Joseph Bédier (essay date 1904)
SOURCE: “The Legend of Tristan and Isolt,” in International Quarterly, Vol. 9, 1904, pp. 103-28.
[In the following essay, Bédier examines the origin and development of the Tristan and Isolde legend and maintains that there was one single source poem from which the extant versions proceeded.]
In all the realm of legends, there is none more wonderful than the story of Tristan and Isolt. Long ago, a trouvère, dedicating it to posterity, wrote in gentle verse: “I have told this tale for those who love, and for none else. May it go down through the ages to those who are thoughtful, to those who are happy, to those who are dissatisfied, to those who are full of...
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