Transcription - Tristam
Transcription, B. L. MS. 45,329
 FOR the pricking and moving of the hearts of noble folk to live gloriously and virtuously, and Conform them to the manners of excellent and triumphant Knights, who of old days so strove and blossomed fair in the virtue of knighthood that they have gained of right the name of everlasting memory. I Lucius, Knight, lord of the castle of Gast hard by Salisbury in England, have taken heart to bring together and set in a book the true history of the virtuous, noble and glorious deeds of the right valiant and renowned Knight Tristram, son of the mighty King Meliadus of Lyonesse; the which in the days of the most noble King Arthur obtained before all others the renown and triumph of glorious knighthood and next after the fame and valiancy of the two good knights Galahad and Lancelot of the Lake, even as ye may learn by the telling of their story hereinafter written. Wherewith I pray the readers and hearkeners of this present history that it please them to excuse my ignorance, and to fill up my shortcomings, the correction and better amending whereof to their benevolence I wholly submit.
¶ How Joseph ordained and foresaw for the children of Bron his brother.
2 ¶ How and by what adventure Sadoc wedded the daughter of the King of Babylon.
3 ¶ How the King of Cornwall wedded the wife of Sadoc.
ON a night as the King lay in his bed there came to him a vision, that he was in a wood by a fountain side, and there went before him a Leopard full fearful to behold: the King was armed at all pieces, so he set on the Leopard and the leopard on him, and great was the battle between them; but at the last the leopard fled away wounded, and the King followed in chase; and as the King chased the leopard, lo, a lion that slew the leopard and then returned on the King and devoured him incontinent. The King had great fear of this vision and arose, and cried out; and those who lay before him asked him “sir what aileth thee?” And he said: “I have dreamed the fearfullest dream that man may think on, nor may I deem that good will come of it.”  “Sir,” said they, “tell us thereof.” “Nay by my faith,” said he: and no more he spake. On the morrow he called before him a pagan of great age, who knew well necromancy and astronomy, and was of the kin of Virgil: and whereas he was so old a man they called him Philosopher. The king told him of his dream, whereto he answered: “Tomorrow shall ye know the sooth thereof.” “So be it,” said the king. On the morrow came the philosopher before the king and said: “King, I will tell thee the sooth of thy dream. Thou knowest well that thy wife is big by another than thee and is Christian: wot well that the child with whom she goeth shall slay thee if he live, and shall be by his knighthood as redoubted among men as the lion among beasts: but the leopard thou foughtest withal is the husband of thy wife, who yet liveth.” “How,” said the king, he was cast into the sea.” “Yea forsooth,” said the philosopher, “but fortune cast him therein; and he is on a rock of the sea, enduring enough of pain and torment.” “Well, council me,” said the king, “what I shall do herein.” “Sir,” said the philosopher, “I will counsel thee not, for I would not speak a word whereby any creature should die: thou art wise enow to counsel thyself in the matter.” “Ye say sooth” said the king, “I shall take good heed to myself.” And he held his peace hereof. But when he knew that the lady travailed with child, he came to one of the ladies who were about the Queen and said to her: “I command thee as thou holdest thy body dear, as soon as the Queen bring forth the child, bear it to me to look on.” “Sir,” said she “with a good will.” So the queen was delivered of a son, and the lady took it and brought it before the king, a little before the day dawning: and the king  took it, and gat to horse, and rode into the wood to a fountain thinking to cast the child therein and drown him: but as he went he met a knight and a lady who knew him well and asked him whither he went all alone: and he answered: “I am about a need of mine own I wherein I would have no company, but I will get me back presently.” Therewith they parted: “So may God be good to me!” said the lady, who was with the knight, either the king [is] about some felony or hath already done it.” And as they spake the child began to cry as the king carried him so that the knight and lady heard it well. “Ah,” said the lady, “the king beareth a little child with him; sure I will see all to an ending.” Therewith she got down and said that she would go after the king. “Do it not” said the knight. “Yea forsooth will I, said she, “Go full softly then, so he see thee not.” “That will I” said she. So the knight waited her with the horses in the wood, and she followed after the king, who was by now some so far that he had reached the fountain: he leapt down and took the child from under his cloak, and saw so fair a creature, that he had pity on it, and said that over great pity it were and great cruelty to destroy such a creature: but he thought to leave it by the fountain, for there in no long space it would be devoured of wild beasts; so he laid it by the fountain, and got to horse and departed, nor ever saw the lady who was hidden there behind a thicket. And as soon as the king was gone the lady came to the child that was wrapped in a cloth of silk, and took it, and saw that he was exceeding fair, and said that it was a happy thing of his finding: then went she straight to where she knew the knight was, and showed it to him; and he was very joyous, and said to her:  “Dame, get we back to our house for plentiful good is yet in store.” So they mounted, and brought the child in to safeguard, for God would not let him die a while. The knights name was Nicoran, a good man of his law, and his wife was called Madule a very wise lady and right valiant: they let nourish the child who was exceeding fair, and because of his beauty was called Apollo the Haply, for that he had been found by so fair a hap: the child grew and amended marvellously, so that all marvelled at his beauty and the growth of him: but here leaveth the tale to tell of him, and telleth of Sadoc.
4 ¶ How after Sadoc was cast into the sea he saved himself on a rock by the grace of God.
5 ¶ How King Pelias of Lyonesse thought to kill King Thanor of Cornwall.
6 ¶ How fishers found King Thanor in the river.
SO far have sailed the mariners that they are come to Lyonesse hard by a castle called Lusin; there dwelt they in poor houses by the river side, and as they were taking the king out of their ship there passed by two knights of the house of King Pelias who were going to the Castle of Lusin; and they saw the mariners as they drew the king out, and went thither, and asked where they had found this dead man; and they said in Cornwall: then one of the knights called to his fellow and said: “It is King Thanor, I know him well.” Then said they softly that if he came to himself they would present him to King Pelias. So the knights looking on the King saw well that he was not dead, and they did so much to the mariners that they bore him into a certain stronghold that they had there hard by the castle: and there they so dealt with the King that he came to himself and asked where he was, and they told him all the truth. That very day had King Pelias let cry throughout the land to gather for going into Cornwall, and had said that he would never make an end till he had destroyed all the land; for he deemed King Thanor dead: and thought to have all his land and to take Chelinde to wife, her whom of all the world he loved best. When the two knights head the tidings of the war they came to King Pelias and said: “Sir we have in our prison King Thanor of Cornwall.” and therewith they told how they had found him. “Ha,” said Pelias, let none wit that he is in my land, and guard him well for me, but do him great honour: for much he honoured me in his land, and if I do not the like for him men shall call me traitor: but when I have conquered his land if I give him more honour then, he shall know the cause why all was done.”  Then they said they would guard him so that none should hear him speak till the king asked for him. And so as ye have heard King Pelias made ready war against those of Cornwall: and they of Cornwall had set their lady the queen in prison in a tower because they said that through her they had lost their lord: wherefore it was settled that she should never depart from prison till they had tidings of their lord: for the Chamberlain had they found by the waterside, and therefore doubted they sorely of their lord. The King had a brother called Pellades, who when he saw that his brother was so lost, and that war was come upon them so that each day they lost somewhat he knew not what to do. So he came to the philosopher, and said to to him: “What do we herein for we are all lost?” “I shall show you,” said the philosopher, “What to do: there is a man of Galilee upon a rock of the sea; there hath he been long time in full great mis-ease; for nought hath he to eat save what strange ships cast to him, so that it is marvel he is not dead of hunger. If ye may have him he shall bring your war to an end: lo my counsel, and otherwise I see not how ye may escape out of the hands of King Pelias.” “And how may we have him?” said Pellades. “Ye shall send,” quoth the philosopher folk well armed to the rock, and they shall search if he be there, and there shall they find him, and so ye shall have him.” So was it done as the philosopher bade: Pellades sent for mariners to go to the rock, and they did so much that they found Sadoc, who had then abided there three years. And when Sadoc saw the ship coming he went to meet them, and joined his hands and said: “My lords, I pray for God’s love take me away from this dolorous prison, where I am dying of hunger and the most grievous death that ever caitif died.” When the mariners heard him speak thus they knew it was he whom Pellades had sought of them; so they set him in their ship and asked the other good man if he would go with them and he said: “Nay nay, never if it please God will I go hence but serve him here as long as I live.” So they left him but brought Sadoc into Cornwall, and then was Sadoc sore grieved that they were heathen men: yet said he that better it was to be in the hands of the heathens than to abide upon that rock, where he had suffered so much grief that a man may no more suffer. The mariners brought Sadoc to Pellades, who commanded that he should have all he would even as himself: and thus is Sadoc returned to pleasure out of pain.
7 ¶ How King Thanor appealed King Pelias of treason in the court of King Maroneus
8 ¶ How King Thanor let banish Sadoc from Cornwall
9 ¶ How Sadoc was judged of murder and was set under the perron, and how he was delivered.
10 ¶ How the son of King Pelias whom men led to death was taken by the giant.
11 ¶ How King Pelias discovered to Sadoc the love that he had for the Queen of Cornwall.
12 ¶ How Sadoc brought the queen of Cornwall taking Pelias.
13 ¶ How the queen knew again Sadoc her husband, and how they were taken in the Forest of the Giant.
