Le Morte Darthur
Sir Thomas Malory's Book of
King Arthur and of his Noble
Knights of the Round Table
IN TWO VOLS.--VOL. II
Content of Chapters.
here follow the Chapters of the Tenth Book.>
How Sir Tristram jousted, and smote down King Arthur, because he
told him not the cause why he bare that shield . Chap. i.
How Sir Tristram saved Sir Palomides' life, and how they promised
to fight together within a fortnight . . Chap. ii.
How Sir Tristram sought a strong knight that had smitten him down,
and many other knights of the Round Table . Chap. iii.
How Sir Tristram smote down Sir Sagramore le Desirous and Sir
Dodinas le Savage . . . . Chap. iv.
How Sir Tristram met at the peron with Sir Launcelot, and how they
fought together unknown . . . . Chap. v.
How Sir Launcelot brought Sir Tristram to the court, and of the
joy that the king and other made for the coming of Sir
Tristram . . . . . . Chap. vi.
How for the despite of Sir Tristram King Mark came with two
knights into England, and how he slew one of the knights
How the king came to a fountain where he found Sir Lamorak
complaining for the love of King Lot's wife . Chap. viii.
How King Mark, Sir Lamorak, and Sir Dinadan came to a castle, and
how King Mark was known there . . Chap. ix.
How Sir Berluse met with King Mark, and how Sir Dinadan took his
part . . . . . . Chap. x.
How King Mark mocked Sir Dinadan, and how they met with six
knights of the Round Table . . . Chap. xi.
How the six knights sent Sir Dagonet to joust with King Mark, and
how King Mark refused him . . . Chap. xii.
How Sir Palomides by adventure met King Mark flying, and how he
overthrew Dagonet and other knights . . Chap. xiii.
How King Mark and Sir Dinadan heard Sir Palomides making great
sorrow and mourning for La Beale Isoud . . Chap. xiv.
How the king had slain Amant wrongfully to-fore King Arthur, and
Sir Launcelot fetched King Mark to King Arthur . Chap. xv.
How Sir Dinadan told Sir Palomides of the battle between Sir
Launcelot and Sir Tristram . . . Chap. xvi.
How Sir Lamorak jousted with divers knights of the castle wherein
was Morgan le Fay . . . . Chap. xvii.
How Sir Palomides would have jousted for Sir Lamorak with the
knights of the castle . . . . Chap. xviii.
How Sir Lamorak jousted with Sir Palomides, and hurt him grievously
. . . . . . Chap xix.
How it was told Sir Launcelot that Dagonet chased King Mark, and
how a knight overthrew him and six knights . Chap. xx.
How King Arthur let do cry a jousts, and how Sir Lamorak came in,
and overthrew Sir Gawaine and many other . Chap. xxi.
How King Arthur made King Mark to be accorded with Sir Tristram,
and how they departed toward Cornwall . . Chap. xxii.
How Sir Percivale was made knight of King Arthur, and how a dumb
maid spake, and brought him to the Round Table Chap. xxiii.
How Sir Lamorak lay with King Lot's wife, and how Sir Gaheris slew
her which was his own mother . . . Chap. xxiv.
How Sir Agravaine and Sir Mordred met with a knight fleeing, and
how they both were overthrown, and of Sir Dinadan Chap. xxv.
How King Arthur, the Queen, and Launcelot received letters out of
Cornwall, and of the answer again . . Chap. xxvi.
How Sir Launcelot was wroth with the letter that he received from
King Mark, and of Dinadan which made a lay of King Mark Chap. xxvii.
How Sir Tristram was hurt, and of a war made to King Mark; and
of Sir Tristram how he promised to rescue him . Chap. xxviii.
How Sir Tristram overcame the battle, and how Elias desired a man
to fight body for body . . . . Chap. xxix.
How Sir Elias and Sir Tristram fought together for the truage, and
how Sir Tristram slew Elias in the field . . Chap. xxx.
How at a great feast that King Mark made an harper came and sang
the lay that Dinadan had made . . . Chap. xxxi.
How King Mark slew by treason his brother Boudwin, for good
service that he had done to him . . . Chap. xxxii.
How Anglides, Boudwin's wife, escaped with her young son, Alisander
le Orphelin, and came to the Castle of Arundel . Chap. xxxiii.
How Anglides gave the bloody doublet to Alisander, her son, the
same day that he was made knight, and the charge withal Chap. xxxiv.
How it was told to King Mark of Sir Alisander, and how he would
have slain Sir Sadok for saving of his life . . Chap. xxxv.
How Sir Alisander won the prize at a tournament, and of Morgan le
Fay: and how he fought with Sir Malgrin, and slew him Chap. xxxvi.
How Queen Morgan le Fay had Alisander in her castle, and how she
healed his wounds . . . . Chap xxxvii.
How Alisander was delivered from the queen Morgan le Fay by the
mean of a damosel . . . . Chap. xxxviii.
How Alisander met with Alice la Beale Pilgrim, and how he jousted
with two knights; and after of him and of Sir Mordred Chap. xxxix.
How Sir Galahalt did do cry a jousts in Surluse, and Queen Guenever's
knights should joust against all that would come . Chap. xl.
How Sir Launcelot fought in the tournament, and how Sir Palomides
did arms there for a damosel . . . Chap. xli.
How Sir Galahalt and Sir Palomides fought together, and of Sir
Dinadan and Sir Galahalt . . . Chap. xlii.
How Sir Archade appealed Sir Palomides of treason, and how Sir
Palomides slew him . . . . Chap. xliii.
Of the third day, and how Sir Palomides jousted with Sir Lamorak
and other things . . . . . Chap. xliv.
Of the fourth day, and of many great feats of arms . Chap. xlv.
Of the fifth day, and how Sir Lamorak behaved him . Chap. xlvi.
How Palomides fought with Corsabrin for a lady, and how Palomides
slew Corsabrin . . . . Chap. xlvii.
Of the sixth day, and what was then done . . Chap. xlviii.
Of the seventh battle, and how Sir Launcelot, being disguised like a
maid, smote down Sir Dinadan . . . Chap. xlix.
How by treason Sir Tristram was brought to a tournament for to have
been slain, and how he was put in prison . . Chap. l.
How King Mark let do counterfeit letters from the Pope, and how
Sir Percivale delivered Sir Tristram out of prison . Chap. li.
How Sir Tristram and La Beale Isoud came into England, and how
Sir Launcelot brought them to Joyous Gard . Chap. lii.
How by the counsel of Beale Isoud Tristram rode armed, and how
he met with Sir Palomides . . . Chap. liii.
Of Sir Palomides, and how he met with Sir Bleoberis and with Sir
Ector, and of Sir Percivale . . . Chap. liv.
How Sir Tristram met with Sir Dinadan, and of their devices, and
what he said to Sir Gawaine's brethren . . Chap. lv.
How Sir Tristram smote down Sir Agravaine and Sir Gaheris, and
how Sir Dinadan was sent for by La Beale Isoud . Chap. lvi.
How Sir Dinadan met with Sir Tristram, and with jousting with Sir
Palomides, Sir Dinadan knew him . . Chap. lvii.
How they approached the Castle Lonazep, and of other devices of the
death of Sir Lamorak . . . . Chap. lviii.
How they came to Humber bank, and how they found a ship there,
wherein lay the body of King Hermance . . Chap. lix.
How Sir Tristram with his fellowship came and were with an host
which after fought with Sir Tristram; and other matters Chap. lx.
How Palomides went for to fight with two brethren for the death of
King Hermance . . . . . Chap. lxi.
The copy of the letter written for to revenge the king's death, and
how Sir Palomides fought for to have the battle . Chap. lxii.
Of the preparation of Sir Palomides and the two brethren that should
fight with him . . . . . Chap. lxiii.
Of the battle between Sir Palomides and the two brethren, and how
the two brethren were slain . . . Chap. lxiv.
How Sir Tristram and Sir Palomides met Breuse Saunce Pit
how Sir Tristram and La Beale Isoud went unto Lonazep Chap. lxv.
How Sir Palomides jousted with Sir Galihodin, and after with Sir
Gawaine, and smote them down . . . Chap. lxvi.
How Sir Tristram and his fellowship came unto the tournament of
Lonazep; and of divers jousts and matters . Chap. lxvii.
How Sir Tristram and his fellowship jousted, and of the noble feats
that they did in that tourneying . . . Chap. lxviii.
How Sir Tristram was unhorsed and smitten down by Sir Launcelot,
and after that Sir Tristram smote down King Arthur Chap. lxix.
How Sir Tristram changed his harness and it was all red, and how he
demeaned him, and how Sir Palomides slew Launcelot's horse Chap. lxx.
How Sir Launcelot said to Sir Palomides, and how the prize of that
day was given to Sir Palomides . . . Chap. lxxi.
How Sir Dinadan provoked Sir Tristram to do well . Chap. lxxii
How King Arthur and Sir Launcelot came to see La Beale Isoud, and
how Palomides smote down King Arthur . . Chap. lxxiii.
How the second day Palomides forsook Sir Tristram, and went to the
contrary party against him . . . Chap. lxxiv.
How Sir Tristram departed out of the field, and awaked Sir Dinadan,
and changed his array into black . . . Chap. lxxv.
How Sir Palomides changed his shield and armour for to hurt Sir
Tristram, and how Sir Launcelot did to Sir Tristram Chap. lxxvi.
How Sir Tristram departed with La Beale Isoud, and how Palomides
followed and excused him . . . Chap. lxxvii
How King Arthur and Sir Launcelot came unto their pavilions as
they sat at supper, and of Palomides . . Chap. lxxviii.
How Sir Tristram and Sir Palomides did the next day, and how King
Arthur was unhorsed . . . . Chap. lxxix.
How Sir Tristram turned to King Arthur's side, and how Sir
Palomides would not . . . . Chap. lxxx.
How Sir Bleoberis and Sir Ector reported to Queen Guenever of the
beauty of La Beale Isoud . . . . Chap. lxxxi.
How Epinogris complained by a well, and how Sir Palomides came
and found him, and of their both sorrows . . Chap. lxxxii
How Sir Palomides brought to Sir Epinogris his lady; and how Sir
Palomides and Sir Safere were assailed . . Chap. lxxxiii.
