Instructor: Elisabeth Mclaren3 October 2014
Gawain and the Green Knight
At the core of this story stand the values of honor and chivalry. It conveys immense respect for an honorable and noble lifestyle. In Gawain and the Green Knight, it is clear that the author wrote the story based on honor and a chivalrous approach to life.
The first sign of the importance of honor in this story, as well as the time period of which is peaks, is when we realize that King Arthur and his knights are not seated by random but are seated in order of honor. Their seat at the table seems to represent their social status in the kingdom. I find it admirable that, seemingly, women of genuine and honorable traits are still presented as equal to or of greater importance than those around her. They seemed to respect and honor women as opposed to holding them at a lower level as we see in most other cultures and time periods.
Several aspects of honor are undoubtably recognizable at the first visit of the Green Knight. The elaborate way that the Green Knight is dressed portrays a sense of honor towards himself, his cause, and towards his acquaintances and potential enemies. He carries no weapons or shields, allowing us to make the assumption that although his challenge is violent, he does not intend to inflict harm during his visit. He also carried a sprig of holly, which used to be known as a sign of peaceful intent.
Gawain displays his honor, first and foremost, in the moments that he decides to…