight of the roundtable who is devoted and loyal to King Arthur. He is more than willing and prepared to take what is coming and preserve the honor of his people, as well as his own.
Gawain takes King Arthur’s place in the competition with the green knight, chivalry dictates this as the right course of action, a knight must protect and serve the king. Gawain then delivers the blow to the green knight, who then picks up his own head, and remains alive. Gawain fails to kill the green knight and now must face his own death next year. Later, Gawain makes his way to the green chapel to face the green knight. When he visits the Lord Bertilak on his own, Gawain struggles with the Lady and what to do when she invites him to kiss her.
There are many archetypes in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight that help Gawain on his hero's journey. While on his journey, Gawain has learns many different lessons while dealing with these characters. As he travels deeper into the “Zone of Magnified Power” (Campbell 71), he develops as an archetypal hero and recognizes the conflict on his community. A number of characters in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight play key archetypal roles in the perfecting of the hero’s moral development. Arthur, the king of Camelot, has become a kind of mentor for Sir Gawain.
Relations Between Sir Gawain And The Green Knight And Christianity “Sir Gawain and The Green Knight” have a plethora of connections and relations to Christianity all around its story. Some examples could be Arthurian chivalry with the pentangle of Sir Gawain's shield and Mary's face in the middle, the battle between Sir Gawain and the Green Knight which took place inside the chapel of a church, and The Green Knight's decision toward Gawain in showing him mercy. These examples show only few reasons why “Sir Gawain And The Green Knight” have connections and relations towards Christianity. The ideals of Christianity and chivalry are brought together in Gawain’s symbolic shield.
Sir Gawain and the Green depicts this importance of faith by testing Gawain’s moral and knightly code. Gawain is the epitome of what a knight ought to be, with a strong moral code and an unquestioning faith, which he proudly displays on his shield with the Virgin Mary painted on the inside and the Pentangle on the outside. This faith is soon meet with a test the castle of the lord and his once strong faith in God falters. While Gawain is able to remain innocent when it comes to the seductive ways of the lord’s wife, he is unable to stop himself from accepting her magical girdle that would protect him against any harm, even though it is in opposition to both his faith and his loyalties. Gawain comprises his morals due to fear about his impending encounter with the Green Knight and he give into his fear and takes the magical protection the girdle offers.
Essay: Consider how the Theme of courage is treated in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. It has to be said that Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is arguably one of the greatest middle English poems of the 14th Century. The author of the text, whom, amazingly is still unknown tells the reader, through the medium of poem the courage of the Great Sir Gawain as he bravely challenges the Green Knight. The poem also shows the courage of others. In Medieval times and especially medieval writings, there was a great engrossment with courage.
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, composed by an unknown artist, is a medieval story that follows the tale of a knight who embarks on a journey after being issued a challenge from a mysterious green stranger. During his quest, Sir Gawain, the knight, stays at a castle in the wilderness and is housed by Lord and Lady Bertilak, both of whom test his chivalric code and his Christian ideals. Lady Bertilak is a seductress and tempts Sir Gawain, though he refuses all her advances, with the exception of her kisses. Lord Bertilak is the mysterious green stranger, known as the Green Knight. Once Sir Gawain completed his task, he discovers that Morgan le Faye, a witch scorned by King Arthur, orchestrated the entire challenge in the hopes of causing King
Despite the human flaws that each knight bears, all three knights represent knighthood and the chivalric code because of its importance in medieval society. The author of “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” describes Sir Gawain as the “most courteous knight” (215) in Arthur’s court because he models chivalry ideally. Gawain’s chivalric traits