Lancelot, or The Knight of the Cart. by Chretien de Troyes. Click for image source Since my lady of Champagne wishes me to undertake to write. Chrétien de Troyes’s masterpiece Lancelot, The Knight of the Cart is a riveting tale of knightly valor and courtly love. This romance marks the. The Depiction of Lancelot in Chrétien de Troyes’ The Knight of the. Cart and Malory’s ‘Book of Sir Lancelot and Queen Guinevere’ in Le. Morte Darthur.

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Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart French: It is one of the first stories of the Arthurian legend to feature Lancelot as a prominent character.

Lancelot: The Knight of the Cart

The narrative tells about the abduction of Queen Guinevereand is the first text to feature the love affair between Lancelot and Guinevere. He was the first writer to deal with the Arthurian themes of the lineage of Lancelot, his relationship dhretien Guinevere, and the idea of courtly love.

The story centers on Lancelot ‘s rescue of Guinevere after she has been abducted by Meleagantthe son of Bademagu. It deals with Lancelot’s trials rescuing Guinevere, and his struggles to balance his duties both as a warrior and a lover bound by conventions. The book begins with Guinevere being abducted by Meleagantwho tricked Arthur into allowing him to do so. While Gawain df looking for the pair, he runs into the then unnamed Lancelot who, after riding his horse to death, convinces Gawain to lend him a horse in pursuit of the queen.

Lancelot then speeds after Guinevere. When Gawain catches up to him, Lancelot has worn out his new horse to death just as he did his previous one.

Lancelot encounters a cart-driving dwarf, who says he will tell Lancelot toryes Guinevere and her captor went if Lancelot agrees to ride in his cart. Lancelot boards the cart reluctantly since this is a dishonorable form of transport for a knight.

Along this journey they encounter many obstacles, the most prominent one arising because of other people being unwilling to talk to Lancelot since he is thought to be of a lowly status because he is riding in the cart.


His first trial comes when a maiden offers a bed for the knights, but refuses to let Lancelot lie on it. It is then revealed to be a trap to kill the knights, but it does not faze Lancelot.

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After many more encounters with beautiful women and rude knights, Lancelot and Gawain decide to part so that they may cover more lancelkt. Lancelot finds Guinevere in the castle of Gorrebut is then driven away by her coldness, which is later revealed to be because of his initial hesitation to enter the cart. Lancelot leaves to find Gawain but is then drawn back and Guinevere apologizes to him.

Lancelot breaks into her tower and they spend a passionate night together. He injures his hand during his break-in, and leaves blood all over Guinevere’s sheets. Lancelot sneaks out of the tower before sunrise, and Meleagant accuses Guinevere of committing adultery with Kay, who is the only wounded knight nearby.

Over this year’s time, Lancelot is tricked by another dwarf and forced into imprisonment while Guinevere is allowed to return home. When it comes time to duel, Lancelot bargains with his captors to let lanxelot go and fight, and he promises to return.

When he finally does fight the tournament fighters, Guinevere asks him to lose in order to prove his love. He obliges and when he starts to lose, Guinevere changes her proposal, now instructing him to ee. Lancelot complies and beats the other tournament competitors and afterwards he returns to his captors.

Meleagant finds out from the captor’s husband that the captor’s wife was the one who agreed to release Lancelot temporarily to fight at the tournament. Meleagant orders Lancelot to be locked away in a master craftsman’s castle. The section ends with Lancelot imprisoned. In a continuation, the woman whom Lancelot had earlier saved from kidnapping she ordered Lancelot to sever her stalker’s head was actually Meleagant’s sister.

Meleagant’s sister searches for Lancelot in order to return his favor. She finds an axe, and the rope used by Lancelot to pull up food, and sends up the axe instead.


Chrétien de Troyes

Lancelot chops his way out and escapes with her to a secluded home that she owns. Meanwhile, Gawain prepares to battle Meleagant, since Lancelot is missing a one-year rematch after the second duel was established. Lancelot arrives on time and fights Meleagant, who loses his temper and his arm, and then is beheaded by Lancelot. Guinevere embraces Lancelot restrictively they are in public in the end. He was employed as a writer by aristocrats of Champagneexplaining the champenois dialect detected in his work, and he usually crafted stories based on material that was presented to him.

The matiere in this case would refer to the story of Lancelot, and the san would be his affair with Guinevere. Marie de Champagne was well known for her interest in affairs of courtly love, and is believed to have suggested the inclusion of this theme into the story. Courtly love was coined by the medievalist Gaston Paris in to help understand the relationship between Lancelot and Guinevere in Lancelot, The Knight of the Cart.

Denomy describes courtly love as, “… a type of sensual love and what distinguishes it from other forms of sexual love, from mere passion… is its purpose or motive, its formal object, namely, the lover’s progress and growth in natural goodness, merit, and worth.

As the queen, Guinevere maintains power over the kingdom as well as Lancelot. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Dictionary of Medieval Heroes. New York, New York: Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart. Godefroi de Leigni Lancelot. Retrieved from ” https: Views Read Edit View history. This page was last edited on 22 Septemberat By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

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