Short-Answer Quizzes

Part One, Verses 1-10, Lines 1-231 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Who according to tradition, founded the dynasty of Arthur?

2. Where was the court of Arthur?

3. At what time of year does the story begin?

4. Why is Arthur not yet seated?

5. Next to whom is Gawain seated?

6. Next to whom, apart from Guinevere, is the seat of Arthur?

7. How tall is the Green Knight?

8. Is the Green Knight equipped to do battle?

9. What has the Green Knight in his hands?

10. For whom does the Green Knight call?

Answers
1. According to tradition, the dynasty of Arthur was founded by Felix Brutus, great grandson of the Trojan hero Aeneas.

2. The court of Arthur was at Camelot.

3. The story begins at Christmas Eve.

4. Arthur has sworn not to eat until he has either heard a marvel or a challenge has been issued.

5. Gawain is seated beside Guinevere and by his brother Agravain.

6. Arthur is seated between Guinevere and Bishop Baldwin.

7. The Green Knight is almost a giant, far taller than any of Arthur’s knights.

8. No, the Green Knight is not wearing armor.

9. In one hand the Green Knight holds a branch of holly, in the other a battle-ax.

10. The Green Knight calls for whomever is presiding at the gathering.

Part One, Verses 11-21, Lines 232-490 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. What is Arthur’s initial offer to the Green Knight?

2. Is the Green Knight wearing armor? Is he carrying a weapon?

3. How does the Green Knight taunt the Knights of the Round Table?

4. According to the bargain proposed by the Green Knight, what may an adversary who accepts his challenge do to him?

5. What must the adversary later do to complete the bargain?

6. What is the initial response of the knights of the Round Table to the challenge of the Green Knight.

7. Who first accepts the challenge?

8. Who finally beheads the Green Knight?

9. What does the Green Knight do on being beheaded?

10. By what name does the Green Knight say he is commonly known?

Answers
1. Arthur offers the Green Knight hospitality, and says the stranger may give his reason for coming at the appropriate time.

2. No, the Green Knight is not wearing armor and carries no weapon but the ax.

3. The Green Knight calls the knights of the Round Table “boys,” and states that they are too young to match him in combat.

4. An adversary may behead the Green Knight.

5. The adversary must then find the Green Knight and allow himself to be beheaded.

6. The knights of the Round Table initially sit in silence on hearing the challenge.

7. King Arthur initially accepts the challenge.

8. Sir Gawain finally beheads the Green Knight.

9. On being beheaded, the Green Knight retrieves his head, then carries it to his horse and mounts.

10. The Green Knight says he is commonly known as the “Knight of the Green Chapel.”

Part Two, Verses 22-34, Lines 491-810 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. When does Gawain leave Camelot to seek the Green Knight?

2. How do the lords and ladies respond to Gawain’s departure?

3. What is the last thing Gawain does before his departure?

4. What does Gawain have painted on the outside of his shield?

5. What is the design of a pentangle?

6. What does Gawain have on the inside of his shield?

7. What are the five virtues connected with the five points of the pentangle?

8. Is the journey of Gawain difficult?

9. What does Gawain do when he comes to the deep woods?

10. Who first greets Gawain when he comes to Haudesert castle?

Answers
1. He leaves on All Souls’ Day.

2. They grieve for him, since he may not return.

3. The last thing Gawain does before his departure is to hear Mass.

4. Gawain has a pentangle painted on the outside of his shield.

5. A pentangle is a five-pointed star, drawn in a single line without a beginning or end.

6. Gawain has a picture of the Virgin Mary etched on the inside of his shield.

7. The five virtues are generosity, kindness, continence, courtesy and piety.

8. Yes, the journey is extremely difficult. Gawain has to contend with adversaries such as dragons and wild men, as well as with loneliness and cold.

9. When he comes to the deep woods, Gawain prays to Mary for a place to hear mass.

10. A servant first greets Gawain when he comes to Hautdesert castle.

Part Two, Verses 35-45, Lines 811-1125 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. Where do the courtiers take Gawain on his arrival at Hautdesert Castle?

2. What color is the beard of Lord Bertilak?

3. Where does Gawain go after meeting Bertilak?

4. Who accompanies Lady Bertilak when she goes to meet Gawain?

5. Who is paired with Gawain at mealtime on the day after his arrival at Hautdesert Castle?

6. Who sits in the place of highest honor at mealtime on the day after Gawain’s arrival at Hautdesert Castle?

7. Why does Gawain, at first, not accept the invitation to stay longer at the castle?

8. How long does Gawain agree to stay at Hautdesert Castle?

9. What, according his agreement with Bertilak, will Gawain receive?

10. What, according to his agreement with Bertilak, must Gawain give in return?

Answers
1. The courtiers take Gawain into the main hall after he arrives at Hautdesert Castle.

