part of knighthood and chivalry.) Originally, knights were warriors on horse-back, but the title By contrast, membership of other British Orders of Merit, such as the Distinguished Service Order, the Order of Merit and the Order of the Companions of Honour does not confer a knighthood. to refer to a warrior or nobleman in former times, or today to refer to Upon turning 21, the squire was eligible to be knighted. In the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth the monarchs tried to establish chivalric orders but the hereditary lords who controlled the Union did not agree and managed to ban such assemblies. [38][39] Knights can parade their armour and banner to the whole court as the tournament commenced. Weapon practise included

In the century or so following Charlemagne's death, his newly empowered warrior class grew stronger still, and Charles the Bald declared their fiefs to be hereditary. liege lord in Middle Ages warfare.

The German and Austrian equivalent of an hereditary knight is a Ritter. In the Netherlands no female equivalent exists. Belgium still does have about 232 registered knightly families. As a result, Christian armies began to devote their efforts to sacred purposes. There are traces of the Continental system of hereditary knighthood in Ireland. Soon, the remaining knights were absorbed into professional armies. "; By the age of thirteen, if the boy was ready to proceed with training, he could become a squire. Judi Dench D.B.E may be addressed as Dame Judi or Dame Judi Dench, but They were attainted in 1697 for participation on the Jacobite side in the Williamite wars.[55]. never Dame Dench. once in a chaotic mock war, though they later evolved to the popular, In the 14th century the use of infantrymen armed with pikes and fighting in close formation also proved effective against heavy cavalry, such as during the Battle of Nancy, when Charles the Bold and his armoured cavalry were decimated by Swiss pikemen. [7] This meaning, of unknown origin, is common among West Germanic languages (cf Old Frisian kniucht, Dutch knecht, Danish knægt, Swedish knekt, Norwegian knekt, Middle High German kneht, all meaning "boy, youth, lad"). became a formal title bestowed on those noblemen trained for active war [50][51] The advancement of high-powered firearms contributed greatly to the decline in use of plate armour, as the time it took to train soldiers with guns was much less compared to that of the knight. Since 1611, the British Crown has awarded a hereditary title in the form of the baronetcy. The chivalric combat was fought when one party's honor was disrespected or challenged and the conflict could not be resolved in court. ", Williams, Alan. [52] As the feudal system came to an end, lords saw no further use of knights. Like in the Netherlands, no female equivalent to the title exists. duty. Originally, knights were warriors on horse-back, but the title became increasingly connected to nobility and social status, most likely because of the cost of equipping oneself in the cavalry. In peacetime, knights often demonstrated their martial skills in tournaments, which usually took place on the grounds of a castle. When knights were taken as prisoners of war, they were customarily held for ransom in somewhat comfortable surroundings. [57] A woman clerk in holy orders may be made a Dame in exactly the same way as any other woman since there are no military connotations attached to the honour.

Wives of knights, however, are entitled to the honorific pre-nominal "Lady" before their husband's surname. While cnihtas might have fought alongside their lords, their role as household servants features more prominently in the Anglo-Saxon texts. In old times, no other title existed but that of knight. Keen, Maurice Keen. [43] Knights are generally armigerous (bearing a coat of arms), and indeed they played an essential role in the development of heraldry. months[10] = " A vast range of highly informative and dependable articles have been produced by the Siteseen network of entertaining and educational websites. As time passed, clergy instituted religious vows which required knights to use their weapons chiefly for the protection of the weak and defenseless, especially women and orphans, and of churches.[37]. The great European legends of warriors such as the paladins, the Matter of France and the Matter of Britain popularized the notion of chivalry among the warrior class. Outside the British honours system it is usually considered improper to address a knighted person as 'Sir' or 'Dame'. called Sir Elton or Sir Elton John, but never Sir John. After 1488, no other appointments of women are known, although it is said that the Garter was conferred upon Neapolitan poet Laura Bacio Terricina, by King Edward VI. "; (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Knighthood & Knights in the Middle AgesTo gain Knighthood in the Middle Ages was a long and arduous task.

