Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Chapter 128 [part 1 of 3]

[Christ crucified between two thieves, with the Virgin Mary and John the Evangelist, and Joseph of Arimathea collecting Christ's blood in a grail. From Estoire del Saint Graal, c.  1315-1325. Royal MS 14 E III at The British Library.]

The story says the knight ordered sufficient provisions brought to the shore, and when that had been done, unarmed as he was, he boarded a ship with men to guide them. They set sail for Balan’s island, and as they were traveling through the sea, the knight asked Amadis if he knew King Cildadan. Amadis said he did, that he had often seen him and his great feats of knighthood in the battles that King Lisuarte fought against Amadis, and it could be truthfully said that he was one of the most courageous and best kings in the world.

“Certainly he is,” said the knight from Prince Island, “but against him, fortune has been more adverse than it ever has to anyone else so worthy by placing his realm in vassalage beneath King Lisuarte, because for such a King it is better to rule and be lord than to be a vassal.”

“Now he is freed from that tribute,” Amadis said, “for the great courage of his heart and the valor of his person removed that burden from his great estate, which he bore not at his own fault.”

“How do ye know this, knight?”

“My lord,” he said, “I know it because I saw it.”

Then he told him what King Lisuarte had done to release him, just as this book has recounted. When the knight heard this, he knelt on the deck and said:

“Lord God, praised be Thou forever, for Thou hast freed that King, as his great virtue and nobility deserved.”

Amadis said:

“My lord, do ye know this Balan?”

“Very well,” he said.

“I ask you, if ye please, since there is nothing else we must speak of, to tell me what ye know about him, especially what ought to be known about his character.”

“I shall do so,” the knight said, “and ye might not find anyone else who could tell you so fully. Know that this Balan is the son of the brave Madanfabul, the giant whom Amadis of Gaul killed, when he was called Beltenbros, in the battle King Cildadan fought against King Lisuarte of one hundred knights against one hundred knights, where many other giants and mighty knights in his lineage died. They held many islands in this region of great worth, and with the deep love and affection they had for my lord King Cildadan, they wished to be in his service, and almost all of them were killed in that battle.

“This Balan ye ask me about was a very young man when his father died, and he was left this island which is the most fertile of all with fruit of all types and all the most appreciated and esteemed spices in the world. For this reason there are many merchants and infinite others who come there safely, who provide the giant with great income.

“And I tell you that after he became a knight, he proved to be greater than his father in courage and bravery and in personality and conduct, which is what ye wished to know about. He is very different and the opposite of other giants, who are naturally very arrogant and vain, but he is not. Instead, he is very calm and truthful in everything, so much so that it is amazing that a man who comes from such lineage can be so dissimilar to the character of the others.

“Everyone thinks this comes from the side of his mother, who is the sister of Gromadaza, the brave giantess, wife of the late Famongomadan of the Burning Lake. I do not know if ye have heard about that. Just as she exceeds the beauty of her sister Gromadaza and many other giantesses who in their time were beautiful, she is also very different in all manner of goodness. Her sister was exceedingly brave and impetuous, but she is very gentle and disposed to every virtue and all humility.

“This must be the reason why women who are ugly, with bodies more like men than women, acquire much of the manly arrogance and roughness that men have, owing to their nature, and women who are beautiful and gifted with the proper nature of women are the contrary, conforming to their condition with a delicate voice, soft and smooth flesh, and beautiful faces, which make them peaceful and deflect bravery, as was the giantess who was the wife of Madanfabul and mother of Balan, and this is reflected in her son’s gentleness and repose.

“Her name is Madasima, and because of her, that same name was given to a very beautiful daughter who was left by Famongomadan, who married a knight named Galvanes, a man of high estate, and all who know her say that she is of a very noble nature and very humble with all people.