[How Sir Palomides and Sir Safere conducted Sir Epinogris to his
castle, and of other adventures] . . . Chap. lxxxiv.
How Sir Tristram made him ready to rescue Sir Palomides, but Sir
Launcelot rescued him or he came . . Chap. lxxxv
How Sir Tristram and Sir Launcelot, with Palomides, came to Joyous
Gard; and of Palomides and Sir Tristram . Chap. lxxxvi.
How there was a day set between Sir Tristram and Sir Palomides for
to fight, and how Sir Tristram was hurt . . Chap. lxxxvii.
How Sir Palomides kept his day for to have foughten, but Sir Tristram
might not come; and other things . Chap. lxxxviii.
Here follow the Chapters of the Eleventh Book
How Sir Launcelot rode on his adventure, and how he holp a dolorous
lady from her pain, and how that he fought with a dragon Chap. i.
How Sir Launcelot came to Pelles, and of the Sangreal, and how he
begat Galahad on Elaine, King Pelles' daughter . Chap. ii.
How Sir Launcelot was displeased when he knew that he had lain by
Elaine, and how she was delivered of Galahad . Chap. iii.
How Sir Bors came to Dame Elaine and saw Galahad, and how he
was fed with the Sangreal . . . Chap. iv.
How Sir Bors made Sir Pedivere to yield him, and of marvellous
adventures that he had, and how he achieved them Chap. v.
How Sir Bors departed; and how Sir Launcelot was rebuked of Queen
Guenever, and of his excuse . . . Chap. vi.
How Dame Elaine, Galahad's mother, came in great estate unto
Camelot, and how Sir Launcelot behaved him there Chap. vii.
How Dame Brisen by enchantment brought Sir Launcelot to Dame
Elaine's bed, and how Queen Guenever rebuked him Chap. viii.
How Dame Elaine was commanded by Queen Guenever to void the
court, and how Sir Launcelot became mad . Chap. ix.
What sorrow Queen Guenever made for Sir Launcelot, and how he
was sought by knights of his kin . . . Chap. x.
How a servant of Sir Aglovale's was slain, and what vengeance Sir
Aglovale and Sir Percivale did therefore . . Chap. xi.
How Sir Percivale departed secretly from his brother, and how he
loosed a knight bound with a chain, and other doings Chap. xii.
How Sir Percivale met with Sir Ector, and how they fought long, and
each had almost slain other . . . Chap. xiii.
How by miracle they were both made whole by the coming of the
holy vessel of Sangreal . . . . Chap. xiv.
Here follow the Chapters of the Tenth Book
How Sir Launcelot in his madness took a sword and fought with a
knight, and after leapt into a bed . . . Chap. i.
How Sir Launcelot was carried in an horse litter, and how Sir
Launcelot rescued Sir Bliant, his host . . Chap. ii.
How Sir Launcelot fought against a boar and slew him, and how he
was hurt, and brought to an hermitage . . Chap. iii.
How Sir Launcelot was known by Dame Elaine, and was borne into a
chamber and after healed by the Sangreal . Chap. iv.
How Sir Launcelot, after that he was whole and had his mind, he
was ashamed, and how that Elaine desired a castle for him Chap. v.
How Sir Launcelot came into the Joyous Isle, and there he named
himself Le Chevaler Mal Fet . . . Chap. vi.
Of a great tourneying in the Joyous Isle, and how Sir Percivale and
Sir Ector came thither, and Sir Percivale fought with him Chap. vii.
How each of them knew other, and of their courtesy, and how his
brother Ector came to him, and of their joy . Chap. viii.
How Sir Bors and Sir Lionel came to King Brandegore, and how Sir
Bors took his son Helin le Blank, and of Sir Launcelot Chap. ix.
How Sir Launcelot with Sir Percivale and Sir Ector came to the
court, and of the great joy of him . . . Chap. x.
How La Beale Isoud counselled Sir Tristram to go unto the court, to
the great feast of Pentecost . . . Chap. xi.
How Sir Tristram departed unarmed and met with Sir Palomides, and
how they smote each other, and how Palomides forbare him Chap. xii.
How Sir Tristram gat him harness of a knight which was hurt, and
how he overthrew Sir Palomides . . . Chap. xiii.
How Sir Tristram and Sir Palomides fought long together, and after
accorded, and Sir Tristram made him to be christened Chap. xiv.
Here follow the Chapters of the Thirteenth Book
How at the vigil of the Feast of Pentecost entered into the hall before
King Arthur a damosel, and desired Sir Launcelot for to come
and dub a knight, and how he went with her . Chap. i.
How the letters were found written in the Siege Perilous, and of the
marvellous adventure of the sword in a stone . Chap. ii.
How Sir Gawaine assayed to draw out the sword, and how an old man
brought in Galahad . . . . Chap. iii.
How the old man brought Galahad to the Siege Perilous and set him
therein, and how all the knights marvelled . Chap. iv.
How King Arthur shewed the stone hoving on the water to Galahad,
and how he drew out the sword . . . Chap. v.
How King Arthur had all the knights together for to joust in the
meadow beside Camelot or they departed . . Chap. vi.
How the queen desired to see Galahad; and how after, all the knights
were replenished with the Holy Sangreal, and how they avowed
the enquest of the same . . . . Chap. vii
How great sorrow was made of the king and the queen and ladies for
the departing of the knights, and how they departed Chap. viii.
How Galahad gat him a shield, and how they sped that presumed to
take down the said shield . . . Chap. ix.
How Galahad departed with the shield, and how King Evelake had
received the shield of Joseph of Aramathie . Chap. x.
How Joseph made a cross on the white shield with his blood, and how
Galahad was by a monk brought to a tomb . Chap. xi.
Of the marvel that Sir Galahad saw and heard in the tomb, and how
he made Melias knight . . . . Chap. xii.
Of the adventure that Melias had, and how Galahad revenged him,
and how Melias was carried into an abbey . Chap. xiii.
How Galahad departed, and how he was commanded to go to the
Castle of Maidens to destroy the wicked custom . Chap. xiv.
How Sir Galahad fought with the knights of the castle, and destroyed
the wicked custom . . . . Chap. xv.
How Sir Gawaine came to the abbey for to follow Galahad, and how
he was shriven to a hermit . . . Chap. xvi.
How Sir Galahad met with Sir Launcelot and Sir Percivale, and smote
them down, and departed from them . . Chap. xvii.
How Sir Launcelot, half sleeping and half waking, saw a sick man
borne in a litter, and how he was healed by the Sangreal Chap. xviii.
How a voice spake to Sir Launcelot, and how he found his horse and
his helm borne away, and after went afoot . Chap. xix.
How Sir Launcelot was shriven, and what sorrow he made, and of
good ensamples which were shewed him . . Chap. xx.
here follow the Chapters of the Fourteenth Book
How Sir Percivale came to a recluse and asked her counsel, and how
she told him that she was his aunt . . Chap. i.
How Merlin likened the Round Table to the world, and how the
knights that should achieve the Sangreal should be known Chap. ii.
How Sir Percivale came into a monastery, where he found King Evelake,
which was an old man . . . Chap. iii.
How Sir Percivale saw many men of arms bearing a dead knight, and
how he fought against them . . . Chap. iv.
How a yeoman desired him to get again an horse, and how Sir Percivale's
hackney was slain, and how he gat an horse. Chap. v.
Of the great danger that Sir Percivale was in by his horse, and how he
saw a serpent and a lion fight . . . Chap. vi.
Of the advision that Sir Percivale saw, and how his advision was
expounded, and of his lion . . . Chap. vii.
How Sir Percivale saw a ship coming to him-ward, and how the lady
of the ship told him of her disheritance . . Chap. viii.
How Sir Percivale promised her help, and how he required her of love,
and how he was saved from the fiend . . Chap. ix.
How Sir Percivale for penance rove himself through the thigh; and
how she was known for the devil . . . Chap. x.
here follow the Chapters of the Fifteenth Book which is of
How Sir Launcelot came into a chapel, where he found dead, in a white
shirt, a man of religion, of an hundred winter old . Chap i.
Of a dead man, how men would have hewn him, and it would not
be, and how Sir Launcelot took the hair of the dead man Chap. ii.
Of an advision that Sir Launcelot had, and how he told it to an hermit,
and desired counsel of him . . . Chap. iii.
How the hermit expounded to Sir Launcelot his advision, and told
him that Sir Galahad was his son. . . Chap. iv.
How Sir Launcelot jousted with many knights, and how he was taken Chap.
How Sir Launcelot told his advision to a woman, and how she
expounded it to him . . . . Chap. vi.
here follow the Chapters of the Sixteenth Book
How Sir Gawaine was nigh weary of the quest of the Sangreal, and of
his marvellous dream . . . . Chap. i.
Of the advision of Sir Ector, and how he jousted with Sir Uwaine les
Avoutres, his sworn brother . . . Chap. ii.
How Sir Gawaine and Sir Ector came to an hermitage to be confessed,
and how they told to the hermit their advisions . Chap. iii.
How the hermit expounded their advision . . Chap. iv.
Of the good counsel that the hermit gave to them . Chap. v.
How Sir Bors met with an hermit, and how he was confessed to him,
and of his penance enjoined to him . . Chap. vi.
How Sir Bors was lodged with a lady, and how he took upon him for
to get against a champion for her land . . Chap. vii.
Of a vision which Sir Bors had that night, and how he fought and
overcame his adversary . . . . Chap. viii.
How the lady was restored to her lands by the battle of Sir Bors, and
of his departing, and how he met Sir Lionel taken and beaten
with thorns, and also of a maid which should have been devoured Chap.
How Sir Bors left to rescue his brother, and rescued the damosel and
how it was told him that Lionel was dead . Chap. x.
How Sir Bors told his dream to a priest, which he had dreamed, and
of the counsel that the priest gave to him . . Chap. xi.
How the devil in a woman's likeness would have had Sir Bors to have
lain by her, and how by God's grace he escaped . Chap. xii.
