American Rhetoric: Movie Speech

"A Knight's Tale" (2001)


Geoffrey Chaucer: Second Declamation Honoring Sir Ulrich Von Lichtenstein of Gelderland

Audio mp3 of Address delivered by Paul Bettany



My lords! My ladies.

And everybody else here NOT sitting on a cushion:

Today, today, you find yourselves equals.

For you are all equally blessed.

For I have the pride, the privilege, nay, the pleasure

Of introducing to you a Knight, sired by Knights,

A Knight who can trace his lineage back beyond Charlemagne.

I first met him atop a mountain near Jerusalem,

Praying to God,

Asking His forgiveness,

For the Saracen blood spilt by his sword.

Next, he amazed me still further in Italy

When he saved a fatherless beauty

From the would-be ravishings

Of her dreadful Turkish uncle.

In Greece, he spent a year in silence

Just to better understand the sound of a whisper.

And so, without further gilding the lily,

And with no more ado,

I give to you the Seeker of Serenity,

The Protector of Italian Virginity,

The Enforcer of our Lord God,

The One --

The Only --

Sir Ulrich Von Lichtenstein!!!

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HTML transcription by Michael E. Eidenmuller.