14 WHEN Sadoc had heard the riddle he began to think a while, and the giant stirred him up to answer: then said Sadoc: “Guileful and dark is thy riddle, but let me alone to see into it; and if I know it not, then slay me.” “Think then and loiter not,” said the giant. So he fell to thinking, and when he had mused a while he said to the giant: “I will tell thee what I deem the sooth of thy riddle; if yet thou wilt not hold me  excused.” “By my faith,” said the giant, “excused thou shall not be.” Then will I tell thee,” said Sadoc: whereas thou sayest thou hadst a tree thou so lovedst, that was a woman thou lovedst more than aught else: and she had a daughter of thee, who was so fair that the beauty of her deceived thee inasmuch that when she was ripe of age thou didst play with her, and take from her the flower of her maidenhood, and after kept her a great while with thee, till it befell on a day that thou camest where she was so dear and sweet, and because thou mightest not find victual for the quenching of thine hunger, thou didst eat her up who was the fruit of thy tree: lo thy book well read meseems for I deem this the unravelling of thy riddle.” For ye shall know that in those days were there giants in the forests of Logres and Cornwall, who ate flesh of men like beasts: till our lord St Denis prayed to the Lord God, that nought eating human flesh might abide in those realms: and as soon as God heard his prayer, he slew that night all the giants of those realms, nor has there been any there sithence, but he came from the outlands: but have here leaveth the tale hereof, and returneth to our matter. FOR, saith the tale when Sadoc had expounded the riddle of the giant so wisely, the giant was all abashed and said: “Quit art thou, and hast nought to fear of me: but I pray thee to abide with me for the fellowship of a damsel and a youth who are hereby and if thou dost by my prayer it will go well with thee; but if not thou shalt surely be shamed.” “Meseems,” said Sadoc, “thou breakest faith so keeping me perforce said he; I force thee thus because I see thee wise and subtle over all men” And when Sadoc saw that so it must be, he gain sayed him not, so that no harm should come to him: and the giant gave his troth hereto: and wot ye well that Lucius son of King Pelias was full joyous of this adventure, and  said to him when he saw him: “Welcome art thou Sir” and asked him of the woman with him: and Sadoc told him the sooth with nought hidden: and Lucius told of his adventure, and showed him the daughter of the giant, who was right fair. So thus dwelt Sadoc with Lucius and the giant, yet but little assured . And on a day it befell that King Pelias hunted in that forest, and lost all his folk and his dogs, and was all spent: and great fear had he, for he knew full well that there haunted the giant who had borne off his son; now was there aught that he feared more: and ever as he rode he looked to come on that giant’s abode; and as luck would have it he rode straight on the rock where the giant abode passers by: who when he saw King Pelias turned on him and took his sword and said: “Stay Vassal thou hast ridden far enow!” and King Pelias stopped in great fear, for he looked to die straightway; and the giant said: “If ye guess not that which I ask then must ye needs die.” And when the king who knew much about the matter, and had heard many things thereof, knew that he might be delivered by the guessing of a riddle, he said: “By my faith, I will do all at thy pleasure, I will guess two things of of thine, and thou one of mine, so that if I divine thy two things I shall be quit, and if thou divinest not mine, I shall do with thee, as else thou hadst done with me.” “Good sooth I agree,” said the giant. “Tell me thy two riddles then, said the King. “With a good will said the giant, and began, saying:
There was a man that loved a pard
Said the giant: “Thou hast given me truce until tomorrow, abide with me this night, and tomorrow I will answer, and then do thy will; for in the covenant I will fail thee not.” “How shall I [be] ensured against ill till that time?” said the King. “Be assured,” said the giant, “for under my conduct none will dare do thee harm.” So when the king heard he lighted down, and the giant brought him to his house, and never was such joy as Lucius made his father when he saw him: and the King was exceeding joyous when he saw his son safe and sound, for well he deemed he was dead; and he asked of his hap, and he told him all even as is aforesaid in the tale. Great joy was betwixt father and son; but whoso was joyous, troubled was Sadoc, for he deemed well he had lost his wife since the King, who loved her so sore was come thither. Enow of talk there was that night between Pelias Lucius and Sadoc;  That night the giant weighed sorely the riddle of the king, but he might nowise know the sooth thereof: So on the morrow he called Sadoc to him and said: “The King hath set me a riddle that I may not aread, and that I will tell thee and I pray thee tell me thy mind thereon:” and therewith he told him the riddle of the king, and so soon as Sadoc heard it he knew what there was to say, and began to think what he should do, for if he told the giant, he was but dead; and if he were left with King Pelias he feared to lose his wife whom he loved more than all things living: So he said to the giant; “If thou wilt give me a certain gift I will tell thee the sooth of the riddle.” “By my faith,” said the giant, “I will give it thee, be assured thereof.” “Then ask I thee to let me go freely, I and my wife, and I will tell it thee.” “Of a sooth said the giant I grant it thee.”
Said Sadoc, “The man who fell into company of a leopard was the king, who fell into my company, and would have given me the half of his kingdom if I would have had it; and whereas he had more trust in my knighthood than in aught else he calleth me leopard of his country: but after we had been fellows together, I took my wife whom I did not rightly know, and delivered her into his hands, for he loved her sorely: but when I knew my wife, I took her from him, and got me gone anywhither: and she is called the side of him, because according to the Gods and the law, she was made his flesh, even as it went with Adam; and whereas he said that ye might now see a body going heartless, it meaneth to say that all his thought is on the lady, and all his heart, that may not forget her: thus have I told the the signification of what he spake concerning me and him, and now may I in sooth go when I list” “Certes,” said the  giant, though fain I were ye would abide with me.” But Sadoc said that he would not abide: so they came to their horses and arrayed them and mounted, he and his wife, and departed from the giant, who was heavy of their departure. Then went the giant to the King and said to him; “I will tell thee the sooth of thy riddle,” and therewith he told him all the dealings of him and Sadoc, even as Sadoc had told it: and when the King heard it he said: “Ha Sadoc deceived me, he to whom thou gavest life and delivered from death: heavy I am thereof; but now thou art quit as to me, and I as to thee; wherefore now I may go, for I have no will to abide here.” Said the giant; “Thou needest not fear thy death of me, but needs must thou abide here to make me company, for thou are good knight and wise; therefore will I have thee abide here till adventure bring hither one wiser than thou, and then shalt thou depart and I will no longer keep thee.” And when the king heard it he was very sorry, for he feared sore that he must abide there ever. But here leaveth the tale to tell of King Pelias, and telleth of Sadoc.
15 ¶ How the giant led away King Pelias, and how Sadoc and Chelinde his wife were delivered.
16 ¶ How and wherefore Apollo departed from the land of Cornwall, and how the giant found him in the forest, and had him away.
On a day the king was a hunting and lost all his dogs and his folk save only Nichoran, and hap brought them to the selfsame fountain, whereto the king had while agone brought Apollo to destroy him: then the king remembered him of what Nichoran had said, and he spake to him: From this place didst thou bear away him by whom I was to die, as while agone a wise philosopher told me; and had he died I had doubted no man living; and since thou savedst him who is to  be my bane needs must thou die therefore.” Therewith he drew his sword, and smote him deadly amidst the head so that he fell to earth, knowing well that he had gotten his death: then the king lighted down and thrust his sword through his body, so that he fainted and swooned of the great anguish that rent him as one hurt deadly. And when the king had so done he went about to seek his meeney, and found some with whom he entered his castle. But Apollo had hunted daylong, and with such craft that all his fellows had left him, and he rode after them, and as he rode hap led him to the fountain where lay Nichoran not yet dead: and when he saw him whom he thought was his father, he lighted down, fell to making such moan that none who saw him might have with-held to pity him: and when Nichoran heard the moan that he made he opened his eyes and saw Apollo whom he loved so well and for whom he was a dying, and he said: “Ha Apollo, here did I and my wife deliver thee from death, and here am I smitten deadly for thy love: but the Gods and thou that I cherished may avenge me.” And even as he spake the word the soul departed from his body as Apollo well behld: who when he had wept a while took him up before him and bore him to his own house: then all asked who had done this ill, and Apollo said it was King Thanor. Enough dole they made both they of his own house and strangers, and then took him and laid him in the earth full honourably after the manner of gentle folk: and when he was laid in earth Apollo said to the dame, “Certain words spake my father Nichoran to me a dying, and is it perchance that he was not my father.” “Certes yea, fair friend,” said she  “he told thee the very sooth, we are nought akin save through nourishing.” Therewith she told him of his life, and how King Thanor bore him away to do him to death, and left him by the fountain whence she bore him, and how she and her husband cherished him. “And wottest thou dame, who were my father and my mother.” “Certes nay,” said she, “never heard I tell either of thy father or thy mother, and heavy is that to me.” “God wott,” said he, “since I have neither father nor mother, I will dwell no longer with thee, but will go seek till I find my father if I may, or any sooth of my lineage.” Then he asked for arms and they brought them, and he mounted and took leave of the lady who had done him so much good, and so went his ways with no speech of the King Thanor, being all alone without fellows. In such wise rode Apollo all alone and passed the realm of Cornwall and came into Lyonesse, and rode till he came to the forest where was the giant; and King Pelias was yet with him and his son, who had abided there twelve years. So on the day when Apollo came to the rock he found the giant there, who cried: “Stay vassal, or thou art dead: if thou wouldst escape whole needs must thou guess one of my riddles;” if thou guessest it thou art quit, but if not die thou must.” So he, beholding the giant that nought living might look on without fear, stayed for he saw well that he might [not] endure before him: but he spake: “Evil creature full of the devil, who never hast done good, I know well thy custom: thou shalt tell me one of thy riddles, which I shall read and be free, or areading not die; and then shall I thee one of mine, and if thou aread it not I will cut off thine head with thine own sword.”  And the giant answered: “Thou tellest the custom truly, nor will I ever fail therein.” “Speak then,” said Apollo, that I may presently tell thee mine.” And the giant began in this wise.
¶ One thing in all the world I see
To these words answered Apollo: “Plain it is concerning this thing born without sin: and I will tell thee: for it is the trees whereof ships are made which at the beginning are but little and of little price and wax up as great as we behold: and the greater and fairer it waxeth the gladlier will man cut the foot from it, and overthrow it: then make we ships thereof and set them on the sea, which we call a plain because there is neither hill nor valley there; thereon saileth the ship speedily and leaveth no trace that it hath made; for four things leave no slot to be followed by; to wit, a lizard over a stone, a bird flying through the air, a ship passing over the sea, and an evil woman surprised as she goeth about her ways , and spieth for herself: these four things may not be followed by any trace: also of the ship as it passeth over the sea may we well say that it hath no foot nor head, and yet leaveth not to run. Thus have I told thee the sooth of thy riddle, and therefore am I quit toward thee; and now will I tell the mine, and let see what shall befal.” “Speak then,” quoth the giant, “for with mine hast thou done as thou shouldest.” So he began in this wise:
¶ When the giant had heard the riddle he asked him what he had to name: said he; “I am called Apollo the Haply; yet of my name needest thou  not heed, but think rather on areading my riddle.” “I will rid me well of the riddle,” said the giant, but not before tomorrow at prime.” “By my faith,” said Apollo, “respite thou shalt never have; thou must speak out straightway.” Needs must thou grant it,” said the giant, “my custom ever is to have a night of respite.” “Then must I abide with thee tonight.” Thou sayest sooth,” said the giant. “And shall I be assured against evil at thine hands?” “I assure thee loyally,” said the giant, “on my faith and all my Gods, that thou needest fear nought.” So Apollo abode with the giant; and King Pelias and his son made him great joy and the daughter also of the giant; saying that they saw never man of his age so unabashed of the giant; of his great heart it came for a valiant man he was. That night the giant thought much on the riddle, but might never know it nor or find what to say: so he took counsel of King Pelias in whom he trusted much, and he knew well what to say, but he thought that if her delivered the giant from death it would be of no avail, for he would deliver nought but the body of him, and his son whom he loved must needs dwell all his life with the giant's daughter; and better it were to let the giant die after whose death he might go whither he would. Then he said to the giant that he knew not what to say; “But think on still if ye may yet know the verity thereof” “By my faith, “ said the giant, “as much as I think, as little I know.” Therewith the king left speaking, for sore he desired the death of the giant, for then were he delivered from his prison, he and his son, where they had so long abided.
