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He has a vision Book XV in which he joins the black sinful knights against the white pure knights.

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He is wounded and Elaine dies for love of him. He cures King Urre.


Lancelot and friends rescue the queen from the stake. Gawain and knights make war on Lancelot who slays Gareth. Finally Book XI he and Guinevere part for the very last time, then he goes to Glastonbury and becomes a monk. Far from needing to prove himself to a Guinevere whom he already loves, he reveres her above all others only in response to her admiration and honouring of his matchless proficiency as a knight.

King Arthur and His Part in the Breaking of the Round Table

Through the persona of Lancelot and indeed through the foundation and eventual decline of the noble fellowship of the Round Table, not to mention the metaphorical passing of the seasons Malory contrasts the prized medieval virtues of constancy and steadfastness with the inevitable rise and fall of the stable order of things. Lancelot, in particular, appears to symbolise on the one hand — in his innocence — the achievement of a certain kind of order, and on the other — in his ultimate sufferings — the tragic real-world truth that all good things come to an end.

See also Arthurian Legend homepage. This site uses cookies More info Okay. Thus the death of Galehot arises inescapably from the conflict between his friendship with Lancelot and. Sommer, IV, p. Lancelot's love for Guinevere, and no knowledge that Lancelot may have of the future can alter this inevitable outcome.

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It explains and to some extent excuses his conduct and his extreme brutality towards Guinevere. What the author of the long version does is typical of the process ot rationalization which characterizes so many remaniements of earlier romances. His treatment of the theme is in fact closely paralleled in the prose Tristan where motivation through magic is overshadowed by a realistic intrigue.

Before drinking the love potion Tristan falls in love with Iseut on hearing that Pala-mede is in love with her. The third " improbability " criticised by M. Micha concerns two remarks made before and during Lancelot's fight against the three knights. Micha believes that this remark only has its full meaning if regarded as an allusion to the episode in the long version Sommer IV, p. Certes, fait il, voires. Ge m'i com-batrai segurement. Et sagiez que ge voudroie avoir fait mout grant meschief par covant que tel roi a il en ceste place fust Ii quarz.

Et issi voirement m'aist Dex, il ne porterait jamais corone 2. Micha maintains that the short version's text no longer fits in with Lancelot's taunt at Kay in the middle of the battle and introduces a discordant note into the character of Lancelot who has never failed to show respect towards the King. In the short version Lancelot is angry with Kay who has presumed to offer himself as the Queen's champion and to question Lancelot's willingness to fight against three knights, and this anger would seem to provide adequate justification for Lancelot's taunt without the remark which is to be found in the long version only.

Nor can it logically be maintained that the short version's threat to King Arthur is discordant with Lancelot's character unless the same discordancy is admitted in the long version where there is an undeniable threat to the King himself in Lancelot's reply to King Arthur's attempts to persuade him to give up the battle against the three knights Sommer, p.

Et si n'en peust estre pais faite, si m'ait Diex il y a tel qui jamais ne porteroit coronne en teste.

Guinevere, the Jealous Queen

In fact, these threats, although found in both versions, are more justified in the short version where King Arthur, completely blinded by the potion, is more brutal, himself proposes the battle of one knight against three and does not, as in the long version, offer to set Guinevere free to save Lancelot from fighting against such overwhelming odds. Lastly M. Micha alleges that in the short version too much happens in too short a time, incidents are brutally juxtaposed and there is none of the skilful entrelacement which, he believes, characterises the author of the prose Lancelot.

A great number of events and a considerable amount of travelling do indeed take place in approximately one and a half months, from the departure of Galehot and Lancelot for Sorelois to the final uncovering of the treachery of the False Guinevere and Ber-tholai on the eve of Christmas. It is true that there is a feeling of urgency throughout the episode.

This terrible question must be settled before the important festival of Christmas; the action here, as in Sommer III, is related to the rhythm of the great feasts, so important in fact as well as in fiction, for it was then that the kings held their great courts at which they wore their crowns In Sommer III events revolve round these great feasts, and winter and. The Anglo Saxon Chronicle, trans, by G. Garmonsway London, ' , p. The phrases deux ans or trois ans are used without any very great significance being attached to the exact number of years, indeed there are sometimes slight inconsistencies.

He hides them plus de iii ans in his house p. This statement does not agree with that on p.

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As for the entrelacement , it is certainly the case that there are considerable parts of Sommer III in which entrelacement plays no very great part. There is obviously no need to prepare for events which are not going; to take place 3. This non cyclic version of the Prose Lancelot contains references to-the Grail, but these are in open contradiction with events in the Queste del' Saint Graal.

The contradictions are common to almost all MSS of Sommer,,. III, whether cyclic or non cyclic.

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Ferdinand Lot did not know the Rouen MS, but he attached conside-. Finally, to argue that thise non-cyclic version is a truncated version of the complete cycle, achieved by an unravelling of the different threads of narrative, is to ignore the fact that we have no examples of an unravelling and simplifying process in the second quarter of the thirteenth century, the date to which paleographers assign fr.

There is also the abridged version of the Mori Artu which is described by M. Frappier in the introduction to his edition but again this is an example of condensation rather than of unravelling. He never suggested that the version contained in this MS had circulated in a separate form asan independent non cyclic work.

But cf. Frappier, Elude sur la mort du roi Artu, p. La Mort le roi Artu Paris, , p. The difficulties of unravelling the threads of the Lancelot cycle are therefore considerable, and none of those few scribes who wished to condense seem to have had any idea how to carry it out or to have even attempted seriously to do so. Such a task would surely be beyond the powers of the clumsy remanieur postulated by M. For example, a number of MSS try to give greater unity to the cycle by removing an obvious discrepancy between the account of the birth of Merlin given in the Prose Lancelot proper Sommer, III, p.