The High History of the Holy Graal

Author: Unknown


"Sir Knight," saith the King, "This sword will I give you, and another thing will I do whereof you shall have joy."

"Sir," saith Messire Gawain, "And I will do your need, if God please and His sweet Mother."

Thereupon he teacheth him the way whereby the Giant went, and the place where he had his repair, and Messire Gawain goeth his way thitherward and commendeth himself to God. The country folk pray for him according to their belief that he may back repair with life and health, for that he goeth in great peril. He hath ridden until that he cometh to a great high mountain that lay round about a land that the Giant had all laid waste, and the enclosure of the mountain went round about for a good three leagues Welsh, and therewithin was the Giant, so great and cruel and horrible that he feared no man in the world, and for a long time had he not been sought out by any knight, for none durst won in that quarter. And the pass of the mountain whereby he went to his hold was so strait that no horse might get through; wherefore behoveth Messire Gawain leave his horse and his shield and spear and to pass beyond the mountain by sheer force, for the way was like a cut between sharp rocks. He is come to level ground and looketh before him and seeth a hold that the Giant had on the top of a rock, and espieth the Giant and the lad where they were sitting on the level ground under a tree. Messire Gawain was armed and had his sword girt on, and goeth his way thitherward. And the Giant seeth him coming and leapeth up and taketh in hand a great axe that was at his side, and cometh toward Messire Gawain all girded for the fight and thinketh to smite him a two-handed stroke right amidst the head. But Messire Gawain swerveth aside and bestirreth him with his sword and dealeth him a blow such that he cut off his arm, axe and all. And the Giant returneth backward when he feeleth himself wounded, and taketh the King’s son by the neck with his other hand and grippeth him so straitly that he strangleth and slayeth him. Then he cometh back to Messire Gawain and falleth upon him and grippeth him sore strait by the flanks, and lifteth him three foot high off the ground and thinketh to carry him to his hold that was within the rock. And as he goeth thither he falleth, Messire Gawain and all, and he lieth undermost. Howbeit, he thinketh to rise, but cannot, for Messire Gawain sendeth him his sword right through his heart and beyond. Afterward, he cut off the head and cometh there where the King’s child lay dead, whereof is he right sorrowful. And he beareth him on his neck, and taketh the Giant’s head in his hand and returneth there where he had left his horse and shield and spear, and mounteth and cometh back and bringeth the King’s son before the King and the head of the Giant hanging.


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Chicago: Unknown, "5," The High History of the Holy Graal, trans. Evans, Sebastian in The High History of the Holy Graal Original Sources, accessed August 7, 2022,

MLA: Unknown. "5." The High History of the Holy Graal, translted by Evans, Sebastian, in The High History of the Holy Graal, Original Sources. 7 Aug. 2022.

Harvard: Unknown, '5' in The High History of the Holy Graal, trans. . cited in , The High History of the Holy Graal. Original Sources, retrieved 7 August 2022, from