The Interlace Structure of the Third Part of the Prose Lancelot

November 2010
308 pages
23.4x15.6 cm
Arthurian Studies
ISBN: 9781843842576
Format: Hardback
Library eBook

The Interlace Structure of the Third Part of the Prose Lancelot

Frank Brandsma

The intricate structure and the many different narrative threads of the Prose Lancelot are here skilfully analysed, showing them to be a major new development in literary technique.
Thematically and as a narrative technique, interlace, the complex weaving together of many different story-telling strands, comes to its full development in the intriguing conclusion of the Prose Lancelot. The Grail appears on the horizon and although Lancelot's love for Guenevere still makes him the best knight in the world, it becomes clear that this very love disqualifies him from the Grail Quest. Meanwhile, the adventures of a myriad Arthurian knights continue to be followed.
This study explains how the interlace works and shows that it is the perfect vehicle for the relation of the events. It discusses the division of the narrative into threads, their interweaving, convergence and divergence, the gradual introduction of the Grail theme and its first climax (the begetting of Galahad), the distribution of information to the audience, the use of dramatic irony and emotions, and many other aspects of this major innovation in story-telling technique.

Dr Frank Brandsma is Senior Lecturer in Comparative Literature (Middle Ages) in the Department of Modern Languages at Utrecht University.

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Table of Contents

Editorial Conventions
Plot summary of the Prose Lancelot and Vulgate Cycle
Interlace: the narrative technique in Lancelot Part 3
Interlace: the themes of Lancelot Part 3
Conclusion: narration [revisited] and the audience
Appendix 1: Survey of Prose Lancelot manuscript according to [1] date and [2] contents
Appendix 2: The interlace of the primary narrative threads in Lancelot Part 3
Appendix 3: Reading time


The book features very clear footnoting throughout and thorough appendices, which when combined with the close textual analysis and staggering detailed content of the whole, forms a valuable addition to scholarship on the Prose Lancelot. MEDIUM AEVUM

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