Study Guide

Alanna: The First Adventure Principles

By Tamora Pierce

Principles

Learning to be a knight in Alanna: The First Adventure apparently involves a lot of chivalry, honor, duty, and all that good stuff. It's not just bashing things with swords, since knights are called on to be teachers, diplomats, and leaders. The Code of Chivalry gets a lot of talking-time in this book, and for good reason: it's the manual for how knights must conduct themselves. Kind of like a driving manual, but with fewer diagrams. Alanna (along with the other pages and squires) is hungry for this kind of instruction, while older knights like Sir Myles are skeptical that the Code of Chivalry provides everything they need to live fulfilled and happy lives. Read on and judge for yourself whether Tortall's knightly principles are awesome or awful.

Questions About Principles

  1. Why do you think Sir Myles is so opposed to living life according to the Code of Chivalry?
  2. What are the main ideas in the Code of Chivalry as far as you can tell?
  3. Why is it so important to Alanna to fight her own battles?
  4. If you were in Alanna's shoes, would you continue to take beatings from Ralon, or ask for help in the way she did, or ask for help in some other way?

Chew on This

The Code of Chivalry requires too much sacrifice to be a sustainable life philosophy.

As the underdog, Alanna is better equipped to understand and enforce the Code of Chivalry than any of the other pages or squires.