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Ethics and Chivalry: Bravery, Honor and Gallantry

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In the Middle Ages, society took on the concept of bravery, honor and gallantry towards women...in other words, the term CHIVALRY. In your opinion, does knighthood-type chivalry still exist in society today? How is it the same and how is it different? Did it lead to the version of ethics in the military that we use today?

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****This work is not intended to be hand in ready, and it is advised that the student use the material in this posting as guidance and information for their original work****

It is important to examine chivalry as it was intended and as it was actually put into effect in the Middle Ages. Consider this statement:
Two other French historians, less devout but more trustworthy than M. Lacroix, substantially concur: "Chivalry," they say, "was a system which modified and completed feudalism. It was not an institution, but an ethical and religious association, shedding a ray of ideal beauty through a society corrupted by anarchy. (Prestage, 1928, p. 2)
Additionally, consider this statement as well:

Use of the term chivalry by the medievals themselves suggests a blurring of such simplistic categories as theory and practice. When they spoke or wrote of chivalry (militia in Latin, chevalerie in French), any of three related meanings may have been in their minds. First, the term could mean nothing more theoretical or ethical than deeds of great valor and endurance on some field of ...

Solution Summary

The discussion for this posting is definitely based on the code of conduct and a part of that was gallantry towards women as well as gentlemanly behavior. The type of gallantry exhibited in the Middle Ages was uncontrolled and each country instituted chivalry in its own way. For instance the French applied a more romanticized sense. The Germans held it to mean more duty bound towards the lord than the people. Chivalry came to its peak during the crusades and especially during the third crusade; specifically the exploits of "Richard the Lion Heart". However, the idea of gallantry was institutionalized and it did have ramifications in the manner in which warfare was waged as well as how women were treated. This usually only applied to women of royal or other significant stature. The code was supposed to be applied equally but was often interpreted differently by the individual knight. It is important to remember that Knights were elite warriors and made their living by killing enemies of the Kingdom.