“Now I wish to tell how I know everything I say and much more about the deeds of these giants. Know that I have been the governor of Prince Island, where ye found me, since the time when King Cildadan was a prince and had lordship over the island without having anything else to his inheritance. And more because of his great courage and good deportment than for his estate, he was called by the entire Kingdom of Ireland to marry the daughter of King Abies, whose realm she inherited when Amadis of Gaul killed the king, and he left me in the post of governor, which I have held since then.

“And as I am here amid those people, and they all have deep affection for my lord the King, I have a great deal of contact with them, and I know that the sons of the giants who died in that battle I told you about are now men, and they have a deep desire to avenge the deaths of their fathers and family if they get the opportunity.”

When Amadis heard these facts, he said:

“My good lord, I am very pleased by what ye have recounted for me. I am only troubled by the good nature of him whom I seek, and I would be more pleased if it were all the opposite and he was very boastful and arrogant, because men like that do not take long in achieving the ire and punishment of God. I do not wish to deny that I am more afraid than I was before. But no matter how it may be, I shall not fail to bring a remedy to this lady, if I can, from the great wrong and injustice she has received for no reason. I would wish to know from you if this Balan is married.”

The knight from the island told him yes. “And with a daughter of a giant named Gandalac, lord of the Peak of Galtares, with whom he has a son some fifteen years old, who if he lives, will inherit that realm.”

When Amadis heard this, he was quite upset and very sorry to have learned about the great love that Balan had for Gandalac and his sons, for Gandalac had been the foster father of his brother Sir Galaor. He considered everything that his brother had to be the same as his own to protect. And he said to the knight:

“Ye have said things that make me more fearful than before.”

He said this for what he had been told about Gandalac. The knight suspected that he held more fears about the battle, but that was not so. Even if he would have to fight against his brother Sir Galaor himself, whom he feared more than the giant, he would do so, for he would not in any way fail to fight to right and restore that lady’s cause or lose his life, because it had always been his custom to help those who rightly asked him for it.

And so speaking of what ye have heard and of many other things, they traveled all that day and night. The next day at the third hour they saw the Island of the Vermilion Tower, which gave them great pleasure, and they sailed on until they were very close. Amadis studied the island, and it seemed exceptionally beautiful, both for its thickly wooded mountains that he could make out in the distance and for the placement of its castle with its beautiful, strong towers, especially the one called Vermilion, which was the largest and made of the rarest stone that could be found in the world.

In some stories it is read that when the island first began to be populated, the man who had the tower and the rest of the great castle built was Joseph, son of Joseph of Arimatha, who had brought the Holy Grail to Great Britain. Because at the time all those lands were pagan, and seeing the location of the island, he populated it with Christians, and he made that great tower where he and all the people took refuge when they saw approaching danger.

But after some time it was ruled by giants until Balan came, and while its population had remained Christian, as they still were, they had lived subjected and oppressed by those lords because most of them were of a pagan sect. But they suffered through it all for the great richness of the land, and if they had any peace, it was only under the time of Balan, both for the good will he had for them and for the love of his father. He was closer to the law of Jesus Christ than any of the others, and even more so farther on, as this story shall recount.

Having arrived, Amadis told the knight from Prince Island:

“My good lord, if ye please, since ye know this Balan, as a courtesy go to him and tell him how the lady, whose son he killed and whose husband and daughter he took prisoner, has brought with her a knight from Firm Island to seek to amend the harm he has done to her, and if he does not give it, to fight him and force him to give her satisfaction. And get a guarantee that this knight shall be safe from harm by everyone except himself, however good or bad things turn out.”

The knight told him:

“I shall be happy to do so, and ye may be sure that the promise he gives will have no exceptions.”

Then the knight with his men boarded a boat and went to the port, and Amadis remained with the lady in some seclusion.

When the knight arrived, he was immediately recognized by the giant’s men and brought before him, who received him with good will, for he had spoken with him a great many times, and he said:

“Governor, what dost thou seek in my lands? Tell me, for thou already knowest that I consider thee a friend.”

