Chastity from the Wife

The wife of the king in the poem of Yonec begins an affair with another knight during a time when this action was one of the gravest sins.  Yet, the story develops to praise this action.  The maidens husband locked her away in a tower, which is a great injustice, but she still enters into an affair sanctioned by God.  As she prays to God the knight appears to rescue the wife.  Not only does this affair begin but the bastard offspring eventually kills the maiden’s husband.  The series of events of this poem contains Christian elements; however, there are remnants of pagan culture as well.  The wife being unfaithful, the magical hawk, and revenge are all indications of a past culture that may still be lingering.

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