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Literature / Saint George and the Dragon

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Saint George

A book by Margaret Hodges, a partial retelling of the epic poem The Faerie Queene written by Edmund Spenser.

This book contains examples of:

  • The Champion: Una set out alone from the safety of the castle walls to look for a champion who would face the terrible dragon.
  • Damsel Errant: Princess Una traveled a long, long way before she found the Red Cross Knight.
  • Dragons Are Demonic: The dragon defeated by Saint George, which was terrorizing towns eating people and livestock. George claims to have defeated the creature through the power of Christ, which implies the dragon is literally of demonic origin.
  • The Hero's Journey:
  • Knight Errant: The story begins with the Red Cross Knight riding across a plain, bound on a great adventure, sent by the Queen of the Fairies to fight the dragon.
  • Knight in Shining Armor: The knight bade his lady stand apart, out of danger, to watch the fight, while the beast drew near, half flying, half running.
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  • Lady and Knight: When gentle Una saw him lying motionless, she trembled with fear and prayed for his safety.
  • Loved I Not Honor More: The brave knight tells the king that he can't stay because he has sworn to give knight's service to the Fairy Queen for six years.
  • No Name Given: Subverted. The Red Cross Knight at first doesn't know his birth name or where he had been born, until a good old hermit informs him that he was born to be Saint George of Merry England.
  • Standard Hero Reward: The king tells the brave knight that he has promised that the dragonslayer should have Una for his wife, and be king after him.


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