Gareth

From Academic Kids

Sir Gareth was a Knight of the Round Table in Arthurian Legend. He was the son of Lot and Morgause, King Arthur's sister thus making him Arthur's nephew and brothers to Gawain, Gaheris, Agravaine, and Mordred. He came to Camelot in disguise as a kitchen boy and was set to work by Kay, who nicknamed him "Beaumains" or "Goodhands", since he would not give his name. He volunteered to go with Lynette to save Lyonesse from the Red Knight of the Red Launds. He was accompanied by the dwarf Melot who knew his true identity.

However, Lynette believes him to be a mere kitchen boy and constantly derides him. On the way he defeats the impressive Sir Perarde, the Black Knight, and takes his armor and horse. He then meets Sir Pertolope, the Green Knight, who mistakes him for his brother, the Black Knight. Lynette tells the Green Knight that he's Beaumains, and not his brother, and begs him to rid her of him. However, Beaumains overcomes the Green Knight, and spares his life in return for the knight's swearing to serve him. He then sets out and in much the same fashion defeats Sir Perymones, the Puce Knight (not to be confused with the one of the Red Launds), and Sir Persaunte, the Indigo Knight, who both also swear to serve him. Lynette finally sees that Beaumains' calm acceptance of her abuse is very knightly, and that he must be a very good knight indeed and no mere kitchen boy.

He finally arrives at Lyonesse's castle, where she is besieged by the Sir Ironside, Red Knight of the Red Launds. He fights him, which takes all day, and finally prevails, although the Red Knight had the strength of seven men. He originally intends to kill him, as the Red Knight slaughtered all the other knights who came to save Lyonesse. However, the Red Knight explains that he was doing so because the lady he loved made him swear to kill Lancelot, and the only way to get his attention was to kill the knights. And so Gareth spares him, making him swear to serve him and also go to Arthur's court and apologize to Lancelot. Afterwards, and despite some difficulties, Gareth marries Lyonesse. Gareth also kills King Datis of Tuscany. Unfortunately, he is later accidentally killed by Lancelot during a rescue of Guinevere.

The legend has been reintepreted by Theodore Goodridge Roberts in the short story "For To Achieve Your Adventure", in which Lynette knows she is sending Gareth into an ambush, and her derision is an attempt to make him give up for his own protection; and in Vera Chapman's novel The King's Damosel, which gives a complete version of Lynette's life.

See also

de:Gareth

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