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Gawain’s tale serves to show how difficult it was to uphold the chivalric codes as they are often very conflicting ideals. One of the codes states that “thou shalt never lie, and shall remain faithful to thy pledged word”. Gawain fails to follow through with this aspect of the code, as he lies to his host during the third test. He does not lie maliciously, but rather to uphold his conduct as the guest in the household. While Gawain is indeed acting out of what he believes to be the most polite, and chivalric ideals, he is also contradicts the aspect of not lying. The code is meant to serve as a moral compass or guidelines for these knights, but it is rather difficult to uphold each aspect of the code when they often go against one another.

One of the codes from the Art of Courtly Love that I found interesting is the one that states “If love diminishes, it quickly fails and rarely revives”. Though it does not necessarily contradict the other guidelines, most of the other codes revolve around loving your partner fully and unconditionally, which would mean that love could never diminish. As mentioned in class, these codes seem to act as a way to fudge behavior of knights or lords to reflect better upon their character while they follow their whims. I believe this is why many of the codes contradict each other, and are often hard to follow.

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