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Knight, quoth Amadis, it is folly to continue the combat bare-headed! Look to thine own head ! was the answer ; but Amadis staggered him with one stroke, then with the side of the sword struck his head as he was reeling, Knight, it had been gone, if I had laid on with the edge! And after this victory he past on.

There within he saw dames and damsels on the wall, and heard them say, if this knight pass the bridge in despite of the three, he will have done a most rare feat of chivalry. Presently there came out three knights, well armed on goodly coursers ; Yield, said they, or swear to perform our lady's will. I am not yet won, quoth Amadis; and for the lady's will, I know not what it may be. With that there began a fierce battle, for the three of the castle were hardy knights, practised in arms, and he whom they encountered was not one that would leave off with shame. Amadis so displayed himself, that his antagonists, no longer able for many wounds and great loss of blood to sustain him, took to flight. The one he overtook and made him yield, the other twain he followed into the hall; there stood at the door thereof about twenty dames and damsels, and the fairest of them all said to him, Hold, sir knight, you have done enough. Lady, let them own themselves vanquished. Wherefore? how have they wronged you l-I was told to slay or conquer them before I could obtain my demand.—They told you if you could penetrate here by force you should obtain it : say then what you would have.-A damsel, whom a knight stole from me while I slept, and has brought hither. I pray you, sir, replied the lady, rest while I send for the knight to answer you.

Then he alighted, and the lady sate down by him, and asked him if he knew a knight called Amadis ?

Why ask you kBecause all the guard you found in this castle was appointed for his sake ; if he entered here, he should never depart till he revoked a promise which he has made.- What might it have been l-I will tell you, if you will promise by arms or otherwise to make him revoke it, for it is an injustice.-Lady, whatever Amadis hath so promised, I will with my utmost power make him discharge. Sir knight, quoth she, this Amadis promised Angriote of Estravaus to procure his lady's liking to him : this was ill done, for love should be of liking, not of force. Certes, lady, you say true, and that promise will I make him release, said Amadis ; no less glad for what had past than the lady, though for another cause. Belike then, you are that lady whom Angriote so loveth 2—The same.Of a truth, I hold him for one of the best knights living, and methinks there is no lady, however honourable, who might not pride herself to have such a servant as he. I do not say this to recal the word which I have given you, but because he is a better knight than he who gave him that promise.

CHAP. XXVIII.-How Amadis fought with the knight who

had stolen away the damsel, and conquered him.
p HILE they were thus devising there came in

another knight, large limbed and strong,

compleatly armed, except his head and hands. Sir knight, quoth he to Amadis, they tell me you claim a damsel whom I brought here : I did not force her from you ; she chose to come.with me, rather than remain with you, therefore it is no reason that I should resign her.-Shew me then the damsel.--It is

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no reason that I should ; if you say otherwise, I am ready to do battle. Now the name of this knight was Gasinan, uncle to Grovenesa, the lady of the castle ; and she, who loved him the best of all his kin, and was altogether governed by his counsel, for he was the best knight of his race, said to him, I pray you, uncle, forbear this difference, for if ill befal either of you it will be to my loss : you are my best friend, and he hath sworn to make Amadis revoke his promise to Angriote. Niece, quoth Gasinan, neither he nor any other can make the best knight in the world revoke his promise; and for this quarrel, so help me God, as I will not give up the damsel! They gave spurs to their horses and met; their spears brake, their shields and breasts encountered, and Gasinan fell : yet he arose quickly, and drawing his sword stood by a strong pillar in the midst of the court, thinking Amadis could little endamage him, while he was on horseback, and as Amadis drew nigh, he struck at the head of his horse ; but he of Gaul, moved to anger thereby, made a blow at him with his sword, which fell upon the pillar, and cut away a fragment thereof, though the stone was very hard, but the sword brake in three pieces. Seeing in what danger he was, he leaped from his horse ; and Gasinan came at him, saying, Confess the damsel to be mine, or thou art but dead! That, quoth Amadis, shall I never do, till she tell me it be with her good will. And with his shield he warily received the blows that fell fast upon him, and at times smote at Gasinan with his broken sword, so that he twisted the helmet on his head, and made him often give back. The battle lasted long, to the great peril of Amadis, for his shield was cut away and his harness laid open in sundry places; he, knowing his

the dame, and Gasinan danger he was, he

danger, ran suddenly upon Gasinan and grappled with him, and dashed him against the pillar, so as for a moment to stun him and make him drop his sword, which Amadis quickly seized, and cut the laces of his helmet, saying, Sir knight, you have handled me hardly and wrongfully, now will I be revenged ! and he lifted his sword as if to slay him. Seeing that, Grovenesa cried aloud, mercy, good knight, and she ran towards him; but he seeing her fear, made the more semblance of anger, saying, He hath so wronged me that I must have his head. For God's sake, quoth she, ask any thing else that he may live! Give me, my damsel, then, said he, and swear that you will go to the first court which King Lisuarte shall hold, and there grant me what I shall ask. Swear it, niece ! cried Gasinan, who had now recovered speech : and suffer me not to be slain ! and upon that Grovenesa made the oath. Lady, then, quoth Amadis, I shall faithfully observe my promise to you : hold you yours, and fear not that I shall ask ought against your honour. Then was the damsel sent for, and she kneeling to Amadis, said, Truly, sir, great pains have you taken for my sake; and Gasinan, though he stole me, must love me well, since he preferred to fight rather than deliver me. As God shall help me, fair damsel, cried Gasinan, if you think so you think rightly : I beseech you stay with me. That will I do, willingly, she answered, if it please this good knight. Amadis replied, Certes, you have chosen one of the best knights in the world ; but if this be not with your free will, speak now, that I may not be blamed hereafter. She answered, I thank you truly that you let me remain. In God's name, quoth he. Then albeit he was greatly intreated to abide there that

night, he would depart to rejoin Galaor; and mounting horse, he bade Gandalin take with him the pieces of his sword. Hearing that, Gasinan besought him to accept his weapon ; which, having thankfully accepted, and a lance also from Grovenesa, he rode away.

spear" pon their villand with haher, and it

CHAP. XXIX.-How Balays atchieved his adventure. TO ALAYS of Carsante followed the knight who

had driven Galaor's horse astray, so fast as

possibly he could. The darkness overtook him, nevertheless he rode on till midnight, when he heard voices by a river side, and shaping his course thither he found five thieves dragging a damsel by the hair, with design to force her, and they were all armed in corslets and with hatchets. Balays crying out upon their villainy, ran at them and broke his spear in the body of one, so that he fell down dead. Then the other four beset him sharply, and slew his horse ; but he lightly clearing himself, cleft one to the neck with a sword stroke, and suffering his sword to hang by the chain, caught at the fellow's hatchet and pursued the others, who fled before him along a narrow path into a quagmire, where they had a great fire, and there they turned upon him, for they could fly no farther. He drove his hatchet through the ribs of one, and with another blow made the fourth fall into the fire; the other one fell upon his knees, Mercy, for God's sake, and do not destroy me body and soul ! Since thou seest thy crime, repent it, and amend thy life ! said Balays; and the thief performed his promise, for from that time he was a good man, and led a good life, and became a hermit.

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