An Honorable Knight in King Arthur's Court Sir Gawain and the Green Knight In a passage of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (Part2, 640-712), the main character sits upon his steed, Gringolet, in front of King Arthurfs court, adorned in golden armor. He is about to depart in order to look for the Green Knight and the Green Chapel since he is the only knight brave enough to take up the Green Knightfs challenge, in which a volunteer is to strike the Green Knightfs head off with an axe, but in return, he has to present himself in the following year to receive a return blow. By reading this passage closely, readers can see the qualities necessary for being an honorable knight in King Arthurfs court. These attributes are to be devoted to the truth, to risk his life, and to confront the most difficult challenges. Sir Gawain has the symbol of a pentangle on his shield, which represents devotion to the truth and perfection. Since Sir Gawain is committed to the truth, he supports and protects his lord when the Green Knight suddenly appears at King Arthurfs court. In addition, the pentangle represents the number five, which symbolizes perfection: gfive fives were confirmed in this knighth (Norton 216). Since Sir Gawain has heightened senses of sight, smell, sound, taste, and touch, he is also considered to have five qualities of perfect knighthood that are geach linked in other, that end there was none, [a]nd fixed to five points, whose force never failed" (Norton, 216). Wearing the shield with the pentangle is honorable for a knight and can be accomplished only by gaining the token of truth from his lord. While the shield with the pentangle represents an honorable knight, his departure conveys the importance of self-sacrifice for honor. Right before he leaves the court, he says ggood dayh (Norton 216) to everyone, who is sending him off, thinking that he shall never return to the court again. Yet, he courageously departs to look for the Green Knight: gNow armed is Gawain gay, [a]nd bears his lance before, [a]nd soberly said good day, [h]e thought forevermoreh (Norton 216). People are sympathetic to Sir Gawain since they disagree with
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