The knight told him:

“So I consider thee, and I thank thee deeply, but I have come for a matter that does not involve me, but for an odd thing that I have witnessed. And this is that a knight form Firm Island has come by his own will to fight with thee. I am very amazed that he dares to do such a thing.”

When the giant heard this, he said:

“This knight thou speakest of, does he bring a lady with him?”

“Yes,” the knight said, “absolutely.”

“I understand,” the giant said, “that he would be Amadis of Gaul, he who is lauded with so much praise and fame throughout the world, or one of his brothers, because she left here to bring one of them back, which is why I permitted her to go.”

Then the knight said:

“I do not know who he is, but I tell thee that he is a very handsome knight and very well built for his size, and calm in his reasoning. I do not understand whether simplemindedness or the great courage in his heart has given him such madness. I come to thee to ask for a guarantee for him, so that he shall fear no one except for thee.”

The giant told him:

“Thou knowest well that my word shall never be broken at my will. Bring him with safety, and when thou hast, thou shalt learn from experience which of these two possibilities that thou spoke of are true.”


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Chapter 127 [part 2 of 2]

[How the lady came to seek Amadis, and what he feared most about the giant.] 

[The fortress of Alquézar, Spain.]

“And so my husband and son and the giant were armed, and they mounted their horses in a great plaza between some large stones and the gate to the castle, which is very stout. Then my unfortunate son begged his father so much that against his will he granted him the first joust, in which my son was struck so fiercely by the giant that he and his horse were knocked down so roughly that they both died immediately.

“My husband charged him and struck his shield, but it was like striking a tower. The giant came to him and grabbed him by the arm and, although he has been gifted with sufficient strength for the size of his body and his age, he was pulled from the saddle as if he were a boy. After this was done, the giant ordered my dead son left in the field, and for my husband and me and my daughter, who we were bringing so she could serve your sister Melicia, to be brought to his fortress, and he ordered our company be placed in prison.

“When I saw this, like a woman out of her mind, which I was at that time, I began to shout wildly and say:

“ ‘Oh King Perion of Gaul! If thou wert here, or one of thy sons, how sure I am that by thee or by any of them I would be saved from this great tribulation!’

When the giant heard this, he said:

“ ‘What dost thou know of this King? Is he by chance the father of the one they call Amadis of Gaul?’

“ ‘Yes, he truly is,’ I said, ‘and if any of them were here, thou wouldst not be powerful enough to do me any injustice, for they would protect me as she who has passed and expended all of my days in their service.’

“ ‘Then if thou hast such faith in them,’ he said, ‘I shall allow thee to call whichever of them thou most preferest, and it would please me the most if he were Amadis, who is so esteemed in the world, because he killed my father Madanfabul in the battle between King Cildadan and King Lisuarte when my father took Lisuarte from his saddle and was bearing him beneath his arm to the ships. Amadis, who at the time called himself Beltenebros, chased him, and although he could rightly attack in defense of his lord and those on his side, he saved him without my father seeing him, which should not be considered as great courage or valor, nor a great dishonor to my father. And if thou wishest he, who is so famous and whom thou hast served, to fight for thee, take that boat with a sailor whom I shall give to guide thee, and look for him. And to incite in him more wrath and a greater desire to avenge thee, take thy son the knight armed and dead as he is. And if he loves thee as thou believest, and if he is as courageous as all say, seeing thy great plight, he shall not fail to come.’

“When I heard this, I told him:

“ ‘If I do what thou sayest and bring that fine knight to thine island, how may he be certain that thou hast spoken the truth?’

“ ‘Nor thou nor he should have any fear of this,’ he said, ‘for although there may be in me evil and arrogance, I have kept and shall keep my word for my entire life, and I would rather die than fail to do so. I give my word to thee and to any knight who comes with thee, especially if he is Amadis of Gaul, that there shall be nothing to fear other than my own self at my wishes.”

