Le Morte d'Arthur BOOK X CHAPTER LX

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How Sir Tristram with his fellowship came and were with
an host which after fought with Sir Tristram; and
other matters.

THEN departed Sir Tristram, Gareth, and Sir Dinadan,
and left Sir Palomides in the vessel; and so Sir Tristram
beheld the mariners how they sailed overlong Humber.
And when Sir Palomides was out of their sight they took
their horses and beheld about them.  And then were they
ware of a knight that came riding against them unarmed,
and nothing about him but a sword.  And when this
knight came nigh them he saluted them, and they him
again.  Fair knights, said that knight, I pray you insomuch
as ye be knights errant, that ye will come and see
my castle, and take such as ye find there; I pray you
heartily.  And so they rode with him until his castle, and
there they were brought into the hall, that was well
apparelled; and so they were there unarmed, and set at a
board; and when this knight saw Sir Tristram, anon he
knew him.  And then this knight waxed pale and wroth
at Sir Tristram.  When Sir Tristram saw his host make
such cheer he marvelled and said:  Sir, mine host, what
cheer make you?  Wit thou well, said he, I fare the
worse for thee, for I know thee, Sir Tristram de Liones,
thou slewest my brother; and therefore I give thee
summons I will slay thee an ever I may get thee at
large.  Sir knight, said Sir Tristram, I am never advised
that ever I slew any brother of yours; and if ye say that
I did I will make amends unto my power.  I will none
amends, said the knight, but keep thee from me.

So when he had dined Sir Tristram asked his arms,
and departed.  And so they rode on their ways, and
within a while Sir Dinadan saw where came a knight well
armed and well horsed, without shield.  Sir Tristram,
said Sir Dinadan, take keep to yourself, for I dare undertake
yonder cometh your host that will have ado with
you.  Let him come, said Sir Tristram, I shall abide
him as well as I may.  Anon the knight, when he came
nigh Sir Tristram, he cried and bade him abide and keep
him.  So they hurtled together, but Sir Tristram smote
the other knight so sore that he bare him over his horse's
croup.  That knight arose lightly and took his horse
again, and so rode fiercely to Sir Tristram, and smote him
twice hard upon the helm.  Sir knight, said Sir Tristram,
I pray you leave off and smite me no more, for I would
be loath to deal with you an I might choose, for I have
your meat and your drink within my body.  For all that
he would not leave; and then Sir Tristram gave him
such a buffet upon the helm that he fell up-so-down from
his horse, that the blood brast out at the ventails of his
helm, and so he lay still likely to be dead.  Then Sir
Tristram said:  Me repenteth of this buffet that I smote
so sore, for as I suppose he is dead.  And so they left
him and rode on their ways.

So they had not ridden but a while, but they saw
riding against them two full likely knights, well armed
and well horsed, and goodly servants about them.  The
one was Berrant le Apres, and he was called the King
with the Hundred Knights; and the other was Sir
Segwarides, which were renowned two noble knights.  So
as they came either by other the king looked upon Sir
Dinadan, that at that time he had Sir Tristram's helm
upon his shoulder, the which helm the king had seen
to-fore with the Queen of Northgalis, and that queen the
king loved as paramour; and that helm the Queen of
Northgalis had given to La Beale Isoud, and the queen
La Beale Isoud gave it to Sir Tristram.  Sir knight, said
Berrant, where had ye that helm?  What would ye? said
Sir Dinadan.  For I will have ado with thee, said the
king, for the love of her that owed that helm, and
therefore keep you.  So they departed and came together with
all their mights of their horses, and there the King with
the Hundred Knights smote Sir Dinadan, horse and all,
to the earth; and then he commanded his servant:  Go
and take thou his helm off, and keep it.  So the varlet
went to unbuckle his helm.  What helm, what wilt thou
do? said Sir Tristram, leave that helm.  To what intent,
said the king, will ye, sir knight, meddle with that helm?
Wit you well, said Sir Tristram, that helm shall not depart
from me or it be dearer bought.  Then make you ready,
said Sir Berrant unto Sir Tristram.  So they hurtled
together, and there Sir Tristram smote him down over his
horse's tail; and then the king arose lightly, and gat his
horse lightly again.  And then he struck fiercely at Sir
Tristram many great strokes.  And then Sir Tristram
gave Sir Berrant such a buffet upon the helm that he fell
down over his horse sore stonied.  Lo, said Dinadan, that
helm is unhappy to us twain, for I had a fall for it, and
now, sir king, have ye another fall.

Then Segwarides asked:  Who shall joust with me?
I pray thee, said Sir Gareth unto Dinadan, let me have
this jousts.  Sir, said Dinadan, I pray you take it as for me.
That is no reason, said Tristram, for this jousts should
be yours.  At a word, said Dinadan, I will not thereof.
Then Gareth dressed him to Sir Segwarides, and there Sir
Segwarides smote Gareth and his horse to the earth.
Now, said Sir Tristram to Dinadan, joust with yonder
knight.  I will not thereof, said Dinadan.  Then will I,
said Sir Tristram.  And then Sir Tristram ran to him,
and gave him a fall; and so they left them on foot, and
Sir Tristram rode unto Joyous Gard, and there Sir Gareth
would not of his courtesy have gone into this castle, but
Sir Tristram would not suffer him to depart.  And so
they alighted and unarmed them, and had great cheer.
But when Dinadan came afore La Beale Isoud he cursed
the time that ever he bare Sir Tristram's helm, and there
he told her how Sir Tristram had mocked him.  Then
was there laughing and japing at Sir Dinadan, that they
wist not what to do with him.