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The Green Knight

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Sir Gawain is a complex character and represents many things in the story of “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”. The Green Knight is very intriguing because of his otherworldliness and his presence in this story.

When the Green Knight first enters the story, he is definitely a sight to be seen. People had to be shocked seeing an all green man on an all green horse bursting into their celebration unannounced.

For example the text says, “Great wonder grew in hall at his hue most strange to see for man and gear and all were green as green could be” (“Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” 161).

The Green Knight is also a figure of nature and rebirth. His gray/green color represents the dying off of winter and the renewal of summer. Along with the birds and butterflies embroidered on the saddle. He is a huge, intimidating man with intricately designed, expensive pieces of clothing on. The way the clothing, the saddle and every detail of his appearance is described makes him seem like nobility and of great stature.

“…the fabric was noble, embellished with ermine,” (“Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” 161) the text states.

Something also has to be said about how he addresses Arthur and his knights. Obviously when you walk in you would be able to tell who is in charge because of how the knights were seated. The Green Knight challenges how righteous and brave Arthur and his knights really are.

“But as the praise of you my prince, is puffed up so high, and your court and your company are counted the best” (“Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” 164) said the Green Knight to Arthur. He challenged them to prove their worth.

Another captivating scene is when the Green Knight gets his head chopped off by Gawain. This was the most surprising element in the tale. This is when you know that he must be supernatural because he just picks up his head and mounts his horse like nothing had happened to him.

The text says, “And his head by the hair his hand holds, and as steady as he sits in the stately saddle he had met with no mishap, nor missing were his head” (“Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” 167).

In Part 2 of the story, the Green Knight is the Lord that takes Gawain in and is a generous host to him before he has to leave again. As the host the Green Knight is still a very substantial man who seemed to hold great power in his life.

“A man of massive mold, and of middle age; broad, bright was his beard of beaver’s hue” (“Sir Gawain and the Green Knight” 176) stated the text describing the host.

There weren’t many things alluding to the host being the Green Knight except for the description of the host and the noble things that he had in his home. Like the “…canopy over the couch clad with fur, curtains running on cords, caught to gold ringsвЂ¦Ð²Ð‚Ñœ (“Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”



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