When you think of knights, you probably think of the gallant plate armored man atop a beautiful steed.  Did you ever wonder what it took to become a knight?  It was no easy task.

It all started at a very young age, usually seven years old, when the child of a nobleman or knight would be sent to become a page.  There, he learned horsemanship, swordsmanship and performed other duties around the castle.  One of the games he would play would consist of fighting with wooden swords on piggy back.  This would teach him the balance and skills required in mounted combat.  Can you imagine sending your young seven year old son to another household to work?

Between ten years and fourteen years old, the boy would start his squire’s training and be attached to a knight.  It was during this age strength was developed, fitness encouraged and he was taught skill with weapons.  His duties also included caring for the knight’s horse and maintaining his weapons, as well as learning courtly manners.  It was during this time when his training became far more dangerous.  Injuries happened all the time, as well as deaths.  Squires were required to be on the battlefield with his knight, attending him and his horse.

Usually around the age of 21, the squire would be dubbed a knight through an elaborate ceremony.

It was possible for any free man to become a knight.  The process of training and equipping was very expensive.  Generally, knights came from a noble or wealthy family because they needed money and connections.  Lacking these, some men never reached knighthood.  However, they could prove themselves on the battlefield and be knighted that way.

Many heroes in my novels are either knights or fallen knights.  In my novel Angel’s Assassin, my hero Damien was trained much the same as a knight.  He was never a page, but when his master bought him, he began a grueling regiment of learning.  Damien was taught skills with a sword and hand to hand combat.  Failure was not an option.  It was a ruthless time in his life, a much darker training then that of the knights, to be sure.

In The Angel and the Prince, both my hero Bryce Princeton and my heroine, Ryen De Bouriez are knights.  This novel is set during the One Hundred Years war between England and France.

In A Knight of Honor, Slane Donovan, is a knight…of honor.

Please check out all my novels.  And next time you see a knight atop his valiant steed, remember all of the training he had to go through!


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