Of the holy communication of an abbot to Sir Bors, and how the
abbot counselled him . . . . Chap. xiii.
How Sir Bors met with his brother Sir Lionel, and how Sir Lionel
would have slain Sir Bors . . . . Chap. xiv.
How Sir Colgrevance fought against Sir Lionel for to save Sir Bors
and how the hermit was slain . . . Chap. xv.
How Sir Lionel slew Sir Colgrevance, and how after he would have
slain Sir Bors . . . . . Chap. xvi.
How there came a voice which charged Sir Bors to touch him not, and
a cloud that came between them . . Chap. xvii.
here follow the Chapters of the Seventeenth Book
How Sir Galahad fought at a tournament, and how he was known of Sir
Gawaine and of Sir Ector de Maris . . Chap. i.
How Sir Galahad rode with a damosel, and came to the ship whereas ir
and Sir Percivale were in . . Chap. ii.
How Sir Galahad entered into the ship, and of a fair bed therein, with
marvellous things, and of a sword . . Chap. iii.
Of the marvels of the sword and of the scabbard . Chap. iv.
How King Pelles was smitten through both thighs because he drew the
and other marvellous histories . . Chap. v.
How Solomon took David's sword by the counsel of his wife, and of other
matters marvellous . . . . Chap. vi.
A wonderful tale of King Solomon and his wife . Chap. vii.
How Galahad and his fellows came to a castle, and how they were fought
withal, and how they slew their adversaries, and other
matters . . . . . . Chap. viii.
How the three knights, with Percivale's sister, came
into the waste forest, and
of an hart and four lions, and other things Chap. ix.
How they were desired of a strange custom, the which they would not
wherefore they fought and slew many knights Chap. x.
How Sir Percivale's sister bled a dish full of blood for to heal a lady,
wherefore she died; and how that the body was put in a ship Chap. xi.
How Galahad and Percivale found in a castle many tombs of maidens that
bled to death . . . . Chap. xii.
How Sir Launcelot entered into the ship where Sir Percivale's sister
lay dead, and how he met with Sir Galahad, his son Chap. xiii.
How a knight brought to Sir Galahad an horse, and bade him come from his
father, Sir Launcelot . . . Chap. xiv.
How Sir Launcelot was to-fore the door of the chamber wherein the Holy
Sangreal was . . . . Chap. xv.
How Sir Launcelot had lain four-and-twenty days and as many nights as a
dead man, and other divers matters . . Chap. xvi.
How Sir Launcelot returned towards Logris, and of other adventures which
saw in the way . . . . Chap. xvii.
How Galahad came to King Mordrains, and of other matters and
adventures . . . . . Chap. xviii.
How Sir Percivale and Sir Bors met with Sir Galahad, and how they
came to the castle of Carbonek, and other matters . Chap. xix.
How Galahad and his fellows were fed of the Holy Sangreal, and how
Our Lord appeared to them, and other things . Chap. xx.
How Galahad anointed with the blood of the spear the Maimed King,
and of other adventures . . . Chap. xxi.
How they were fed with the Sangreal while they were in prison, and
how Galahad was made king . . . Chap xxii.
Of the sorrow that Percivale and Bors made when Galahad was dead:
and of Percivale how he died, and other matters . Chap. xxiii.
here follow the Chapters of the Eighteenth Book.
Of the joy King Arthur and the queen had of the achievement of the
Sangreal; and how Launcelot fell to his old love again Chap. i.
How the queen commanded Sir Launcelot to avoid the court, and of
the sorrow that Launcelot made . . . Chap. ii.
How at a dinner that the queen made there was a knight enpoisoned,
which Sir Mador laid on the queen . . Chap. iii.
How Sir Mador appeached the queen of treason, and there was no
knight would fight for her at the first time . Chap. iv.
How the queen required Sir Bors to fight for her, and how he granted
upon condition; and how he warned Sir Launcelot thereof Chap. v.
How at the day Sir Bors made him ready for to fight for the queen;
and when he would fight how another discharged him Chap. vi.
How Sir Launcelot fought against Sir Mador for the queen, and how
he overcame Sir Mador, and discharged the queen Chap. vii.
How the truth was known by the Maiden of the Lake, and of divers
other matters . . . . . Chap. viii.
How Sir Launcelot rode to Astolat, and received a sleeve to wear upon
his helm at the request of a maid . . . Chap. ix.
How the tourney began at Winchester, and what knights were at the
Jousts; and other things . . . . Chap. x.
How Sir Launcelot and Sir Lavaine entered in the field against them
of King Arthur's court, and how Launcelot was hurt Chap. xi.
How Sir Launcelot and Sir Lavaine departed out of the field, and in
what jeopardy Launcelot was . . . Chap. xii.
How Launcelot was brought to an hermit for to be healed of his
wound, and of other matters . . . Chap. xiii.
How Sir Gawaine was lodged with the lord of Astolat, and there had
knowledge that it was Sir Launcelot that bare the red sleeve
Of the sorrow that Sir Bors had for the hurt of Launcelot; and of the
anger that the queen had because Launcelot bare the sleeve Chap. xv.
How Sir Bors sought Launcelot and found him in the hermitage, and
of the lamentation between them . . . Chap. xvi.
How Sir Launcelot armed him to assay if he might bear arms, and how
his wounds brast out again . . . Chap. xvii.
How Sir Bors returned and told tidings of Sir Launcelot; and of the
tourney, and to whom the prize was given . Chap. xviii.
Of the great lamentation of the Fair Maid of Astolat when Launcelot
should depart, and how she died for his love . Chap. xix.
How the corpse of the Maid of Astolat arrived to-fore King Arthur,
and of the burying, and how Sir Launcelot offered the mass-penny
Of great jousts done all a Christmas, and of a great jousts and tourney
ordained by King Arthur, and of Sir Launcelot . Chap. xxi.
How Launcelot after that he was hurt of a gentlewoman came to an
hermit, and of other matters . . . Chap. xxii.
How Sir Launcelot behaved him at the jousts, and other men also
How King Arthur marvelled much of the jousting in the field, and
how he rode and found Sir Launcelot . . Chap. xxiv.
How true love is likened to summer . . . Chap. xxv.
here follow the Chapters of the Nineteenth Book
How Queen Guenever rode a-Maying with certain knights of the
Round Table and clad all in green . . Chap. i.
How Sir Meliagrance took the queen and all her knights, which were
sore hurt in fighting . . . . Chap. ii.
How Sir Launcelot had word how the queen was taken, and how Sir
Meliagrance laid a bushment for Launcelot . Chap. iii.
How Sir Launcelot's horse was slain, and how Sir Launcelot rode in a
cart for to rescue the queen . . . Chap. iv.
How Sir Meliagrance required forgiveness of the queen, and how she
appeased Sir Launcelot; and other matters . Chap. v.
How Sir Launcelot came in the night to the queen and lay with her, and
how Sir Meliagrance appeached the queen of treason Chap. vi.
How Sir Launcelot answered for the queen, and waged battle against
Sir Meliagrance; and how Sir Launcelot was taken in a trap Chap. vii.
How Sir Launcelot was delivered out of prison by a lady, and took a
white courser and came for to keep his day . Chap. viii.
How Sir Launcelot came the same time that Sir Meliagrance abode
him in the field and dressed him to battle . Chap. ix.
How Sir Urre came into Arthur's court for to be healed of his wounds,
and how King Arthur would begin to handle him. Chap. x.
How King Arthur handled Sir Urre, and after him many other knights
of the Round Table . . . . Chap. xi.
How Sir Launcelot was commanded by Arthur to handle his wounds,
and anon he was all whole, and how they thanked God Chap. xii.
How there was a party made of an hundred knights against an hundred
knights, and of other matters . . . Chap. xiii.
here followeth the book of the Piteous History which
is of the Morte or Death of King Aurthur, and
the Chapters of the Twentieth Book.
How Sir Agravaine and Sir Mordred were busy upon Sir Gawaine for
to disclose the love between Sir Launcelot and Queen Guenever Chap. i.
How Sir Agravaine disclosed their love to King Arthur, and how King
Arthur gave them licence to take him . . Chap. ii.
How Sir Launcelot was espied in the queen's chamber, and how Sir
Agravaine and Sir Mordred came with twelve knights to slay him Chap.
How Sir Launcelot slew Sir Colgrevance, and armed him in his
harness, and after slew Sir Agravaine, and twelve of his fellows Chap.
How Sir Launcelot came to Sir Bors, and told him how he had sped,
and in what adventure he had been, and how he escaped Chap. v.
Of the counsel and advice that was taken by Sir Launcelot and his
friends for to save the queen . . . Chap. vi.
How Sir Mordred rode hastily to the king, to tell him of the affray
and death of Sir Agravaine and the other knights . Chap. vii.
How Sir Launcelot and his kinsmen rescued the queen from the fire,
and how he slew many knights . . . Chap. viii.
Of the sorrow and lamentation of King Arthur for the death of his
nephews and other good knights, and also for the queen, his wife Chap.
How King Arthur at the request of Sir Gawaine concluded to make
war against Sir Launcelot, and laid siege to his castle called
Joyous Gard . . . . . Chap. x.
Of the communication between King Arthur and Sir Launcelot, and
how King Arthur reproved him . . . Chap. xi.
How the cousins and kinsmen of Sir Launcelot excited him to go out
to battle, and how they made them ready . . Chap. xii.
How Sir Gawaine jousted and smote down Sir Lionel, and how Sir
Launcelot horsed King Arthur . . . Chap. liii.
How the Pope sent down his bulls to make peace, and how Sir
Launcelot brought the queen to King Arthur . Chap. xiv.
Of the deliverance of the queen to the king by Sir Launcelot, and
what language Sir Gawaine had to Sir Launcelot . Chap. xv.
Of the communication between Sir Gawaine and Sir Launcelot, with
much other language . . . . Chap. xvi.
How Sir Launcelot departed from the king and from Joyous Gard over
seaward, and what knights went with him . Chap. xvii.
How Sir Launcelot passed over the sea, and how he made great lords
of the knights that went with him . . Chap. xviii.