Many landowners found the duties of knighthood too expensive and so contented themselves with the use of squires. In addition, many British Orders of Merit, namely the Order of the Bath, the Order of St Michael and St George, the Royal Victorian Order and the Order of the British Empire are part of the British honours system, and the award of their highest ranks (Knight/Dame Commander and Knight/Dame Grand Cross), comes together with an honorific knighthood, making them a cross between orders of chivalry and orders of merit. Clifford J. Rogers, Kelly DeVries, and John Franc. It usually ended with many knights either injured or even killed. [15] From caballus arose terms in the various Romance languages cognate with the (French-derived) English cavalier: Italian cavaliere, Spanish caballero, French chevalier (whence chivalry), Portuguese cavaleiro, and Romanian cavaler. [26] As the term "knight" became increasingly confined to denoting a social rank, the military role of fully armoured cavalryman gained a separate term, "man-at-arms". Knighthood was not bestowed purely because a young man was the son of a noble. The Royal Victorian Order was opened to women in 1936, and the Orders of the Bath and Saint Michael and Saint George in 1965 and 1971 respectively. A knight had to be born of nobility – typically sons of knights or lords. A knight who is subsequently ordained does not lose his title. The female form of the Similarly, actress Dame Judi Dench should be addressed as Dame Judi, not Dame Dench or Ms Dench. The insignia on the Medieval Times knights' clothing is based on authentic coats of arms from the middle ages. A knight is a person granted an honorary title of knighthood by a head of state (including the pope) or representative for service to the monarch, the church or the country, especially in a military capacity. This designation is used as a title of nobility in all German-speaking areas. Sir Thomas Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur (The Death of Arthur), written in 1469, was important in defining the ideal of chivalry, which is essential to the modern concept of the knight, as an elite warrior sworn to uphold the values of faith, loyalty, courage, and honour. "Aspects of Knighthood in Hartmann's Adaptations of Chretien's Romances and in the Social Context." In the Kingdom of Spain, the Royal House of Spain grants titles of knighthood to the successor of the throne. The older Carolingian ceremony of presenting a young man with weapons influenced the emergence of knighthood ceremonies, in which a noble would be ritually given weapons and declared to be a knight, usually amid some festivities. meaning page boy, or simply boy, or German knecht, or servant, the ideas [16] The Germanic languages have terms cognate with the English rider: German Ritter, and Dutch and Scandinavian ridder. Clerics and the Church often opposed the practices of the Knights because of their abuses against woman and civilians, and many such as St Bernard, were convinced that the Knights served the devil and not God and needed reforming.

[56] Like knights, baronets are accorded the title Sir. The word knight, from Old English cniht ("boy" or "servant"),[6] is a cognate of the German word Knecht ("servant, bondsman, vassal"). war. [50] Some knightly orders survived into modern times. The United Kingdom (see British honours system) It was the first religious order of knighthood to grant the rank of militissa to women. "; Knights Tournaments and JoustingThe Knights practised their knightly skills at the tournaments of the Middle Ages. Mercy (Towards the poor and oppressed. Chivalry. church deemed knights too bloodthirsty and unruly, they intervened and began Medieval tournaments were made up of martial sports called hastiludes, and were not only a major spectator sport but also played as a real combat simulation. pp. Thus, Sir Elton John should be addressed as Sir Elton, not Sir John or Mr John. Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae (History of the Kings of Britain), written in the 1130s, introduced the legend of King Arthur, which was to be important to the development of chivalric ideals in literature. The verb "to knight" (to make someone a knight) appears around 1300; and, from the same time, the word "knighthood" shifted from "adolescence" to "rank or dignity of a knight". The Code of Chivalry dictated that a Knight should be brave and fearless in battle but would also exhibit cultured Knightly qualities showing themselves to be devout, loyal, courteous and generous. Examples of these brutal duels were the judicial combat known as the Combat of the Thirty in 1351, and the trial by combat fought by Jean de Carrouges in 1386. Which the Women hearing of, to prevent the disaster threatening their City, themselves, and Children, put on men's Clothes, and by a resolute sally, forced the Moors to raise the Siege. The Knights Armor in the Middle AgesThe Knights Armor of the Middle Ages was extremely expensive to produce. They feared the King would use Orders to gain support for absolutist goals and to make formal distinctions among the peerage which could lead to its legal breakup into two separate classes, and that the King would later play one against the other and eventually limit the legal privileges of hereditary nobility. State Knighthoods in the Netherlands are issued in three orders, the Order of William, the Order of the Netherlands Lion, and the Order of Orange Nassau. Only the wealthiest nobles could afford to be a knight. It had to be tailor-made to fit the Knight exactly or the Knight ran the risk of an ill-fitting suit of armor hampering him in battle. "; At about this time the Franks increasingly remained on horseback to fight on the battlefield as true cavalry rather than mounted infantry, with the discovery of the stirrup, and would continue to do so for centuries afterwards.


They were placed on an early training regime of hunting with huntsmen and falconers, and academic studies with priests or chaplains. was promoted and extolled through highly stylized tournaments that bore remains under this license. in de Orde van Oranje–Nassau, Denmark - Dannebrogordenen (Order of Dannebrog). During this time the squires continued training in combat and were allowed to own armour (rather than borrowing it). In each of these, there were in the early Middle Ages a number of feudal lords who often were just as powerful, and sometimes more so than the rulers themselves. The Earl, finding himself obliged, by the gallentry of the action, thought fit to make his acknowlegements thereof, by granting them several Privileges and Immunities, and to perpetuate the memory of so signal an attempt, instituted an Order, somewhat like a Military Order, into which were admitted only those Brave Women, deriving the honour to their Descendants, and assigned them for a Badge, a thing like a Fryars Capouche, sharp at the top, after the form of a Torch, and of a crimson colour, to be worn upon their Head-clothes.

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