“So, my lord, because of what the giant told me, and because of my dead son, and my lord husband and my daughter who are prisoners along with all our company, I have dared to come this way, trusting in our Lord and in your good fortune, and that the cruelty of that devil is so against His service that He shall give me vengeance against that traitor with great glory for you.”

When Amadis heard this, he felt great sorrow at the misfortune of this lady, who was dearly loved by his father King Perion and by his mother the Queen and by all others, and held as one of the best ladies in the world of her lineage. And he considered the confrontation grave, not only for the danger of the battle, which was great given Balan’s fame, but also for going to his island and being among people where he would have to act according to their wishes.

But he put the matter entirely in the hand of the Lord who had authority over all things, and had great pity for that lady and her husband. She never ceased to weep, and he, putting aside all fear, with great courage consoled her and told her that soon her loss would be repaired and avenged, if God were willing and he were able to do so.

They traveled for two days and a night, and on the third day to their left they saw a small island with a castle that seemed very tall. Amadis asked the sailor if he knew whose it was. He said he did, it belonged to King Cildadan, and it was called Prince Island.

“Guide us there,” Amadis said, “so we may take on board some food, for we do not know what might happen.”

So he turned the boat and soon they reached the island. When they were at the foot of a craggy hill, they saw a knight descending it, and when he arrived, he greeted them and they greeted him. The knight from the island asked them who they were. Amadis told him:

“I am a knight from Firm Island and, if it is the will of God, I am coming to put right an injustice and wrong done to this lady that she suffered at an island farther on.”

“What island was this?” the knight said.

“The Island of the Vermilion Tower,” Amadis said.

“And who did this injustice?” the knight said.

“Balan the giant, who they say is the lord of that island,” Amadis said.

“Then what remedy can ye give alone?”

“To fight with him,” Amadis said, “and break the arrogance with which he has treated this lady and many others who did not deserve it.”

The knight began to laugh as from disdain, and said:

“My lord knight from Firm Island, do not place in your heart this great folly, by your own free will, of searching for he from whom all the world flees. Even if the lord of that island, who is Amadis of Gaul, and his two brothers, Sir Galaor and Sir Florestan, who are the flower and height of all the knights in today’s world, were to come all three to fight Balan, this would be considered great madness by all who know him. For that reason, I advise you to leave this quest, for I would have to mourn your injury and harm because I am a knight and friend to those whom my lord King Cildadan loves and esteems, and I have been told that he and King Lisuarte are now at peace with Amadis of Gaul. I do not know how, but I know for certain that they now share great love and concord. And if ye continue on what ye have begun, it is nothing else than to go knowingly to death.”

Amadis told him:

“Death and life are in the hands of God, and those who wish to be praised above all others must place themselves in the attempt to do dangerous things that others do not dare to try. I say this not believing I am thus, but because I wish to be thus. And for that reason I ask you, my lord knight, not to cause me more fear than I already hold, which is not little, and if ye please, as a courtesy help me with some supplies that could be of service to us if some difficulty overcame us.”

“I shall do that gladly,” the knight from the island said, “and I shall do more. To see such an amazing thing, I wish to keep you company until your fate, good or ill, comes to pass with that brave giant.”


Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Chapter 127 [part 1 of 2]

How Amadis departed with the lady who came by the sea to avenge the killing of the dead knight she brought in her boat, and what happened on that quest. 

[Drawing of King Arthur as he finds a giant roasting a pig from the Roman de Brut by Wace (Edgerton 3028), second quarter of the 14th century, made in England. From the British Library.]

As ye have heard, Amadis remained at Firm Island with his lady Oriana enjoying the greatest delights and pleasure that any knight ever had, from which he had no wish to leave even to become the lord of the world. If his lady had been absent, the troubles and pain and anxieties of his impassioned heart would have tormented him without comparison, and he would have found no renewal or rest anywhere; yet everything was the utter opposite being in her presence and seeing her great beauty, which had no equal. That made him forget all his past troubles and had no thought except for the good fortune he found himself in.

