For soothly ther was no disconfiture.
For fallyng nys nat but an aventure,
Ne to be lad by force unto the stake
Unyolden, and with twenty knyghtes take,
O persone allone, withouten mo,
And haryed forth by arme, foot, and too,
And eke his steede dryven forth with staves
With footmen, bothe yemen and eek knaves –
It nas arretted hym no vileynye;
Ther may no man clepen it cowardye.

– Geoffrey Chaucer

The Canterbury Tales, The Knight’s Tale. There is a great deal of sympathy and comfort for Palamon and his losing team here. Falling from your horse and being forcefully taken by twenty nights without surrendering is no shame or loss of honor, the narrator says. No man could call it cowardice.