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Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

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1 Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

2 Sir Gawain Element of Romance Set in a remote place and time
Incorporates the marvelous and miracles Hero is superior to other men and his environment May involve “Testing Plot”

3 Sir Gawain Testing Plot Tester is unrealistic and remote
Test is extreme Hero follows the higher of conflicting virtues Tester relents and allows hero to fulfill lower virtue

4 Sir Gawain Departs from Romance Calendar time/ real places
Hero is one of us, not superior Tester is split: Morgan and Bercilak Gawain fails the test because he is human and sinful Mixture of romance and realism

5 Major Characters

6 Sir Gawain The story’s protagonist. A loyal knight to King Arthur, as well as his nephew. Gawain goes on his quest to meet the Green Knight in order to uphold his knightly values.

7 The Green Knight Sir Gawain’s main opposition in the story. He is a richly decorated knight, who has green skin and hair.

8 King Arthur The king of Camelot. Uncle of Sir Gawain. It is at his celebration feast that the Green Knight challenges the court to a game.

9 Bertilak de Hautdesert
The Lord of the castle at which Gawain spends his time before meeting the Green Knight. We learn his true identity at the end of the story.

10 Minor Characters Bertilak’s wife- During the competition between Gawain and her husband, she tests Gawain’s integrity and honesty Morgan le Faye (The old lady)- Powerful sorceress trained by Merlin. Assists Lady Bertilak in testing Gawain Guinevere- King Arthur’s wife and Queen. Seated next to Gawain during the court’s feast.

11 Settings

12 Camelot The Holiday celebrations take place at King Arthur’s castle in Camelot. It is here that the Green Knight challenges Gawain to exchange blows with him.

13 Bertilak’s Home On his quest to meet the Green Knight, Gawain stays here for a short period of time.

14 The Green Chapel The supposed home of the Green Knight. Gawain is sent here to keep his end of the bargain which he made with the Green Knight at Arthur’s holiday celebration a year prior

15 Major Conflict Gawain’s struggle to decide between his duties as a knight and the worth of his own life.

16 Rising Action Gawain accepts the Green Knight’s challenge and cuts off his head. The Green Knight survives the blow and Gawain is then required to maintain his half of the challenge.

17 Climax Gawain meets the Green Knight at the Green Chapel. After faking his first two swings, the Green Knight nicks Gawain on his third swing, only slightly cutting his neck.

18 Falling Action Confession Shame and mortification
Statement of Sin: Gawain admits cowardice, covetousness, and untruth Request for penance

19 Examples of The Code of Chivalry
Thou shalt defend the Church. Thou shalt repect all weaknesses, and shalt constitute thyself the defender of them. Live to serve King and Country. Live to defend Crown and Country and all it holds dear. Live one's life so that it is worthy of respect and honor. Live for freedom, justice and all that is good. Never attack an unarmed foe.

20 Examples from The Laws of Courtly Love
Thou shalt avoid avarice like the deadly pestilence and shalt embrace its opposite. Thou shalt keep thyself chaste for the sake of her whom thou lovest. Boys do not love until they reach the age of maturity. When one lover dies, a widowhood of two years is required of the survivor. No one should be deprived of love without the very best of reasons. No one can love unless he is propelled by the persuasion of love.

21 Questions Did Sir Gawain live up to the Code of Chivalry? The Laws of Courtly Love? What does Gawain’s faults as the hero tell us about society? Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is well known for its use of alliteration. Give three examples of this literary technique from the work.

22 Anticipation Guide Number papers Mark ‘yes’ or ‘no’ for each statement. Men often act macho to try to impress women. Women are impressed when men act macho. There are many double standards in society regarding men and women. Women should be treated equally to men in all aspects of life. The expectations for the ability of women should be equal to that of men in every career. Chivalry is dead. If a married man/woman is unhappy he/she should seek companionship elsewhere. The lives of kings are worth more than the lives of peasants. Most people try to live their lives by proper morals and virtues. It is worth it to die to save one’s honor.

23 Links to YouTube video Part 1
Part 2

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