The Virtues of Knighthood, also known as the Knightly Virtues, the Virtues of the Chivalric Knight and the Paths of Virtue, are the ancient styles of combat perfected by GiIles le Breton and his mighty Companions. These virtues have been emulated ever since by the greatest of Bretonnia's Lords and warrior-heroes.
The history of Bretonnia is replete with tales of honour and glory, and none are more glorious than those of Gilles and his knightly Companions. Together, they freed their land from the depredations of Orcs, Chaos and the Undead before founding the kingdom of Bretonnia. Each of these knights represented the pinnacle of martial achievement and nobility, and throughout Bretonnian history, every knight since then has held them up as virtuous examples of all that is best about their code of honour. Each of the Companions of Gilles exemplified a particular virtue of battle and later knights would seek to emulate the virtue of one of these knights in battle.
- Virtue of Confidence - Carleond of Couronne would challenge any foe to single combat, such was his confidence in his prowess.
- Virtue of Duty - Thierulf of Lyonesse was the most loyal of the Companions, always fighting at the side of his liege.
- Virtue of Empathy - Martrud of Montfort always championed the peasants and was loved by them in return.
- Virtue of Heroism - Gilles of Bastonne was known as the slayer of monsters, renowned for killing creatures of great size.
- Virtue of the Ideal - Landuin of Mousillon was the peerless knight, pure in heart, skilled in arm, and wise of mind.
- Virtue of the Impetuous Knight - Balduin of Brionne was always in the forefront of battle, first to engage with his enemies.
- Virtue of the Joust - Folgar of Artois was unmatched in his skill with the lance, save by Landuin himself.
- Virtue of Knightly Temper - Beren of Gisoreux was ever swift to deal death to his foes, striking twice before they could respond.
- Virtue of Noble Disdain - Fredemund of Aquitaine never lost his contempt for those who used cowardly weapons rather than fighting face-to-face.
- Virtue of the Penitent - Corduin of L'Anguille ever mourned the loss of his beloved to the curse of a hag, yet he fought bravely when summoned.
- Virtue of Purity - Rademund of Quenelles was the most virtuous champion of the Lady, upholding her honour in every battle.
- Virtue of Stoicism - Lambard of Carcassonne stood firm in the face of fear, and his bravery steeled those around him.
- "That which is sacrosanct I shall preserve. That which is sublime I will protect. That which threatens I will destroy. For my holy wrath will know no bounds..."
- —The Grail Vow.
The Grail Virtues are only available to Grail Knights, who have truly mastered the fighting styles of the Companions. They are noticeably stronger than the Virtues of Knighthood and are an important part of the reason why Grail Knights are so respected in Bretonnia.
Other Knightly Virtues
Whilst all Bretonnian heroes seek to master the fighting styles of the Companions, some have also managed to develop their own, unique virtues, or mastered multiple forms of combat:
- The Puissant Virtue - Utilised by Louen Leoncoeur, this fighting-style was named the "Virtue of the Lionheart" by the Fay Enchantress upon his ascension to the Bretonnian throne. It allows the King to strike confidently with the speed and ferocity of his namesake, all while combining traits from the Virtue of Purity.[1a]
- Monster Slayer Virtues - Henri le Massif's unique virtues make him almost indomitable in the face of the largest and most fearsome abominations.