Le Morte d'Arthur BOOK X CHAPTER XLVII
Legends and Sagas
How Sir Palomides fought with Corsabrin for a lady, and
how Palomides slew Corsabrin.
SO by fortune this damosel heard tell that Palomides did
much for damosels' sake; so she sent to him a pensel,
and prayed him to fight with Sir Corsabrin for her love,
and he should have her and her lands of her father's
that should fall to her. Then the damosel sent unto
Corsabrin, and bade him go unto Sir Palomides that was
a paynim as well as he, and she gave him warning that
she had sent him her pensel, and if he might overcome
Palomides she would wed him. When Corsabrin wist
of her deeds then was he wood wroth and angry, and
rode unto Surluse where the haut prince was, and there he
found Sir Palomides ready, the which had the pensel.
So there they waged battle either with other afore
Galahalt. Well, said the haut prince, this day must
noble knights joust, and at-after dinner we shall see how
ye can speed.
Then they blew to jousts; and in came Dinadan,
and met with Sir Gerin, a good knight, and he threw
him down over his horse's croup; and Sir Dinadan overthrew
four knights more; and there he did great deeds
of arms, for he was a good knight, but he was a scoffer
and a japer, and the merriest knight among fellowship
that was that time living. And he had such a custom
that he loved every good knight, and every good knight
loved him again. So then when the haut prince saw
Dinadan do so well, he sent unto Sir Launcelot and bade
him strike down Sir Dinadan: And when that ye have
done so bring him afore me and the noble Queen
Guenever. Then Sir Launcelot did as he was required.
Then Sir Lamorak and he smote down many knights,
and raced off helms, and drove all the knights afore
them. And so Sir Launcelot smote down Sir Dinadan,
and made his men to unarm him, and so brought him to
the queen and the haut prince, and they laughed at
Dinadan so sore that they might not stand. Well, said
Sir Dinadan, yet have I no shame, for the old shrew, Sir
Launcelot, smote me down. So they went to dinner, [and]
all the court had good sport at Dinadan.
Then when the dinner was done they blew to the
field to behold Sir Palomides and Corsabrin. Sir Palomides
pight his pensel in midst of the field; and then they
hurtled together with their spears as it were thunder, and
either smote other to the earth. And then they pulled
out their swords, and dressed their shields, and lashed
together mightily as mighty knights, that well-nigh there
was no piece of harness would hold them, for this Corsabrin
was a passing felonious knight. Corsabrin, said
Palomides, wilt thou release me yonder damosel and the
pensel? Then was Corsabrin wroth out of measure, and
gave Palomides such a buffet that he kneeled on his knee.
Then Palomides arose lightly, and smote him upon the
helm that he fell down right to the earth. And therewith
he raced off his helm and said: Corsabrin, yield thee
or else thou shalt die of my hands. Fie on thee, said
Corsabrin, do thy worst. Then he smote off his head.
And therewithal came a stink of his body when the soul
departed, that there might nobody abide the savour. So
was the corpse had away and buried in a wood, because
he was a paynim. Then they blew unto lodging, and
Palomides was unarmed.
Then he went unto Queen Guenever, to the haut
prince, and to Sir Launcelot. Sir, said the haut prince,
here have ye seen this day a great miracle by Corsabrin,
what savour there was when the soul departed from the
body. Therefore, sir, we will require you to take the
baptism upon you, and I promise you all knights will set
the more by you, and say more worship by you. Sir,
said Palomides, I will that ye all know that into this land
I came to be christened, and in my heart I am christened
and christened will I be. But I have made such an avow
that I may not be christened till I have done seven true
battles for Jesu's sake, and then will I be christened; and
I trust God will take mine intent, for I mean truly
Then Sir Palomides prayed Queen Guenever and the
haut prince to sup with him. And so they did, both Sir
Launcelot and Sir Lamorak, and many other good knights.
So on the morn they heard their mass, and blew the field,
and then knights made them ready.