17 ¶ How Apollo slew the giant and delivered King Pelias  and his son
BUT when the giants daughter saw her father dead, she fell a making very good dole; but King Pelias comforted her with many promises till she left lamenting and said she would go whither he would: and he said that he would bring her into Lyoness.
So Apollo went to his horse, and mounted, and took leave of King Pelias, who said to him: “Thou wouldst do well to come with me, for know that I would give thee fair lands and rich, whereof thou shouldst hold thee well apaid.” And so much said King Pelias to Apollo that he granted him his wish, so they mounted and left the giant lying dead before his lair. Then said Apollo to King Pelias: “Sir, if the giant  who lieth dead there had known the riddle of his death, happy had he been, for of his death was my riddle made.” “Thou sayest sooth,” said the King, for so soon as he had told me I knew well how to aread it; and blessed be God who hath led thee hither, for but for thee I had never come out of this doleful prison wherein I have been so long: never has so much good come from any man as from thee to me.” So rode they all four together till they were come to the castle of King Pelias: and when they of Lyoness saw their lord whom they deemed dead, they made him exceeding great joy, and let the tidings run through all Lyoness that their lord was come back safe and sound: and when they knew it they came to him as soon as they might and received him right honourably, and made him great feast and said to him: “Sir we have lost somewhat of thy land, and have suffered pain and grief, and this hath the King of Cornwall done us, who maketh no end to warring on us, since he knew thee lost.” “Trouble not yourselves,” said the King, “for he hath done us no scathe, and taken naught from us, but he shall render it again.”
So great was the fest they of Lyoness made for their lord: carolls they sang, and let slay neat and sheep and kids to sacrifice to the Gods who had given them back their lord. But when King Pelias had somewhat reposed him he fell a warring straightway against the king of Cornwall: and when they of Cornwall saw that King Pelias waged war against them they were sore afeared; for they knew well they might not endure against him, and saw no succour on any hand: for the good King Maroneus was newly dead, and Childeric his son reigned in his stead, an evil king and dastard: the said King Childeric bade King Pelias to leave the war he had began against them of Cornwall, and he said that he would not, but would destroy all Cornwall if he might, for ill enough had they done him.
 18 ¶ How and wherefore they Cornwall allied them to the King of Ireland.
WHEN they of Cornwall saw that they might not overcome in the war they got them peace of them of Lyoness in such wise that either should hold their own and in peace, and whoso had done amiss the most, should make amends. To the King of Ireland, because he had come to succour them, and had hearkened to them in their need, was it awarded that they of Cornwall should pay him every year a hundred maidens and an hundred youths of the age of twentyfive years, and a hundred horses of price: and the covenant was made in the days of King Thanasor of Ireland, and the custom lasted for two hundred years afterward till the days of King [Mark], and then broken was the treaty, for the fair Tristram, the good knight and lovesome, fought against Morhoult brother of the Queen of Ireland who was come to claim the tribute of Cornwall, and was slain in the isle of St. Samson, as is told hereinafter.
SO when this tribute was established the King of Ireland got him back, and the two kingdoms abode in peace; for neither  claimed aught of either. A little after befell the feast of my lady Venus, that the pagans made great high-tide of, on the eighth day of entering in of the month of May: and the same was holden on the marches of the two realms in a temple of a little wood called Hercules; because while afore Hercules slew a giant there: to this feast came every year the Kings of Cornwall and of Lyoness, and also to look on the tomb of King Pelias who was buried there: now Sadoc whose lands marched nigh the realm of Lyoness heard how King Pelias whom he had loved so much was buried in their temple: so he thought he would go look on the feast and the sepulchre withal: so he got to horse, he and his wife and three knights, and rode through Lyoness till they were come nigh to the the temple: then he made the three knights and his wife abide there with a forester, and rode himself, all alone and unarmed save his sword, to look on the temple and the sepulchre: and he met King Thanor armed with helm and hauberk as one doubting the King of Lyoness; withal he had left his company so nigh him that, if need were he had been speedily holpen. So it happed that he came to a fountain where Sadoc sat looking on the water which was right fair, and asked his name without greeting; and he said he was called Sadoc. “How,” said the king, “art thou that Sadoc who fought against Pelias for Cornwall?” “Yea surely,” said he, “and ill did they of Cornwall pay me back for my kindness of that day.” “Certes,” said the King, “if thou didest them good, shame enow thou didest them thereafter, when evilly thou leadest away Queen Chelinde of Cornwall; and dearly shalt thou abye it, for now must thou needs die.” When Sadoc heard him threaten he leapt up, and took his cloak, and did it about his arm, and drew his sword; and the king fell on him, making semblance to smite him on the head, but when he put forth his arm against it the king drew back his stroke and thrust him through the body;  and Sadoc fell to earth and knew well that he was wounded deadly; and the king went his ways seeing well that all was done: but he had gone no long way before Sadoc arise and stopped his hurt the best might, for he would fain come to his wife, for as sore hurt as he was, since he would liefer die by her than in any place else: in such wise he got on his way, and as he went he met King Lucius son of Pelias and Apollo going alone without any company to look on the feast and the sepulchre of King Pelias; they were both afoot, but armed with even such arms as King Thanor bore, who had made Apollo knight and had commanded him to bear his arms.
NOW when Sadoc saw Apollo so armed, he deemed it would be him who wounded him, and said: “Thou hast slain me, but I will avenge me on thee if I may.” Therewith he drew his sword, and smote Apollo so great a stroke that he was all abashed and fell to his knees, but rose incontinent and said: “Sir Knight, thou hast smitten me without reason, but thou shalt repent thee thereof:” and with that he drew his sword, and smote Sadoc so fiercely therewith that he clave him to the teeth and he fell dead. But King Lucius knew Sadoc and said: “Ha Sir, thou hast slain the best knight of the world; for this was he of whom we talked so much, who fought against my father for them of Cornwall.” “How,” said Apollo, “is this Sadoc of the castle of Theriadam.” “Yea even so,” said Lucius. “By my faith,” said Apollo, “I took no heed thereof; but what do we?” “By my faith,” said Lucius, “whereas he is the best knight I have known saving thee, I would lay him by my father’s side before our Lady Venus.” “I accord thereto,” said Apollo, and sheathed his sword withal.
¶In such wise died Sadoc by the disloyalty of his son. But they took him, and bore him along, and met on their  way King Thanor coming all alone from the temple: and when Apollo hsaw him he knew him straightway and showed him to King Lucius, saying “Lo the King of Cornwall!” Then sprang forth King Lucius full of wrath and said: “A fools deed to enter my land without leave of me!” and set his hand to his sword therewith and cried; “King Thanor I defy thee keep thee from me! for a long time have we warred together, and now shall one of us come to the worse.” Then they smote each other exceeding fiercely, giving each other many wounds, and a long while lasted that battle; but at last King Thanor smote King Lucius in such wise that he wounded him deadly, and he fell to earth: and when Apollo saw it, he asked of King Lucius; “Sir how is it with thee.” “Apollo, said he, I am hurt to death; but if ever thou lovedst me think of avenging me.” And he answered, “My honour is gone in that I let thee be slain in my fellowship.” And therewith he fell on King Thanor with his drawn sword; and when the King saw him coming he said; “Get thee aback Apollo, for I made thee knight, therefore shouldest thou for nought at all raise thine hand against me.” “Ha ha! King Thanor, needs must thou die, for but if I avenge the death of my fellow I am unworthy to bear arms.” And he fell on him therewith, and did so much in short space that he presently brought him nigh to death; and when he saw him overcome he went to his lord and did off his helm, and asked him how it was with him, but he answered; “I am nigh to my death, hast thou not yet avenged me?” “Sir yea, King Thanor is dead.” And as they talked thus together lo four barons of Lyoness, akin to King Lucius, who, when they saw their lord wounded, made great dole, and asked how it went with him. “Dead am I without doubt,” said he, “but whereas I would not have you abide without a lord, I command and pray you for your avail,  and for the honour of Lyoness, that ye straightway make this Apollo King of Lyoness; for he is a valiant man and good knight, and well-beloved, and wot well how to hold the land better than any knight I know therein. And I command you that ye bury me in the temple of our Lady Venus beside my father Pelias, and lay beside me King Thanor and Sadoc.” And they answered that they would do his commandment with a good will. And now amidst this grief as the King of Lyoness lay dead on the way the folk of King Thanor heard thereof, and were not well assured, for they saw nought that might save them, so they got them gone as wisely as they might out of the land; but great dole they made of their lord and great dole there was when they told how Apollo had slain him. King Lucius, King Thanor and Sadoc were borne to the temple of Venus; and lo thither came Chelinde with the two knights who guarded her, and when she saw her lord dead, she fell a making exceeding great lamentation, and said: “Ah fair lords, suffer me to bear away the body of my lord to his own castle that I may bury him among his own folk.” But they said it might not be, for even as King Lucius had commanded so should it be done: and all three were buried in the temple. Then Chelinde held her peace and spoke no more when she saw that prayers availed her not.
19 ¶ How Apollo was crowned King of Lyoness.
On a day the King held feast in memory of his crowning; and there came a knight before him, who said, “Tidings, Sir,” “Whereof?” said the King: “Sir a man out of his wit hath een now slain a gentleman of this city, and so was led out to the death: but as we led him out we met a man in poor habit, who said to us: “Lords ye do wrong to slay this man who is out of his wit, he knoweth not what he does: let him go and take me, and if I bring not the slain man to life again, then slay me.” So we let the one go and took the other: who so soon as he was brought before the dead body, fell on his knees, and in no long time he who had been slain arose safe and sound as if he had never had grief or sickness. Then he went about the town preaching the faith of Christ, whom the Jews crucified in Jerusalem.” “Ha,” said the king, “marvel it is what God doeth for these Christians; let him come before me, I would see him.” So they went to seek him, and found him on a perron with the people assembled before him. So they took him and asked him of his name, and he said that he was called Augustin. “Come then to the King,” said they, “he will you no hurt.” So he went straight to the palace. And when he was come the king was gone into his chamber all alone he and his queen: And those that had brought Augustin thither said to the King: “Lo the man thou wouldst have; what do we with him?” And the King said; “Bring him before me,” and they brought him: and when Saint Augustin entered into the chamber he feigned and made semblance to be sore afraid: and the King said to him, “Have no heed here.” But he said: “If heed I have not,  evil shall befal me; for here I am bestead between you twain as the lamb between the wolf and the shewolf, and sore me needeth a good shepherd and a good guard to watch over me.” “How,” said the King, “callest thou me wolf, and the Queen she-wolf?” “Yea and worser,” quoth he, “for the wolf is of such a nature, that let him behold his sire never so far off, or sniff the scent of him as he chaseth his prey, never will he touch the quarry when he hath gotten it for the fear of his father, but goeth his ways other where: thus doth the brute beast who hath no with but of nature: but thou, who hast wit in thee to know good from evil, hast not done in likewise, but it hath fallen on thee to slay thy father and to wed with thy mother afterwards; neither have the very pagans heard of such things: for the law of kind forbiddeth to slay the father and lie with the mother; which two things thou hast done: lo now what thou hast deserved!”