But since among the perishable things of this world, nothing can be found that ends well, since God did not wish to make it so, and when we think we have reached the goal of our desires, at that point we are immediately tormented by others of greater size or better fate. So soon, Amadis looked within himself, and while he was aware that what he possessed was beyond comparison, he began to remember his earlier times when his honor and esteem had been achieved by feats at arms, and he thought that if he spent much time in his present situation, his fame would begin to fade and shrink. So he was placed in great worry, not knowing what to do with himself.

He sometimes spoke to Oriana with great humility, asking her urgently to give him permission to leave and go to places where he believed his aid would be needed, but she, finding herself on that island far from her father and mother and all the people of her native land, having no other consolation or company besides him for her solitude, never wished to grant it. Instead, always with many tears, she begged him to give his body some rest from the labors of the past, and she also reminded him that his friends had left at great danger to themselves and their men to gain realms to increase their honor, and were they to suffer some reversal, if he were there, he could help them much better than if he were somewhere else. With this and other many loving things she tried to detain him.

But as ye have been told many times in this great story, ever since the knight’s spirit had been lit by that great fire of desire on the first day when he began to love her, he had a great fear of somehow angering her or failing to follow her command regardless of the good or ill that would come to him. So with little pressure, although his desire had reached anguish, he was detained.

Determined to fulfill his lady’s command, he agreed with Grasandor that until some news came about the fleet, they would ride out through the mountains and go hunting for exercise, and preparations were quickly made. They left with their beaters and dogs from the island, and rode to where, as this book has told you, there were hills and riverbanks with more bear, boar, deer, waterfowl, and many other animals than could be found anywhere else. They hunted often, and at night returned to the island with great pleasure for themselves and for the ladies, and so they lived that life for some length of time.

Then it happened one day that as Amadis was among the beaters on the skirts of the mountain near the seashore waiting for a boar or wild beast, holding the leash of a very handsome dog that he especially liked, he looked at the sea and saw a boat coming in the distance toward him. And when it was closer, he saw in it a lady and a man who was rowing, and because it seemed odd, he left the line of beater without being seen and rode downhill with his dog, passing through some thick brush.

He reached the shore, where he found that the lady and the man with her had landed and were dragging from the boat a fully armed dead knight, whom they laid on the ground, covered by his shield.

When he reached them, Amadis said:

“Lady, who is this knight, and who killed him?”

She turned to look, and although he was dressed as knights usually do to go hunting, and he was alone, she immediately recognized him as Amadis, and she began to tear her veils and clothing in great mourning and said:

“Oh my lord Amadis of Gaul! Help this sad and ill-fated lady for what ye owe to chivalry, because these hands of mine took you from your mother’s womb and made the ark in which ye were placed in the sea, saving your life when ye were born. Help me, my lord, for ye were born to save and rescue those with tribulations and bitter persecutions such as those that have come over me!”

Amadis felt great sorrow for the lady, and when he heard her words, he looked at her more carefully and immediately recognized her as Darioleta, who was with his mother the Queen when he was engendered and born, and so his pain for her grew. He came to her and took her hands from her hair, which was mostly white, asked her to tell him why she was weeping and tearing her hair so hard, and said he would not fail to immediately place his life in danger of death to repair her great loss.

When she heard this, she knelt before him and wished to kiss his hands, but he would not give them, and she told him:

“Then, my lord, without going elsewhere and finding some delay, come with me right away in  this boat, and I shall guide you to where ye may remedy my troubles, and on the way I shall tell you my misfortune.”

Amadis, seeing her with such anguish and passion, believed the lady had indeed suffered a great injury. And because he had no armor and only his fine sword, knowing that if he sent for his arms, Oriana would stop him from going with the lady, he decided to arm himself with the armor of the dead knight. He ordered the man to disarm the dead knight and help him put on that armor, and so it was done. With the lady and the man who was rowing, he immediately entered the boat. As he was about to cast off from the shore, by chance a beater from his company came chasing a wounded deer that had hidden there where the brush was very thick.

