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Launcelot, Sir

Launcelot, Sir (lănˈsəlŏtˌ, lŏnˈ–, lônˈ–), in Arthurian legend, bravest and most celebrated knight at the court of King Arthur. He was kidnapped as an infant by the mysterious Lady of the Lake, from whom he received his education and took his title, Launcelot of the Lake. As a young man he went to the court of King Arthur, where he was knighted and became one of the most feared warriors in all Christendom. Launcelot was the lover of Guinevere, his sovereign's queen. He was also loved by Elaine (the daughter of King Pelles), by whom he was the father of Sir Galahad, and by Elaine, the Lily Maid of Astolat, who died for love of him. Launcelot's name sometimes appears as Lancelot.


See study by J. L. Weston (1901, repr. 1972).

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disguises herself as Guinevere in order to seduce Lancelot. [Br. Lit.: Malory Le Mort d’Arthur]


nursing Lancelot, she falls in love with him, but he loves Guinevere; she dies of a broken heart. [Br. Poetry: Tennyson Idylls of the King]
Allusions—Cultural, Literary, Biblical, and Historical: A Thematic Dictionary. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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