The Roles Of Women In Sir Gawain And The Green Knight

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The men throughout the Old English era played a very prevailing role in society. Men were the persons in society that were portrayed as the central leaders; being in charge of their homes and representing wisdom and strength. Because the men’s role in the Old English era was so dominant, there is a vast amount of literature about them, thus allowing women to be outshined. In fact, restrictions were placed on the majority of women during this period. However, as time evolved, the roles of women also evolved. In the Old English texts, The Wife’s Lament and Beowulf, the roles of women are seen as peace weavers, motivators, cupbearers and memory keepers, compared to the women in the Middle English text, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, who now play the roles of being protective, seductive and manipulative. The women during the Old English era had specific roles to carry out. One of…show more content…
A woman who was married off to make peace between two kingdoms or tribes that were at war, was considered to be a peace weaver. An example of a peace weaver in The Wife’s Lament is where the narrator writes, “… Now, far or near, I must bear the malice of the man I loved” (Lines 25-26). Through these lines, it can be assumed that she was married to this man in order to settle a tribal feud. However, now she is lamenting over the fact of how she is both exiled by his family and lost her love. Also, in the text Beowulf, there is evidence of peace weavers. An example of a peace weaver is no other than Queen Wealhtheow. The lines which says “…Sometimes the queen herself appeared, peace-pledge between nations…” (Lines 2016-2017) clearly indicates that she is a peace weaver. In fact, she is married to Hrothgar with the intentions of bringing peace to two warring tribes, and sure enough peace was made because of her diplomat and generous character. Even though the role of a peace
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