illustration of a green shield with an ornate design

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

by Pearl-Poet

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Part 4, Verses 80–87, Lines 1998–2211 Summary

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Last Updated January 25, 2023.

On a bleak and snowy day, Gawain wakes up and calls for his guide to take him to the Green Chapel. After putting on his armor, he ties the green sash around him and sets off to meet his fate. He believes this to be his last journe and that he likely goes to his death.

As Gawain and his guide approach the Green Chapel, his guide informs him that the Green Knight is renowned for his ferocity and brutality, and that no one who goes to the Green Chapel survives. The guide begs Gawain to turn back and promises to keep it a secret, even if he has to swear an oath. Gawain thanks the guide for his concern, but he insists on continuing on his quest. The guide tells him that he cannot go any further, gives Gawain a lance and helmet, and directs him down the ravine. He leaves, and Gawain follows the path to face the Green Knight.

Gawain follows the path into a desolate and gloomy place, full of huge, jagged rocks. He finds a mound near a stream and tethers his horse to a tree. As he gets closer, he notices a cavern that he thinks could be the Green Chapel.

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Part 3, Verses 67–79, Lines 1648–1997 Summary

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Part 4, Verses 88–101, Lines 2212–2630 Summary