WHEN the king heard this he was all abashed and said: “How knowest thou my father whom I have never known? and how sayest thou that I have taken my mother to wife.” “The very mother,” said he, “that bore thee in her belly, and of whom thou art hast thou surely wedded: and know that Cicorades new crowned King of Cornwall is thy brother by the mother’s side, and on this lady did King Thanor beget him.” When the lady heard these words she was abashed, and said to the King: “Sir, a great folly is it to hearken this enemy and devil; he is a wizard, and if thou hearken him he shall shame thee in the end.” And the King, whom these words pleased much, said to the Queen: “Dame doth it displeasure thee that he be with us?” “Nay,” said she, “rather would I that he were taken and destroyed for his wicked word.” “That were an evil deed, dame,” said the King, “for since I have bidden him hither, he should have nought to fear:  and if he hath spoken folly, his it is, and falleth not on us.” But for no word of the King would the Queen refrain from her evil mind, but commanded that he be taken and set in prison and slain sithence: and so was it done; for they took the holy man, and set him in prison, and said that tomorrow he should be slain, for so the Queen would: but the King was sore grieved thereat, but so much he loved the Queen that he durst not turn her from her will. That same night, as the King lay abed by his wife there befell him a marvellous vision: for him seemed that he was on the highest mountain of the world, and all the world he saw thence, and under the said mountain was an exceeding deep valley; so he, who would behold the valley, and what folk dwelt there, found two ways, one to the right hand, and the other to the left; and the right way guarded a fair lamb, but the left a wolf dreadful and hideous, who ran with blood from his throat ever open, and lepy a crying ‘Bring, bring!’ Of him had the King such fear that he trembled all over, and turned toward the lamb, and beheld how it wept full tenderly, and the King asked what ailed it; and it said: “Here I weep because all they whom I have bought with my blood, and delivered know me not, and are not my friends but my enemies.” “And whither goeth,” said the King, “yonder way that the wolf keepeth?” “It goeth to the valley of woe, and the dwelling of darkness.” “And that which thou keepest, whither goest it?” “It goeth straight to the house of joy and delight.” “Thither would I with a good will,” quoth the King. “So long as thou trowest in thy Gods thou wilt not thither.” “And what Gods then shall I trow in?” said the King. “Augustin, whom thy wife holdeth in prison shall tell thee well what thou oughtest to trow in; and if thou believest that he saith, thou mayst go  by the way I keep, and enter into the house of delight; but otherwise shalt thou enter not: and know that thy wife shall enter never, but shall come presently to that place which the wolf arrayeth for her, and shall suffer there pain everlasting.”
20 THEN woke the King and it lay heavy on him, and sore he desired the day to speak with Augustin; for he deemed well that he would tell him the sooth of the vision he had seen: so when it was day the King and the Queen arose, and went to the temple, to worship after the heathen law, and then returned unto their palace. Then the king bade bring the good man, who had been set in prison yester eve by the Queen’s commandment: and when the Queen who hated him much, saw him, she said “Sir, what wouldst thou with this wizard, this devil? I would not that he come where we be; for nought will come of him but evil.” “Ha dame,” said the King, “let him come for thou shalt hear words shall please me.” “What,” said the Queen, “dost thou account me so little, that thou wilt have him come against my will?” “Dame,” said he, “since thou wilt not that he come, do thy pleasure herein.” “So shall I without fail,” said she: and therewith called the sergeants, and said to them: “Kindle a great fire outside in the meadows, and lead thither him who was set in prison yestereve, and burn and destroy him therein; for he has spoken that which pleaseth me not.” So they went, and made a fire so great, that the King, who was at the windows, saw the fire, and called the Queen, and said to her: “Dame, knowest thou wherefore yonder fire is made?” “Right well, Sir,” said she, and told him wherefore. “Ah Dame,” said he, “too great a misdeed is it to put a man to death for nought; I fear lest the Gods be angry with thee.” “Sir,” said she, “On my head be it!”
 So the King held his peace as one who would not gain say her. But the sergents came to Saint Augustin, and led him through the streets unto the fire: and many of the heathen there were who grieved sore thereat, because of the good they had beheld in him, and sore they blamed the Queen who thus did him to death for nought: but when they came to the fire, befel a marvel, whereof all were abashed; for so soon as Saint Augustin came before the fire, it was slaked straightway, and all about was it cold as ice: then they drew aback when they saw it, saying: “We do evil to put this man to death, for a good man is he and of good life; let we him go, for if we do him evil, evil shall befall us.” And even as they spoke they heard from the palace so great a cry that they were all abashed: so they left Saint Augustin there, and ran to the palace to know what that crying was, and when they came there they found the Queen aburning up with fire from heaven, that had fallen on her at the self same time that Augustin should have been cast in the fire: So did God take vengeance on her.
BUT when the King saw the Queen a burning, he fell fainting for sorrow, and when he came to himself the Queen was already dead. “Ha,” said he “this hath fallen upon us for the sin that we did to the holy man in doing him to die.” And when they heard thereof who had led Augustin to the fire, they told the King what they had seen, and what had befallen them. “Ha,” said the King go seek him for me, I would speak with him.” So they went and found him and brought him before the King, who when he saw him rose up to meet him and saluted him, and then led him all alone with him into his chamber. “Ha” said Augustin, “I wot well that thou wouldst ask me of the vision of the wolf and the lamb that thou sawest sleeping a nighttime.” When the King heard that he was all abashed, for he was being told that which he had told neither to man nor woman: So he said; Yea; and thou art the wisest man of the world, or the Gods have told thee that which no man knoweth save me.” “Ha ha,” said Saint Augustin, “thou sayest ill, for the Gods may not teach me aught, for no might have they save to cast them who trow in them into pain everlasting: for but one GOD it was that made Adam and Eve, and all things as they are ordained; and that is the God of might and wisdom, for he seeth all and knoweth all and doth all; and he it was who saved thee at the fountain whither King Thanor bore thee to slay thee: by him didst thou escape and by none other; and he is the God of Gods.” And therewith he fell to telling him the interpretation of his dream, how one of those ways was Paradise, and the other hell.
SO much said and did Saint Augustin to the King, and to those of Lyonesse that he christened them all, but the King changed not his name: the temples and the idols were all beaten down and destroyed, and were made churches throughout all Lyonesse: and when they of Cornwall heard say that they of Lyonesse had left their law, they held them in great despite and said they would destroy them: so they came upon them with a great host, and met with them man to man: but they of Cornwall were discomforted and vanquished, and their King Cicorades fled away wounded, and they who were left fled away to dwell in Cornwall; for God wot not all returned: but they of Lyoness got them home to their land.
Now in those days there was in Cornwall, in the city of Norhoult an old man, who was called Philosopher, because he was a good clerk and a wise man: born was he in the land of Greece, but had dwelt for a while in Cornwall in the city of Norhoult a foresaid: now at  the Temple of Apollo there were many altars: one there was in honour of Jupiter, one to Mars, one to Saturne, one to Apollo, and there the heathen worshipped after their law. So when the Philosopher knew that Saint Augustin was come into Lyoness, and had christened all folk there, he marvelled; for of that God whom Saint Augustin preached he had never heard tell: and when he saw that he might live no long time he let build an altar in the said temple afar from the others and afar from all folk, and let write letters thereon that said: To the God of marvels. Then he began to trow in the said God and to make his prayers before the altar, and when they of the city came and read the letters of that altar they marvelled at what that might be; for they saw that the Philosopher worshipped not the Gods that they worshipped, and they told the King that he was not of their faith. The King went to see the altar and the letters, and said to the Philosopher: “In whose honour hast thou made this altar?” And he said “In honour of the God of Marvels.” “And what God is that?” said the King. “Certes,” said the Philosopher, “I know not, not have I ever heard tell of his name; but I wot well that he is God over all Gods, and so marvellous, that he may well be called the God of Marvels.” “And knowest thou not his name them, said the King. “Certes Sir, of his name know I nought.” “Nay?” said the King; “well since thou knowest no more needs must thou adore the Gods that we adore, or thou shalt die the death.” “Of a surety,” said the Philosopher, “I will never adore them; and full sorry am I that ever I did so; and I heed not how I die, so that my body be buried before this altar, for in this faith and in no other will I live and die.” So the King let take him, and bring him into his palace, and make him drink venom perforce; and he drank a  cup full thereof and it did him no hurt; thereon was the King all abashed and said to him, A wizard art thou;” but he said it was nowise so. “And how is it,” said the King, “that thou art not dead?” Said the Philosopher: “That God of whom I spake to thee hath saved me from death to show his power.” Then was the King right sore abashed, and said; “His might will I prove.” And therewith was the remnant of the venom given to another, who fell dead straightway: so he let put his body in the earth, and said to the Philosopher: “Adore our Gods or thou shalt die.” “Death heed I little,” said he, “or what thou wilt do to me; and for no death wilI I adore other God than him I know.” So the King bade slay him, and so it was done, and he was buried before the altar he had made to the God of Marvels. NOW on a day the King went a-hunting, and he lost all his dogs, and chance led him to a fountain, and there he alighted to drink; and as he would drink he fell a-thinking on the words that the Philosopher had said to him; and amidst his thinking came a lion thereto, and leapt into the fountain, and made so great noise therewith that the King left his thinking and drew aback, for fear lest the lion should fall upon him when he came forth from the fountain: and when he had abided a long while to see what the lion would do he got him to the fountain, and looked therein on one side and the other, but saw nothing and was all abashed thereat: so he sat himself down again, and fell a-thinking as aforetime: but lo! the lion came out of the fountain, but went his way without heeding him, nor was he anywise wet, but as dry and clean as if he had been all day in the sunshine: and when the King beheld it he was all abashed, and deemed it was enchantment that he had seen, and fell a-thinking what it  might be. BUT as he thought came a marvellous voice that said: “Lo even in such wise entereth the Great Lion into the sins and filthiness of the world, and is nowise soiled thereby, but departeth pure and clean even as when he entered.” And so great was that voice that the King fell aback for fear; and then he looked down the road, and saw coming from afar the good Saint Augustin: and he rose to meet him because he seemed a good man, and saluted him; and Saint Augustin asked of him: “Sir, what dost thou here all alone?” “And who art thou that asked?” said the King. “Who so I be,” said he, “I am a Christian man, a sinner as others; but the will of God hath sent me hither to counsel thee to leave thy belief.” “Ha,” said the King, “art thou Augustin then, who hath christened Apollo and all Lyonesse.” I did my might thereto,” said he, “but little had my might availed had not greater aid been.” “Men hold thee for wise,” said the King; “Show me the sooth of what hath befallen me even now.” And therewith he told him how he had been a thinking of what the Philosopher had said, and how the lion came and returned. Then said Saint Augustin: “By such example showeth our Lord that he would have thee of his fellowship:” and therewith he fell to showing him all the points of the Law of Christ, and the sooth of the Great Lion; and such good words he said to him, that the King left his law, and was christened in that self same fountain, and Saint Augustin christened him, ever thereforward was that fountain called the fountain of the Lion: and thereafter by that fountain did Tristram slay the brother of Androc, and thereby lost King Mark his son Moragis whom he had from his mother so little a creature, that he was not seven.