When Amadis saw him, he called to him and said:

“Tell Grasandor that I am leaving with this lady who landed here, and I ask for his forgiveness. Her great loss and haste mean that I cannot see him and speak to him. I ask him to have this knight interred and to win the forgiveness of my lady Oriana because I am making this trip without her permission. She must believe that I could not have failed to do so without great shame.”

That having been said, the boat left the shore as fast as it could be rowed, and they traveled all that day and night the same way that the lady had come. In the meantime Amadis asked her to tell him about her urgency and injury that needed such help. Weeping bitterly, she told him:

“My lord, ye know that when your mother the Queen left Gaul to go to your island to attend the weddings of yourself and your brothers, she sent a messenger to my husband and me at Little Brittany, where at her command we were governing, and in her letter she ordered us to follow her to Firm Island because it would not be right if those celebrations happened without us. She did this because of her great nobility and her great love for us rather than for anything we deserved.

“At this command, I and my husband and my unfortunate son, whom we left there dead and whose armor ye wear, immediately set sail with a fine company of servants in a very large ship. We sailed with good weather, which to our ill fortune changed to bad weather that pushed us far off course, and after two months and many dangers that overcame us because of that storm, one night a high wind took us to the island of the Vermilion Tower, where a giant named Balan is the lord, the bravest and strongest of all the giants of any island.

“We came to port, not knowing where we were traveling, and we took shelter, but we were soon surrounded by people from the island in boats, and we were all taken prisoner and held until the next day when they took us to the giant. When he saw us, he asked if there was a knight among us. My husband said yes, that he was, and that the man next to him, his son, was also a knight.

“ ‘Then,” the knight said, “ye must follow the custom of this island.’

“ ‘And what is the custom?’ my husband asked.

“ ‘Ye must fight me one by one,’ the giant said, ‘and if either of you can defend yourself for an hour, ye and all your company are all free, and if ye are defeated within that hour, ye are my prisoners, but ye shall have some hope for your safety if as good men ye had put all your strength to the test. But if by chance your cowardice is so great that ye do not place yourselves in battle, ye shall be put into a cruel prison where ye shall suffer great anguish as payment for having taken the order of knighthood and fearing loss of life more than loss of honor or those things for which ye took your oath. Now that I have told you everything rightly about the customs maintained here, decide what ye would prefer.’

“My husband told him:

“ ‘We wish to fight, for in vain we would bear arms if out of fear of some danger we would fail to do with them what they were made for. But what security have we that if we are victorious, the custom ye have spoken of shall be followed?’

“ ‘There is none other than my promise,’ the giant said, ‘for come good or ill, it will not be broken willingly by me. I would rather have my body be broken, and I have had my son whom I have here and all my servants and vassals swear to uphold it.’

“ ‘In the name of God,’ my husband said, ‘have my arms and horse be brought to me and to my son, and prepare yourself for battle.’

“ ‘This shall be done at once,’ the giant said.


Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Chapter 126 [part 2 of 2]

[How the Kings and knights left Firm Island, and what they planned to do.] 

[A series of photos depict the Moon rising over Sesimbra Castle, south of Lisbon, Portugal. Photo by Miguel Claro.]

The lords and ladies returned to island for the games and great merriment in honor of the weddings. When they were finally over, the Emperor asked Amadis for permission to leave, if he were pleased, because the Emperor wished to return to his lands with his wife and reform that great realm, which after God Amadis had given him. He asked for Sir Florestan, King of Sardinia, to come with him, and said he would immediately deliver all the realm of Calabria, as Amadis had ordered, and the rest he would divide with him as a true brother. This he did, and after Arquisil, Emperor of Rome, arrived in his grand empire, he was received with great love by all, and he was always accompanied by that courageous and valiant knight Sir Florestan, King of Sardinia and Prince of Calabria, by whom both he and all the empire was benefitted and honored, as we shall recount farther on.

