, Research Paper
During the fourteenth century, gallantry was in a diminution due to drastic societal and
economic alterations. Feudalism along with gallantry will fall for many grounds, but the
writer of Gawain blames the autumn on the loss of spiritual values within the knights. The
writer uses adult females in the narrative as the chief instrument to reenforce feudal system, for
illustration: Lady Bertilak and The Virgin Mary are used to contrast the good and evil that a
knight has to face ; courtly and religious love. With this, adult females are weakening the
spiritual values behind gallantry with their enticements towards wickedness, and the writer warns
the audience that the loss of spiritual values behind gallantry will take to its ultimate
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a romantic jubilation of gallantry. The
original ideas of gallantry were Christian values such as poorness, celibacy, service to
God, and all campaigns that were taken by knights were to turn out their religion in God. But as
clip went on to the fourteenth century, knights began to take their great workss by devotedness to a
kept woman instead than their God. Men began to derive desire for the flesh of another, instead
so for the protection of their psyches. The writer shows that adult female can be used as a
message to demo the Church s misgiving of adult females. The writer ever portrays the immorality
adult females, but tends to demo that the Virgin Mary ever comes out on top, and gallantry
will populate on because good lickings evil.
Mary, stand foring the good, is prayed to by Gawain and in bend she gives him the
aid to be strong and survive. She obtained her goodness by being the lone adult female who
of all time achieved maternity while keeping her celibacy. She represents religious love,
obeisance, celibacy, and life. Gawain uses Mary as a reassurance of protection. He has
that queen s image / etched on the interior of his armoured shield ( 648-49 ) and he prays to
the image when he senses problem. Besides on his shield is the pentacle, or endless knot
( p. 147 ) , which represents the 5 joys of Mary. Gawain strives to keep true to Mary and to
her volitions, but he has many enticements to cover with.
Lady Bertilak on the other manus represents the immorality and enticements that a knight
has to contend and avoid. Lady Bertilak works entirely in the sleeping room and in public before the
people of the palace at feasts and she single-handedly taints the Chevalier, doing him
to interrupt deals and besides to travel against the good, and hence interrupting his vow of
feudal system. Within the bible and the book, Lady Bertilak represents the traditional female
illustration of courtly love, noncompliance, lust, and decease. She is everything that was made to
halt and destruct a male Chevalier whose mission in life is to make all good and no immorality.
Lady Bertilak uses her organic structure to press him so heatedly ( p. 87 ) and showed him that he was
permitted to come in her, but Gawain s enticement was overridden by Mary s will, and he
replied to her:
Then gently, By Saint John,
Said the knight with a smiling,
I owe my curse to none,
Nor wish to yet a piece. ( p. 88 )
By Gawain stating this to Lady Bertilak, he non merely politely removed himself from
enticement, but he besides dishonored Mary, for he said he doesn t owe his curse to anyone.
The changeless battle of good and evil between the adult female will stay with Gawain
throughout his full journey.
Gawain went along his journey to the Green Chapel where he was to hold his
caput cut off. As he traveled during the Winter in the cold forests, he began to pray to
Mary ; And thee Mary, Mildest female parent so beloved, that in some oasis with due award I may
hear mass and Matins tomorrow forenoon. ( p. 49 ) . By inquiring Mary for a shelter and
someplace in which he could pray in Christmas Eve, Gawain believes that She
replies him by demoing him to Bertilak s Castle, which will really convey him to a
trial of gallantry. When he arrives at the palace, he is grateful for the success he received
with happening a shelter. But, the minute that Lady Bertilak steps into the room, his fright of
life and praying to Mary is instantly f
orgotten and he now devotes his entire
attending to the beautiful lady. There in Bertilak s palace, unlike in Arthur s, he tries more
to affect courtiers with his accomplishment in the field of courtly love, instead than the efforts of
make bolding or continuing his award.
But Gawain s true challenge and proving land come when he is entirely in the
sleeping room with Lady Bertilak throwing her organic structure at him. This overpowers the deals he
made with The Green Knight and Lord Bertilak, which were to turn out bravery and
gallantry, he now has a deal of celibacy, with a adult female. He his being confronted with
wickedness from a beautiful lady who is half bare in forepart of him, yet to state no would be
discourteous to the host of the Castle, so Gawain is in a bind. An obvious struggle
between religious and courtly love is now evident in Gawain for he is concerned for his
courtesy, lest he be called caitiff, but more particularly for his evil predicament if he should
dip into wickedness, and dishonor the proprietor of the house faithlessly, ( 1773-75 ) . This
throws him from fright of disgracing Mary, Mother of God, to the fright of being
discourteous to the host of the palace. Yet he bargains with Lady Bertilak. He doesn T
wish to disgrace Lady Bertilak or The Virgin Mary, so he accepts a girdle from the Lady.
Yet one of the finding factors in the credence of the girdle lays in the fact that it
holds a particular power of immortality.
Gawain s credence of the girdle weakens feudal system and more specifically,
Logres. The girdle causes him to interrupt his deal with Lord Bertilak because Gawain
must conceal the girdle because of its powers. At this point in the narrative, the writer strongly
criticizes the altering face of gallantry. The writer shows intimations that the game of courtly
love will finally interrupt the mal societal bonds, which hold feudal system together. It about
seems that the lone thing that could salvage feudal system are the traditional Christian
hierarchies from which gallantry was born.
Then comes Gawain s concluding challenge. The Green Knight now faces him with the
taking of his life. When he arrives at the Green Chapel, Gawain is confronted with a
confession ; the Green Knight admits that Lady Bertilak was used to allure Gawain to
interrupt his vow of celibacy and his deal with the host of the palace, one of which was
successful. The Green Knight goes on to state Gawain that he instructed her [ Lady
Bertilak ] to seek him [ Gawain ] , and you genuinely seem to be the most perfect champion of all time to
gait the Earth. ( p.109 ) . So Gawain s whole destiny in the decapitation game rested in his
public presentation in the exchange of profitss game. With this freshly obtain cognition,
Gawain learns a lupus erythematosus: clasp true to the ideals of the Christian philosophy as a support for the
knightly codification. But after Gawain admits to his incorrect behaviors, he pushes the incrimination from
himself onto adult females, stating he was inadvertently duped by adult females and led into wickedness.
Gawain tells the Green Knight of four Fictional characters in the Bible and how [ all ] four fell to
strategies of adult females whom they used. If I am snared, it seems I ought to be excused. ( P.
111 ) This supplanting of the incrimination allows Gawain to recover his power by returning to
Arthur s tribunal non as a failure, but as a to the full reinstated Knight of Honor. Yet his refusal to
spell and do peace with Bertilak s married woman downs his courtesy, but his power is non back in
the custodies of the appropriate authorization ( Mary ) , and Gawain s truenesss are redefined.
Gawain returns to the unit of ammunition tabular array, and everyone in the tribunal adopts the Girdle.
The credence is a symbol of how Arthur doesn Ts take Gawain s lesson to bosom and how
work forces covet adult females, which causes civilisations or organisations to interrupt. But in the long
tally, good will overmaster immorality in the strong adult male. If he has the self-control to be faithful and
strive for celibacy, he can get the better of any obstruction. Women will ever be at that place to deflect
a knight from his mission, but if a true knight, no adult female can halt him. Gawain can be
considered as an anti-woman philippic, but personally, I feel that the book discovers the
deep secrets of both sides of the adult female.