The Grand Tournament at Logres
THE GRAND TOURNAMENT AT LOGRES: FOOTNOTES
1 Than, When.
2 bachelers, young knight-aspirants.
3 thourgh, completely.
4 wedir, weather; nothir reyned ne, neither rained nor.
5 strowed, strewn.
7 swote, sweet.
7-8 fer men, men far off.
8 fele the odour, smell the fragrance.
9 maister mynster, main cathedral; whereas, there.
10 abode, waited.
11 songe, sung; yede, went.
12 mete, food; coriouse ordenaunce, elaborate arrangement.
13 and, along with.
14 norischid, raised; reson, fitting.
15 and1, along with; and were, who were; casteleins, castle constables.
17 whiche hadde be, who had been.
18 cowde hem, could them.
20 quyntayne reysed, tilting-board raised; bourded, sported.
21 departed hem, divided themselves.
22 well, at least.
24 her, their.
27 leve, leave behind.
28 signes, banners; neye, neigh.
30 oute of, out onto; renge, range, field.
36 covetouse, desirous.
38 semede, looked [as if]; yen fill, eyes fell.
41 With that, Then; renged hem, formed themselves.
46 drough, drew.
49 cosin germain, first cousin.
51 arached helmes, knocked off helmets.
54 Temse, Thames.
55 noon ne wiste, no one knew.
56 er, before.
57 smeten, charged.
58 tho gan, then began.
59 thei gate place, they gained the advantage; playn, open.
62 stour, fighting.
64 chaple, engagement.
65 chevalries, noble deeds.
68 somdell, somewhat.
69 enbusshement, hiding place.
75 hadde the prys, received the most honor.
82 for, because.
83 tohewen and rente, hacked and torn.
84 disconfiture, defeat; hasted, hurried; henten, grabbed.
86 presse, crowd.
87 grete-growen, thick.
93 tecche, fault; in, from; norice, nurse; sowke, suck.
94 of norture, from the nursing.
95 rought, cared.
96 japes, jokes.
97-98 on the othir syde, in addition.
101 nygh at disconfiture, close to defeat.
104 stynte, stopped.
105 upright, on his back.
108 wende, thought.
110 saugh, saw.
112 wight and delyver, swift and agile.
114 fly on, flew into.
117 enforse for, achieve.
118 fewtre, its spear-rest.
119 leyde on, attacked.
122 that, so that.
123 sye, saw; forthought it sore, regretted it greatly.
126 arson, bow.
127 astooned, stunned; upright, on his back.
127-28 hym dressed, observed him.
129 quyte, repay.
131 for that, as a result; felishiped, became friends; woned will, were bound well.
134 moche, many; greved, injured; stour, battle.
136 kytte, cut; but, if; hadde swarved, had [not] swerved.
137 lifte, left.
139 syen, saw.
141 medlé, melee.
144 blushit, fell.
150 heilde hem even like, performed very evenly; noon ne wiste wele, no one knew clearly.
152 departed, separated.
154 ostell, hostel; myster, necessity.
157 semed, thought.
158 alther beste, best of all.
160 alowe, praise.
161 here tales, their discussion; loos, honor; pris, praise.
163 nede, situation.
164 tables were up, dinner was over.
166 Temse, Thames.
171 of, by.
172 cleped, called; be, by.
173 oughten, owed.
178 speche loste, wasted words.
186 agein, toward.
187 returne, come with me.
189 no forse, have no concern.
191 party, portion.
198 clergie, learning; ne not, not even; ne cowde not, nor could.
200 toon, one.
205 agein, against.
208 was befalle, occurred.
212 lesynge, falsehood.
214 reame, realm.
219 maistries, marvels; pleyes, skills.
220 wrought, worked.
221 Bloy Breteyne, Little Britain (Brittany).
222 reherse, be told.
223 her ese, their ease.
224 messe, mass.
232 seyntes, saints.
234 debonerly, courteously.
235 sympilliche, humbly.
245 besy hem, busy themselves.
254 discesse, death; werre agein, war against.
255 geauntes, giants; puyssaunt, powerful.
256 marcheth to, borders on.