When the Emperor had bid farewell to Amadis, offering him his person and realm at his wishes and command, he took his wife, whom he loved more than he loved himself, and the very noble and courageous knight Sir Florestan, whom he considered to be just like a brother, and the very beautiful Queen Sardamira. He also brought the bodies of the Emperor Patin and the very courageous knight Floyan, which were in the monastery at Lubaina at the orders of King Lisuarte, and of Prince Salustanquidio, which at the time when Amadis and his companions brought Oriana to Firm Island, he had ordered to be very honorably placed in a chapel so that it could receive the sepulture in his lands appropriate to his grandeur.

He ordered the great fleet that the Emperor Patin had left at the port of Windsor to come there, and he and all the Romans who had been prisoners at Firm Island returned to his empire.

All the other Kings and lords prepared to go to their lands, but before they left they decided to plan how the knights who were going to win the realms of Sansuena, the Kingdom of Arabigo, and Deep Island might proceed with precautions so that they could achieve their goals without any obstacles.

Amadis spoke with King Lisuarte, saying that he thought that given the time the King had been away from his lands, he might be feeling anxious, and if he were, Amadis hoped he would not delay his return. The King said that in fact he had been relaxing with great pleasure, but now it was time to do as Amadis said, but if for what was being planned he needed Lisuarte’s knights, he would gladly give them. Amadis thanked him deeply and said that since the lords of those lands were being held prisoner, no more provisions would be needed than the men that his lord King Perion was leaving behind, and if by chance Lisuarte’s were necessary, he would accept them, for all had to serve Lisuarte as a lord, and those lands were being won for him.

The King said that if that was how things seemed to him, he would immediately arrange to leave, but first he wished to call together all those lords and ladies in the great hall because he wanted to speak to them. When they were all together, King Lisuarte said to King Cildadan:

“Your great loyalty, which has delivered me in the recent past from many dangers and fears, has tormented and afflicted me because I did not know how I might offer satisfaction. A reward equal to your great merit would be hopeless to search for because it could not be found. Considering what was in my hand and possible, I saw that just as your noble person had been placed at my service in many battles, in that same way mine with everything in its realm shall with complete willfulness be place to fulfill whatever may be to your honor, and so from here onward ye shall no longer be in vassalage to my service, which your contrary fortune had subjected you to by force. From here on any service shall be done at your pleasure as between two good brothers.”

King Cildadan said:

“Whether this deserves thanks or not I leave to be judged by those who by some compulsion were caused to follow another’s will rather than their own, which is always accompanied by anxiety and sighs. And ye may believe, my lord, that the volition which until now ye received by force and with no friendship, shall from here on be given with love and many more men and obedience and attention to whatever is most agreeable to you. Let the time come that can demonstrate this by deeds.”

All the great lords thought King Lisuarte had acted with great virtue, and many praised him, above all Sir Cuadragante, who had always thought the vassalage was a enormous and sorrowful misfortune for that kingdom, where he was had been born, which in other times had been very honored and empowered over all others, for he now saw it freed from such heavy and dishonorable servitude.

King Lisuarte asked King Cildadan what he wished to do, because Lisuarte was arranging to return to his lands. He answered that if it pleased King Lisuarte, he would remain there to help plan how his uncle Sir Cuadragante could win the kingdom of Sansuena and, if necessary, go with him. The King told him that he had spoken wisely and he was pleased for him to do so, and if any of his men would be necessary, he would immediately send them. King Cildadan thanked him sincerely and said that he believed what they had would suffice, since Barsinan was their prisoner.

