Sir Gawain - An Ideal Symbol of Chivalry Essay

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Sir Gawain - An Ideal Symbol of Chivalry The chivalric code is a very complex, and perhaps somewhat foreign concept to a modern person. There are many rules and taboos that a knight must obey. Indeed, the very concepts of honor, love, and humility have been raised to the highest conceivable power, making it almost impossible for a mortal to become a true, perfect knight. Sir Gawain, in the passage [Norton, 1535-1622] of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, proves himself to be an ideal symbol of chivalry. One of the symbols of knighthood is a lady of knight's heart; knight's behavior with ladies is important in general, and Sir Gawain behaves as a true knight with the hostess of the castle. Another important side of being a knight …show more content…
All he can do is "to please, as honor behooves" [Norton, 1547] and only because honor obliges him. So she tests him and tries to lure him to sin, but his defense is impeccable. The lady realizes that Sir Gawain is truly noble, without any flaws, so she kisses him and leaves.

Another aspect of being a knight is to know the art of hunting. According to the chivalric ideal, the art of hunting is just as important for a knight as the art of using different weapons or having a lady to serve. Slaughtering and preparing a dead animal, a boar in this case, is done according to the proper rules.

In the passage, the art of dressing the dead animal is described in detail. Only a "worthily skilled" person, "wise in woodcraft" [Norton, 1605], can perform this act. Most of the time, as it is shown in the passage, the butchering of the animal is done by the lord himself. It should be done in a certain way - he should cut the animal in certain parts, draining the blood properly, throwing away certain parts of the animal, or feeding them to the dogs. It is described as follows:

"He severs the savage head and sets it aloft,
Then rends the body roughly right down the spine;
Takes the bowels from the belly, broils them on coals,
Blends them well with bread to bestow on the hounds.
Then he breaks

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