Le Morte d'Arthur BOOK VI CHAPTER II

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How Sir Ector followed for to seek Sir Launcelot, and how
he was taken by Sir Turquine.

WHEN Sir Ector de Maris wist that Sir Launcelot was passed out of
the court to seek adventures, he was wroth with himself, and made
him ready to seek Sir Launcelot, and as he had ridden long in a
great forest he met with a man was like a forester.  Fair fellow,
said Sir Ector, knowest thou in this country any adventures that
be here nigh hand?  Sir, said the forester, this country know I
well, and hereby, within this mile, is a strong manor, and well
dyked, and by that manor, on the left hand, there is a fair ford
for horses to drink of, and over that ford there groweth a fair
tree, and thereon hang many fair shields that wielded sometime
good knights, and at the hole of the tree hangeth a basin of
copper and latten, and strike upon that basin with the butt of
thy spear thrice, and soon after thou shalt hear new tidings, and
else hast thou the fairest grace that many a year had ever knight
that passed through this forest.  Gramercy, said Sir Ector, and
departed and came to the tree, and saw many fair shields.  And
among them he saw his brother's shield, Sir Lionel, and many more
that he knew that were his fellows of the Round Table, the which
grieved his heart, and promised to revenge his brother.

Then anon Sir Ector beat on the basin as he were wood, and then
he gave his horse drink at the ford, and there came a knight
behind him and bade him come out of the water and make him ready;
and Sir Ector anon turned him shortly, and in feuter cast his
spear, and smote the other knight a great buffet that his horse
turned twice about.  This was well done, said the strong knight,
and knightly thou hast stricken me; and therewith he rushed his
horse on Sir Ector, and cleight him under his right arm, and bare
him clean out of the saddle, and rode with <178>him away into his
own hall, and threw him down in midst of the floor.  The name of
this knight was Sir Turquine.  Then he said unto Sir Ector, For
thou hast done this day more unto me than any knight did these
twelve years, now will I grant thee thy life, so thou wilt be
sworn to be my prisoner all thy life days.  Nay, said Sir Ector,
that will I never promise thee, but that I will do mine
advantage.  That me repenteth, said Sir Turquine.  And then he
gart to unarm him, and beat him with thorns all naked, and sithen
put him down in a deep dungeon, where he knew many of his
fellows.  But when Sir Ector saw Sir Lionel, then made he great
sorrow.  Alas, brother, said Sir Ector, where is my brother Sir
Launcelot?  Fair brother, I left him asleep when that I from him
yode, under an apple-tree, and what is become of him I cannot
tell you.  Alas, said the knights, but Sir Launcelot help us we
may never be delivered, for we know now no knight that is able to
match our master Turquine.