The poem, “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, is a chivalric romance of the late Middle- ages. The poem is set in Britain’s midlands and begins with a story about Christmas in Camelot. A brief summary of “Sir Gawain and the Green knight” begins with King Arthur and his court that had been celebrating for fifteen days when suddenly a gigantic green knight appears. He challenges King Arthur or one of his knights to a game, which Sir Gawain accepted. Sir Gawain encounters many hardships on his journey. He is put in many situations that tempt him to break the chivalric code and he tries his best not to break it. His chivalry is truly tested.
In “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, the pentangle has a big impact on the story, but it is only mentioned specifically one time. The pentangle has many symbolic meanings, but one meaning is the representation of the chivalric code that Sir Gawain follows. The chivalric code is everything that Sir Gawain stands for and he wears the pentangle on his shield as a representation of what he strives for. Since Gawain is striving for perfection, and he believes that by wearing the pentangle on his shield, he will be able to obtain it. In “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, the poet explains what each point of the pentangle means. Each of these points are a ...
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...the chivalric code. Assayag also states, “He chooses to keep the girdle and possibly his life over being truthful with the Lord Bertilak” (Assayag 1). Once again, Assayag recognizes Sir Gawain’s sin and understands the importance it holds in the story. It is because of Sir Gawain’s selfish actions that changes the meaning of the pentangle and the green girdle. The pentangle now stands for something that could have been perfected and no longer stands for striving to be perfect. The green girdle now stands for sin and failure instead of being an item to protect him.
Symbols are very relevant to the meaning and understanding of “Sir Gawain and the Green knight”. The pentangle and its connection to the green girdle is just one of the many symbols in this story. The pentangle and the chivalric code go hand in hand with each other, as established with the above examples.
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- Symbolism is the act of using an object to represent an idea. A single object can have multiple meanings that can differ by the way that the reader understands the story. In “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, there are multiple ways that symbolism is used, but one way that was particularly important was the symbolism of the pentangle. The pentangle, in “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, represents the chivalric code and Sir Gawain’s upholding of it. The poem, “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, is a chivalric romance of the late Middle- ages.... [tags: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight]
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