Chivalry Lesson in Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott
In everybody's life, there is something that makes him or her strive for success. That something can be money, a significant other, fame or many other incentives. To the medieval knights, victory renown and glory are the ambitions they strive for. Breaking a law in this code would be considered a disgrace, and would bring a dishonor worse than death itself. However, by applying the Code of Chivalry, the knights in medieval time displayed certain character traits that would secure success and honor in both battle and morality. In the book Ivanhoe, by Sir Walter Scott, a knight named Wilfred of Ivanhoe illustrates this by devoting his attention to keeping the rules of the Code of Chivalry, which consisted of love of adventure, integrity and loyalty to the king, to name just a few. These character traits of Ivanhoe coupled with strong characters and a realistic setting allow the reader to understand the importance of a strong set of moral guidelines to all individuals of all times in spite of Sir Scott's excessive detail and confusing subplot.
Respect and loyalty are two of the character traits that Ivanhoe not only possesses but also helps the reader to see their importance for a successful life. For example, in the very beginning of the book Ivanhoe is known as the Disinherited Knight because his father, Cedric the Saxon, disinherits him; however, even though he is abandoned, he still respects his father and is loyal to him. His respect is shown in the book when the castle burns and someone asks his father whether defeat is visible. Cedric responds by saying, "Not so, by the soul of Hereward." He then denounces his Ivanhoe's beliefs. Instead of getting angry with Cedric, Ivanhoe shows respect, brushes the comments off, and leads a successful life as a result. This is a very good example to today's reader that comes from generations of children having relationship problems with their parents.
Ivanhoe is not only loyal to his real father, but to King Richard the Lion Heart as well. When Ivanhoe is disowned by his father, King Richard steps in and adopts him. Ivanhoe attaches himself to the king and follows him into battle for the Crusades. When the King is captured, Ivanhoe has loyalty and sets his eye on freeing him.
Ivanhoe is not the only character that demonstrates loyalty. The reader can also learn a thing or two about having too much loyalty and pride in family. Cedric the Saxon shows extreme pride and loyalty to his heritage. In fact, it is because of this that Ivanhoe is kicked out of his home. He has more interest in...