Le Morte Darthur
Syr Thomas Malory
William Caxton, H. Oskar Sommer
[leaf 18r]

¶ Capitulum primum

HIt befel in the dayes of Vther pendragon when he was kynge of all Englond / and so regned that there was a myȝty duke in Cornewaill that helde warre ageynst hym long tyme / And the duke was called the duke of Tyntagil / and so by meanes kynge Vther send for this duk / chargyng hym to brynge his wyf with hym / for she was called a fair lady / and a passynge wyse / and her name was called Igrayne / So whan the duke and his wyf were comyn vnto the kynge by the meanes of grete lordes they were accorded bothe / the kynge lyked and loued this lady wel / and he made them grete chere out of mesure / and desyred to haue lyen by her / But she was a passyng good woman / and wold not assente vnto the kynge / And thenne she told the duke her husband and said I suppose that we were sente for that I shold be dishonoured Wherfor husband I counceille yow that we departe from hens sodenly that we maye ryde all nyghte vnto oure owne castell / and in lyke wyse as she saide so they departed / that neyther the kynge nor none of his counceill were ware of their departyng Also soone as kyng Vther knewe of theire departyng soo sodenly / he was wonderly wrothe / Thenne he called to hym his pryuy counceille / and told them of the sodeyne departyng of the duke and his wyf /

¶ Thenne they auysed the kynge to send for the duke and his wyf by a grete charge / And yf he wille not come at your somōs / thenne may ye do your best / thenne haue ye cause to make myghty werre vpon hym / Soo that was done and the messagers hadde their ansuers / And that was thys shortly / that neyther he nor his wyf wold not come at hym / Thenne was the kyng wonderly wroth / And thenne the kyng sente hym playne word ageyne / and badde hym be redy and stuffe hym and garnysshe hym / for within xl dayes he wold fetche hym oute of the byggest castell that he hath /

¶ Whanne the duke hadde thys warnynge / anone he wente and furnysshed and garnysshed two stronge Castels of his of the whiche the one hyght Tyntagil / & the other castel hyȝt Page  36 [leaf 18v] Terrabyl / So his wyf Dame Igrayne he putte in the castell of Tyntagil / And hym self he putte in the castel of Terrabyl the whiche had many yssues and posternes oute / Thenne in alle haste came Vther with a grete hoost / and leyd a syege aboute the castel of Terrabil / And ther he pyght many pauelyons / and there was grete warre made on bothe partyes / and moche peple slayne / Thenne for pure angre and for grete loue of fayr Irayne the kyng Vther felle seke / So came to the kynge Vther Syre Vlfius a noble knyght / and asked the kynge why he was seke / I shall telle the said the kynge / I am seke for angre and for loue of fayre Igrayne that I may not be hool / wel my lord said Syre Vlfius / I shal seke Merlyn / and he shalle do yow remedy that youre herte shalbe pleasyd / So Vlfius departed / and by aduenture he mette Merlyn in a beggars aray / and ther Merlyn asked Vlfius whome he soughte / and he said he had lytyl ado to telle hym / Well saide Merlyn / I knowe whome thou sekest / for thou sekest Merlyn / therfore seke no ferther / for I am he / and yf kynge Vther wille wel rewarde me / and be sworne vnto me to fulfille my desyre that shall be his honour & profite more thā myn for I shalle cause hym to haue alle his desyre / Alle this wyll I vndertake said Vlfius that ther shalle be nothyng resonable / but thow shalt haue thy desyre / well said Merlyn / he shall haue his entente and desyre / And therfore saide Merlyn / ryde on your wey / for I wille not be long behynde