Heroes In Sir Gawain And The Green Knight

2056 Words 9 Pages
As seen through the multifarious and complex world of literature, heroes or protagonists, have been instilled with various characteristics that reflect their individuality, while simultaneously demonstrating the broad sets of values held within their cultural world. By the reader picturing the hero’s journey through the hero’s very eyes, the reader has an increasing sense of what the cultures encompass and can relate it back to the individual’s faults and conflicts he undergoes within his or her journey. As heroes often take the bull by its horns and confronts particular obstacles, as seen in both Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, there is always a moral lesson that the hero extracts from the given event. For instance, as seen in …show more content…
However, these two unhealable wounds represent both a contrast in psychological and physical wounds toward hero of the story. As seen in Sir Gawain, Gawain’s unhealable wound represents more of a physical one as seen through the blow of the sword upon his neck. Even though this doesn’t cause the overall death of the hero, it still causes blood to protrude from the wound. On the other hand, as seen in Beowulf, his unhealable wound happens to be a psychological one in fact. Throughout the folk epic, he begins to age and it only causes himself to get “lost in the pride of his innocence.” (Archetypes-Beowulf) According to an online document on Beowulf, the speaker expresses, “As Beowulf becomes king he gets older and still believes that he 's the hero he was in his younger years.” (Archetypes-Beowulf) Through this, it emphasizes that Beowulf let the psychological wound of pride lead to his demise. Furthermore, one can conclude that over time the cultural value of humility has been altered to one seen as a loss of innocence within the times of the Anglo-Saxons and one of pure physical attributes as soldiers wear the green girdle to protect themselves from the evil of the …show more content…
As seen in Beowulf, Beowulf’s trials contain more physical conflicts toward the individual while Sir Gawain’s trials are internal conflicts that have to prove his loyalty to the Green Knight. Beowulf’s road of trials begin with three main conflicts as seen through the battle with Grendel, the revenge taken by Grendel’s mother, and the deadly fight with the fiery dragon. As Beowulf enters each battle, he goes in with the sense of not wanting to use any weapons to enhance his advantage over his opponent. By him taking a more physical approach toward his conflicts, the reader can see that the pure will power he thought he has finally catches up to him when he wants to fight the dragon alone, versus having one of his fellow soldiers accompany him. Furthermore, we can see throughout the folk epic, Beowulf’s road of trials have to deal with the sole basis of spirituality being the overall deciding factor to the outcome of the trial. Beowulf exclaims, “So may a man not marked by fate easily escape exile and woe by the grace of God.” (Lines 2291- 2293) Through this, we can see that Beowulf expresses a strong belief in the area of individuals not being able to escape the fate of God. On the other hand, Gawain’s trials have to deal with internal demises. Gawain’s road of trials have to deal with the three temptations of the Green Knight and the temptation of the

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