258 partees, sides.
259 ne were, if it were not for.
263 but, until.
266 quyte, saved.
267 journey, a day's travel.
THE GRAND TOURNAMENT AT LOGRES: NOTES
The Grand Tournament at Logres
[Fols. 40r (line 18)-47v (line 20)]
In this section Arthur's two most crucial allies, King Ban and King Bors, come from their kingdoms of Benoyk and Gannes in Brittany to help him to quell the barons' rebellion. Later on in the larger Arthurian narrative the sons of these two men become central figures in Arthur's knightly fellowship, with Lancelot, the son of King Ban, emerging as Arthur's pre-eminent knight. Other important relationships are established in this section also, in particular the close bond formed by Kay and Lucas the boteler and Lucas's cousin Gifflet.
Summary Based on EETS 10, p. 120 to EETS 21, p. 132.
In lines 5 ff. of the summary reference is made to Ygerne's daughters and their husbands. Although the PM is not consistent on the matter of Ygerne's daughters, here it is stated that she and the Duke of Tintagel had five daughters, in addition to two other daughters from an earlier marriage. In addition, the writer claims that Ygerne's youngest daughter, Morgan, was illegitimate. Each of Igerne's daughters, including Morgan, becomes the wife of one of Britain's lesser kings.
In lines 6 ff. we learn that Arthur himself fathered the last one. The story of Arthur's involvement with Blasine, the wife of King Lot, which is mentioned in passing here by Merlin, will soon be related in full by the narrator in the form of a flashback. Merlin mentions it here to make Arthur aware of the fact that Mordred is his illegitimate son.
5 as aboute August. Although the weather resembles that of August, the time is actually late October and hence a kind of Indian summer.
12 coriouse ordenaunce. For descriptions of the devices that made up components of the coriouse ordenaunce of splendid feasts see "The Manner of Serving a Knight, Squire, or Gentleman" in Hugh Rhodes's Boke of Nurture, or the receipts for serving wine, meats, fish, and grand feasts with several courses in John Russell's The Book of Nurture (from Harlin MS 4011) in The Babees Book, The Bokes of Nurture of Hugh Rhodes and John Russell, etc., ed. Frederick J. Furnivall EETS o.s. 32 (London: N. Trübner & Co., 1868; rpt. New York: Greenwood Press, 1969), especially pp. 66-68 and 139-75.
16 Lucas the Boteler. This significant character -- who is usually named Lucan, not Lucas -- holds the important position of King's Butler, making him one of the highest-ranking officials in the royal court. Normally a "butler" was responsible for overseeing the provisioning of a nobleman's hall.
20 the yonge bachelers. "Bachelors" are young noblemen training for knighthood. Chaucer's Squire in the Canterbury Tales, the son of the pilgrim Knight, is similarly described as a "lusty bacheler" (CT I.80).
82-83 felisship of the table of Logres. This refers to the best of Arthur's knights, who are taking a brief respite from the tournament. The use of the word "table" may simply be a mistake -- since these are clearly not the Knights of the Round Table, who at this time are with King Leodegan in Tamelide -- or it may just imply that these knights are bound together in knightly fellowship.
93 This tecche . . . . he dide of sowke. Kay's habit of "evil speech" stems from the fact that he was taken away from his mother and nursed by a woman of low birth, so that Arthur could be nursed by Kay's mother. This is part of the debt that Arthur owes to Kay and his family.
106-07 cride "Clarence," the signe of Kynge Arthur. "Clarence" is Arthur's battle cry, used to spur on his troops in the heat of battle. In some medieval accounts of the Arthur Story, however, "Clarence" is said to be the name of another of Arthur's swords; see The Alliterative Morte Arthure, lines 4193-4205.
170 the wordes that Merlin hadde hym tolde. Merlin, apparently, has already informed Arthur about the difficulties that Ulfin and Bretell experienced in delivering Arthur's message to King Ban and King Bors.
