Sir Gawain and the Green Knight: A Hero (Fit 4)

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight: A Hero (Fit 4)

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  • The Green Knight welcomes Gawain and compliments him on his punctuality. He then tells Gawain that he will "receive what [the Green Knight] swore to give."(104)  Gawain tries to act unafraid as he bares his neck for the deadly blow.  He is a hero here because of his chivalry. Gawain went all this way in order to meet the Green Knight so that he could get beheaded. The Green Knight does not behead Gawain however. He feints to hit hit him twice, then cuts his neck on the third time. 
  •  Gawain gets up early and prepares to leave the castle. He puts on his armor and orders a servant to saddle his horse. He is a hero in this scene. He is a hero because he is getting ready to go meet the Green Knight and own up to his promise. His armor is also described in a very heroic way, much like in Fit 2. Gawain's "breast-and belly- armour had been burnished bright,/ And the rusty rings of his rich mail-coat [were] rolled clean." (96) he also is described as "putting on apparel of the most princely kind." ( 97)
  • Gawain and Gringolet prepare to take off, and Gawain silently blesses the castle, asking Christ to keep it safe from harm and wishing joy on the host and the host’s wife. He is a hero here because he is showing respect to his hosts by wishing them the best.  
  • " Here in the castle is a company whose conduct is honorable./ The man who maintains them, may he have joy!/ The delightful lady, love befall her while she lives!/ ...may He on high,/ The King Of Heaven, requite you and your company too!" (98.)
  • Gawain's guide tells him that if leaves now without facing the Green Knight, he will not to tell anyone. He tells Gawain that no one survives an encounter with the Green Knight.Gawain refuses to be a coward, and decides to go on without the guide. He is a hero because he will go on, no matter what his guide says, because he is a chivalrous knight. 
  • "if I quit this place,/ Fled from the fellow in the fashion you propose,/ I should become a cowardly knight with no excuse whatever,/ For I will go to the Green Chapel, to get what Fate sends,/ And have whatever words I wish that worthy,/ Whether words I wish with that worthy,/ Whether weal of woe is what Fate/ Demands." (100)
  • Gawain gets up right away and challenges the Green Knight to a fight, telling him that he has withstood the promised hit. The Green Knight agrees that Gawain has fulfilled his promise, but refuses to fight, and points out that he has spared Gawain. He points out that he was the host at the castle Gawain was staying at. He feinted the first two times, because of Gawain telling the truth on the first two days (when Gawain gave him the gifts he had won from the wife) The cut from the third hit was punishment for Gawain’s behavior on the third day, when he failed to tell the truth about the green girdle. Gawain is a hero here because he came all this way to meet the Green Knight, and the Green Knight even calls Gawain a hero because of his " liberality and loyalty belonging to chivalry." (109)
  • " You truthfully kept your trust in troth with me,/ Giving me your gains, as good a man should./ The further feinted blow was for the following day,/ When you kissed my comely wife, and the kisses came to me:/ For those two things,/ harmlessly I thrust twice at you/ Feinted blows./ Truth for truth's word;/ No need for dread, God knows./ From your failure at the third/ The tap you took arose." (108,109) 
  • Gawain’s wound heals as he makes his way back to Arthur's castle. He continues to wear the green girdle on his right shoulder. When he enters the court, he meets a a lot of happy people and tells the story of him and the Green Knight . He says that he intends to wear the green girdle forever as a sign of his failure and sin.  He is a hero here because he is openly admitting his mistake and feels bad about it. All humans make mistakes.  In order to comfort Gawain, Arthur explains that everyone will wear a green belt as a sign of unification and sympathy. 
  • " each brave man of the brotherhood should bear a baldric,/ A band, obliquely about him, of bright green" (115.)
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