With that King Lisuarte and his company left, and Amadis and Oriana went with him, although he did not wish them to, for almost a full day’s journey, then they returned to plan what ye have heard about, which they did in this way: since the kingdom of King Arabigo shared a border with Sansuena, Sir Cuadragante and Sir Bruneo would go together and immediately try to win whatever part was weakest, and the rest would be easier to conquer.

Sir Galaor said he wished to go, and his cousin Dragonis would go with him, since he would soon be able to bear arms, and that he, with all the rest of what he would have in his kingdom, could be used to help him win Deep Island. Sir Galvanes said he also wished to make the same journey, and he would get good men for it from the island of Mongaza. With that agreement Sir Galaor left with his wife, the very beautiful Queen Briolanja, and Dragonis went with them, and Sir Galvanes and Madasima went to his land to prepare for the journey as fast as they could.

Although Amadis had urged Agrajes to stay with him at Firm Island, he did not wish to do so. Instead, he said he would go with Sir Bruneo and with the men from his father the King, and would not leave Sir Bruneo until he was a king and at peace. Sir Brian of Monjaste and all the other knights there said the same and left with Sir Cuadragante, especially the good and courageous Angriote d’Estravaus, who no matter what Amadis said would not go to his own lands and rest, or be dissuaded from going with Sir Bruneo of Bonamar.

All these knights left with new arms and brave hearts, taking the men from Spain, Scotland, and Ireland, and from the Marquis of Troque, who was Sir Bruneo’s father, and from Firm Island and the King of Bohemia, and many other companies that had come from other lands. They boarded a great fleet and they all urged Grasandor to remain with Amadis to keep him company, which he did much against his wishes, for he would rather have made that journey.

But he was not there in vain, nor was Amadis, for they often left to accomplish great feats at arms, righting many wrongs and injuries done to ladies and damsels and others who could not defend themselves by their own hands and abilities, and who sought them ought, as this story shall recount farther on.

King Cildadan, who deeply loved Sir Cuadragante, tried as hard as he could to be allowed to go with him, but Sir Cuadragante would not consent to it at all. Instead, he asked him out of love to return immediately to his kingdom to bring happiness and consolation to his wife the Queen and all his subjects with the good news he brought and could fully recount: that by fulfilling his duty he had lost his freedom, and by fulfilling the promise and vow to his honor and obligation, he had won it back.

Gastiles, nephew of the Emperor of Constantinople, had send all his men with the Marquis of Saluder, and remained to see the results of the effort so he could tell his lord the Emperor everything about it. When he saw what was being done, he spoke with Amadis and told him that he was very sorry not to have men prepared to help those knights in their journey, but if Amadis considered it good, he would go personally and with some of the men who had remained behind.

Amadis told him:

“My lord, what has been done should be enough, and because of your uncle and yourself I have been given all the honor that ye see. May God be pleased in His mercy to have a time come when I can serve him. And ye, my lord, should leave immediately and kiss his hands for me, and tell him that everything that has just been won here has been won by him, and it shall always be at his service or whomever he may send. I also commend you to kiss the hands of the very beautiful Leonorina and Queen Menoresa for me, and tell her that I shall fulfill everything I promised and shall send them a knight of my lineage who will be able to serve her very well.”

“I fully believe that,” Gastiles said, “because there are so many in your lineage that there are enough to serve all the world.”

With that he said farewell and boarded his ship, and for now nothing more shall be told until the proper time.

When everything ye have heard of was arranged and prepared, the great fleet left the port and went out to sea with all those knights and the courage that their great hearts would give them in perilous encounters. Amadis remained at Firm Island with Grasandor, as has been said; Mabilia, Melicia, Olinda, and Grasinda remained with Oriana, praying for God to help their husbands. King Perion and his wife Queen Elisena returned to Gaul. Esplandian and the King of Dacia and the other youths remained with Amadis waiting for their time to become knights and for Urganda the Unrecognized to arrange it, as she had said and promised.

But now this story shall cease to speak of those knights who went to win their kingdoms, and shall recount what happened Amadis a little later.