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Chapter XII The Quest of the Sangreal, and the Adventures of Sir Percival, Sir Bors, and Sir Galahad

After these things, Merlin fell into a dotage of love for a damsel of the Lady of the Lake, and would let her have no rest, but followed her in every place. And ever she encouraged him, and made him welcome till she had learned all his crafts that she desired to know. 
Then upon a time she went with him beyond the sea to the land of Benwicke, and as they went he showed her many wonders, till at length she was afraid, and would fain have been delivered from him.


dotage は「耄碌(もうろく);溺愛」です。



And as they were in the forest of Broceliande, they sat together under an oak-tree, and the damsel prayed to see all that charm whereby men might be shut up yet alive in rocks or trees. But he refused her a long time, fearing to let her know, yet in the end, her prayers and kisses overcame him, and he told her all. Then did she make him great cheer, but anon, as he lay down to sleep, she softly rose, and walked about him waving her hands and muttering the charm, and presently enclosed him fast within the tree whereby he slept. And therefrom nevermore he could by any means come out for all the crafts that he could do. And so she departed and left Merlin.


Broceliande は日本語でもウィキペディア記事がありました。



At the vigil of the next Feast of Pentecost, when all the Knights of the Round Table were met together at Camelot, and had heard mass, and were about to sit down to meat, there rode into the hall a fair lady on horseback, who went straight up to King Arthur where he sat upon his throne, and reverently saluted him.

“God be with thee, fair damsel,” quoth the king; “what desirest thou of me?”







“I pray thee tell me, lord,” she answered, “where Sir Lancelot is.”

“Yonder may ye see him,” said King Arthur.

Then went she to Sir Lancelot and said, “Sir, I salute thee in King Pelles’ name, and require thee to come with me into the forest hereby.”

Then asked he her with whom she dwelt, and what she wished of him.

“I dwell with King Pelles,” said she, “whom Balin erst so sorely wounded when he smote the dolorous stroke. It is he who hath sent me to call thee.”

“I will go with thee gladly,” said Sir Lancelot, and bade his squire straightway saddle his horse and bring his armour.









Then came the queen to him and said, “Sir Lancelot, will ye leave me thus at this high feast?”

“Madam,” replied the damsel, “by dinner-time to-morrow he shall be with you.”

“If I thought not,” said the queen, “he should not go with thee by my goodwill.”

Then Sir Lancelot and the lady rode forth till they came to the forest, and in a valley thereof found an abbey of nuns, whereby a squire stood ready to open the gates. When they had entered, and descended from their horses, a joyful crowd pressed round Sir Lancelot and heartily saluted him, and led him to the abbess’s chamber, and unarmed him. Anon he saw his cousins likewise there, Sir Bors and Sir Lionel, who also made great joy at seeing him, and said, “By what adventure art thou here, for we thought to have seen thee at Camelot to-morrow?”






“A damsel brought me here,” said he, “but as yet I know not for what service.”

As they thus talked twelve nuns came in, who brought with them a youth so passing fair and well made, that in all the world his match could not be found. His name was Galahad, and though he knew him not, nor Lancelot him, Sir Lancelot was his father.

“Sir,” said the nuns, “we bring thee here this child whom we have nourished from his youth, and pray thee to make him a knight, for from no worthier hand can he receive that order.”

Then Sir Lancelot, looking on the youth, saw that he was seemly and demure as a dove, with every feature good and noble, and thought he never had beheld a better fashioned man of his years. “Cometh this desire from himself?” said he.

“Yea,” answered Galahad and all the nuns.

“To-morrow, then, in reverence for the feast, he shall have his wish,” said Sir Lancelot.









And the next day at the hour of prime, he knighted him, and said, “God make of thee as good a man as He hath made thee beautiful.”

Then with Sir Lionel and Sir Bors he returned to the court, and found all gone to the minster to hear service. When they came into the banquet-hall each knight and baron found his name written in some seat in letters of gold, as “here ought to sit Sir Lionel,” “here ought to sit Sir Gawain,”—and so forth. And in the Perilous Seat, at the high centre of the table, a name was also written, whereat they marvelled greatly, for no living man had ever yet dared sit upon that seat, save one, and him a flame leaped forth and drew down under earth, so that he was no more seen.



・大文字の He は God を受けています。



Then came Sir Lancelot and read the letters in that seat, and said, “My counsel is that this inscription be now covered up until the knight be come who shall achieve this great adventure.” So they made a veil of silk and put it over the letters.

In the meanwhile came Sir Gawain to the court and told the king he had a message to him from beyond the sea, from Merlin.

