Becoming a Knight Page Age 7 Serving in

Becoming a Knight Page Age 7 Serving in

Becoming a Knight Page Age 7 Serving in household Learning swordplay Playing chess and other strategy games

Hunting with hawks and falcons Learning code of courtesy expected of knight A boy started on his way to knighthood at about the age of seven or eight. At this time, he was sent to a Lord's castle to be trained for knighthood. This

young trainee was known as a page. During his time as a page, he learned about horses, armor and weapons. Because hunting was so important, a page had to learn how to handle hawks and falcons, as well as to cut up a deer for venison. Since a page was also

expected to serve the meals at the knight's table, they had to learn how to carve the meat properly before becoming a knight. Pages practiced fighting with a sword against a wooden stake, or "pell" to develop muscles needed in becoming a

strong knight. A page had to learn to skillfully use a bow and arrow for hunting and often practiced this skill by competing with others. Pages also had to clean the coats of mail by rolling it in a barrel filled with sand. A knight not only had to know how to

fight in battle, but he also had to learn how to be courteous. The lady of the castle taught a young page manners and social graces. He would learn how to sing, play instruments and dance from the lady. A priest would give the page religious

training and he would often teach the page how to do basic reading and writing. Squire Age 13 14 Acting as personal servant to knight

Learning jousting Assisting knight in battle Taking charge of prisoners captured in battle At the age of fourteen the page became a squire. Squires had to follow

their master on the battlefield to protect him if he would fall. From the 13th century, squires fought on the battlefield beside their knight. A squire was responsible for dressing the knight for battles

and tournaments. He was the knight's assistant and the only one allowed to help the knight. The squire was responsible for taking care of the knight's armor and weapons.

He had to become skilled in the use of the armor as well as the weapons. A squire had to get used to wearing the armor so it would be second nature to him when worn. A squire had to become skilled in

using the lance, spear, or sword. He had to practice so that the lance did not run back through his fingers when he struck the knight. He practiced against a wooden dummy called a quintain. A quintain was a heavy weighted

sack or dummy in the form of a human. It was hung on a wooden pole along with a shield. The squire had to hit the shield in it's center. When hit, the whole structure would spin around and around. The page had to move out of the way quickly without getting

hit and knocked off his horse by the weighted bag! Knight Age 18 22 Serving lords as warriors Overseeing land Taking part in tournaments

When considered ready, generally between the ages of eighteen and twenty, a squire was dubbed a knight. This was often performed by the knight who trained him.

On the eve before becoming a knight, the squire confessed his sins to a priest. He was given a symbolic bath and then he fasted, cleansing his soul. Dressed all in white he prayed and kept watch over his armor and his weapons in the chapel

all night. The next morning he would be dressed in symbolically colored clothes - red (for his blood), white (for purity), and brown (for the return to the earth when he died). Gilded spurs were

attached to his ankles and he was "girded" with a sword. By a tap on each shoulder with a sword, he was dubbed a knight, thus reminding him of his vows he promised to uphold. If a knight broke his vows or was

dishonorable, he was stripped of his knighthood in another ceremony to bury him, because in the Middle Ages, " a knight without honor is no longer alive." There were two other ways for one to become a knight. If there

was a battle and the King needed additional men, he would knight a number of squires to have enough men to fight. Also, one could become a knight for showing bravery and courage in battle.

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