Early-fourteenth century, Middle English, Cambridge University Library, Lincoln Cathedral Library, British Library.
'I have never before seen a man who works at a blacksmith's forge conduct himself so well in battle,' said the king, incredulously, to the former knight.
Sir Isumbras was once a knight, but after loosing all his wealth and then his family, he lived the life of a blacksmith's apprentice for seven years.
Now he has excelled himself on the battlefield once more, in his home-made armour.
Knyghtes and squyers han hym sought, – Knights and squires were sent out to search for Sir Isumbras and they found him badly wounded; but despite this, they brought him before the king. He was asked his name and, rather than revealing who he really was, he said: 'Sir, I work at a blacksmith's forge. What will you do with me?'
'I have never before seen a man who works at a blacksmith's forge conduct himself so well in battle,' said the king, incredulously.
'Please could I have some food and water, replied Sir Isumbras, modestly. 'Anything else I think of asking you for can wait until I have recovered from these wounds.'
But having recovered from his wounds, Sir Isumbras slips away from the convent where he is convalescing, disguised as a palmer, without once giving away his true identity.