How King Arthur and Sir Gawaine made a great host ready to go over
sea to make war on Sir Launcelot . . Chap. xix.
What message Sir Gawaine sent to Sir Launcelot; and how King
Arthur laid siege to Benwick, and other matters . Chap. xx.
How Sir Launcelot and Sir Gawaine did battle together, and how Sir
Gawaine was overthrown and hurt . . Chap. xxi.
Of the sorrow that King Arthur made for the war, and of another
battle where also Sir Gawaine had the worse . Chap. xxii.
here follow the Chapters of the Twenty-first Book.
How Sir Mordred presumed and took on him to be King of England,
and would have married the queen, his father's wife Chap. i.
How after that King Arthur had tidings, he returned and came to
Dover, where Sir Mordred met him to let his landing; and of
the death of Sir Gawaine . . . . Chap. ii.
How after, Sir Gawaine's ghost appeared to King Arthur, and warned
him that he should not fight that day . . Chap. iii.
How by misadventure of an adder the battle began, where Mordred
was slain, and Arthur hurt to the death . . Chap. iv.
How King Arthur commanded to cast his sword Excalibur into the
water, and how he was delivered to ladies in a barge Chap. v.
How Sir Bedivere found him on the morn dead in an hermitage, and
how he abode there with the hermit . . Chap. vi.
Of the opinion of some men of the death of King Arthur; and how
Queen Guenever made her a nun in Almesbury . Chap. vii.
How when Sir Launcelot heard of the death of King Arthur, and of
Sir Gawaine, and other matters, he came into England Chap. viii.
How Sir Launcelot departed to seek the Queen Guenever, and how
he found her at Almesbury . . . Chap. ix.
How Sir Launcelot came to the hermitage where the Archbishop of
Canterbury was, and how he took the habit on him Chap. x.
How Sir Launcelot went with his seven fellows to Almesbury, and
found there Queen Guenever dead, whom they brought to
Glastonbury . . . . . Chap. xi.
How Sir Launcelot began to sicken, and after died, whose body was
borne to Joyous Gard for to be buried . . Chap. xii.
How Sir Ector found Sir Launcelot his brother dead, and how
Constantine reigned next after Arthur; and of the end of this
book . . . . . . Chap. xiii.
Explicit the Table.
How Sir Tristram jousted, and smote down King Arthur,
because he told him not the cause why he bare that shield.
AND if so be ye can descrive what ye bear, ye are worthy
to bear the arms. As for that, said Sir Tristram, I will
answer you; this shield was given me, not desired, of
Queen Morgan le Fay; and as for me, I can not descrive
these arms, for it is no point of my charge, and yet I
trust to God to bear them with worship. Truly, said
King Arthur, ye ought not to bear none arms but if ye
wist what ye bear: but I pray you tell me your name.
To what intent? said Sir Tristram. For I would wit,
said Arthur. Sir, ye shall not wit as at this time. Then
shall ye and I do battle together, said King Arthur.
Why, said Sir Tristram, will ye do battle with me but if
I tell you my name? and that little needeth you an ye
were a man of worship, for ye have seen me this day
have had great travail, and therefore ye are a villainous
knight to ask battle of me, considering my great travail;
howbeit I will not fail you, and have ye no doubt that I
fear not you; though you think you have me at a great
advantage yet shall I right well endure you. And there
withal King Arthur dressed his shield and his spear, and
Sir Tristram against him, and they came so eagerly
together. And there King Arthur brake his spear all to
pieces upon Sir Tristram's shield. But Sir Tristram hit
Arthur again, that horse and man fell to the earth. And
there was King Arthur wounded on the left side, a great
wound and a perilous.
Then when Sir Uwaine saw his lord Arthur lie on the
ground sore wounded, he was passing heavy. And then
he dressed his shield and his spear, and cried aloud unto
Sir Tristram and said: Knight, defend thee. So they
came together as thunder, and Sir Uwaine brised his spear
all to pieces upon Sir Tristram's shield, and Sir Tristram
smote him harder and sorer, with such a might that he
bare him clean out of his saddle to the earth. With that
Sir Tristram turned about and said: Fair knights, I had
no need to joust with you, for I have had enough to do
this day. Then arose Arthur and went to Sir Uwaine,
and said to Sir Tristram: We have as we have deserved,
for through our orgulyt
and yet we knew not your name. Nevertheless, by Saint
Cross, said Sir Uwaine, he is a strong knight at mine
advice as any is now living.
Then Sir Tristram departed, and in every place he
asked and demanded after Sir Launcelot, but in no place
he could not hear of him whether he were dead or alive;
wherefore Sir Tristram made great dole and sorrow. So
Sir Tristram rode by a forest, and then was he ware of a
fair tower by a marsh on that one side, and on that other
side a fair meadow. And there he saw ten knights
fighting together. And ever the nearer he came he saw
how there was but one knight did battle against nine
knights, and that one did so marvellously that Sir
Tristram had great wonder that ever one knight might
do so great deeds of arms. And then within a little
while he had slain half their horses and unhorsed them,
and their horses ran in the fields and forest. Then Sir
Tristram had so great pity of that one knight that
endured so great pain, and ever he thought it should be
Sir Palomides, by his shield. And so he rode unto the
knights and cried unto them, and bade them cease of
their battle, for they did themselves great shame so many
knights to fight with one. Then answered the master of
those knights, his name was called Breuse Saunce Pit
that was at that time the most mischievoust knight living,
and said thus: Sir knight, what have ye ado with us to
meddle? and therefore, an ye be wise, depart on your
way as ye came, for this knight shall not escape us.
That were pity, said Sir Tristram, that so good a knight
as he is should be slain so cowardly; and therefore I
warn you I will succour him with all my puissance.
How Sir Tristram saved Sir Palomides' life, and how they
promised to fight together within a fortnight.
So Sir Tristram alighted off his horse because they were
on foot, that they should not slay his horse, and then
dressed his shield, with his sword in his hand, and he
smote on the right hand and on the left hand passing
sore, that well-nigh at every stroke he struck down a
knight. And when they espied his strokes they fled all
with Breuse Saunce Pit
followed fast after with his sword in his hand, but they
escaped into the tower, and shut Sir Tristram without the
gate. And when Sir Tristram saw this he returned aback
unto Sir Palomides, and found him sitting under a tree
sore wounded. Ah, fair knight, said Sir Tristram, well
be ye found. Gramercy, said Sir Palomides, of your great
goodness, for ye have rescued me of my life, and saved
me from my death. What is your name? said Sir
Tristram. He said: My name is Sir Palomides. O
Jesu, said Sir Tristram, thou hast a fair grace of me this
day that I should rescue thee, and thou art the man in
the world that I most hate; but now make thee ready,
for I will do battle with thee. What is your name?
said Sir Palomides. My name is Sir Tristram, your
mortal enemy. It may be so, said Sir Palomides; but ye
have done over much for me this day that I should fight
with you; for inasmuch as ye have saved my life it will
be no worship for you to have ado with me, for ye are
fresh and I am wounded sore, and therefore, an ye will
needs have ado with me, assign me a day and then I
shall meet with you without fail. Ye say well, said Sir
Tristram, now I assign you to meet me in the meadow
by the river of Camelot, where Merlin set the peron.
So they were agreed.
Then Sir Tristram asked Sir Palomides why the ten
knights did battle with him. For this cause, said Sir
Palomides; as I rode upon mine adventures in a forest
here beside I espied where lay a dead knight, and a lady
weeping beside him. And when I saw her making such
dole, I asked her who slew her lord. Sir, she said, the
falsest knight of the world now living, and he is the most
villain that ever man heard speak of and his name is Sir
Breuse Saunce Pit
to leap on her palfrey, and I promised her to be her
warrant, and to help her to inter her lord. And so,
suddenly, as I came riding by this tower, there came out
Sir Breuse Saunce Pit
my horse. And then or I might recover my horse this
Sir Breuse slew the damosel. And so I took my horse
again, and I was sore ashamed, and so began the medley
betwixt us: and this is the cause wherefore we did this
battle. Well, said Sir Tristram, now I understand the
manner of your battle, but in any wise have remembrance
of your promise that ye have made with me to do battle
with me this day fortnight. I shall not fail you, said Sir
Palomides. Well, said Sir Tristram, as at this time I will
not fail you till that ye be out of the danger of your
So they mounted upon their horses, and rode together
unto that forest, and there they found a fair well, with
clear water bubbling. Fair sir, said Sir Tristram, to drink
of that water have I courage; and then they alighted off
their horses. And then were they ware by them where
stood a great horse tied to a tree, and ever he neighed.
And then were they ware of a fair knight armed, under
a tree, lacking no piece of harness, save his helm lay
under his head. By the good lord, said Sir Tristram,
yonder lieth a well-faring knight; what is best to do?
Awake him, said Sir Palomides. So Sir Tristram awaked
him with the butt of his spear. And so the knight rose
up hastily and put his helm upon his head, and gat a great
spear in his hand; and without any more words he hurled
unto Sir Tristram, and smote him clean from his saddle to
the earth, and hurt him on the left side, that Sir Tristram
lay in great peril. Then he walloped farther, and fetched
his course, and came hurling upon Sir Palomides, and there
he struck him a part through the body, that he fell from
his horse to the earth. And then this strange knight left
them there, and took his way through the forest. With
this Sir Palomides and Sir Tristram were on foot, and gat
their horses again, and either asked counsel of other, what
was best to do. By my head, said Sir Tristram, I will
follow this strong knight that thus hath shamed us.
Well, said Sir Palomides, and I will repose me hereby with
a friend of mine. Beware, said Sir Tristram unto Palomides,
that ye fail not that day that ye have set with me
to do battle, for, as I deem, ye will not hold your day,
for I am much bigger than ye. As for that, said Sir
Palomides, be it as it be may, for I fear you not, for an I
be not sick nor prisoner, I will not fail you; but I have
cause to have more doubt of you that ye will not meet
with me, for ye ride after yonder strong knight. And if
ye meet with him it is an hard adventure an ever ye escape
his hands. Right so Sir Tristram and Sir Palomides
departed, and either took their ways diverse.