2. The beard of Lord Bertilak is the hue of a beaver’s pelt.

3. After meeting Bertilak, Gawain goes to a splendid room to change clothes.

4. An old crone accompanies Lady Bertilak when she goes to meet Gawain.

5. Lady Bertilak is paired with Gawain at mealtime on the day of his arrival at Hautdesert Castle.

6. The old crone sits in the place of highest honor at mealtime on the day after Gawain’s arrival at Hautdesert Castle.

7. Gawain does not accept the invitation to stay longer, because he has little time to find the Green Chapel.

8. Gawain agrees to stay at Hautdesert Castle for three days.

9. According to his agreement with Bertilak, Gawain will receive whatever game Bertilak brings back from hunting.

10. According to his agreement with Bertilak, Gawain must give Bertilak whatever he obtains during the day.

Part Three, Verses 46-66, Lines 1126-1647 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. What sounds accompany the hunt?

2. Do Bertilak and his men kill all of the deer?

3. What does Gawain first do when Lady Bertilak first enters his chamber?

4. Why does Lady Bertilak tell the guest that he cannot really be Gawain?

5. What does Gawain say on seeing the game that Bertilak brought back after the first day of hunting?

6. What does Bertilak give Gawain according to their agreement when he returns from the first day of hunting?

7. What does Gawain give Bertilak according to their agreement after his first day in the castle?

8. Why can the huntsmen not kill the boar with arrows?

9. How and by whom is the boar finally killed?

10. What does Gawain give Bertilak in exchange for the boar?

Answers
1. Horns and the barking of dogs are some of the sounds which accompany the hunt.

2. No, Bertilak and his men leave the stags and kill only the hinds.

3. When Lady Bertilak first enters his chamber, Gawain pretends to be asleep.

4. She says that the guest cannot be Gawain, because a knight like Gawain would not have stayed with a lady so long with¬out claiming a kiss.

5. When Gawain sees the game that Bertilak brought back from the first day of hunting, he says that it is the finest harvest of game during the season that he has seen in seven years.

6. According to their agreement, Bertilak gives Gawain the piles of game that he obtained during the first day of hunting?

7. According to their agreement, Gawain gives Bertilak the kiss he received from the mistress of the house during his first day in the castle.

8. The huntsmen cannot kill the boar with arrows, because they fail to penetrate the hide.

9. The boar is finally killed by Bertilak with his sword.

10. In exchange for the boar, Gawain gives Bertilak the two kisses he received from Lady Bertilak during the day.

Part Three, Verses 67-79, Lines 1648-1997 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. What is on Gawain’s mind when Lady Bertilak enters his chamber on the third day?

2. What does Lady Bertilak do after entering Gawain’s chamber for the third time?

3. After she has given up her attempt at seduction, what does the mistress of the house request of Gawain?

4. What does the mistress of the house offer to Gawain first after he has declined to give her a token to remember him by?

5. What does the mistress of the house say her green sash can accomplish?

6. What does Gawain do after he has taken the green sash?

7. What does Bertilak do after the fox has been killed?

8. What does Gawain give Bertilak in exchange for the fox pelt?

9. What final request does Gawain make of Bertilak?

10. What is the last thing Gawain does before going to bed?

Answers
1. Gawain is drowsing uneasily, troubled by dreams of his appointment with the Green Knight, when Lady Bertilak enters his chamber on the third day.

2. After entering Gawain’s chamber for the third time, Lady Bertilak bends over Gawain and gives him a kiss.

3. After she has given up her attempt at seduction, the mistress of the house asks Gawain for a token to remember him by.

4. After he has declined to give her a token to remember him by, the mistress of the house first offers Gawain a precious ring.

5. The mistress of the house says her green sash can protect the wearer from being harmed by weapons.

6. After he has taken the green sash, Gawain goes to mass and confesses his sins.

7. After the fox has been killed, Bertilak holds up the fox to display it. Then he has the animal skinned.

8. In exchange for the fox pelt, Gawain gives Bertilak the three kisses he received from the mistress of the house.

9. The final request that Gawain makes of Bertilak is for a guide to the Green Chapel.

10. The last thing that Gawain does before going to bed is to say farewell to the members of Bertilak’s household and thank them for their hospitality.

Part Four, Verses 80-87, Lines 1998-2211 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. How is the weather when Gawain awakes to journey to the Green Chapel?

2. What does Gawain wear for the final journey to the Green Chapel?

3. How does Gawain travel to the Green Chapel?

4. Who sees Gawain off when he leaves Hautdesert Castle?

5. What does Gawain think to himself as he leaves Hautdesert Castle?

6. What does the guide tell Gawain about the Green Knight?

7. What does the guide urge Gawain to do?

8. What does the guide do after warning Gawain about the Green Knight?

9. Where does the path the guide pointed out take Gawain?

10. What does Gawain find after he dismounts?

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(The entire section is 260 words.)

Part Four, Verses 88-101, Lines 2212-2630 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. What does Gawain hear after he first arrives at the Green Chapel?

2. Where does the Green Knight first appear?

3. How does the Green Knight cross the stream?

4. What does Gawain ask after he has greeted the Green Knight?

5. What does Gawain do when the Green Knight first lowers the ax?

6. How does Gawain stand when the Green Knight lowers the ax a second time?

7. What does Gawain see after the Green Knight lowers the ax a third time?

8. For what does Gawain reproach himself?

9. What final request does Gawain make of the Green Knight?

10. What do Gawain and Bertilak do as the part company?

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(The entire section is 263 words.)