More Literature Analysis of a Knight of the White Cross

In my last essay I talked about the setting and style of the book assigned for English, so today I’ll be writing about the character development and plot.

 

The Plot development of A Knight of the White Cross, by G.A. Henty

As I said in my last essay, most of Henty’s books pretty much all have the same base story. A handsome, strong, young man rises in fame and fortune and becomes a hero to the country. They normally end up with the fella’ marrying a gal that he rescued from some terrible thing. In A Knight of the White Cross, a young man named Gervaise joins the Order of St. John, in the magnificent city of Rhodes. He has a good thinking head, as well as being a great warrior at a young age (due to the training he received ever since he was a small child). He is a Page to the Grand Master for 3 years, before becoming a professed knight. Soon after, he was sent on a galley with a bunch of other knights. They encountered 5 or 6 pirate ships that they eventually captured with the help of two other galleys that were also on patrol. While out on the ocean, Gervaise showed himself worthy of being dubbed a real Knight upon their return. In later events, Gervaise did lots of things that earned him great renown including capturing 13 pirate ships and destroying 10 more with only one galley. He was a favorite with the Grand Master and all his fellow knights. He took part in the defense of Rhodes during the famous siege of Rhodes. In the end of the book, he marries a girl from Genoa and lives happily ever after.

Character Development

Really the only characters that develop enough to mention are Gervaise, his best friend Ralph Harcourt, and Lady Claudia (the girl he marries). Gervaise starts out being a 13-year-old boy, working as Page to the Grand master of the Order of St. John. Later on, he becomes a professed knight, then a real knight, the captain of a galley (at the age of 17), a slave (he got captured, but then escapes), and then finally a married man. Sir Ralph Harcourt starts out as a professed knight and becomes a real knight at the same time as Gervaise. He is 1st mate to Gervaise on his galley, and eventually, gets awarded with the command of his own galley. Lady Claudia is first introduced in the book as a serious 14-year-old girl. She isn’t talked about a lot since she lives in a whole different country than Gervaise, but she’s talked about enough to know that as she became a woman, she was the beauty of Genoa, and refused many offers for her hand in marriage. When Gervaise asks her to marry him, she accepts and becomes his wife.

 

Advertisements

The Anglo-Spanish War

Odessa O.
Teacher: Bradley Fish Jr.
Subject: History

This war is what gave England it’s great naval supremacy.  Spain was determined to take the English throne and return the country to Catholicism, while England was equally determined to keep the throne and also keep the freedom of religion that Elizabeth I had brought when she ascended the throne in 1558.  Philip II of Spain built a fleet of 130 huge ships especially to attack England. It was called the Armada, which in Spanish, means Navy.

Mary Tudor had died, and her half-sister Elizabeth had been crowned queen. But, Mary had married Philip II, the king of Spain.  So, when Mary died in 1558, and Elizabeth became queen, he believed that he should get some of the English throne, or at least Elizabeth’s hand in marriage.  She refused to marry him (in fact, she never got married at all).  So, Philip decided to try to overthrow Elizabeth and take England for himself.

Philip started building a fleet of 130 ships that were huge. Those 130 were so huge that they held 26,000 men.  Elizabeth knew that if the Armada landed in England, they were as good as dead, so under Lord Howard of Effingham and Sir Frances Drake, the English navy met the massive Spanish Armada in the English channel.

The Battle went poorly for the Spaniards. The weather was against them, the English had small ships that could run circles around their huge ones, plus the English Channel wasn’t super wide, so it was a lot easier for the English navy to maneuver and get around.  To top it off, the English sent a few fire-ships over that lit a bunch of Spain’s fleet on fire.  The Armada was so crippled that it returned to Spain without even landing on English Ground.

The Anglo-Spanish war didn’t officially end until 1604 when King James (who became king after Elizabeth I died) instituted the treaty of London that ended the war.