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How Sir Launcelot behaved him in a tournament, and how
he met with Sir Turquine leading Sir Gaheris.

WITH that came Sir Launcelot du Lake, and he thrust in with his
spear in the thickest of the press, and there he smote down with
one spear five knights, and of four of them he brake their backs. 
And in that throng he smote down the King of Northgalis, and
brake his thigh in that fall.  All this doing of Sir Launcelot
saw the three knights of Arthur's.  Yonder is a shrewd guest,
said Sir Mador de la Porte, therefore have here once at him.  So
they encountered, and Sir Launcelot bare him down horse and
<185>man, so that his shoulder went out of lith.  Now befalleth
it to me to joust, said Mordred, for Sir Mador hath a sore fall. 
Sir Launcelot was ware of him, and gat a great spear in his hand,
and met him, and Sir Mordred brake a spear upon him, and Sir
Launcelot gave him such a buffet that the arson of his saddle
brake, and so he flew over his horse's tail, that his helm butted
into the earth a foot and more, that nigh his neck was broken,
and there he lay long in a swoon.

Then came in Sir Gahalantine with a great spear and Launcelot
against him, with all their strength that they might drive, that
both their spears to-brast even to their hands, and then they
flang out with their swords and gave many a grim stroke.  Then
was Sir Launcelot wroth out of measure, and then he smote Sir
Gahalantine on the helm that his nose brast out on blood, and
ears and mouth both, and therewith his head hung low.  And
therewith his horse ran away with him, and he fell down to the
earth.  Anon therewithal Sir Launcelot gat a great spear in his
hand, and or ever that great spear brake, he bare down to the
earth sixteen knights, some horse and man, and some the man and
not the horse, and there was none but that he hit surely, he bare
none arms that day.  And then he gat another great spear, and
smote down twelve knights, and the most part of them never throve
after.  And then the knights of the King of Northgalis would
joust no more.  And there the gree was given to King Bagdemagus.

So either party departed unto his own place, and Sir Launcelot
rode forth with King Bagdemagus unto his castle, and there he had
passing good cheer both with the king and with his daughter, and
they proffered him great gifts.  And on the morn he took his
leave, and told the king that he would go and seek his brother
Sir Lionel, that went from him when that he slept, so he took his
horse, and betaught them all to God.  And there he said unto the
king's daughter, If ye have need any time of my service I pray
you let me have knowledge, and I shall not fail you as I am true
knight.  And so Sir Launcelot departed, and by adventure he came
into the same forest there he was <186>taken sleeping.  And in
the midst of a highway he met a damosel riding on a white
palfrey, and there either saluted other.  Fair damosel, said Sir
Launcelot, know ye in this country any adventures?  Sir knight,
said that damosel, here are adventures near hand, an thou durst
prove them.  Why should I not prove adventures? said Sir
Launcelot for that cause come I hither.  Well, said she, thou
seemest well to be a good knight, and if thou dare meet with a
good knight, I shall bring thee where is the best knight, and the
mightiest that ever thou found, so thou wilt tell me what is thy
name, and what knight thou art.  Damosel, as for to tell thee my
name I take no great force; truly my name is Sir Launcelot du
Lake.  Sir, thou beseemest well, here be adventures by that fall
for thee, for hereby dwelleth a knight that will not be
overmatched for no man I know but ye overmatch him, and his name
is Sir Turquine.  And, as I understand, he hath in his prison, of
Arthur's court, good knights three score and four, that he hath
won with his own hands.  But when ye have done that journey ye
shall promise me as ye are a true knight for to go with me, and
to help me and other damosels that are distressed daily with a
false knight.  All your intent, damosel, and desire I will
fulfil, so ye will bring me unto this knight.  Now, fair knight,
come on your way; and so she brought him unto the ford and the
tree where hung the basin.

So Sir Launcelot let his horse drink, and then he beat on the
basin with the butt of his spear so hard with all his might till
the bottom fell out, and long he did so, but he saw nothing. 
Then he rode endlong the gates of that manor nigh half-an-hour. 
And then was he ware of a great knight that drove an horse afore
him, and overthwart the horse there lay an armed knight bound. 
And ever as they came near and near, Sir Launcelot thought he
should know him.  Then Sir Launcelot was ware that it was Sir
Gaheris, Gawaine's brother, a knight of the Table Round.  Now,
fair damosel, said Sir Launcelot, I see yonder cometh a knight
fast bounden that is a fellow of mine, and brother he is unto Sir
Gawaine.  And at the first beginning I promise you, by the leave
of God, to rescue that knight; <187>but if his master sit better
in the saddle I shall deliver all the prisoners that he hath out
of danger, for I am sure he hath two brethren of mine prisoners
with him.  By that time that either had seen other, they gripped
their spears unto them.  Now, fair knight, said Sir Launcelot,
put that wounded knight off the horse, and let him rest awhile,
and let us two prove our strengths; for as it is informed me,
thou doest and hast done great despite and shame unto knights of
the Round Table, and therefore now defend thee.  An thou be of
the Table Round, said Turquine, I defy thee and all thy
fellowship.  That is overmuch said, said Sir Launcelot.