[The Grand Tournament at Logres]
[Summary. After defeating the seven kings, Arthur assembles a huge army, provi-
sions his cities and castles, and goes to his chief city of Logres where he knights many
men. For Arthur's benefit, Merlin rehearses much of the recent history of Britain. He
tells Arthur about Blase, the hermit who helped Merlin and his mother; about Vortiger
and his tower; about Uterpendragon's great love for Ygerne; about Ygerne's daugh-
ters and their husbands; and about the five sons of King Lot, revealing that Arthur
himself fathered the last one. Merlin also tells Arthur about two kings in Little Brit-
ain named Ban and Bors, whose help he should seek. Then Merlin says that he must
go to the forest but will return when Arthur needs him.
Arthur sends Ulfin and Bretell to Little Britain to request the help of Kings Ban
and Bors, who are at war with the villainous Claudas de la deserte. Ulfin and Bretell
meet Elein, the young wife of King Ban, and they have a fierce encounter with several
of Claudas's knights. At last they find King Ban and King Bors and convey Arthur's
message. The kings agree to postpone their own concerns and help Arthur. They
travel to Logres, where Arthur greets them warmly. Fols. 40r (line 18)-44r (line
Than these lordes entred into the citee of Logres, began the caroles and the
daunces of the ladies and damsels and the turnementes of yonge bachelers, that
all the day dured till the nyght. And the town was thourgh hanged with clothes of
silke, and it was feire wedir and clere, for it hadde not yet nothir reyned ne snowed
ne frosen, but was as stille as aboute August. And the stretes were strowed with
small grasse, and incense and myrre in fires in the stretes thikke. And in the
wyndowes [were] many lightes, and so swote savoured thourgh the cytee that fer
men shulde fele the odour.
Thus come the lordes togeder into the maister mynster, and whereas the pro-
cession hem abode and receyved hem fro fer with humble reverence. That day
songe the archebisshop masse; and whan it was ended, they yede up into the grete
paleyse whereas the mete was arraide with all the coriouse ordenaunce that myght
be don. And the thre kynges were sette togeder at oon table, and the archebisshop
and Antor that hadde norischid Arthur. And Kay served at tables as was reson,
and two yonge knyghtes of grete prowesse and were sones to two casteleins --
that oon was cleped Lucas the Boteler, and that other Gifflet, the sone of Doo of
Cardoell, which hadde be maister forester to Uterpendragon. And thei served with
the stiwarde, and with Ulfin and Bretell, that wele cowde hem enforme so that thei
were well served and richely.
After mete was the quyntayne reysed, and therat bourded the yonge bachelers.
And after they begonne a turnemente, and departed hem in two partyes, and were
well on eyther syde seven hundred and three hundred of the reme of Benoyk, that
kepte hem togeder in oon partye. And whan the turnemente was assembled redy
to smyte togeder, the Kynge Ban and the Kynge Boors and her brother that was a
mervilouse clerke of astronomye -- noon in that tyme [was] so expert saf Merlin
-- these were lenynge oute at wyndowes, and Arthur and the archebisshop with
hem, and Antor that thei wolde not leve, behelden the turnement on bothe partees;
and [they] saugh the signes, and the stedes to neye and crye and to praunce under
knyghtes and bacheleres, that the hilles and the medowes resouned all abowte.
And whan thei were so nygh assembled, than departed oute of the renge a knyght
that was cleped Gifflet, the sone of Do of Cardoell, that satte upon a grey stede
that merveilously was swyfte. And on that other part com agein hym a knyght of
Benoyk that was cleped Ladynas, and he was of grete renoun; and he sette agein
Gifflet as faste as the stedes myght renne, theire sheldes aboute theirnekkes,
gripynge the speres. And thei smote togeder in the sheldes so grete strokes that
bothe brake theire speres, for bothe were they gode knyghtes and covetouse to
gete worship. And they mette so togeder with helmes and sheldes so fiersly that
they semede the yen fill from theire hedes. So eche bar other to the erthe, and
theire horse aboven hem, and bothe lay longe in sowowne that thei semed deed.
And every man seide that thei saugh never so crewell incountre betwene two
kynghtes. With that they renged hem on that oon part and on that other for the
rescewe of the two knyghtes.
