Medieval Arthurian Legend

The Story of Sir Tristrem

13th century, Middle High German | 14th century, Middle English, National Library of Scotland.

The people were trying desperately to escape from a dragon.

The folk wel fast ran, in a water to droun, so ferd were thai than, for doute of o dragoun. The people were trying desperately to escape from a dragon!

A stede of schip thai drewe. – Tristram's companions led a horse from the ship that had carried him to Dublin, the best one that he had. Tristram's armour was new and polished and his heart was good and true; it would not fail him. He knew the countryside round about from his previous visit to Queen Isolde of Ireland and her beautiful daughter Isolde.

Shortly, he came upon the dragon. It looked as though hell-fire was pouring from its mouth – helle-fere, him thought, fram that dragoun fleighe.

Story fragment retold in Modern English from: Lupack, Alan (Ed), 1994. Lancelot of the Laic and Sir Tristrem, Kalamazoo, Michigan: Western Michigan University for TEAMS. Medieval Institute Publications. Introduction and Middle English text. Text of Sir Trystrem from National Library of Scotland MS Advocates 19.2.1, the Auchinleck Manuscript.

The episode is also in: Hatto, A. T., 1960, reprinted with revisions, 1967, 2004. Gottfried von Strassburg: Tristan. With the surviving fragments of the Tristran of Thomas. Translated from Medieval German and Old French with an introduction. Penguin Books Limited. 12. The Dragon, pp 159–72.

See for yourself

Sir Tristrem – TEAMS Middle English texts

Thomas of Britain – Wikipedia

Tristan and Iseult – Wikipedia

Gottfried von Strassburg – Wikipedia

Mark of Cornwall – Wikipedia

Thomas the Rhymer – Wikipedia

Medieval Institute Publications – Alan Lupack (Ed), 1994. Lancelot of the Laik and Sir Tristrem. Middle English text with an introduction.

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