1066—The Battle of Hastings William the Conquerer and... Influence Military Government

Notes for Gawain:
1066—The Battle of Hastings William the Conquerer and the French
 Military
 Government
 Cooking
 “Romance” and Rhyme
ROMANCE…. Originally refers to a style of French Poem, but becomes
infused in many areas
12th Century (1100’s)
 Romances are Written for the Noble audience
 Written in French
 Arthur and the Britons a very popular topic
 Celtic Ancients appear (Merlin? Green men? Etc)
 R’s later popular with “lay audience” Clerks,
 Now written in English
 Some become Ballads
Definition of a Romance!???
 Hard to define:
 Narrative in nature
 Adventures (multiple)
 Chivalry … SEE BELOW (see golden age)
 Remote/Contemporary (medieval style..an ancient
English Romance Style
 Entertain and Instruct
 Occasional Couplets
 Alliterative Verse
 Bob and Wheel
Bob = 2 stress line // 1 line tag on
Wheel = 3 stress line // 4 lines
Rhyme Scheme ABABA
Knightly Behavior: a blend of
1. Loyalty to a lord
2. Generosity to Followers
3. Courage in Battle
1. Cardinal Virtues:
Justice, wisdom, temp. , fortitude
2. Theological Virtues:
Faith, Chastity, Humility, Charity
Courtly Love: Fighting, horsemanship, poetry, art, music
“A man of arms skilled in the pastimes of peace.”
PERFECTION in that it is bravery without brutality, Generosity without
greed, love without sex, etc…
 Probably a 6th century king who resisted the
AngloSaxon invasion.
 Very Celtic in nature
 1130’s there is a story where Arthur is a descendant of
Rome… Brutus?
 Round Table and the Holy Grail
 Gawain vs. Lancelot
Sir Gawain, the text:
 Gawain is mostly written in English Alliterative verse. Though
some rhyme (sparingly)
 Does use the Bob and Wheel
 Written in England (western?) in the 1350’s and up
 Plot is that of a beheading match… from old Celtic traditions
 Fertility rites, winter sacrifice…
 Green Knight/ Morgan le Fey
 Gift giving… closure… green vs. gold… hospitality… all things to
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