At the metynge of this turnement was sein many justinges that gladly were
beholden; and some ther were that threw other to the erthe, and some that brake
theire shaftes withoute fallynge to grounde. Whan the speres were broken, thei
drough oute swerdes and began the turney grete and huge. And ther was oon knyght
that dide many maystries of arms with his body, of whom was moche spoken and
preysed thourgh the contree; and [he] was cleped Lucas the Boteler and [was]
cosin germain to Gifflet that hadde the grete encountir. This Lucas smote down
knyghtes and horse and began soche dedis of armes that noon myght his strokes
endure. He arached helmes fro hedes and sheldes fro nekkes, and began to do so
well that it was merveile hym to beholde. And the thre kynges preysed him moche,
and so dide many other.
Grete was the turnement in the medowes by Logres upon the Ryver of Temse,
and longe it endured that noon ne wiste who sholde have the better. For on bothe
sides were many worthi men, and longe it was er the two were releved that hadden
the grete encountre. And whan thei were horsed, thei smeten into the turnemente,
and tho gan Gifflet to do soche dedes of armes that he and Lucas the Botiller, that
thei gate place upon hem of Benoyk and put hem fer bakke in the playn feilde.
And than com hem to helpe the three hundred knyghtes of Benoyk that yet ne
hadde no stroke smyten, and on that othir syde come also three hundred all fressh.
And so eche ran to other. Ther was grete stour and merveillouse and harde strokes
smyten, and whan the speres were broken, theileyde honde to swerdes and began
the chaple so stronge and dured longe tyme. Ther men myght se many feire
chevalries don on bothe parties, for ther were many yonge bachelers that dide
right wele. But above alle other Gifflet the sone of Do of Cardoell and Lucas the
Botiller, these tweyn were preised of prowesse above alle other.
Whan the turnemente hadde longe indured and they were somdell wery for
traveyle, than lept Kay the Stywarde oute of his enbusshement that yet hadde no
stroke smyten, he and other five felowes that were well horsed, and theire shildes
aboute her nekkes, theire launces in their hondes; and whan thei aproched the
renges, thei smote in amonge hem as faucouns amonge starlinges, and bar the
firste that thei mette to grounde. And when theire speres were broke, thei drough
oute swerdes and begonne to do soche maistryes and dedes of armes that Kay
hadde the prys and the wurship of the turnemente on that oon part, and on that
other part Gifflet and Lucas the Boteller. And the beste after hem was Marke de la
Roche, and Guynas le Bleys, and Drias de la Foreste Savage, and Belyas the
Amerouse of Maydens Castell, and Blyos de la Casse, and Madyens le Crespes,
and Flaundryns le Blanke, and Grassien the Castelein, and Placidas le Gays. These
dide so well whan thei come to the turnement that noon myght agein hem endure.
But after that the felowes of the reame of Benoyk dide so well that they made
all the turnement resorte bak to theire firste place, for the felisship of the table of
Logres were gon oute for to chaunge helmes that weren tohewen and rente. And
whan thei saugh theire party turned to disconfiture, thei hem hasted and henten
speres and come into the turnemente as faste the horse myght hem bere, and smote
in amonge the grettest presse. And Kay cam before alle his felowes as he that was
desirouse to shewe his knyghthode, and griped a grete-growen spere. And he was
a merveillouse gode knyght yef he ne hadde not be so full of wordes; for his evell
speche made hym to be hatid of amonge his felowes and also of straungers that
herden of hym speke, that after refuseden to go in his felisshepto seche aventures
in the reame of Logres; that after endured longe tyme, as this boke shall reherse
This tecche hadde Kay take in his norice that he dide of sowke, for he hadde it
nothynge of norture of his modere, for his moder was right a gode lady and wise
and trewe. But of what Kay seide, his felowes that knewe his costomes ne rought
never; but he was full of myrthe and japes in his speche, for [he] seide it for noon
evyll will of no man, and therat lough thei gladly that knewe his maners. And on
the othir syde, he was oon of the beste felowes and myriest that myght be founde.
