Gawain and the Green Knight

Gawain and the Green Knight
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  • The Green Knight challenges King Arthur, King Arthur can cut off his head if he can do the same in a year and one day. 
  • "Now if you are truly as bold as the people all say, you will grant me gladly the little game that I ask as my right" (lines 54-55). 
  • " 'I beseech you, sire,' he said, 'Let this game be mine' " (lines 124-125).
  • Gawain takes the ax and tells King Arthur he will do it instead.  
  • "He turned his trunk about, that baleful body that bled...He held his head in his hand up high before him" (lines 171-175). 
  • Gawain cuts off the Green Knight's head and he leaves holding it in his hand. 
  • "As the end of the year approaches, Gawain leaves on his quest to find the Green Chapel and fulfill his pledge...the lady attempts to seduce Gawain" (216). 
  • Gawain leaves to find the Green Knight and is welcomed into a castle. The lady gives him a sash to protect him. Gawain does not tell the lady's husband.   
  • "But hard as he hammered down, it hurt him no more than to nick the nape of his neck..." (lines 303-304). 
  • The Green Knight makes fun of Gawain for being scared of his ax. The Knight eventually swings his ax, but only cuts Gawain's neck a little. 
  • "Since now you're confessed so clean, acknowledging sins and bearing the plain penance of my point; I consider you polished as white and as perfectly clean as if you had never fallen..." (lines 383-386). 
  • The lady turns out to be the Green Knight's wife. Gawain confesses to taking the sash. The Green Knight spares Gawain because he learned his lesson. 
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