Le Morte Darthur
Syr Thomas Malory
William Caxton, H. Oskar Sommer

¶ Capitulum xx

SYr knyghte said the kynge leue that quest / and suffre me to haue hit / and I wyll folowe it another xij moneth / A foole said the knyghte vnto Arthur / it is in veyne thy desyre / for it shalle neuer ben encheued but by me / or my next kyn / there with he sterte vnto the kynges hors and mounted in to the sadel / and said gramercy this hors is myn owne / wel said the kynge thow mayst take myn hors by force but and I myȝte preue the whether thow were better on horsbak or I / wel said the knyght seke me here whan thow wolt and here nygh this wel thow shalt fynde me / and soo passyd on his weye / thenne the kyng sat in a study and bad his men fetche his hors as faste as euer they myghte / Ryght soo came by hym Merlyn lyke a child of xiiij yere of age and salewed the kyng / and asked hym why he was so pensyf / I may wel be pensyf sayd the kynge / for I haue sene the merueyllest syȝt that euer I sawe / that knowe I wel said Merlyn as wel as thy self and of all thy thoughtes / but thow art but a foole to take thought / for it wylle not amend the / Also I knowe what thow arte / and who was thy fader / and of whome thow were begoten / kynge Vtherpendragon was thy fader / and begat the on Igrayne / that is fals said kyng Arthur / how sholdest thou knowe it / for thow arte not so old of yeres to knowe my fader / yes sayd Merlyn I knowe it better than ye or ony man lyuynge / I wille not bileue the said Arthur and was wroth with the child / Soo departed Merlyn and came ageyne in the lykenes of an old man of iiij score yere of age / wherof the kynge was ryght glad / for he semed to be ryghte wyse Thenne saide the old man why are ye so sad / I maye wel be heuy said Arthur for many thynges / Also here was a chyld and told me many thynges that me semeth / he shold not knowe / for he was not of age to knowe my fader / yes said the old Page  67 [leaf 34r] man / the child told yow trouthe / and more wold he haue tolde yow and ye wolde haue suffred hym / But ye haue done a thynge late that god is displeasyd with yow / for ye haue layne by your syster / and on her ye haue goten a chyld / that shalle destroye yow and all the knyghtes of your realme What are ye said Arthur that telle me these tydynges / I am Merlyn / and I was he in the childes lykenes / A sayd kyng Arthur ye are a merueillous man / but I merueylle moche / of thy wordes that I mote dye in bataille / Merueylle not said Merlyn / for it is gods wyll youre body to be punysshed for your fowle dedes / but I may wel be sory said Merlyn / for I shalle dye a shameful deth / to be put in the erthe quyck / and ye shall dye a worshipful deth / And as they talked this / cam one with the kynges hors / and so the kyng mounted on his hors and Merlyn on another and so rode vnto Carlyon / & anone the kynge asked Ector and Vlfyus how he was bigoten / & they told hym Vtherpendragon was his fader & quene Igrayn his moder / thenne he sayd to Merlyn I wylle that my moder be sente for that I may speke with her / And yf she saye so her self / thēne wylle I byleue hit / In all hast the quene was sente for / and she cam & broughte with her Morgan le fay her doughter that was as fayre a lady as ony myghte be / & the kynge welcomed Igrayne in the best maner /