Whan he was come to the turnement, as ye have herde, he mette with Lydonas
that wele hadde do all the day. And moche he and his felowes peyned to dryve
hem of Logres oute of the feilde. And so thei were nygh at disconfiture. And
whan Kay saugh this he was sory and wroth. Than he smote into the presse and
mette Lydonas in the shelde so sore that he perced thourghoute, and the spere
poynte stynte at the haubrek. And he shof so harde that he caste hym to the
grounde upright. And with the same course he smote Grascien of Trebes that he
overthrewe hym and his horse. Than he leyde honde to his swerde and cride
"Clarence," the signe of Kynge Arthur. And they beheilde hym and saugh the
socour that he brought, for they wende they hadde all loste. Than they returned
and begonne to do so well that they hadde not do so well all the day before.
This justynge that Kay hadde don saugh well the Kynge Arthur and the Kynge
Ban and the Kynge Boors his brother; and they preysed moche Kay and seide he
was wight and delyver, and thei beheilde hym gladly. And whan Lucas the Botyller
saugh Kay hadde don so well, he smote the horse the spores into the grettest presse
and smote Blios so harde that he fill to the grounde and the spere fly on peses.
Than he pulde oute hys swerde and spronge in amonge hem and began to yeve
grete strokes and to do so well that moche he was preysed; and so began the
turnement newe to enforse for the rescewe of theire felowes.
Than com Gifflet freschely armed, his spere in fewtre, as faste as his horse
myght hym bere, and saugh Blioberes and two of hys felowes that leyde on Kay
the Stiwarde with here swerdes, and heilde hym so short that he hadde grete nede
of helpe, for thei were thre and he was but alone. And also they were thre the
beste of all the turnement. And Placidas hadde hitte Kay on the helme that he
lened on his sadill bowe. And whan Gifflet sye this he forthought it sore, and he
smote Blioberis so harde that he fill to the erthe, bothe he and his horse, and the
spere fly on peces; and [he] leide honde to his swerde and smote Placidas on the
helme that he bowed over the arson of his sadell, and after leyde on hym so grete
strokes that he was so astooned that he fill to the erthe upright. And Kay hym
dressed, that grete nede hadde of that socoure, and after he beheilde and knew that
it was Gyfflet that so hadde hym delyvered, and thought to quyte hym that bountee
yef he myght. And so he dide withynne short tyme, as ye shall heren heirafter; and
for that thei felishiped first togeder, and woned well togeder longe tyme after of
grete love, alle the dayes of her lyf.
Whan Gifflet hadde delyvred Kay, as ye have herde, he loked aboute hym and
saugh Jeroas, that moche hadde greved in that stour. Than he griped his swerde
and ran upon hym for ire and yaf soche a stroke that the fire fley oute, and ther-
with he kytte a pece of his helme; and but the swerde hadde swarved, he hadde
ben deed for evermore. The stroke descended upon the lifte sholder that he fill to
the erthe all blody. Than arose the noyse and the crye, for well wende thei that
this syen that he hadde be deed withoute recover. Than come his felowes to the
rescowe, and on that other parte com the felowes of Kay the Stywarde.
Than began the medlé grete and hidouse, that many were wounded and
overthrowen er that other was rescowed and sette on horse. And the fyve felowes
that were before rehersed, whan thei saugh the medlé so begonne, thei smot so
five of the first that thei metten that thei blushit to the erthe. Than thei smyten in
amonge hem and began to do so well that alle hadde merveile how they myght it
suffre or endure.
Ther began agayn the turnement on bothe partyes, and well thei dide in armes
on that oon part and that other, till it drough towarde evenesonge, that the thre
kynges descended from the paleise and com into the place whereas was the
turnement, and saugh that thei heilde hem even like, that noon ne wiste wele whiche
hadde the better.
