The Green Knight (novel)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
The Green Knight
Cover of the first edition
AuthorIris Murdoch
Cover artistRembrandt, The Polish Rider
CountryUnited Kingdom
PublisherChatto & Windus
Publication date
Media typePrint

The Green Knight is the 25th novel by the British writer and philosopher Iris Murdoch, first published in 1993.

Plot summary[edit]

The lives of Louise Anderson and her daughters Aleph, Sefton and Moy become intertwined with a mystical character whose destiny both affects and informs the novel's central conflicts which include a murder that never actually occurs, sibling rivalry, love triangles, and one extremely sentient dog who dearly misses his owner. This novel loosely parodies the medieval poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; however, it is largely a comedy of errors with bizarre twists and turns in circumstances that threaten the stability of a circle of friends in a London community.


  • Louise Anderson, an emotionally repressed mother of three girls
  • Sefton, daughter of Louise, a student and lover of history
  • Aleph, daughter of Louise, an extremely beautiful and desired young lady
  • Moy, daughter of Louise, a psychic animal lover
  • Joan, a childhood friend of Louise and mother of Harvey
  • Harvey, Joan's son who breaks his foot
  • Clement, brother of Lucas who is also his nemesis
  • Lucas, a dark, Byronic figure who mentally tortures his brother Clement, the antagonist
  • Bellamy, a wannabe monk
  • Peter, a gentlemen who was assaulted by Lucas and has come back to demand reparation
  • Anax, a border collie who desperately misses Bellamy who gave him up to prove his Christian convictions