Summary (Masterplots, Fourth Edition)
At the season of Pentecost, King Arthur holds his court at Carduel in Wales. After dinner on that feast day, a knight named Calogrenant tells a tale of adventure that is not altogether to his credit, and for which he is mocked by Sir Kay the seneschal. Calogrenant reveals that seven years before he had journeyed beyond the forest of Broceliande. After a night’s lodging in the tower of a courteous vavasor he continued on his way until he encountered a giant seventeen feet tall who was guarding some wild bulls in a clearing. The giant told the knight that if he sought some marvel he was to look for a spring in a mysterious wood, for water from the spring poured on a nearby stone would bring down upon him a storm such as few men had ever seen, with bolts of lightning that would blind him and thunder that would shake the earth. All happened as the giant had foretold, and after the storm had ceased, a knight appeared and challenged Calogrenant to a duel because of the great damage that had been caused by the wind and rain Calogrenant had brought about. The two fought and Calogrenant was overthrown. He tells his companions that he had been so shamed in that encounter that he had never told the story before.
One of those who listens to his tale is Yvain, a valiant knight, who swears to avenge the shame of Calogrenant, his German cousin. Yvain is then also mocked by Sir Kay. While they speak, King Arthur comes from his chamber, and Queen Guinevere tells him the...
(The entire section is 2324 words.)
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