Than com the thre kynges and hem departed and seide it was tyme to cesse, for
it was to late eny more to turney. And so were they departed, and eche yede to his
ostell to resten, for therto hadde thei nede and gret myster, for many were ther
hurte. And the kynges yede to here evesonge, and than thei yede to soper, and
after begonne the carolles and to speke of the turnemente, and asked oon of an-
other how hem semed of whom that hadde don beste. And thei seide that the
Kynge Ban hadde fifteen knyghtes that hadde don alther beste more than eny
other; and on that other part were eight that hadde don merveiles in armes, and
gretly hadde they traveylled and peyned, and moche were thei to alowe. Thus
heilde they here tales longe, and alwey they yaf the loos and the pris to Kay the
Stiward and to Lucas the Boteller and to Gifflet the sone of Do. These were the
thre that beste hadde don, and oft tymes justed and in every nede were redy.
Whan the tables were up, arisen the thre kynges and the archebisshop and Antor
and Guynebans, that was brother to the two kynges. Than thei yede into a cham-
ber that was besyde the halle, towarde the gardyn up the River of Temse, and with
hem yede tweyne that ne ought not to be foryeten -- that was Ulfin and Bretell.
And so thei pleide and spake togeder of many thinges.
Than [King Arthur] beheilde Ulfin and Bretell, and than he gan to laugh, for he
bethought hym on the wordes that Merlin hadde hym tolde, whan thei were gon
on his message, how thei were assailed in the deserte of seven knyghtes, and how
thei dide hem deliver. Than the kynge cleped hem bothe and comaunded hem be
the feith that thei hym oughten, that thei sholde hym telle all the trouthe, how thei
hadde spedde in theire message. Whan thei herde the kynge thus speke, that oon
loked on the tother and begonne to smyle. And Bretell ansuerde thekynge, that
thought well he it knewe thourgh Merlin, and seide, "Sir, wherto sholde we telle
you oure spede in oure jurney, for as wele ye do it knowe as we oureself, thourgh
hym that hath it tolde, and therfore it were but speche loste."
Than seide the Kynge Ban, "Who is that that hath hym this tolde?" "Certein,
sir, the wisest man of the worlde." "And where is he?" quod Ban, "and what is his
name?" "Sir," quod Bretell, "it is Merlin, and he resteth in my chamber here-
ynne, and by his counseile hath my lorde sente after yow." "Sir," quod Kynge
Ban, "lete hym come hider, for we have moche disired hym for to see, for the
merveiles that we have herde of hym spoken."
And Arthur seide that so wolde he do with gode will. And than he sente Ulfin
for hym, and therwith anoon entred Merlin into the chamber agein Ulfin and seide
"returne"; and so thei wente before the kynge and asked wherefore he hadde
sente hym to seche. And the Kynge Ban blissed hym for the merveile that he
hadde, how he myght knowe these thingis, and Merlin seide, "Therof no forse,
for hereafter ye shull wite inough."
Than he began to telle a party of his lif; and than com forth Guynebande the
clerke and opposed hym of dyverse thynges, for he was a profounde clerke. And
Merlyn hym ansuerde to alle the questiouns that he asked, the very trouthe as it
was; and so indured longe the disputacion betwene hem tweyne. And at laste Merlin
seide that all for nought he traveylede, "For," quod he, "the more thow sechest,
the more shalt thow fynde." And than seide Merlin to hem that were aboute hym
that he hadde never founde no clerke that ever hadde spoke to hym of so high
clergie -- ne not Blase that was so holy a man -- ne cowde not so moche enquere.
Wherto sholde I make yow longe tale? But longe thei spake togeder so that the
toon was well aqueynted with that other, and well thei loved togeder.
And whan the disputaciouns were don, Merlin com to the two kynges that were
his brethern and seide, "Lordynges, ye be worthi men and of high renoun, and
also ye beth right feithfull and trewe. And lo, here the Kynge Arthur that ought to
be youre lorde, and of hym sholde ye holde youre londes and do hym homage.
And he ought to helpe yow and to socoure agein alle men, yef ye havenede." And
thei seide, "Merlin, now telle us how he was chosen to be kynge, and wherfore,
and yef Antor knowe whether he be the sone of Uterpendragon." And Merlin
seide, "Ye, withoute faile." Than he tolde hem alle the thinges like as was befalle,
so that the archebisshop and Ulfin it recorded.