How Sir Tristram sought a strong knight that had smitten
him down, and many other knights of the Round Table.
AND so Sir Tristram rode long after this strong knight.
And at the last he saw where lay a lady overthwart a dead
knight. Fair lady, said Sir Tristram, who hath slain your
lord? Sir, she said, here came a knight riding, as my lord
and I rested us here, and asked him of whence he was,
and my lord said of Arthur's court. Therefore, said the
strong knight, I will joust with thee, for I hate all these
that be of Arthur's court. And my lord that lieth here
dead amounted upon his horse, and the strong knight and
my lord encountered together, and there he smote my
lord throughout with his spear, and thus he hath brought
me in great woe and damage. That me repenteth, said
Sir Tristram, of your great anger; an it please you tell
me your husband's name. Sir, said she, his name was
Galardoun, that would have proved a good knight. So
departed Sir Tristram from that dolorous lady, and had
much evil lodging. Then on the third day Sir Tristram
met with Sir Gawaine and with Sir Bleoberis in a forest at
a lodge, and either were sore wounded. Then Sir Tristram
asked Sir Gawaine and Sir Bleoberis if they met with such
a knight, with such a cognisance, with a covered shield.
Fair sir, said these knights, such a knight met with us to
our great damage. And first he smote down my fellow,
Sir Bleoberis, and sore wounded him because he bade me
I should not have ado with him, for why he was overstrong
for me. That strong knight took his words at
scorn, and said he said it for mockery. And then they
rode together, and so he hurt my fellow. And when he
had done so I might not for shame but I must joust with
him. And at the first course he smote me down and my
horse to the earth. And there he had almost slain me,
and from us he took his horse and departed, and in an
evil time we met with him. Fair knights, said Sir
Tristram, so he met with me, and with another knight
that hight Palomides, and he smote us both down with
one spear, and hurt us right sore. By my faith, said Sir
Gawaine, by my counsel ye shall let him pass and seek
him no further; for at the next feast of the Round Table,
upon pain of my head ye shall find him there. By my
faith, said Sir Tristram, I shall never rest till that I find
him. And then Sir Gawaine asked him his name. Then
he said: My name is Sir Tristram. And so either told
other their names, and then departed Sir Tristram and
rode his way.
And by fortune in a meadow Sir Tristram met with Sir
Kay, the Seneschal, and Sir Dinadan. What tidings with
you, said Sir Tristram, with you knights? Not good,
said these knights. Why so? said Sir Tristram; I pray
you tell me, for I ride to seek a knight. What cognisance
beareth he? said Sir Kay. He beareth, said Sir Tristram,
a covered shield close with cloth. By my head, said Sir
Kay, that is the same knight that met with us, for this
night we were lodged within a widow's house, and there
was that knight lodged; and when he wist we were of
Arthur's court he spoke great villainy by the king, and
specially by the Queen Guenever, and then on the morn
was waged battle with him for that cause. And at the
first recounter, said Sir Kay, he smote me down from my
horse and hurt me passing sore; and when my fellow, Sir
Dinadan, saw me smitten down and hurt he would not
revenge me, but fled from me; and thus he departed.
And then Sir Tristram asked them their names, and so
either told other their names. And so Sir Tristram
departed from Sir Kay, and from Sir Dinadan, and so he
passed through a great forest into a plain, till he was ware
of a priory, and there he reposed him with a good man
How Sir Tristram smote down Sir Sagramore le Desirous
and Sir Dodinas le Savage.
AND then he sent his man that hight Gouvernail, and commanded
him to go to a city thereby to fetch him new harness;
for it was long time afore that that Sir Tristram had been
refreshed, his harness was brised and broken. And when
Gouvernail, his servant, was come with his apparel, he took
his leave at the widow, and mounted upon his horse, and
rode his way early on the morn. And by sudden adventure
Sir Tristram met with Sir Sagramore le Desirous, and
with Sir Dodinas le Savage. And these two knights met
with Sir Tristram and questioned with him, and asked
him if he would joust with them. Fair knights, said Sir
Tristram, with a good will I would joust with you, but I
have promised at a day set, near hand, to do battle with a
strong knight; and therefore I am loath to have ado with
you, for an it misfortuned me here to be hurt I should
not be able to do my battle which I promised. As for
that, said Sagramore, maugre your head, ye shall joust
with us or ye pass from us. Well, said Sir Tristram, if
ye enforce me thereto I must do what I may. And then
they dressed their shields, and came running together with
great ire. But through Sir Tristram's great force he
struck Sir Sagramore from his horse. Then he hurled his
horse farther, and said to Sir Dodinas: Knight, make thee
ready; and so through fine force Sir Tristram struck
Dodinas from his horse. And when he saw them lie on
the earth he took his bridle, and rode forth on his way,
and his man Gouvernail with him.
Anon as Sir Tristram was passed, Sir Sagramore and
Sir Dodinas gat again their horses, and mounted up lightly
and followed after Sir Tristram. And when Sir Tristram
saw them come so fast after him he returned with his horse
to them, and asked them what they would. It is not long
ago sithen I smote you to the earth at your own request
and desire: I would have ridden by you, but ye would
not suffer me, and now meseemeth ye would do more
battle with me. That is truth, said Sir Sagramore and Sir
Dodinas, for we will be revenged of the despite ye have
done to us. Fair knights, said Sir Tristram, that shall
little need you, for all that I did to you ye caused it;
wherefore I require you of your knighthood leave me as
at this time, for I am sure an I do battle with you I shall
not escape without great hurts, and as I suppose ye shall
not escape all lotless. And this is the cause why I am so
loath to have ado with you; for I must fight within these
three days with a good knight, and as valiant as any is
now living, and if I be hurt I shall not be able to do
battle with him. What knight is that, said Sir Sagramore,
that ye shall fight withal? Sirs, said he, it is a good
knight called Sir Palomides. By my head, said Sir
Sagramore and Sir Dodinas, ye have cause to dread him,
for ye shall find him a passing good knight, and a valiant.
And because ye shall have ado with him we will forbear
you as at this time, and else ye should not escape us
lightly. But, fair knight, said Sir Sagramore, tell us your
name. Sir, said he, my name is Sir Tristram de Liones.
Ah, said Sagramore and Sir Dodinas, well be ye found,
for much worship have we heard of you. And then either
took leave of other, and departed on their way.
How Sir Tristram met at the peron with Sir Launcelot,
and how they fought together unknown.
THEN departed Sir Tristram and rode straight unto
Camelot, to the peron that Merlin had made to-fore,
where Sir Lanceor, that was the king's son of Ireland, was
slain by the hands of Balin. And in that same place was
the fair lady Colombe slain, that was love unto Sir
Lanceor; for after he was dead she took his sword and
thrust it through her body. And by the craft of Merlin
he made to inter this knight, Lanceor, and his lady,
Colombe, under one stone. And at that time Merlin
prophesied that in that same place should fight two the
best knights that ever were in Arthur's days, and the best
lovers. So when Sir Tristram came to the tomb where
Lanceor and his lady were buried he looked about him
after Sir Palomides. Then was he ware of a seemly knight
came riding against him all in white, with a covered
shield. When he came nigh Sir Tristram he said on
high: Ye be welcome, sir knight, and well and truly have
ye holden your promise. And then they dressed their
shields and spears, and came together with all their might
of their horses; and they met so fiercely that both their
horses and knights fell to the earth, and as fast as they
might avoided their horses, and put their shields afore
them; and they struck together with bright swords, as
men that were of might, and either wounded other
wonderly sore, that the blood ran out upon the grass.
And thus they fought the space of four hours, that never
one would speak to other one word, and of their harness
they had hewn off many pieces. O Lord Jesu, said
Gouvernail, I marvel greatly of the strokes my master
hath given to your master. By my head, said Sir Launcelot's
servant, your master hath not given so many but
your master has received as many or more. O Jesu, said
Gouvernail, it is too much for Sir Palomides to suffer or
Sir Launcelot, and yet pity it were that either of these
good knights should destroy other's blood. So they stood
and wept both, and made great dole when they saw the
bright swords over-covered with blood of their bodies.
Then at the last spake Sir Launcelot and said: Knight,
thou fightest wonderly well as ever I saw knight, therefore,
an it please you, tell me your name. Sir, said Sir Tristram,
that is me loath to tell any man my name. Truly,
said Sir Launcelot, an I were required I was never loath
to tell my name. It is well said, said Sir Tristram, then I
require you to tell me your name? Fair knight, he said,
my name is Sir Launcelot du Lake. Alas, said Sir Tristram,
what have I done! for ye are the man in the world
that I love best. Fair knight, said Sir Launcelot, tell me
your name? Truly, said he, my name is Sir Tristram de
Liones. O Jesu, said Sir Launcelot, what adventure is
befallen me! And therewith Sir Launcelot kneeled down
and yielded him up his sword. And therewith Sir Tristram
kneeled adown, and yielded him up his sword. And
so either gave other the degree. And then they both
forthwithal went to the stone, and set them down upon it,
and took off their helms to cool them, and either kissed
other an hundred times. And then anon after they took
off their helms and rode to Camelot. And there they met
with Sir Gawaine and with Sir Gaheris that had made
promise to Arthur never to come again to the court till
they had brought Sir Tristram with them.
How Sir Launcelot brought Sir Tristram to the court, and
of the great joy that the king and other made for the
coming of Sir Tristram.
RETURN again, said Sir Launcelot, for your quest is done,
for I have met with Sir Tristram: lo, here is his own
person! Then was Sir Gawaine glad, and said to Sir
Tristram: Ye are welcome, for now have ye eased me
greatly of my labour. For what cause, said Sir Gawaine,
came ye into this court? Fair sir, said Sir Tristram, I
came into this country because of Sir Palomides; for he
and I had assigned at this day to have done battle together
at the peron, and I marvel I hear not of him. And thus
by adventure my lord, Sir Launcelot, and I met together.
With this came King Arthur, and when he wist that there
was Sir Tristram, then he ran unto him and took him by
the hand and said: Sir Tristram, ye are as welcome as any
knight that ever came to this court. And when the king
had heard how Sir Launcelot and he had foughten, and
either had wounded other wonderly sore, then the king
made great dole. Then Sir Tristram told the king how
he came thither for to have had ado with Sir Palomides.
