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Sir Gawain and The Green Knight

:: 2 Works Cited
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Sir Gawain and The Green Knight


The story begins in King Arthur's court, where he and the Knights of the Round Table are celebrating New Year's. While they are enjoying their feast, a gigantic Green Knight rides in on a green horse with an immense axe in his hand to offer them a challenge. His offer is: "I shall bide the fist blow, as bare as I sit…….., but in twelve month and one day he shall have of me the same." (Norton Anthology,208)

After a moment of consideration, Sir Gawain accepts the terrifying challenge. As he tries to perform the first part of the challenge, he stumbles into an even bigger surprise. As Gawain hits the Green Knight with an ax, the head of the Green Knight falls on the floor. Instead of the Green Knight falling, he jumps up, grabs his head and leaves, with these final words: "Sir Gawain forget not to go as agreed…To the Green Chapel come, I charge you to take such a dint as you have dealt – you have well deserved that your head should have a knock on New Year's morn." (Norton Anthology,211)

The year goes by, and Gawain prepares for his ...

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...ance of the green girdle, thus violating the agreement between him and the host. Though in the end we realize that for Gawain, just as for other people, it is impossible to reach perfection, he still remains an honorable and noble figure in our minds, admirable to us – the readers until the very end.

Work Cited

1) M.H. Abrams, Norton Anthology Of English Literature. Sixth Edition. Volume I.
W.W.Norton & Company. New York. 1993.

2) R.A. Waldron, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Northwestern University Press.
Evanston. 1970.

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