The Green Knight later appears as one of Arthur’s greatest champions in the fragmentary ballad “King Arthur and King Cornwall”, again under the name “Bredbeddle”. In Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Bercilak is transformed into the Green Knight by Morgan le Fay, a traditional adversary of King Arthur, in order to test his court. In The Green Knight he is transformed by a different woman for the same purpose. In both stories he sends his wife to seduce Gawain as a further test. “King Arthur and King Cornwall” portrays him as an exorcist and one of the most powerful knights in Arthur’s court. In Sir Gawain, the Green Knight is so called because his skin and clothes are green. The meaning of his greenness has puzzled scholars since the discovery of the poem, who identify him variously as the Green Man, a vegetation being in medieval art a recollection of a figure from Celtic mythology who has at least 50 shades of green for he is many.
“Skye Cuillin” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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