Le Morte d'Arthur BOOK VI CHAPTER XVIII
Legends and Sagas
How Sir Launcelot came to King Arthur's Court, and how
there were recounted all his noble feats and acts.
NOW turn we unto Sir Launcelot du Lake, that came home two days
afore the Feast of Pentecost; and the king and all the court were
passing fain of his coming. And when Sir Gawaine, Sir Uwaine,
Sir Sagramore, Sir Ector de Maris, saw Sir Launcelot in Kay's
armour, then they wist well it was he that smote them down all
with one spear. Then there was laughing and smiling among them.
And ever now and now came all the knights home that Sir Turquine
had prisoners, and they all honoured and worshipped Sir
When Sir Gaheris heard them speak, he said, I saw all the battle
from the beginning to the ending, and there he told King Arthur
all how it was, and how Sir Turquine was the strongest knight
that ever he saw except Sir Launcelot: there were many knights
bare him record, nigh three score. Then Sir Kay told the king
how Sir Launcelot had rescued him when he should have been slain,
and how he made the knights yield them to me, and not to him.
And there they were all three, and bare record. And by Jesu,
said Sir Kay, because Sir Launcelot took my harness and left me
his I rode in good peace, and no man would have ado with me.
Anon therewithal there came the three knights that fought with
Sir Launcelot at the long bridge. And there they yielded them
unto Sir Kay, and Sir Kay forsook them and said he fought never
with them. But I shall ease your heart, said Sir Kay, yonder is
Sir Launcelot that <208>overcame you. When they wist that they
were glad. And then Sir Meliot de Logres came home, and told the
king how Sir Launcelot had saved him from the death. And all his
deeds were known, how four queens, sorceresses, had him in
prison, and how he was delivered by King Bagdemagus' daughter.
Also there were told all the great deeds of arms that Sir
Launcelot did betwixt the two kings, that is for to say the King
of Northgalis and King Bagdemagus. All the truth Sir Gahalantine
did tell, and Sir Mador de la Porte and Sir Mordred, for they
were at that same tournament. Then came in the lady that knew
Sir Launcelot when that he wounded Sir Belleus at the pavilion.
And there, at request of Sir Launcelot, Sir Belleus was made
knight of the Round Table. And so at that time Sir Launcelot had
the greatest name of any knight of the world, and most he was
honoured of high and low.
Explicit the noble tale of Sir Launcelot du Lake,
which is the vi. book. Here followeth the tale of
Sir Gareth of Orkney that was called Beaumains
by Sir Kay, and is the seventh book.