 22 WHEN the King Circorades was christened he let the folk of Cornwall wot thereof, and right sorry they were: then came to him all the great men of his country and were christened for the love of him; and when all his men were christened the King let cry throughout the land that whoso were not christened within eight days he should die or avoid the land; then all were christened, both little and great: in such wise were they of Cornwall christened; then went the two kings to see one another, who were brothers come out of one mother’s womb, the King of Cornwall to wit and the King of Lyonesse, and peace was made between them. And know that at this same time that Cornwall was turned to the law of Christ by Saint Augustin was Ireland also christened by Joseph of Arimathea, whom our Lord sent into Britain the Great to people the land with good folk. BUT when Govosor heard say that the two kings were christened, he was full joyous, for he had two exceeding fair daughters, and he knew well that the two brethren would right willingly have them to wife because of his sending them; and with a good will they received them, and wedded them according to the Christian law. The King of Cornwall had the youngest, and the fairest she was, and the wickedest to wit, and cunning in wizardry and she hight Goyne; but she whom the King of Lyonesse had was called Gloriande.
23 Now when the Queen Goyne of Cornwall was come to the age of of twenty five years she fell in love with a knight of her house, and loved him so that she had her will of him: and when the king knew that she was doing foolishly (not that he knew the shame that she had done him), he let make a tower right strong and high hard by his palace, and set her therein; and shut up with her maidens for her serving,  and bore the key thereof himself: and when the Queen found herself so shut up she was fulfilled of grief; for she saw well she might no more speak with him she loved so well: now so it befell that on a day the king had gone to her for his pastime, and she said to him: “Sir wherefore hast thou so imprisoned me? deemest thou that if I had will to do folly I should leave it for all this prison? certes nay; I should go about to accomplish it in any wise I might; and surely had I any thought thereof ye have now given me that evil will. Hast thou never heard say that none may keep a woman from her will: and wot that if I would thou shouldest keep me but evil, if I deemed not that thou wouldst take me out of this trouble.” “Certes dame,” said he, “to keep me from trouble have I shut thee up here for whatso thou be, I have no fear that thou canst do aught to bring me shame.” Quoth she; “Then thou wilt that I try it.” “Yea so,” said the King. “Look to it to guard me well,” said she, and call to mind that which I have said; how none may keep a woman from what she will.”
Then the King held his peace knowing not what she had in her mind.
ON the morrow when the King was departed the knight whom the Queen loved came before a window to speak with her from afar, so that none might think ill of them; and when the Queen saw him she fell on talking to him, nor ever left for all her maidens, for they knew the secrets of her life: so she lamented to the knight that her imprisonment; and he bewailed him of all he had lost, saying that he would never have joy again, since he had lost that which he loved better than himself. “Fair friend,” said she, “since thou lovest me so much as thou sayest, come often to  the place where thou art, and I shall so bring it about that I shall come forth and talk with thee, and we shall have our wills on of another; nor will I abide here either for the King or for his watch.” “Dame,” said the knight, “I will come even if I get my death thereby.” So was the game begun betwixt the knight and the Queen.
NOW the King who had been a-hunting and was weary after he had supped with his knights went into the tower to bed the Queen; and when he came therein the Queen made him as fair semblance as she might; and the King got to bed and slept straightway; but that did not either the Queen or her maidens; but she took a great rope which she had let bring there, and knotted it to a battlement of the tower to let herself down to her love: and when she saw that the King was fast asleep she went to the window and saw her love who was come thither, and said to him: “Art thou there? I will come down to thee presently.” “Ah nay dame, rather let me come up; for wert thou once down, thou mayst not get up again.” “Ah,” said she, “say it not, for be sure if the King find us there together we must needs die both, but without may we escape: and if needs must I die, I had liefer die alone, than that any die with me; for no gain should I have of another’s death.” So much said the lady, that he suffered it, and she took the rope, and let herself down, and came to her love, and when they were together they did their will. But even as they were together thus the King awoke, and when he found not the Queen by him he was all abashed, and arose and sought up and down but found her not, till he came to the window and looked down, and saw the Queen and the knight lying together.  Then he marvelled how she got down, for he saw no door open; but he sought up and down and found two damsels of the Queen who abode by the rope till their lady should climb up again; and when the King saw the rope he was all abashed, and took the damsels and cast them down so that they died: and when the Queen and the knight saw that they knew well that the King had beheld them: “Ha fair friend,” said the Queen, “depart! for if the King find thee thou are but dead.” “How lady,” said he, “shall I leave thee here, who hast come down from the tower for the love of me! Certes love, I ought rather to die for thee than thou for me.” “Nay,” she said, thou must go and I will stay, for the King loveth me so that he will in no wise slay me for this deed; and then oft times mayst thou come and talk with me, as thou mightest not if thou be taken.” So the knight hearkened well how the Queen gave him good counsel, and did her bidding, and went to a wall, and climbed over it and went his way. And the King who was yet on the battlement saw him go, and wotted well he might not come at him, and he cried out: “Dame how hath thy knight left thee? little heedeth he how thou art in the jaws of death; and now is thy shame open; and wot that I shall show it befor the greatest of Cornwall, or ever thou enter in here.” “Sir,” said she, “so much the worse; for my shame is thine: and look to it that if thou shame me I shall win thee skathe if I may.” “Do thy worst,” said the King, but here thou enterest not ere they of Cornwall know hereof.” “Let it be, then,” said she; and sat herself down full of grief, and thinking that she would avenge her of this shame if she might [.]
 24 ALL the night abode the Queen under the tower; and in the morning, when they of the palace were arisen, and saw the cord hanging from the battlement, they marvelled what it might be: then the King came forth from the tower and showed his knights the Queen his wife, and asked them what he should do, telling them all as it had befallen. “Sir,” said they, “she is thy wife thou mayst destroy her if thou wilt, or if thou wilt let her live.” “Certes,” said the King, “I shall slay her not but let her live at my pleasure.” Then he set her in the tower in greater misease than before: yet nonetheless he left not to lie with her, as one who loved her well, and might not keep her withal: with a good will had he pardoned her ill-doing if she would have named the knight, but never might he say so much to her that she would tell his name.
ON a night lay the King with the Queen in the tower: but the Queen, who might not sleep, fell to turning and turning about, because she was minded to go down by the cord to the knight, unto him she had given term to come to her that same night: the King saw it well, and made semblance of sleeping; and when she thought that he was fast asleep she rose from the King’s side full softly, and went to the window, and saw her love who was already come and abode her; then would she get her down; but the King sprang on her sword in hand, and cried out at her, and said: “Ha evil women whither wouldst thou? tell me the sooth, whither wouldst thou?” And she, beholding him with his sword in his hand, was afraid, and cried him mercy. “Never shalt thou have mercy,” said he, but thou tell me how I may take thy knight.” “So may God save me,” said the Queen, “thou mayst no better take him than by doing on my gown, and going  down hereby as I should have done hadst thou not forestalled me; then will he deem that it is I: and so when thou art come down thou wilt easily take him, whereas he is all unarmed, and thou art girt with thy sword.” “By my faith,” said the King, “I may go far safer by this door.” “Do it not,” said the Queen, “for if he hear opening of doors, he will think himself seen.” The King hearkened and deemed she said sooth; so he clad himself with her gown who hated him mortally; so he got on to the cord, and she let it tumble all together, so that the King was broken all to pieces when he came down, and he fell on the earth before the knight and his heart broke and he died.
WHEN the knight saw him he was full of grief for he thought it had been the Queen, but when he saw the sword wherewith the King was girt he was all assured; and the Queen did open the door and came to the Knight and said: “Fly we hence speedily, for if we be found here we be dead.” “Dame,” said the knight, “thou sayest sooth.” So they went straight to the house of the knight and got to horse, and had with them such goods as they might, and rode night long till they came to the Castle of North Galloys which is hard by the sea: and the lord thereof was nigh akin to the knight who led away the Queen: who when he saw them made them great cheer, and asked them of their welfare: and the knight told them how the King was dead, but told him not by what mean: so the lord of the castle who was called Liel said to him: “Abide with me since so it is; and fear not aught with me; for if they seek thee thou mayst enter into the sea: and know that I will keep the Queen here as long as she will be hidden so that she need fear nought; and all this for thy love. So the knight and the lady thanked him and abode with  him there.
So befell the end of King Cicorades of Cornwall; and on the morrow was he borne to the minster and buried in the Church of Our Lady, which had been new built in the city of Norhault: and know that if the said Queen had fallen into the hands of his men, they would have done such justice on her, as folk had talked on for ever. But now leaveth the take of this matter, and telleth of the other sister wife of the King of Lyonesse, and who was called Gloriande, how she was wrongfully accused before her lord, and how she died, and in what wise.
25 ¶ How Apollo went into France to the crowning of King Clovis.
IN that city was a lady hight Albine mother of her whom the Queen had doomed: she hated the Queen sore, and had gladly seen her destroyed, even as her daughter had been. Now on a day the King went a-hunting, and the dame of whom I spake, arrayed herself like a messenger, and made a false letter, and wrote therein words against the Queen the most disloyal that ever were written: then she gat to horse, and daylong followed the King from afar; and in the evening when the King came back from hunting he met her; and said: “God save thee, dame, who art thou, and why goest thou so alone?” “Sir I come to speak privily to my lady the Queen: and a woman am I; nor will I saw my say save to me only.” When the King heard this he fell into evil thoughts. “Thou bearest letters from the Queen,” said he, “show them unto me.” “Ah sir,” said she, “over great would be my trespass were I to discover the secret of so high a lady as the Queen of Lyonesse.” But hereof was the King the more agrieved, and he drew his sword and said he would slay her, but she showed them unto him: and she who had devised this treason against the Queen and was all joyous now, said as one full of wrath and grief: “Ha true knight, slay me not, and I will show them to thee;” and therewith she delivered the letter to him, which said even this:
¶ O Love so loving, so sore beloved of my heart, true salutation to thee from thy true love, Gloriande Queen of Lyonesse: sweet friend know that I am  nought away from thee, and all too little have I come to thee, or thou to me: I beseech thee therefore to bring about the death of my lord the King, and I will tell thee how: every day he goeth a-hunting in the woods without fellowship, and there slay him if thou mayst: and know that so soon as he is dead I will have thee crowned King of Lyonesse, whosoever be lief or loth thereof: for the best knight thou art of the world, and the fairest, and best beloved of me.