And then he told the king how he had rescued him from
the nine knights and Breuse Saunce Pit
found a knight lying by a well, and that knight smote
down Sir Palomides and me, but his shield was covered
with a cloth. So Sir Palomides left me, and I followed
after that knight; and in many places I found where he
had slain knights, and forjousted many. By my head,
said Sir Gawaine, that same knight smote me down and
Sir Bleoberis, and hurt us sore both, he with the covered
shield. Ah, said Sir Kay, that knight smote me adown
and hurt me passing sore, and fain would I have known
him, but I might not. Jesu, mercy, said Arthur, what
knight was that with the covered shield? I know not,
said Sir Tristram; and so said they all. Now, said King
Arthur, then wot I, for it is Sir Launcelot. Then they
all looked upon Sir Launcelot and said: Ye have beguiled
us with your covered shield. It is not the first time, said
Arthur, he hath done so. My lord, said Sir Launcelot,
truly wit ye well I was the same knight that bare the
covered shield; and because I would not be known that I
was of your court I said no worship of your house. That
is truth, said Sir Gawaine, Sir Kay, and Sir Bleoberis.
Then King Arthur took Sir Tristram by the hand and
went to the Table Round. Then came Queen Guenever
and many ladies with her, and all the ladies said at one
voice: Welcome, Sir Tristram! Welcome, said the
damosels. Welcome, said knights. Welcome, said
Arthur, for one of the best knights, and the gentlest of
the world, and the man of most worship; for of all
manner of hunting thou bearest the prize, and of all
measures of blowing thou art the beginning, and of all the
terms of hunting and hawking ye are the beginner, of all
instruments of music ye are the best; therefore, gentle
knight, said Arthur, ye are welcome to this court. And
also, I pray you, said Arthur, grant me a boon. It shall
be at your commandment, said Tristram. Well, said
Arthur, I will desire of you that ye will abide in my court.
Sir, said Sir Tristram, thereto is me loath, for I have ado
in many countries. Not so, said Arthur, ye have promised
it me, ye may not say nay. Sir, said Sir Tristram, I will
as ye will. Then went Arthur unto the sieges about the
Round Table, and looked in every siege the which were
void that lacked knights. And then the king saw in the
siege of Marhaus letters that said: This is the siege of the
noble knight, Sir Tristram. And then Arthur made Sir
Tristram Knight of the Table Round, with great nobley
and great feast as might be thought. For Sir Marhaus
was slain afore by the hands of Sir Tristram in an island;
and that was well known at that time in the court of
Arthur, for this Marhaus was a worthy knight. And for
evil deeds that he did unto the country of Cornwall Sir
Tristram and he fought. And they fought so long,
tracing and traversing, till they fell bleeding to the earth;
for they were so sore wounded that they might not stand
for bleeding. And Sir Tristram by fortune recovered, and
Sir Marhaus died through the stroke on the head. So
leave we of Sir Tristram and speak we of King Mark.
How for the despite of Sir Tristram King Mark came with
two knights into England, and how he slew one of the
THEN King Mark had great despite of the renown of Sir
Tristram, and then he chased him out of Cornwall: yet
was he nephew unto King Mark, but he had great suspicion
unto Sir Tristram because of his queen, La Beale Isoud;
for him seemed that there was too much love between
them both. So when Sir Tristram departed out of Cornwall
into England King Mark heard of the great prowess that
Sir Tristram did there, the which grieved him sore. So
he sent on his part men to espy what deeds he did. And
the queen sent privily on her part spies to know what
deeds he had done, for great love was between them twain.
So when the messengers were come home they told the
truth as they had heard, that he passed all other knights
but if it were Sir Launcelot. Then King Mark was right
heavy of these tidings, and as glad was La Beale Isoud.
Then in great despite he took with him two good knights
and two squires, and disguised himself, and took his way
into England, to the intent for to slay Sir Tristram.
And one of these two knights hight Bersules, and the
other knight was called Amant. So as they rode King
Mark asked a knight that he met, where he should find
King Arthur. He said: At Camelot. Also he asked that
knight after Sir Tristram, whether he heard of him in the
court of King Arthur. Wit you well, said that knight,
ye shall find Sir Tristram there for a man of as great
worship as is now living; for through his prowess he won
the tournament of the Castle of Maidens that standeth by
the Hard Rock. And sithen he hath won with his own
hands thirty knights that were men of great honour.
And the last battle that ever he did he fought with Sir
Launcelot; and that was a marvellous battle. And not
by force Sir Launcelot brought Sir Tristram to the court,
and of him King Arthur made passing great joy, and so
made him Knight of the Table Round; and his seat was
where the good knight's, Sir Marhaus, seat was. Then
was King Mark passing sorry when he heard of the honour
of Sir Tristram; and so they departed.
Then said King Mark unto his two knights: Now
will I tell you my counsel: ye are the men that I trust
most to alive, and I will that ye wit my coming hither is
to this intent, for to destroy Sir Tristram by wiles or by
treason; and it shall be hard if ever he escape our hands.
Alas, said Sir Bersules, what mean you? for ye be set in
such a way ye are disposed shamefully; for Sir Tristram
is the knight of most worship that we know living, and
therefore I warn you plainly I will never consent to do
him to the death; and therefore I will yield my service,
and forsake you. When King Mark heard him say so,
suddenly he drew his sword and said: Ah, traitor; and
smote Sir Bersules on the head, that the sword went to
his teeth. When Amant, the knight, saw him do that
villainous deed, and his squires, they said it was foul done,
and mischievously: Wherefore we will do thee no more
service, and wit ye well, we will appeach thee of treason
afore Arthur. Then was King Mark wonderly wroth
and would have slain Amant; but he and the two squires
held them together, and set nought by his malice. When
King Mark saw he might not be revenged on them, he
said thus unto the knight, Amant: Wit thou well, an
thou appeach me of treason I shall thereof defend me
afore King Arthur; but I require thee that thou tell not
my name, that I am King Mark, whatsomever come of
me. As for that, said Sir Amant, I will not discover your
name; and so they departed, and Amant and his fellows
took the body of Bersules and buried it.
How King Mark came to a fountain where he found Sir
Lamorak complaining for the love of King Lot's wife.
THEN King Mark rode till he came to a fountain, and
there he rested him, and stood in a doubt whether he
would ride to Arthur's court or none, or return again to
his country. And as he thus rested him by that fountain
there came by him a knight well armed on horseback;
and he alighted, and tied his horse until a tree, and set
him down by the brink of the fountain; and there he
made great languor and dole, and made the dolefullest
complaint of love that ever man heard; and all this while
was he not ware of King Mark. And this was a great
part of his complaint: he cried and wept, saying: O fair
Queen of Orkney, King Lot's wife, and mother of Sir
Gawaine, and to Sir Gaheris, and mother to many other,
for thy love I am in great pains. Then King Mark arose
and went near him and said: Fair knight, ye have made
a piteous complaint. Truly, said the knight, it is an
hundred part more ruefuller than my heart can utter. I
require you, said King Mark, tell me your name. Sir,
said he, as for my name I will not hide it from no knight
that beareth a shield, and my name is Sir Lamorak de
Galis. But when Sir Lamorak heard King Mark speak,
then wist he well by his speech that he was a Cornish
knight. Sir, said Sir Lamorak, I understand by your
tongue ye be of Cornwall, wherein there dwelleth the
shamefullest king that is now living, for he is a great
enemy to all good knights; and that proveth well, for he
hath chased out of that country Sir Tristram, that is the
worshipfullest knight that now is living, and all knights
speak of him worship; and for jealousness of his queen
he hath chased him out of his country. It is pity, said
Sir Lamorak, that ever any such false knight-coward as
King Mark is, should be matched with such a fair lady
and good as La Beale Isoud is, for all the world of him
speaketh shame, and of her worship that any queen may
have. I have not ado in this matter, said King Mark,
neither nought will I speak thereof. Well said, said Sir
Lamorak. Sir, can ye tell me any tidings? I can tell
you, said Sir Lamorak, that there shall be a great
tournament in haste beside Camelot, at the Castle of Jagent;
and the King with the Hundred Knights and the King of
Ireland, as I suppose, make that tournament.
Then there came a knight that was called Sir Dinadan,
and saluted them both. And when he wist that King
Mark was a knight of Cornwall he reproved him for the
love of King Mark a thousand fold more than did Sir
Lamorak. Then he proffered to joust with King Mark.
And he was full loath thereto, but Sir Dinadan edged him
so, that he jousted with Sir Lamorak. And Sir Lamorak
smote King Mark so sore that he bare him on his spear
end over his horse's tail. And then King Mark arose
again, and followed after Sir Lamorak. But Sir Dinadan
would not joust with Sir Lamorak, but he told King Mark
that Sir Lamorak was Sir Kay, the Seneschal. That is
not so, said King Mark, for he is much bigger than Sir
Kay; and so he followed and overtook him, and bade
him abide. What will you do? said Sir Lamorak. Sir,
he said, I will fight with a sword, for ye have shamed me
with a spear; and therewith they dashed together with
swords, and Sir Lamorak suffered him and forbare him.
And King Mark was passing hasty, and smote thick
strokes. Sir Lamorak saw he would not stint, and waxed
somewhat wroth, and doubled his strokes, for he was one
of the noblest knights of the world; and he beat him so
on the helm that his head hung nigh on the saddle bow.
When Sir Lamorak saw him fare so, he said: Sir knight,
what cheer? meseemeth you have nigh your fill of fighting,
it were pity to do you any more harm, for ye are but a
mean knight, therefore I give you leave to go where ye
list. Gramercy, said King Mark, for ye and I be not
Then Sir Dinadan mocked King Mark and said:
Ye are not able to match a good knight. As for that,
said King Mark, at the first time I jousted with this
knight ye refused him. Think ye that it is a shame to
me? said Sir Dinadan: nay, sir, it is ever worship to a
knight to refuse that thing that he may not attain, there
fore your worship had been much more to have refused
him as I did; for I warn you plainly he is able to beat
such five as ye and I be; for ye knights of Cornwall are
no men of worship as other knights are. And because ye
are no men of worship ye hate all men of worship, for
never was bred in your country such a knight as is Sir
How King Mark, Sir Lamorak, and Sir Dinadan came to
a castle, and how King Mark was known there.
