And they put Sir Launcelot into the same horse-bier that Queen Guenever was laid in, and the hermit and they altogether went with the body till they came to Joyous Garde. And there they laid his corpse in the body of the quire, and sang and read many psalms and prayers over him. And ever his visage was laid open and naked, that all folks might behold him. And right thus, as they were at their service, there came Sir Hector de Maris, that had seven years sought Sir Launcelot, his brother, through all England, Scotland and Wales. And when Sir Hector heard such sounds in the chapel of Joyous Garde he alighted and came into the quire. And all they knew Sir Hector. Then went Sir Bohort, and told him how there lay Sir Launcelot, his brother, dead. Then Sir Hector threw his shield, his sword, and helm from him. And when he beheld Sir Launcelot’s visage it were hard for any tongue to tell the doleful complaints he made for his brother. “Ah, Sir Launcelot!” he said, “there thou liest. And now I dare to say thou wert never matched of none earthly knight’s hand. And thou wert the courteousest knight that ever bare shield; and thou wert the truest friend to thy lover that ever bestrode horse; and thou wert the truest lover, of a sinful man, that ever loved woman; and thou wert the kindest man that ever struck with sword. And thou wert the goodliest person that ever came among press of knights. And thou wert the meekest man, and the gentlest, that ever ate in hall among ladies. And thou wert the sternest knight to thy mortal foe that ever put spear in the rest.” Then there was weeping and dolor out of measure. Thus they kept Sir Launcelot’s corpse fifteen days, and then they buried it with great devotion.
Then they went back with the hermit to his hermitage. And Sir Bedivere was there ever still hermit to his life’s end. And Sir Bohort, Sir Hector, Sir Blamor, and Sir Bleoberis went into the Holy Land. And these four knights did many battles upon the miscreants, the Turks; and there they died upon a Good Friday, as it pleased God.
Thus endeth this noble and joyous book, entitled “La Morte d’Arthur;” notwithstanding it treateth of the birth, life, and acts of the said King Arthur, and of his noble Knights of the Round Table, their marvellous enquests and adventures, the achieving of the Sangreal, and, in the end, le Morte d’Arthur, with the dolorous death and departing out of this world of them all. Which book was reduced into English by Sir Thomas Mallory, Knight, and divided into twenty-one books, chaptered and imprinted and finished in the Abbey Westmestre, the last day of July, the year of our Lord MCCCCLXXXV.
Caxton me fieri fecit.