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Medieval Arthurian Legend

Sir Thomas Malory: Le Morte d'Arthur

15th century, late-Medieval English.

Sir Gareth performed such splendid deeds of arms that men wondered who the knight with the green shield could possibly be.

King Arthur has arranged for a tournament to be held at Westminster. Queen Guinevere sends for Sir Lancelot and asks him to wear a sleeve of gold which she will give him to place upon his helmet.

So all thys doynge saw sir Launcelot – Sir Lancelot saw all the combat going on in the early stages of the tournament and went into the field with Sir Lavaine – as hit had bene thunder. And when King Arthur saw the deeds of arms that Sir Lancelot was beginning to notch up for the opposing side, he was displeased and called nine of his Knights of the Round Table to him. And so the kynge wyth thes nine knyghtes made them redy to sette uppon sir Launcelot and uppon sir Lavayne.

Sir Bors saw this and said to Sir Gareth: ‘I fear that my brother Sir Lancelot will have a fight on his hands now.’

‘I will ride out to help him,’ replied Sir Gareth, ‘since he is the man who knighted me.’

Sir Gareth saw a Welsh knight lying on the ground, recovering from a hard encounter with Sir Gawain, and - unto hym sir Gareth rode and prayed hym of hys knyghthode to lend hym hys shylde for hys.

And sir Gareth did such dedys of armys that all men mervayled what knyght he was with the gryne [green] shylde...

Vinaver, Eugene, 1971, reprinted in paperback, 1977. Malory: Works. Oxford University Press. The Book of Sir Launcelot and Queen Guinevere. III. The Great Tournament, pp 645–6.

See for yourself

Sir Thomas Malory – Wikipedia

Le Morte d'Arthur – Wikipedia

Gareth – Wikipedia

Sir Thomas Malory's 'Le Morte Darthur' – British Library, online exhibition

King Arthur – Wikipedia


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