¶ When the King had read this letter, he thought of a surety that it was of his wife, and was full of grief, and said to the lady: “Thou art consenting to this evil and shameful deed; thou shalt have thine hire;” and he smote off her head therewith that she fell dead to earth, and so was she appaid of her treason. But the King did up the letter again and set it in his bosom, saying that he would show it to the Queen before all his barons, and would do her to death if they accorded thereto. Therewith he gat him back toward the city; and when he was come thither he called to him a Knight of Gaul, a right valiant man who there abode, and showed him that letter, and asked him counsel what to do; and when the knight saw the letter he knew well that it was treason, for so well that she was one of the best women of the world, and loved her lord above all things; so he said to the King: “Sir, wot well that this letter is done by guile, nor hath the Queen ever thought on such a thing; and if any will say the contrary I will fight against him for the Queen: yea against any two knights.” And so much said the Knight that the King refrained his anger  yet ever he thought on the matter, and put the Queen from his heart. Now in this very week, sent Clovis King of Gaul to Apollo King of Lyonesse, bidding come to his crowning within a month’s space, bringing with him the Queen his wife, and all whom he would: for this Clovis was new christened of Saint Remy, and Saint Remy was to crown him King of the realm of France. When Apollo heard these tidings, he arranged his departure, and took ship, he and his Queen, and his son who was full fair and right goodly of speech as for his age; and a little hound withal that he loved much, and two knights and four squires: with this company and no more he went into the land of Gaul: and great cheer was made Apollo there, for far and wide folk told of him.
26 Great feast there was at King Clovis’ crowning, and King Apollo sat by him thereat, and looked on his wife and his dog, and fell a laughing : and King Clovis seeing it marvelled and said: “Apollo I crave a gift of thee.” “Sir ask and thou shalt have.” “I will have thee tell me,” said he, “wherefore thou laughest.” “Sir, I would have told thee hadst thou not asked, said Apollo; I am come to thee like unto him who went to the Emperor yore agone: for I have with me my friend, my enemy and my mirth-maker, and nought faileth me saving my thrall.”
“What meaneth this” said King Clovis, “do me to wit.” “Sir, with a good will: I have with me my enemy, even my wife; for none may have worser enemy than his wife, if so she will have it: my friend I have, my dog to wit: never am I in any danger but he cometh to me when I call, and loveth me ever: my mirth-maker also have I; that is my son, who saith so many words for my pastime, that no other  mirth-maker need I; and nought lacketh saving my ass for my thrall: and now have I told thee wherefore I laughed.” The King and all other fell a-laughing at these words; but whoso laughed, the Queen laughed not, but was sore grieved that the King her husband had called her his enemy. Then said King Clovis: What doom doom ye withal in your land on a woman taken in adultery?” “Sir,” said Apollo, “the Queen my wife hath made the doom: for she hath judged them to be burned up in the fire; since such women trespass because of the fire of lust, wherefore ought they to be punished by the fire, so that one fire may destroy the other.” “By my faith,” said King Clovis, “this doom is good, I will have it held to throughout all my realm.” So he let it be holden everywhere, and it endured nigh two hundred years until the time of King Arthur: but in his time was France left without heirs; whereon there came a prince from Germany to France, called Forles, who conquered France perforce despite all those of Rome: now in France was there a lady of marvellous beauty, when the said Forles loved par-amours, but she loved him not, but rather a French knight: whereof it came [one] took her in the deed with him, and brought her before Forles and said: “Sir, I have taken this dame in adultery, and she should be burned according to our custom.” “Is it so?” said Forles, “so may God be good to me never shall so fair a lady be burned for such a deed!” “Sir,” said he “overthrow not our law.” “By my faith,” said Forles, “I am your new lord, and new lords, new laws: I proclaim that no woman be slain for such deed henceforward.” And this he did because he would fain have the lady to himself; whom indeed he got, and guarded as his very body  till King Arthur came into France and fought against Forles and slew him, and conquered France, and gave it to Lancelot of the Lake: but the lady whom Forles had, gave her to Brandelis one of his knights of the Table Round. Whereof leaveth the tale, and returneth to Apollo and the Queen his wife.
27 ¶ How Apollo was slain by the son of King Clovis.
 SORE grieved was the queen of this mishap: the King was had into prison, and the lady and the child were set in the tower; and the son of King Clovis came thither, thinking well to have his will of the lady; but when she saw him coming, she said; “Vassal, why hast thou shamed me and hurt to death my lord the King, who came to do thee so great honour as to be present at the crowning of the King thy father? Yea and yet more thou thinkest to shame me; but never shall it be.” Therewith she cast herself out of a window of the tower onto the ground, and with that fall her soul departed from her body. And when he saw this evil hap he was all abashed, and said: “Ah alas! what have I done! I have slain the most valiant woman of the world!” Then he let take the lady and bury her in as privy a wise as might be, and let search the wounds of the King to see if he might be healed: but the leache said it might not be, and in short space he died: and the King’s son let take him and shroud him full poorly, and cast him into the water of Loire, so that none might find him: but the hound, when he saw his master cast forth leapt after him, and strove so a swimming and thrusting him from under that he got to land and drew him out of the water with his teeth, and digged a hole and buried him, and abode by him there that neither man nor beast might bear him away.
THIS thing was seen and known of many folk; and on a day King Clovis rode by the river of Loire, and went toward a castle he had hard by: and he passed by the hole wherein Apollo had been laid, and the hound who guarded his lord lest none should take him away, fell a baying when he saw King Clovis draw night: and the King saw the hound, and it had been told  him of his ways; so he said it was not done for nought, and he would know wherefore it was; for Apollo had loved the dog much, and said that he was his friend. And lo there lay Apollo underneath and the King saw him as he was unshrouded, and he knew him straightway, and said that he was shamed, when such a man was slain in his land and under his safe-conduct: Then the King let bear him to the castle where he would lie, and there was he laid in earth: Then let the King cry that whoso knew sure tidings concerning the death of Apollo, to him should be given whatso he should ask. Then came forth a damsel so soon as she had heard the King’s promise and said: “Sir if thou wilt tell me the sooth of thy promise, I will tell the the sooth of the death of Apollo.” And the King assured her thereof. Therewith she told him all the deed of his death even as is aforesaid, and how his son was yet in the tower, wherein he was set in prison, and was nourished of a damsel.
NOW when the King heard this he was sorry and said: “My son has shamed me, and him will I shame.” Then he sent to seek the child to nourish him till he might be King of Cornwall and Lyonesse: and there after let bring his son before him, and said to him: “Thou hast shamed me, in slaying under my safe-conduct the valiantest man I had, and thee will I shame.” Thereat fell the damsel a-weeping: but the King bade make a great fire to burn him therein; and so was it done; then was the King’s son brought to be cast therein, for nowise would the King spare him: but the damsel came before him and said: “Sir, give me my gift, for I will have thy son.” “And thou shalt have him,” said the King; “yet shall he do penitence for his misdeed.” Therewith he commanded  that he should be cast into the fire, and they cast him in: and when he saw him in the heat of the fire the King said: “Damsel take him not, for no other wise shall he be delivered of me.” In such wise did King Clovis destroy his son and would nowise spare him. But now leave we of the hound, and of the child, who was named Candace, and who was afterwards King of Cornwall and Lyonesse by his own valour, and to whom King Clovis gave his daughter, Crescilla of name: a long time he reigned and had a great line come from him, thirteen sons to wit, of whom the eldest was called Crises and was King of Cornwall after the death of his father: but the other had Lyonesse between them, and gave it to their youngest brother, and sithence departed to advance them in the outlands.
 28 ¶ How Meliadus King of Lyonesse wedded Isabel daughter of King Felix of Cornwall, and begat on her Tristram the Valliant: and how she died in giving birth to him.
SO even as I have told were the eldest and youngest of the twelve brethren Kings, the one of Cornwall the other of Lyonesse: and in such wise ran the realm of Cornwall from heir to heir till it came to one named Felix who hated gentle folk so sore, that he was laid maimed in the great church of Norhault: King Felix had two sons and four daughters: one of the sons was called Mark because he was born on a Tuesday in the month of March: this Mark King Felix let crown King when he lay, he and his wife in the pain of death; and thereafter did so much that the King of Lyonesse took to wife one of his daughters named Isabel; which King had to name Meliadus. Great love was there between Meliadus and Isabel his wife, but they grieved sore that they had no heir: but at last was Queen Isabel great with child, and great joy thereof had they of Lyonesse when they knew it. And on a day it came to pass that King Meliadus went a hunting, and met a maiden who loved him marvellously: she followed the King as one who would fain speak with him, till she came up with him by a fountain whereas the King had lighted down because of a Knight whom he had found slain there: so she saluted him and said: “King much good have I heard tell of thee, but wert thou as hardy as folk say, and durst follow me I would show thee tonight the fairest adventures thou hast ever seen.” So the King, who greatly desired to see adventures, said: “Get to horse again then, and I will follow thee.” So they mounted and went till nightfall, when they came  unto a rock, which appertained unto the damsel: they of the place made great joy of them, and the damsel took the King and led him into a full fair chamber, and as soon as he was therein he had no memory of aught saving the damsel who had brought him thither and was before him; so in such wise he abode daylong with her. They of his house sought him everywhere but might come to no certainty of him, and deemed that he had been slain by treason.
