Wednesday, October 7, 2009


Another description of critical skills for a knight.

  1. Be a brilliant horseman; be able to pick things off the ground, know and perform all the gaits and have full control over his mount...which would be a stallion.
  2. Be good at swimming and diving; swimming proficiently enough that he can manoeuvre in water
  3. Be good at archery (bows and crossbows) and later on firearms. A common myth is that knights disdained such things in warfare, but the Septem Probitates explicitly mentions that these may be used against Princes and Dukes.
  4. Be fast at climbing ladders, both wooden and rope.
  5. Be honourable in the tournament. This mostly refers to tilting or in modern parlance, jousting. A knight was expected both to good at this as well as very honest.
  6. The part that most people expect: good at wrestling and fighting, but also included in this virtue is to excel at the long jump (beat others) and with using either leg.
  7. The last virtue is mostly about social interaction.
    • He needs to know how to serve at the table. In particular this meant to carve and serve meat for the ladies and know all the other table etiquette which was pretty exhaustive; they had very strict rules which will probably come as a surprise to many, and
    • He needs to know how to dance. This doesn't mean the bump and grind of today's so-called dancing either, and
    • He needs to know how to play boardgames which is those days mainly meant chess, draughts and tables (backgammon), and
    • And the caveat of anything else that is proper.
Stolen from here:

No comments: