38 pages 1 hour read


Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

Fiction | Novel/Book in Verse | Adult | Published in 1397

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Part 2Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Part 2 Summary

The seasons pass, and on All Hallows’ Day (November 1), Arthur holds a feast in honor of Gawain’s imminent departure. The following morning, dressed in exquisitely crafted golden armor, Gawain attends mass and bids farewell to the rest of the court, who grieve as he rides off on his horse Gringolet.

Gawain’s journey takes him out of Logres and King Arthur’s realm, into northern Wales, where he begins to ask after the Green Knight and Chapel; no one has heard of either. Meanwhile, Gawain must contend with numerous dangers as he travels, including wild animals, vagabonds, and the elements themselves.

By Christmas Eve, Gawain has begun to despair of finding the Chapel. In desperation, he prays to be led somewhere he might at least be able to attend mass, at which point he notices a castle in the distance. He rides to the castle, where a porter lets down the drawbridge for him. Inside, he is welcomed by an array of servants, gentlemen, and ladies, including the lord of the castle himself: “A man of massive mold, and of middle age; / Broad, bright was his beard, of a beaver’s hue, / Strong, steady his stance, upon stalwart shanks” (844-846).