¶ When Queen Isabel saw that her lord came not again she took one of her damsels, saying that she herself would go seek him so privily that none should know thereof: So they mounted, she and her damsel and went seeking King Meliadus their lord in the wood; and as they went they met Merlin, and deemed that he was a forester; and the Queen said to him; “Tell me forester if thou hast any tidings of King Meliadus my lord who is lost in this forest.” “Dame,” said Merlin, “the lost may not be found; yet shall he be found; and know that he is whole and well at ease: yet never shalt thou see him more.” And when he had so said he vanished away so that the Queen wist not what had become of him; and so she fell a weeping of what Merlin had said to her, till pain took the belly of her and she might go no more: then she told her damsel that she was taken by the pains of travail, and the damsel fell a weeping for pity: then fell the Queen to cry aloud and call on God and his mother: and all that day and night was the lady in labour, and at the dawn was delivered of a fair son as God would have it: and when she was delivered she said to the damsel: “Show me my child that I may kiss him; for I am a dying.” And she gave him to her: And when she had him she beheld how he was the fairest creature of the World; and she said: “O son, much have I desired to have thee, and now behold thou art the fairest thing ever born of woman:  but little joy shall I have of thy beauty, for I am a-dying of the travail I have had of thee: sorry came I hither, and sorry lay I down; and in sorrow did I bear thee; and the first feast I have made thee has been of sorrow; and in sorrow shall I die presently: so for as sorry as thou hast come hither shall thy name be Tristram: Yet may God grant that thy life be more joyful and of better hap than thy birth.”
And when she had so said she kissed him; and so soon as she had kissed him the soul departed from her body, and even so she died.
29 ¶ Thus was born Tristram the good knight who thereafter suffered so many things for Iseult, the tale whereof I have to tell. But when the damsel saw her lady dead she fell a crying so loud that all the forest rang again: and therewith came two Knights of Lyonesse who were a seeking their lady the Queen: and when they found her dead, and the child before her covered with the mantle of the Queen they said: The King is lost and the Queen is dead, and now were this child dead also the realm would abide with us, and would fall to us of right, for we are of all the nearest akin: so let us slay him and win the land.” “Ah for God’s sake, fair lords,” said the damsel, “slay him not; for that were the greatest disloyalty that ever man did: give him me rather, and I swear on my faith that ye shall never more hear of him.” And she prayed them till they gave her the child, and so took up their lady dead, and bore her to the castle, saying that they had found her dead. The ladies and the barons of the land knew well that the Queen was great with child, and thought well that she had been delivered and died thereof: so they said to those knights: “Give us up this child my lady hath born dead or alive.” But they said they knew nought thereof. Then said they: “Either ye have slain the lady and her child, or the damsel who  was with her.” And while they thus spake together, lo Merlin among them, who said: “Lords, take these two disloyal knights and do them to death, for they have well deserved it.” And therewith he told them how they would have slain the child to have the land; and well they knew the sooth thereof. Then were they taken and set in prison, and it was told them that they should never come out thence till the child was come back safe and sound. Then said Merlin: “I shall tell you how ye may have your Lord Meliadus again: ye shall send to the castle of the Rock which is in the forest; there shall ye find him, so enchanted that he remembereth nought of himself: and the damsel of that castle hath done this: so take ye the damsel, and hold her so straitly that she shall undo her enchantment, and then put her to death, for else shall she hold your lord.”
Then they asked Merlin of his name, but he said he would tell them nought thereof: But do my bidding for your honour’s sake.” And they did so; for they mounted and went all armed to the castle of the rock, and found their lord there, and took the damsel, and tormented her till she undid her enchantment, and then put her to death: they they brought back their lord Meliadus. But Merlin, who had abided behind called to him a damoyseau, whom he saw, a man right fair and valliant, born in Gaul, but who had fled across the sea because of his brother whom he had slain; and he was called Governail: so Merlin who knew him well said to him: “If I deemed that thou wouldst guard the heir of Lyonesse loyally so that no harm should come to him, I would give him to thee.” “Sir,” said he, “I will keep him if God will so that no hurt come to him in my keeping.” And when he had said so Merlin took him and led him to a fountain called the Fount of Bargaigne; there was a perron of marble on thereon the letters written, which said: Here shall come the three good knights, and  shall hold them alone without peers; to wit Galahad, Tristram and Lancelot.
Then said Merlin to Governail: “Seest thou these letters?” Yea” said he, “but I know not who these knights shall be of all the world, who shall do such deeds of arms that none shall talk but of them.” “Know well then,” said Merlin, “that the heir of Lyonesse whom thou shalt nourish shall be one of them: look to it that he have no ill.” “None shall he have,” said Governail, “if God will.” So they departed from the fountain, and came to the damsel who kept the child, and bade her to bear it to the City of Abime, where she should find his father, so soon as he knew of his being there. When the damsel heard it she was afeard that if she kept the child perforce, she would be undone: so she took the child and delivered it to his father, who has now come back full of grief for the death of the Queen: but when he saw the child which he thought he had lost, he took comfort thereof. But when the folk of the place saw Merlin they said to the King: “Sir, by God’s help and by the help of this man have we got the again; had he not been never had we found thee.” “King,” said Merlin, “I have done thee a good deed; yet have I done more for another than for thee: and look well to the child, for of great account will he be.”
When the King heard Merlin speak so assuredly he asked who he was and what was his name: and Merlin said: “I will tell thee who I am, but discover me not to any other.” And the King promised, so he said: “I am Merlin, and I have taken thee out prison wherein the damsel had set thee by enchantment: yet I have I done more for another than for thee: for know that thy son will be one of the three best knights of the world: and take heed that he have no master saving Governail of Gaul.”
So the King said he would do his bidding; and therewith  departed Merlin, who would not abide for any prayer the King might make him. Then asked the King if the child were christened: “Yea,” said the damsel, and hath to name Tristram, for his mother gave him that name dying.” So the King took the child and gave him into Governail’s keeping, who guarded him thenceforth so loyally that none might blame him, and let seek a nurse for him, such as was due. But here leaveth the tale to tell of Tristram and of King Meliadus his father, and telleth of King Mark, and how he slew his brother at the Fount of the Lyon.
30 ¶ How King Mark slew his brother Pernehan
Then answered King Mark and said: “Pernehan, how may I break that which my house oweth from father to son, and hath ever paid: it may not be done.”
“How,” said Pernehan, “If thy house hath been befooled must thou needs to folly ever and maintain it: rather shouldst  thou amend their misdoing: and if thou hast no heart to do it, lay by the crown, and some one will come who will dare well enow to defend it.” “A God’s name,” said the King, “I took it not up to lay it down.” and therewith he held his peace, and the messengers of Ireland said to him: “Sire shall we have the tribute?” “Yea in good sooth,” said he: and commanded therewith that the tribute for seven years should be rendered, for that space during had nought been paid: and lo the lot fell on a sister of King Mark who was sent into the servitude of the King of Ireland with the others. But when Pernehan saw his sister go thus into bondage he was very sorry and said to the King: “Thou hast shamed us by thy cowardice, and worser yet shalt thou do if thou live long, but long shalt thou not live if I may have it so.” King Mark had great fear a this word, for he knew well that his brother was a right good knight and well beloved of all fol, and might do him scathe enough, so he thought to slay him if time served: and it befell on a day that the King went a-hunting, and hunted till he came, he and his brother, to the Fount of the Lion; and there they lighted down both: and the King fell a-looking at Pernehan with evil eyes when he called to mind the word that he had said, and so he drew his sword and slew him: nor had that ever been known but for a writing that Merlin let write on a rock, which Gahereit found afterwards and showed unto Lancelot: so they two knew of the adventures, and thereof did Sir Lancelot reprove King Mark. But here leaveth the tale to tell of this matter, and returneth to Tristram and King Meliadus his father.
How King Meliadus wedded the daughter of King Howel who went about to poison Tristram.
Now saith the tale that a long while was King [f. 96] Meliadus widowed; but when he thought good to wed again he took to wife the daughter of King Howel of Nantes in Britain the Little: a right fair lady and a pleasant but greedy and cunning withal and who was wont to love paramours. Tristram was now of the age of seven years, and so fulfilled in beauty that none was ever so fair saving Lancelot: they twain passed all other younglings in kindness and beauty and prowess. Now when his stepmother saw him wax and amend so fast she knew not what to do, so sore as he won the goodwill of all; for she had a son of one year old by King Meliadus and she deemed if Tristram lived he would not suffer him to be King after his father.
So she thought to slay him by treason so subtilly that none should know it, but saw not how it might be done save by venom; so in a vessel of silver she dight venom which was clearer than water of the fountain , and set it by the bedhead in he r chamber , till Tristram should come to her and she might make him drink: and as it happed a maiden came thereby bearing in her arms the young son of King Meliadus, and full hot was the tide: the child thirsted and fell a crying: so the maiden loo ked here and there for water to give to him to drink and she turned toward the vessel wherein was the venom deeming it to be water because it was so clear: so she gave it to the child to drink, and as soon as it had drunk the soul departed from his body and he died in her arms.
So when the damsel saw that thing she cried "Alas! Alas!" and all ran to he r cry and when the people saw the child dead they took the damsel to slay her. "For well hath she deserved it," said they, "who hath slain so fair a creature." And as they made this stir and cry the Queen entered into the chamber, who when she saw her child dead that she loved so well she fell fainting: and when she came to herself she said to the damsel," Ha maiden what have I done unto thee that thou s houldst slay the child."
[ f. 97] "Certes dame," said the damsel, " I have done it not, rather whoever put venom in this cup with evil intent and hath brought me to shame thereby. Let that one suffer what right is! "So the damsel was brought before the King and told him of this evil hap. " By my faith," said the King " thou art [not] guilty of this death; but they who set the venom in the cup: and wot ye well it was not dight for the child but for another." And he let deliver the guiltless maiden. But Governail, who was right wise, said to the King: "Si r wot well that this thing was dight either for thee or for Tristram; and either dame or damsel dight it: look well to thyself then: for of Tristram will I have good heed, so please God."
So the king saw well that he spake sooth and called to him a privy counsellor and asked him how this thing might be known. "Sir," said he, " it may not be lightly known and straightway!; but be wise and take heed of thyself beforehand, for whoso hath done it will essay it again. And therewith the word dropped: but the king had great doubt for himself. The Queen seeing that she had lost her child by that very thing she had herself done was full of grief; and whenever she saw Tristram pass before her, then her grief sprang anew, and she said she would never have joy while he lived; and s he was minded still to slay him if she might even if she were to die therefore : in such wise and with such treason did the Queen of Lyonness hate Tristram, saying that she had liefer be shamed than not slay him: so she went about to slay him all she might. Governail, who was wise saw that she hated Tristram, and deemed that the venom had been dight for him: so he came to Tristram and said to him "Tristram I bid thee to eat or drink nothing that the Queen may give thee: do all that she biddeth thee save in eating and drinking.'' "Master "said Tristram "I will do thy commandment." Of this the Queen knew no[t] [f. 98) and went about to compass Tristam's death all she might, and thought to give Tristram [venom] to drink. Now on a day it fell that the King was in his chamber all alone with Tristram whom he loved passing well: the day was hot, and he was athirst and said to Tristram, "Go bring me to drink." So Tristram ran and took the vessel of venom, taking no thought thereof, and poured it into a cup, and brought it to his father to drink; when lo the Queen who entered into the chamber where she saw Tristram holding the vessel to give his father drink. So she cried " Ha ha Sir, evilly drinkest thou; thou shalt die." Then the King drew aback and said, " Dame what ails thee?" And she would not say it was venom, lest he should deem she willed to slay him, so she said, "The drink is not good for thee." "Wherefore," said the King. But she spake never a word and the King fell a thinking that it was poison dight for his death and said "Dame drink thou or I will slay thee." "Then must thou Sir," said she "for drink will I never." "Nay" said the King, "Then will I do thee to death in otherwise than thou wouldst have done me." There with he called all his barons to him, and told them what had befallen: and when the Queen saw that she was accused she said: " I dight it not for thee." "For whom then, needst must I know." Then she cried him mercy. " It availe[th] not," said the King , "thou shalt speak." And he drew his sword from the sheath, and said that if she spake not he would cut off her head: and she feared him and fell a weeping, and said that she had dight it to do Tristram to death. "Evil hast thou done by my faith," said the King , "and thou shalt die: even as the barons deem, so shall it be done without sparing."