THEN they rode forth all together, King Mark, Sir
Lamorak, and Sir Dinadan, till that they came to a
bridge, and at the end thereof stood a fair tower. Then
saw they a knight on horseback well armed, brandishing
a spear, crying and proffering himself to joust. Now,
said Sir Dinadan unto King Mark, yonder are two
brethren, that one hight Alein, and the other hight
Trian, that will joust with any that passeth this passage.
Now proffer yourself, said Dinadan to King Mark, for
ever ye be laid to the earth. Then King Mark was
ashamed, and therewith he feutred his spear, and hurtled
to Sir Trian, and either brake their spears all to pieces,
and passed through anon. Then Sir Trian sent King
Mark another spear to joust more; but in no wise he
would not joust no more. Then they came to the castle
all three knights, and prayed the lord of the castle of
harbour. Ye are right welcome, said the knights of the
castle, for the love of the lord of this castle, the which
hight Sir Tor le Fise Aries. And then they came into a
fair court well repaired, and they had passing good cheer,
till the lieutenant of this castle, that hight Berluse, espied
King Mark of Cornwall. Then said Berluse: Sir knight,
I know you better than you ween, for ye are King Mark
that slew my father afore mine own eyen; and me had
ye slain had I not escaped into a wood; but wit ye well,
for the love of my lord of this castle I will neither hurt
you nor harm you, nor none of your fellowship. But
wit ye well, when ye are past this lodging I shall hurt
you an I may, for ye slew my father traitorly. But first
for the love of my lord, Sir Tor, and for the love of Sir
Lamorak, the honourable knight that here is lodged, ye
shall have none ill lodging; for it is pity that ever ye
should be in the company of good knights; for ye are
the most villainous knight or king that is now known
alive, for ye are a destroyer of good knights, and all
that ye do is but treason.
How Sir Berluse met with King Mark, and how
Sir Dinadan took his part.
THEN was King Mark sore ashamed, and said but little
again. But when Sir Lamorak and Sir Dinadan wist that
he was King Mark they were sorry of his fellowship.
So after supper they went to lodging. So on the morn
they arose early, and King Mark and Sir Dinadan rode
together; and three mile from their lodging there met
with them three knights, and Sir Berluse was one, and
that other his two cousins. Sir Berluse saw King Mark,
and then he cried on high: Traitor, keep thee from me
for wit thou well that I am Berluse. Sir knight, said Sir
Dinadan, I counsel you to leave off at this time, for he is
riding to King Arthur; and because I have promised to
conduct him to my lord King Arthur needs must I take
a part with him; howbeit I love not his condition, and
fain I would be from him. Well, Dinadan, said Sir
Berluse, me repenteth that ye will take part with him,
but now do your best. And then he hurtled to King
Mark, and smote him sore upon the shield, that he bare
him clean out of his saddle to the earth. That saw Sir
Dinadan, and he feutred his spear, and ran to one of
Berluse's fellows, and smote him down off his saddle.
Then Dinadan turned his horse, and smote the third
knight in the same wise to the earth, for Sir Dinadan
was a good knight on horseback; and there began a great
battle, for Berluse and his fellows held them together
strongly on foot. And so through the great force of Sir
Dinadan King Mark had Berluse to the earth, and his
two fellows fled; and had not been Sir Dinadan King
Mark would have slain him. And so Sir Dinadan
rescued him of his life, for King Mark was but a
murderer. And then they took their horses and departed
and left Sir Berluse there sore wounded.
Then King Mark and Sir Dinadan rode forth a four
leagues English, till that they came to a bridge where
hoved a knight on horseback, armed and ready to joust.
Lo, said Sir Dinadan unto King Mark, yonder hoveth a
knight that will joust, for there shall none pass this
bridge but he must joust with that knight. It is well,
said King Mark, for this jousts falleth with thee. Sir
Dinadan knew the knight well that he was a noble knight,
and fain he would have jousted, but he had had liefer
King Mark had jousted with him, but by no mean King
Mark would not joust. Then Sir Dinadan might not
refuse him in no manner. And then either dressed their
spears and their shields, and smote together, so that
through fine force Sir Dinadan was smitten to the earth;
and lightly he rose up and gat his horse, and required
that knight to do battle with swords. And he answered
and said: Fair knight, as at this time I may not have ado
with you no more, for the custom of this passage is such.
Then was Sir Dinadan passing wroth that he might not be
revenged of that knight; and so he departed, and in no
wise would that knight tell his name. But ever Sir
Dinadan thought he should know him by his shield that
it should be Sir Tor.
How King Mark mocked Sir Dinadan, and how they met
with six knights of the Round Table.
So as they rode by the way King Mark then began to
mock Sir Dinadan, and said: I weened you knights of
the Table Round might not in no wise find their matches.
Ye say well, said Sir Dinadan; as for you, on my life I
call you none of the best knights; but sith ye have such
a despite at me I require you to joust with me to prove
my strength. Not so, said King Mark, for I will not
have ado with you in no manner; but I require you of
one thing, that when ye come to Arthur's court discover
not my name, for I am there so hated. It is shame to
you, said Sir Dinadan, that ye govern you so shamefully;
for I see by you ye are full of cowardice, and ye are a
murderer, and that is the greatest shame that a knight
may have; for never a knight being a murderer hath
worship, nor never shall have; for I saw but late through
my force ye would have slain Sir Berluse, a better knight
than ye, or ever ye shall be, and more of prowess. Thus
they rode forth talking till they came to a fair place,
where stood a knight, and prayed them to take their
lodging with him. So at the request of that knight they
reposed them there, and made them well at ease, and had
great cheer. For all errant-knights were welcome to him,
and specially all those of Arthur's court. Then Sir
Dinadan demanded his host what was the knight's name
that kept the bridge. For what cause ask you it? said
the host. For it is not long ago, said Sir Dinadan, sithen
he gave me a fall. Ah, fair knight, said his host, thereof
have ye no marvel, for he is a passing good knight, and
his name is Sir Tor, the son of Aries le Vaysher. Ah,
said Sir Dinadan, was that Sir Tor? for truly so ever me
Right as they stood thus talking together they saw
come riding to them over a plain six knights of the court
of King Arthur, well armed at all points. And there by
their shields Sir Dinadan knew them well. The first was
the good knight Sir Uwaine, the son of King Uriens, the
second was the noble knight Sir Brandiles, the third was
Ozana le Cure Hardy, the fourth was Uwaine les Aventurous,
the fifth was Sir Agravaine, the sixth Sir Mordred,
brother to Sir Gawaine. When Sir Dinadan had seen
these six knights he thought in himself he would bring
King Mark by some wile to joust with one of them. And
anon they took their horses and ran after these knights
well a three mile English. Then was King Mark ware
where they sat all six about a well, and ate and drank such
meats as they had, and their horses walking and some tied,
and their shields hung in divers places about them. Lo,
said Sir Dinadan, yonder are knights-errant that will joust
with us. God forbid, said King Mark, for they be six
and we but two. As for that, said Sir Dinadan, let us
not spare, for I will assay the foremost; and therewith he
made him ready. When King Mark saw him do so, as
fast as Sir Dinadan rode toward them, King Mark rode
froward them with all his menial meiny. So when Sir
Dinadan saw King Mark was gone, he set the spear out of
the rest, and threw his shield upon his back, and came,
riding to the fellowship of the Table Round. And anon
Sir Uwaine knew Sir Dinadan, and welcomed him, and so
did all his fellowship.
How the six knights sent Sir Dagonet to joust with King
Mark, and how King Mark refused him.
AND then they asked him of his adventures, and whether
he had seen Sir Tristram or Sir Launcelot. So God me
help, said Sir Dinadan, I saw none of them sithen I
departed from Camelot. What knight is that, said Sir
Brandiles, that so suddenly departed from you, and rode
over yonder field? Sir, said he, it was a knight of
Cornwall, and the most horrible coward that ever bestrode
horse. What is his name? said all these knights. I wot
not, said Sir Dinadan. So when they had reposed them,
and spoken together, they took their horses and rode to a
castle where dwelt an old knight that made all knights-errant
good cheer. Then in the meanwhile that they were
talking came into the castle Sir Griflet le Fise de Dieu,
and there was he welcome; and they all asked him whether
he had seen Sir Launcelot or Sir Tristram. Sirs, he
answered, I saw him not sithen he departed from Camelot.
So as Sir Dinadan walked and beheld the castle, thereby in
a chamber he espied King Mark, and then he rebuked
him, and asked him why he departed so. Sir, said he, for
I durst not abide because they were so many. But how
escaped ye? said King Mark. Sir, said Sir Dinadan, they
were better friends than I weened they had been. Who
is captain of that fellowship? said the king. Then for to
fear him Sir Dinadan said that it was Sir Launcelot. O
Jesu, said the king, might I know Sir Launcelot by his
shield? Yea, said Dinadan, for he beareth a shield of
silver and black bends. All this he said to fear the king,
for Sir Launcelot was not in his fellowship. Now I pray
you, said King Mark, that ye will ride in my fellowship.
That is me loath to do, said Sir Dinadan, because ye forsook
Right so Sir Dinadan went from King Mark, and went
to his own fellowship; and so they mounted upon their
horses, and rode on their ways, and talked of the Cornish
knight, for Dinadan told them that he was in the castle
where they were lodged. It is well said, said Sir Griflet,
for here have I brought Sir Dagonet, King Arthur's fool,
that is the best fellow and the merriest in the world. Will
ye do well? said Sir Dinadan: I have told the Cornish
knight that here is Sir Launcelot, and the Cornish knight
asked me what shield he bare. Truly, I told him that he
bare the same shield that Sir Mordred beareth. Will ye
do well? said Sir Mordred; I am hurt and may not well
bear my shield nor harness, and therefore put my shield
and my harness upon Sir Dagonet, and let him set upon
the Cornish knight. That shall be done, said Sir Dagonet,
by my faith. Then anon was Dagonet armed him in
Mordred's harness and his shield, and he was set on a
great horse, and a spear in his hand. Now, said Dagonet,
shew me the knight, and I trow I shall bear him down.
