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[*3] In Caxton's edition this chapter is misnumbered XXVI.,
setting the numeration wrong to the end of the book.

How the Queen of Orkney came to this feast of Pentecost, and
Sir Gawaine and his brethren came to ask her blessing.

So then the king and they went to meat, and were served in the
best manner.  And as they sat at the meat, there came in the
Queen of Orkney, with ladies and knights a great number.  And
then Sir Gawaine, Sir Agravaine, and Gaheris arose, and went to
her and saluted her upon their knees, and asked her blessing; for
in fifteen year they had not seen her.  Then she spake on high to
her brother King Arthur:  Where have ye done my young son Sir
Gareth?  He was here amongst you a twelvemonth, and <255>ye made
a kitchen knave of him, the which is shame to you all.  Alas,
where have ye done my dear son that was my joy and bliss?  O dear
mother, said Sir Gawaine, I knew him not.  Nor I, said the king,
that now me repenteth, but thanked be God he is proved a
worshipful knight as any is now living of his years, and I shall
never be glad till I may find him.

Ah, brother, said the Queen unto King Arthur, and unto Sir
Gawaine, and to all her sons, ye did yourself great shame when ye
amongst you kept my son in the kitchen and fed him like a poor
hog.  Fair sister, said King Arthur, ye shall right well wit I
knew him not, nor no more did Sir Gawaine, nor his brethren; but
sithen it is so, said the king, that he is thus gone from us all,
we must shape a remedy to find him.  Also, sister, meseemeth ye
might have done me to wit of his coming, and then an I had not
done well to him ye might have blamed me.  For when he came to
this court he came leaning upon two men's shoulders, as though he
might not have gone.  And then he asked me three gifts; and one
he asked the same day, that was that I would give him meat enough
that twelvemonth; and the other two gifts he asked that day a
twelvemonth, and that was that he might have the adventure of the
damosel Linet, and the third was that Sir Launcelot should make
him knight when he desired him.  And so I granted him all his
desire, and many in this court marvelled that he desired his
sustenance for a twelvemonth.  And thereby, we deemed, many of
us, that he was not come of a noble house.

Sir, said the Queen of Orkney unto King Arthur her brother, wit
ye well that I sent him unto you right well armed and horsed, and
worshipfully beseen of his body, and gold and silver plenty to
spend.  It may be, said the King, but thereof saw we none, save
that same day as he departed from us, knights told me that there
came a dwarf hither suddenly, and brought him armour and a good
horse full well and richly beseen; and thereat we all had marvel
from whence that riches came, that we deemed all that he was come
of men of worship.  Brother, said the <256>queen, all that ye say
I believe, for ever sithen he was grown he was marvellously
witted, and ever he was faithful and true of his promise.  But I
marvel, said she, that Sir Kay did mock him and scorn him, and
gave him that name Beaumains; yet, Sir Kay, said the queen, named
him more righteously than he weened; for I dare say an he be
alive, he is as fair an handed man and well disposed as any is
living.  Sir, said Arthur, let this language be still, and by the
grace of God he shall be found an he be within this seven realms,
and let all this pass and be merry, for he is proved to be a man
of worship, and that is my joy.