“For,” said he, “as I rode through the forest of Broceliande but five days since, I heard the voice of Merlin speaking to me from the midst of an oak-tree, whereat, in great amazement, I besought him to come forth. But he, with many groans, replied he never more might do so, for that none could free him, save the damsel of the Lake, who had enclosed him there by his own spells which he had taught her. ‘But go,’ said he, ‘to King Arthur, and tell him, that he now prepare his knights and all his Table Round to seek the Sangreal, for the time is come when it shall be achieved.’”

When Sir Gawain had spoken thus, King Arthur sat pensive in spirit, and mused deeply of the Holy Grale an what saintly knight should come who might achieve it.

それでランスロット卿が近づいてその席の文字を読み,こう言った。「私は助言します,この文字は今は覆っておきましょうと。いずれかの騎士が大いなる冒険を成し遂げるまでは」 それで絹の覆いを文字の上に被せた。





Anon he bade them hasten to set on the banquet. “Sir,” said Sir Key, the seneschal, “if ye go now to meat ye will break the ancient custom of your court, for never have ye dined at this high feast till ye have seen some strange adventure.”

“Thou sayest truly,” said the king, “but my mind was full of wonders and musings, till I bethought me not of mine old custom.”

As they stood speaking thus, a squire ran in and cried, “Lord, I bring thee marvellous tidings.”

“What be they?” said King Arthur.

“Lord,” said he, “hereby at the river is a marvellous great stone, which I myself saw swim down hitherwards upon the water, and in it there is set a sword, and ever the stone heaveth and swayeth on the water, but floateth down no further with the stream.”







“I will go and see it,” said the king. So all the knights went with him, and when they came to the river, there surely found they a mighty stone of red marble floating on the water, as the squire had said, and therein stuck a fair and rich sword, on the pommel whereof were precious stones wrought skilfully with gold into these words: “No man shall take me hence but he by whose side I should hang, and he shall be the best knight in the world.”

When the king read this, he turned round to Sir Lancelot, and said, “Fair sir, this sword ought surely to be thine, for thou art the best knight in all the world.”


he shall be... の shall は〈話者の意思を示す shall〉というもので,「私の意志で彼は……になるだろう」「彼を……にしてやろう」という意味です。既に一番の騎士とされているランスロット卿よりも「この剣の力で一番の騎士にしてもらう騎士」というニュアンスで書かれているわけです。だからアーサー王の「ランスロット卿が一番の騎士だから,この剣はランスロット卿の物だ」というのは言葉遣いの上でちょっと違うんですね。


But Lancelot answered soberly, “Certainly, sir, it is not for me; nor will I have the hardihood to set my hand upon it. For he that toucheth it and faileth to achieve it shall one day be wounded by it mortally. But I doubt not, lord, this day will show the greatest marvels that we yet have seen, for now the time is fully come, as Merlin hath forewarned us, when all the prophecies about the Sangreal shall be fulfilled.”

Then stepped Sir Gawain forward and pulled at the sword, but could not move it, and after him Sir Percival, to keep him fellowship in any peril he might suffer. But no other knight durst be so hardy as to try.

“Now may ye go to your dinner,” said Sir Key, “for a marvellous adventure ye have had.”






So all returned from the river, and every knight sat down in his own place, and the high feast and banquet then was sumptuously begun, and all the hall was full of laughter and loud talk and jests, and running to and fro of squires who served their knights, and noise of jollity and mirth.

Then suddenly befell a wondrous thing, for all the doors and windows of the hall shut violently of themselves, and made thick darkness; and presently there came a fair and gentle light from out the Perilous Seat, and filled the palace with its beams. Then a dead silence fell on all the knights, and each man anxiously beheld his neighbour.



of itself「ひとりでに」はやや古い言い方で,現代英語では by itself が普通です。


But King Arthur rose and said, “Lords and fair knights, have ye no fear, but rejoice; we have seen strange things to-day, but stranger yet remain. For now I know we shall to-day see him who may sit in the Siege Perilous, and shall achieve the Sangreal. For as ye all well know, that holy vessel, wherefrom at the Supper of our Lord before His death He drank the wine with His disciples, hath been held ever since the holiest treasure of the world, and wheresoever it hath rested peace and prosperity have rested with it on the land. But since the dolorous stroke which Balin gave King Pelles none have seen it, for Heaven, wroth with that presumptuous blow, hath hid it none know where. Yet somewhere in the world it still may be, and may be it is left to us, and to this noble order of the Table Round, to find and bring it home, and make of this our realm the happiest in the earth. Many great quests and perilous adventures have ye all taken and achieved, but this high quest he only shall attain who hath clean hands and a pure heart, and valour and hardihood beyond all othermen.”


it is left to us ... to find and bring it home は形式主語構文です。最初の it が to find 以下を指し,「それを見つけて故郷に持ち帰ることが我々に委ねられている」です。