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Middle English began in the late 11th century with the Norman conquest of England.Old English literature, or Anglo-Saxon literature, encompasses the surviving literature written in Old English in Anglo-Saxon England, in the period after the settlement of the Saxons and other Germanic tribes in England (Jutes and the Angles) c.Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a late 14th-century Middle English alliterative romance.It is one of the better-known Arthurian stories of an established type known as the "beheading game".Political power was no longer in English hands, so that the West Saxon literary language had no more influence than any other dialect and Middle English literature was written in the many dialects that corresponded to the region, history, culture, and background of individual writers.Middle English Bible translations, notably Wycliffe's Bible, helped to establish English as a literary language.
This article is focused on English-language literature rather than the literature of England, so that it includes writers from Scotland, Wales, and the whole of Ireland, as well as literature in English from countries of the former British Empire, including the United States.
However, until the early 19th century, it only deals with the literature of the United Kingdom and Ireland.
It does not include literature written in the other languages of Britain.
Developing from Welsh, Irish and English tradition, Sir Gawain highlights the importance of honour and chivalry.
Preserved in the same manuscript with Sir Gawayne were three other poems, now generally accepted as the work of the same author, including an intricate elegiac poem, Pearl.