So all these knights rode to a woodside, and abode till
King Mark came by the way. Then they put forth Sir
Dagonet, and he came on all the while his horse might
run, straight upon King Mark. And when he came nigh
King Mark, he cried as he were wood, and said: Keep
thee, knight of Cornwall, for I will slay thee. Anon, as
King Mark beheld his shield, he said to himself: Yonder
is Sir Launcelot; alas, now am I destroyed; and therewithal
he made his horse to run as fast as it might through
thick and thin. And ever Sir Dagonet followed after King
Mark, crying and rating him as a wood man, through a
great forest. When Sir Uwaine and Sir Brandiles saw
Dagonet so chase King Mark, they laughed all as they
were wood. And then they took their horses, and rode
after to see how Sir Dagonet sped, for they would not for
no good that Sir Dagonet were shent, for King Arthur
loved him passing well, and made him knight with his own
hands. And at every tournament he began to make King
Arthur to laugh. Then the knights rode here and there,
crying and chasing after King Mark, that all the forest
rang of the noise.
How Sir Palomides by adventure met King Mark flying,
and how he overthrew Dagonet and other knights.
SO King Mark rode by fortune by a well, in the way
where stood a knight-errant on horseback, armed at all
points, with a great spear in his hand. And when he
saw King Mark coming flying he said: Knight, return
again for shame and stand with me, and I shall be thy
warrant. Ah, fair knight, said King Mark, let me pass,
for yonder cometh after me the best knight of the world,
with the black bended shield. Fie, for shame, said the
knight, he is none of the worthy knights, and if he were
Sir Launcelot or Sir Tristram I should not doubt to
meet the better of them both. When King Mark heard
him say that word, he turned his horse and abode by
him. And then that strong knight bare a spear to
Dagonet, and smote him so sore that he bare him over
his horse's tail, and nigh he had broken his neck. And
anon after him came Sir Brandiles, and when he saw
Dagonet have that fall he was passing wroth, and cried:
Keep thee, knight, and so they hurtled together wonder
sore. But the knight smote Sir Brandiles so sore that
he went to the earth, horse and man. Sir Uwaine came
after and saw all this. Jesu, said he, yonder is a strong
knight. And then they feutred their spears, and this
knight came so eagerly that he smote down Sir Uwaine.
Then came Ozana with the hardy heart, and he was
smitten down. Now, said Sir Griflet, by my counsel let
us send to yonder errant-knight, and wit whether he be
of Arthur's court, for as I deem it is Sir Lamorak de
Galis. So they sent unto him, and prayed the strange
knight to tell his name, and whether he were of Arthur's
court or not. As for my name they shall not wit, but
tell them I am a knight-errant as they are, and let them
wit that I am no knight of King Arthur's court; and
so the squire rode again unto them and told them his
answer of him. By my head, said Sir Agravaine, he is
one of the strongest knights that ever I saw, for he hath
overthrown three noble knights, and needs we must
encounter with him for shame. So Sir Agravaine feutred
his spear, and that other was ready, and smote him down
over his horse to the earth. And in the same wise he
smote Sir Uwaine les Avoutres and also Sir Griflet.
Then had he served them all but Sir Dinadan, for he
was behind, and Sir Mordred was unarmed, and Dagonet
had his harness.
So when this was done, this strong knight rode on
his way a soft pace, and King Mark rode after him,
praising him mickle; but he would answer no words,
but sighed wonderly sore, hanging down his head, taking
no heed to his words. Thus they rode well a three mile
English, and then this knight called to him a varlet, and
bade him ride until yonder fair manor, and recommend
me to the lady of that castle and place, and pray her to
send me refreshing of good meats and drinks. And if
she ask thee what I am, tell her that I am the knight
that followeth the glatisant beast: that is in English to
say the questing beast; for that beast wheresomever he
yede he quested in the belly with such a noise as it had
been a thirty couple of hounds. Then the varlet went
his way and came to the manor, and saluted the lady, and
told her from whence he came. And when she understood
that he came from the knight that followed the
questing beast: O sweet Lord Jesu, she said, when shall
I see that noble knight, my dear son Palomides? Alas,
will he not abide with me? and therewith she swooned
and wept, and made passing great dole. And then also
soon as she might she gave the varlet all that he asked.
And the varlet returned unto Sir Palomides, for he was
a varlet of King Mark. And as soon as he came, he
told the knight's name was Sir Palomides. I am well
pleased, said King Mark, but hold thee still and say
nothing. Then they alighted and set them down and
reposed them a while. Anon withal King Mark fell
asleep. When Sir Palomides saw him sound asleep he
took his horse and rode his way, and said to them: I
will not be in the company of a sleeping knight. And
so he rode forth a great pace.
How King Mark and Sir Dinadan heard Sir Palomides
making great sorrow and mourning for La Beale Isoud.
NOW turn we unto Sir Dinadan, that found these seven
knights passing heavy. And when he wist how that they
sped, as heavy was he. My lord Uwaine, said Dinadan, I
dare lay my head it is Sir Lamorak de Galis. I promise
you all I shall find him an he may be found in this
country. And so Sir Dinadan rode after this knight;
and so did King Mark, that sought him through the
forest. So as King Mark rode after Sir Palomides he
heard the noise of a man that made great dole. Then
King Mark rode as nigh that noise as he might and as he
durst. Then was he ware of a knight that was descended
off his horse, and had put off his helm, and there he made
a piteous complaint and a dolorous, of love.
Now leave we that, and talk we of Sir Dinadan, that
rode to seek Sir Palomides. And as he came within a
forest he met with a knight, a chaser of a deer. Sir,
said Sir Dinadan, met ye with a knight with a shield
of silver and lions' heads? Yea, fair knight, said the
other, with such a knight met I with but a while agone,
and straight yonder way he yede. Gramercy, said Sir
Dinadan, for might I find the track of his horse I should
not fail to find that knight. Right so as Sir Dinadan
rode in the even late he heard a doleful noise as it were
of a man. Then Sir Dinadan rode toward that noise;
and when he came nigh that noise he alighted off his
horse, and went near him on foot. Then was he ware of
a knight that stood under a tree, and his horse tied by
him, and the helm off his head; and ever that knight
made a doleful complaint as ever made knight. And
always he made his complaint of La Beale Isoud, the
Queen of Cornwall, and said: Ah, fair lady, why love I
thee! for thou art fairest of all other, and yet showest
thou never love to me, nor bounty. Alas, yet must I
love thee. And I may not blame thee, fair lady, for
mine eyes be cause of this sorrow. And yet to love
thee I am but a fool, for the best knight of the world
loveth thee, and ye him again, that is Sir Tristram de
Liones. And the falsest king and knight is your husband,
and the most coward and full of treason, is your lord,
King Mark. Alas, that ever so fair a lady and peerless
of all other should be matched with the most villainous
knight of the world. All this language heard King
Mark, what Sir Palomides said by him; wherefore he
was adread when he saw Sir Dinadan, lest he espied him,
that he would tell Sir Palomides that he was King Mark;
and therefore he withdrew him, and took his horse and
rode to his men, where he commanded them to abide.
And so he rode as fast as he might unto Camelot; and
the same day he found there Amant, the knight, ready
that afore Arthur had appealed him of treason; and so,
lightly the king commanded them to do battle. And by
misadventure King Mark smote Amant through the body.
And yet was Amant in the righteous quarrel. And right
so he took his horse and departed from the court for
dread of Sir Dinadan, that he would tell Sir Tristram and
Sir Palomides what he was. Then were there maidens
that La Beale Isoud had sent to Sir Tristram, that knew
Sir Amant well.
How King Mark had slain Sir Amant wrongfully to-fore
King Arthur, and Sir Launcelot fetched King Mark to
THEN by the license of King Arthur they went to him
and spake with him; for while the truncheon of the spear
stuck in his body he spake: Ah, fair damosels, said
Amant, recommend me unto La Beale Isoud, and tell her
that I am slain for the love of her and of Sir Tristram.
And there he told the damosels how cowardly King Mark
had slain him, and Sir Bersules, his fellow. And for that
deed I appealed him of treason, and here am I slain in a
righteous quarrel; and all was because Sir Bersules and I
would not consent by treason to slay the noble knight, Sir
Tristram. Then the two maidens cried aloud that all the
court might hear it, and said: O sweet Lord Jesu, that
knowest all hid things, why sufferest Thou so false a
traitor to vanquish and slay a true knight that fought in
a righteous quarrel? Then anon it was sprung to the
king, and the queen, and to all the lords, that it was King
Mark that had slain Sir Amant, and Sir Bersules afore
hand; wherefore they did their battle. Then was King
Arthur wroth out of measure, and so were all the other
knights. But when Sir Tristram knew all the matter he
made great dole and sorrow out of measure, and wept for
sorrow for the loss of the noble knights, Sir Bersules and
of Sir Amant.
When Sir Launcelot espied Sir Tristram weep he went
hastily to King Arthur, and said: Sir, I pray you give me
leave to return again to yonder false king and knight. I
pray you, said King Arthur, fetch him again, but I would
not that ye slew him, for my worship. Then Sir Launcelot
armed him in all haste, and mounted upon a great horse,
and took a spear in his hand and rode after King Mark.
And from thence a three mile English Sir Launcelot over
took him, and bade him: Turn recreant king and knight,
for whether thou wilt or not thou shalt go with me to
King Arthur's court. King Mark returned and looked
upon Sir Launcelot, and said: Fair sir, what is your name?
Wit thou well, said he, my name is Sir Launcelot, and
therefore defend thee. And when King Mark wist that it
was Sir Launcelot, and came so fast upon him with a spear,
he cried then aloud: I yield me to thee, Sir Launcelot,
honourable knight. But Sir Launcelot would not hear
him, but came fast upon him. King Mark saw that, and
made no defence, but tumbled adown out of his saddle