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THE TEST OF SIR GAWAIN'S CHIVALRY



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Essay from the year 2007 in the subject English Language and Literature Studies - Literature, grade: none, , 1 entries in the bibliography, language: English, abstract: One of the main themes of the romantic mystical poem 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight' is to show the rise of one of King Arthur's knights, Sir Gawain, from his status as just one of many noble Knights of the Round Table to that of a legendary figure. The unknown author, who is believed to be the contemporary of Chaucer, skilfully develops this idea by putting Sir Gawain through a series of events and adventures designed to test his courage and devotion to the knightly code of chivalry. During the course of these he demonstrates his loyalty to the King and Queen, and the other chivalric qualities of a knight such as his courage, honesty and courtesy. In circumstances where he experiences strong temptation his human weaknesses are exposed and his behaviour does fall short of the standards demanded by strict adherence to the code of chivalry. However, his failures are fairly minor and only serve to make him appear more of a human character rather than a mystical one.

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