Essay on Sir Gawain And The Green Knight

1343 Words Nov 4th, 2015 6 Pages
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a chivalric romance consisting of extreme exchanges. Most obvious of the exchanges, and perhaps the most import to the plot line is the exchange between Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. The two partake in a game of administering blows to the neck, one year apart. Although Gawain has to accept the challenge from the knight in order to maintain his status as ‘top’ knight, the act also exemplifies Gawain’s chivalry, as he is willing to die in order to honor his court and prove himself. Beyond this exchange, there is also a game of exchange between Bertilak, and Sir Gawain. The game requires Gawain to give Bertilak anything he receives while staying with him and Bertilak to share anything he kills while hunting over the span of three days. There are three hunts, first the deer, second the boar, and third the fox. These hunts can be paralleled to the advances that lady Bertilak makes towards Gawain in the bedroom. These hunts can be seen as symbolic, almost a parallel for the way Gawain is being ‘hunted’ symbolically by the woman. Beyond simple exchanges, the animals that are being hunted and the method in which lady Bertilak tries to seduce Gawain can be seen as parallel. Many animals are seen as having qualities similar to some human emotions, as well as intelligence to an extent. The breed of each animal hunted allows the reader to draw parallels between the hunt, happening outside the castle, and the ‘hunt’ happening inside the castle…

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