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How when Sir Lancelot heard of the death of King
Arthur, and of Sir Gawaine, and other matters, he
came into England

AND when he heard in his country that Sir Mordred was
crowned king in England, and made war against King
Arthur, his own father, and would let him to land in his
own land; also it was told Sir Launcelot how that Sir Mordred
had laid siege about the Tower of London, because the
queen would not wed him; then was Sir Launcelot wroth
out of measure, and said to his kinsmen:  Alas, that
double traitor Sir Mordred, now me repenteth that ever he
escaped my hands, for much shame hath he done unto my
lord Arthur; for all I feel by the doleful letter that my
lord Sir Gawaine sent me, on whose soul Jesu have mercy
that my lord Arthur is full hard bestead.  Alas, said Sir
Launcelot, that ever I should live to hear that most noble
king that made me knight thus to be overset with his subject
in his own realm.  And this doleful letter that my
lord, Sir Gawaine, hath sent me afore his death, praying
me to see his tomb, wit you well his doleful words shall
never go from mine heart, for he was a full noble knight
as ever was born; and in an unhappy hour was I born
that ever I should have that unhap to slay first Sir
Gawaine, Sir Gaheris the good knight, and mine own
friend Sir Gareth, that full noble knight.  Alas, I may
say I am unhappy, said Sir Launcelot, that ever I should
do thus unhappily, and, alas, yet might I never have hap
to slay that traitor, Sir Mordred.

Leave your complaints, said Sir Bors, and first revenge
you of the death of Sir Gawaine; and it will be well done
that ye see Sir Gawaine's tomb, and secondly that ye
revenge my lord Arthur, and my lady, Queen Guenever
I thank you, said Sir Launcelot, for ever ye will my

Then they made them ready in all the haste that
might be, with ships and galleys, with Sir Launcelot and
his host to pass into England.  And so he passed over
the sea till he came to Dover, and there he landed with
seven kings, and the number was hideous to behold.
Then Sir Launcelot spered of men of Dover where was
King Arthur become.  Then the people told him how
that he was slain, and Sir Mordred and an hundred thousand
died on a day; and how Sir Mordred gave King
Arthur there the first battle at his landing, and there was
good Sir Gawaine slain; and on the morn Sir Mordred
fought with the king upon Barham Down, and there the
king put Sir Mordred to the worse.  Alas, said Sir
Launcelot, this is the heaviest tidings that ever came to
me.  Now, fair sirs, said Sir Launcelot, shew me the
tomb of Sir Gawaine.  And then certain people of the
town brought him into the castle of Dover, and shewed
him the tomb.  Then Sir Launcelot kneeled down and
wept, and prayed heartily for his soul.  And that night he
made a dole, and all they that would come had as much
flesh, fish, wine and ale, and every man and woman had
twelve pence, come who would.  Thus with his own hand
dealt he this money, in a mourning gown; and ever he
wept, and prayed them to pray for the soul of Sir
Gawaine.  And on the morn all the priests and clerks that
might be gotten in the country were there, and sang mass
of Requiem; and there offered first Sir Launcelot, and he
offered an hundred pound; and then the seven kings
offered forty pound apiece; and also there was a thousand
knights, and each of them offered a pound; and the
offering dured from morn till night, and Sir Launcelot lay
two nights on his tomb in prayers and weeping.

Then on the third day Sir Launcelot called the kings,
dukes, earls, barons, and knights, and said thus:  My fair
lords, I thank you all of your coming into this country
with me, but we came too late, and that shall repent me
while I live, but against death may no man rebel.  But
sithen it is so, said Sir Launcelot, I will myself ride and
seek my lady, Queen Guenever, for as I hear say she hath
had great pain and much disease; and I heard say that
she is fled into the west.  Therefore ye all shall abide me
here, and but if I come again within fifteen days, then
take your ships and your fellowship, and depart into your
country, for I will do as I say to you.