Sadown's Short Response For Sir Gwain And The Green Knight – Article Example
Due Sir Gawain and the Green Knight In planning their trick, did Morgan le Fay and the Green Knight foresee that Gawain would accept the challenge? (In other tales about the Knights of the Roundtable, Gawain frequently appears as headstrong and reckless in his willingness to accept challenges and prove his mettle.)
It is very likely that they both knew very well that the challenge would be irresistible to a knight of the roundtable. After all the Green Knight presented the perfect bait. He casually states that none of them could ever defeat him; this is an immediate challenge to everything these particular types of Knights believe in (Klein). As a character Gawain is known to be impetuous and headstrong, that knowledge helped the two plotters to devise a plan that knew that he could not turn away from. It would be a challenge to his bravery, his honor, integrity, and an opportunity to stroke his hero’s ego, not to mention an opportunity to step up and face a challenge offered to the King. He likely believed that when taking up the ax he would dispatch the challenger and there would be no need to worry about retaliation in a year.
2. When the lady tells Gawain that the sash is a talisman that will protect him, he does not doubt her. Does his belief in its power reveal him as naive and gullible?
To the average reader most would assume that Gawain’s immediate belief in the “power” of the sash would make him rather gullible and naive, however in these stories there are multiple reasons for his belief. Magic is real. At least within the context of this story what most would consider impossible is an entirely plausible reality. The second is that the Knights of the Round Table are remarked for their virtue and sense of honor and justice; they are men of their word, therefore it is a matter of integrity to accept that another’s word is equally as honest. In other words, I would not lie to you so why would you lie to me, and who am I to accuse you of being dishonest. However, the most likely reason is because it was getting very close to his impending meeting with the Green Knight, whom will likely kill him, and he was desperate. He did not want to die and was willing to do whatever he could to survive. Plus it is the acceptance of the sash that leads him to his lesson of humility and self realization. His strive to be the perfect knight is an impossible one and he too is fallible.
Klein, A.S., ed. "Sir Gawain and the Green Knight." Poetry in Translation. A.S. Klein, n.d.
Web. 7 Oct 2013. .