"Merlin," quod the Kynge Ban, "we will that thow make us sure of oon thinge
that we shall aske, for so moche we knowe in yow that ye will not to us sey no
lesynge for all the londe that longeth to the crowne." "A ha!" quod Merlin, "ye
desire to have me sworn that it be trewe that I sey." And thei begonne to laugh and
seide that ther nas noon so wise as was he in no reame. And Merlin seide, "I
graunte youre requeste and youre desire." And so thei toke respite till on the morn.
Thus ended theire parlament, and [they] departed and yede to bedde; and the
thre kynges and the archebishop lay in oon chamber, for they wolde not departe
on sondre. And moche Guynebande aqueynted hym with Merlin, that taught hym
many grete maistries and many feire pleyes. And Guynebande well hem undirstode,
as he that was wise and a grete clerke, so that he wrought somme of the craftes
ofte in the Bloy Breteyne that longe tyme after endured, and as it shall hereafter
Whan these thre kynges weren abedde and at her ese that nyght, the storye seith
that they lay till on the morn that thei ronge to messe right erly, for it was a litill
afore Halowmesse. Than com Merlin and awoke hem, and opened the two
wyndowes towarde the gardyn, for he wolde that thei hadde lyght therynne. And
they hem clothed and arayed and yede to the mynster, and the archebisshop sange
the messe. And than Merlin dide swere before the kynges that Arthur was the
sone of Uterpendragon, and that he was begeten on the Quene Ygerne that nyght
that the Duke was slayn, and that he was the moste rightfull heire that the londe
After that swore Ulfin that, so God hym helpe and alle seyntes, that it was trewe
all as Merlin hadde rehersed. Whan the two kynges hadde take the oth of these
two, anoon thei dide to Kynge Arthur their homage full debonerly as wasright;
and the kynge hem receyved with gode herte and sympilliche with wepynge, and
than thei kiste with gode herte for grete love. And than was the joye more than
before. And than thei yede up into the halle to mete, and thei were served as high
men ought to be. And after mete, Arthur and Merlin wente togeder to counseile,
and the two kynges that were brethern, and Ulfin and Bretell and Kay the Stywarde.
Thanne seide Merlyn, "Feire lordynges, ye be alle worthy men and trewe, and I
knowe yow alle as wele or beter than ye do youreself. And lo, here youre lorde the
Kynge Arthur that is right a worthi man, and a gode knyght shall he be of his
honde. And ye knowe well that grete wronge that is do to hym by his barouns of
his londe, that will not resceyve hym for their lorde ne do to hym homage as thei
ought to do of right, but besy hem to greve hym with all her power. And therfore
I pray yow do as I shall yow counsell, and knowe it well that it shall be the beste
counseile that I may yow yeve."
And they seide thei wolde do like as he wolde devise, and he [hem] thanked
debonerly. And than he seide, "Lordynges, se here the kynge that hath no wif; and
I knowe a mayden that is kynges doughter and quenes and of right high lynage,
and also she is right feire and of grete valour that no lady ne may have more. And
that is the doughter of Kynge Leodegan of Carmelide, that is now an olde man
and hath no mo children but this doughter, whos name is Gonnore, to whom the
londe moste falle after his discesse. And he hath grete werre agein the Kynge
Rion that is of the lynage of geauntes, and he is right riche and right puyssaunt,
and yef it happe that he conquere the reame of Carmelide that marcheth to the
reame of Logres that is Arthures, wite it well that Arthur ne shall not longe kepe
his londe in pees. And alle the dayes of his lif he shall have werre on alle partees.
"And ne were the Knyghtes of the Rounde Table, that deffende the reame of
Kynge Leodegan agein the geauntes, thei sholde have all his londe wasted and
distroied. And therfore I counseile yow that ye take with yow certein of youre
peple and go with Arthur and abide with the Kynge Leodegan a yere or two, till
that ye be with hym well aqueynted. And ye shull but litill while be ther but he
shall love yow better than theym that with hym now [be] ther. And knowe it wele
that he shall profer Arthur his doughter to be his wif, and therby shall he have his
reame all quyte. Ne never after that the geauntes knowe that he hath her wedded
shull they not be so hardy to abyde in the contré ne nygh it by a journey."