Therewith he called the barons, and bade them judge her according to her misdeed: " And if ye spare to do her justice [ f. 99] herein, I will destroy you all. "So they said among themselves that she deserved death; and the King said, "Then shall she die."
NOTES TO MORRIS'S TRANSLATION OF THE OPENING CHAPTERS OF THE PROSE TRISTAN
Notes are organised according to the foliation of the translation in B.L Add. MS. 45329, and by catchwords within those folios. References to Malory here, as in the Introduction, are to the book and chapter of Caxton's edition.
f. 1 Lucius.....of Gast. See Tristan, tr. Curtis, pp. xvii--xv iii, 327.
Britain the Great: Great Britain, as distinct from Britain the Less, the later Brittany; see also Intro. 7th para. On ff. 47---8 it appears that characters in this romance can pass from Lyonesse to Britain the Great by sea, as Tristan also does when banished from Cornwall at the conclusion of his main adventures there: see Malory, Bk. IX, ch. xxii. The conversion of the larger country to Christianity was ascribed in legend sometimes to Joseph of Arimathea himself (cf. f. 74), sometimes in the Romance tradition to his successors in the Grail lineage.
Bron In the Estoire del Graal, following Robert de Boron (cf. Merlin and the Grail, pp. 39--42), Bron, the husband of Joseph's sister Enygeus, has twelve sons, most of whom marry also, but one, Alain, named later on this folio as Helain the Big, i. e. le Gros, chooses chastity, and is appointed as Joseph's successor as Grail guardian.
Sadoc: His name is presumably borrowed from that of Zadok, high priest of King David's time: 2 Samuel, ch. 15 and later. His character was probably an invention of 'Luce'.
f. 3 Babylon: In the Middle Ages the capitals of the Saracen rulers of Egypt, Fostat, and later Cairo, were often styled Babylon, after a Roman fortress near their sites, and those rulers as the Soldan or Amir of Babylon. The author presumably imagines the King's daughter being taken by ship through the Mediterranean on her way to marriage in Persia, which would not have been necessary for a journey from the now more famous Babylon in Mesopotamia.
Nabuzardan: The Semitic sounding name is taken from that of the commander sent by King Nebuchadnezzar to destroy Jerusalem: 2 Kings, ch. 25.
ff. 6--7 The selection by casting lots of one 'sinner' to throw overboard to appease the storm is presumably based on the story of Jonah, ch. 1.
f. 9 of the kin of Virgil: ln the Middle Ages Virgil was as famous as an enchanter as a poet: see D. Comparetti, Vergil in the Middle Ages (Eng. tr. 1895), pt. II. Philosophy was likewise then often reckoned akin to magic.
f. 10 The exposure in a wood of a child of which it has been foretold that its survival will endanger a king, but which that king cannot bring himself personally to kill, is a folktale motif which Morris also used in his "The Man Born to be King" in the Earthly Paradise. In this story, too, as in that of Perseus and his grandfather which Morris included in that collection, the exposure is as usual thwarted, and the king suffers his prophesied doom.
f. 11. Apollo Giving the child the name of this pagan god is a little strange, when, as 'Apollyon' that god often appears in romance as one of the 'Trinity' worshipped by Saracens. On f. 70 it is noted that the child, by then a king, was not required to alter his pagan name when his land was converted.
f. 12 Sarras In the Estoire the pagan king of Sarras has been converted by Joseph. In the Vulgate tradition Sarras is the city far in the East (usually reached by sea) where the knights seeking the Grail finally achieve their quest. In The Well at the World’s End (Bk. IV, ch. xxviii) Morris took its name as that of the distant eastern city where Ralph's godmother Dame Katherine obtained the enchanted beads which enable him to win his way to the Well.
Caught up by the hair in one of the Apocryphal parts of the Book of Daniel, "Bel and the Dragon," an angel carries the prophet Habakkuk by the hair to bring food to Daniel in the lions' den.
f. 19 a man of Galilee: i.e. a Christian
f. 20 King Maroneus ... King of Gaul: The king's name, so written by Morris, is presumably that used in the French text he was following for Meroveus, the legendary ancextor of the Merovingian dynasty which ruled the Franks from the 5th to the 8th century. For his vassalage to Rome, see Intro. 7th para.
f. 20 tribute of a hundred youths .... This tribute of youths, damsels, and horses is conceived by the author as a standard one for vassal kingdoms, and is repeated on f. 59 as that offered by Cornwall to the king of Ireland for aid against invaders, which continued until abolished by Sir Tristram's victory over Morholt.
ff. 20--1, St. Remy..... Clovis About 500 A D. Remigius bishop of Reims baptised as a Catholic Clovis, the first Frankish king who possessed most of Gaul.; cf. f. 83.
t: 28 thy lecher, i.e. your lover
r. 29 under a perron: A pcrron was a raised platform in front of a building.
f. 41 Logrcs A conventional name in romance for King Arthur 's realm in Britain.
St. Denis: The legendary apostle of Gaul, dated about 250 A.D., patron of the great abbey just north of Paris, and eventually patron saint of France.
f. 51 his meeney: A meinie is the band of followers escorting a king or lord.
f. 58 Childeric ... an evil king: The author may be recalling the story of how Childeric, in legend heir to Meroveus, and historically father of Clovis, was for a time expelled from his kingship over the Franks for seducing their women: see Gregory of Tours, History of the Franks,bk. II, c h. 11.
f. 59 isle of St. Samson's: The Welsh saint, St. Samson (fl. 500--50), founded churches and monasteries in Cornwall and Brittany. His isle is specified as the site of Tristan's combat with Morholt later in the romance: Tristan, tr. Curtis, pp. 36 seqq.
f. 60 Hercules slew a giant: Possibly a reminiscence of the combat in which Hercules killed the giant Cacus, a victory which Aeneas found those dwelling at the site of Rome celebrating: Aeneid, Bk. VIII, lines 184---279.
f. 64 all the dames and damsels .... were bidden: Perhaps inspired by the show of beautiful maidens summoned by King Ahasuerus from his whole kingdom so that he might choose a new bride from among them: Esther, chs. 1--2.
f. 65 Augustin[e]. The name of the imagined missionary to Lyonessse is probably derived from the monk sent by Pope Gregory I to convert the English in 597, rather than from the more famous African bishop and theologian (354--430).
ff. 68--9 a fire so great: Ordeals by fire were occasionally practised in the 11th century, for instance at Antioch during the First Crusade to test the authenticity of the 'Holy Lance', and were offered by St. Franc is to the Sultan of Egypt during the Fifth, and by Savonorola at Florence as late as 1498.
f. 70 a wise man .... born in Greece .... called Philosopher. This philosopher, rather than a magician like the imitator of Virgil mentioned on ff. 9--10, may be reckoned as one of the wise heathen, such as Plato, whom 12th-century scholars supposed to have approached close to Christian belief by the use of natural reason.
ff. 70--1· the Temple of Apollo .... altars ... in honour of Jupiter .... Mars ... Saturn
Medieval authors, knowing little, if anything, of the actual religion of the pre-Christian peoples of Gaul or Germany, assumed that they worshipped the pagan gods well known from Roman literature: cf. the frequent references to a temple of Venus, on e.g. ff. 28, 60, 63, 72, etc.
ff. 71--2 make him drink venom .... It did him no hurt. This episode is based on the miraculous survival after drinking poison (which had killed a criminal on whom it was tested) ascribed in legend to St. John the Evangelist.
f. 79 North Galloys: Probably meaning North Wales.
ff. 80--1 a woman taken in adultery ... doom[ed] to be burned up; cf. f. 84. Presumably the author is imagining a precedent for the punishment of burning for alleged infidelity with which Queen Guinevere is several times threatened in the Vulgate romances and their derivatives.
f. 84 a prince from Germany .... called Forles: This anti-Roman conqueror of France is based on the 'Roman tribune' called Flollo (later Frollo), governing Gaul on behalf of the Empire, whom King Arthur is said to have defeated in single combat, as on f. 85, so winning Gaul for himself: Geoffrey of Monmouth, Hist. of Kings of Britain, Bk. IX, ch. 11.
f. 85 gave it to Sir Lancelot: In the 'Vulgate' versions Lancelot's rights in Gaul are supposed to be inherited from his father King Ban of Benwick.
A son ... named Childeric: This fictitious son of Clovis has perhaps inherited his lustfulness from his grandfather and namesake. See note on f.25.
r. 88 a great line come from him: Here the author has allowed for a long gap of up to 200 years (see f. 59), without attempting to provide any further detailed descent of the kingdoms of Cornwall and Lyonesse, to move the narrative on from early Christian times to those of King Arthur.
f. 89 From this folio Morris has adopted a more formal hand for the remainder of his translation.
ff 90--92, 93--4 Merlin: The appearance of the great enchanter here, sometimes disguised, to protect the childhood of Tristan is copied from the assistance that in Geoffrey of Monmouth he gives with the begetting of Arthur by King Uther, an activity enlarged slightly in Robert de Boron, and extensively in the Vulgate Merlin and its Suite, to cover the early years of Arthur himself.
ff. 94--5 How King Mark slew his brother.... This episode begins in the Tristan romance the blackening of King Mark's character, turning him from an unlucky and suspicious deceived husband into a treacherous and murderous villain and enemy of all knighthood, thoroughly deserving his fate. For Mark' s murder of another brother for too vigorously defending Cornwall from Saracen invaders, see Malory, Bk. X, chs. xxxii---iii..
f. 95 King Howel of Nantes: Ho[w]el appears, in Geoffrey of Monmouth (Bk. IX, chs. 2--3, 11, 17) as a Breton king who is a nephew of King Arthur.