Neither Guinevere nor Ettarre
can eat when balked in desire, whether Guinevere at the feast where Lancelot's love for Elaine is bruited or Ettarre
after her love "veers" to Pelleas at the end and she "pines" away (l.
It is also a parodic reference to the "Tournament of Youth" in the Idyll intended to precede it in the final order, Pelleas and Ettarre.
Where in Pelleas and Ettarre the King had made a favorite of Pelleas, and tenderly protected him, now he must confront and destroy him.
Following Pelleas' rejection of Ettarre
, meanwhile, Ettarre
's "ever-veering fancy" fixes itself perversely upon the man she once scorned and, "desiring him in vain," she, like Elaine, "waste[sj and pine[s]" away (Pelleas and Ettarre
Kaiser concludes by juxtaposing Matthew Arnold's critique of games-mad aristocrats (play as competition) and its cure in the free play of the mind with Tennyson's Idylls of the King, in which homosocial competition in jousts and tourneys leads to civic cohesion while the subversive, imaginary, self-enabling play of desiring women like Vivien or Ettarre
The last line of the preceding idyll is Modred's thought that "The time is hard at hand" (Pelleas and Ettarre
As per convention, Balin and Balan, The Coming of Arthur, Guinevere, Geraint and Enid, Gareth and Lynette, The Holy Grail, Lancelot and Elaine, The Last Tournament, The Marriage of Geraint, Merlin and Vivien, The Passing of Arthur, and Pelleas and Ettarre
are identified by the abbreviations BB, CA, G, GE, GL, HG, LE, LT, MG, MV, PA, PE, respectively.