In a previous blog we learned about the polymath and Christian mystic Ramon Llull (c.1232–c.1315/16) and his Book of the Order of Chivalry, which became a standard manual for chivalry in the 13th and 14th centuries. In chapter 5, Llull metaphorically links parts of the knight’s equipment with chivalrous virtues.
Here Llull equates the knight’s dagger with ‘hope’:1
The dagger is given to the knight so that if his other arms fail him he have recourse to the dagger. Or if he is so close to his enemy that he is unable to wound him with the lance or sword, he may surmount him by the force or strength of his dagger. And this weapon — the dagger — signifies that the knight must not entirely trust in his arms nor in his strength, and he must fear and trust in God and join to Him by good works and by the very hope that he ought to have in him, that by the help and aid of God he may vanquish his enemies and those who are contrary to the Order Chivalry.
The Order of Chivalry: Hope:2
I would add:
Hope is easy when things are going well. But persevering hope when things are going poorly — that’s chivalrous virtue.
All the virtues can be found here.
- Adapted from:
Llull, Ramon. Caxton, William (trans.). The Book of the Ordre of Chyvalry or Knyghthode. 1484, reprinted Walter J. Johnson, Inc., 1976. ISBN 9022107787. (No page numbers available.)
For a modern translation, see:
Llull, Ramon. Fallows, Noel (trans.). The Book of the Order of Chivalry. Boydell Press, 2013. ISBN 978-1843838494. Amazon. p.69.
- Recorded using this marvelous organ sample set and Hauptwerk. William also plays this piece live.