Chivalry, orders of

Chivalry, orders of
Chivalric orders were a 14c creation with, to a lesser or greater degree, King Arthur and his knights of the Round Table in mind. There is a case for stating that an order of chivalry was and is one in which the number of members is limited. For example, the Most Noble Order of the *Garter, created by Edward III c. 1346, has no more than 25 members today, the original complement being 24. It is the highest civil and military honour in the gift of the monarch. Other associations or societies can be considered as confraternities if they have a corpus of statutes and hold meetings at regular intervals. A member's conduct was obviously important: he must not disgrace the order by being guilty of a reproachable offence or incurring dishonour or otherwise infringing the code of *chivalry. There must be no fautes en armes; he must remain un chevalier sans reproche. -

Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases. .

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