Pride is a strong theme that flows throughout almost all old British Literature. In my opinion, the literature of medieval times and so on, are more honest than literature of today which does not display the pride issue so blatantly. And yet it is still a major issue, perhaps even more in modern times. .
We can first see the matter of pride in the Anglo-Saxon story, Beowulf. Pride is evident in Grendel the monster. He obviously thought he could kill whomever he wanted whenever he wanted, which is pride. Beowulf was also proud, but it was portrayed as a good quality. He took pride in his life, in his country and in his honor. .
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight has a very clear portrayal of pride. Sir Gawain was proud because he believed that he could fight the knight, which he successfully did, so he had a reason for his pride but that was no excuse for it. .
I believe that pride really is the root of all evil. When you think about it, anything you do can be traced ultimately back to pride. In Medieval culture pride was the worst of the seven deadly sins. There was a big deal made about pride. This is why it is portrayed in so many of the stories. The stories of today do not claim pride to be the main problems. There is always something else, even though you can still trace it back to pride. Perhaps people of today are to prideful to admit that pride is their problem so they would rather ignore the issue than address it. But that didn't stop the old writers, they continued writing about pride. Maybe it was just customary and it made for good gossip to talk about pride and the consequences of it. .
The Canterbury Tales is practically full of stories about pride and what happens when someone is prideful. The Wife of Bath's Tale is about a prince who had so much pride that he thought he could not marry someone ugly, but when he got ride of the pride, she turned beautiful, so it's almost a lesson saying that if u give up your pride you will be blessed.