King Ryence's Challenge
As it fell out on a Pentecost day,
King Arthur at Camelot kept his court royall,
With his faire queene dame Guenever the gay,
And many bold barons sitting in hall,
With ladies attired in purple and pall,
And heraults in hewkes, hooting on high,
Cryed, Largesse, Largesse, Chevaliers tres-hardie.
A doughty dwarfe to the uppermost deas
Right pertlye gan pricke, kneeling on knee;
With steven fulle stoute amids all the preas,
Say'd, "Nowe Sir King Arthur, God save thee and see!
Sir Ryence of North-Gales greeteth well thee,
And bids thee thy beard anon to him send,
Or else from thy jaws hewill it off rend.
"For his robe of state is a rich scarlet mantle,
With eleven kings beards bordered about,
And there is room lefte yet in a kantle,
For thine to stande, to make the twelfth out.
This must be done, be thou never so stout;
This must be done, I tell thee no fable,
Maugre the teethe of all thy Round Table."
When this mortal message from his mouthe past,
Great was the noyse bothe in hall and in bower:
The king fum'd; the queene screecht; ladies were aghast;
Princes puff'd; barons blustred; lords began lower;
Knights stormed; squires startled, like steeds in a stower;
Pages and yeomen yell'd out in the hall;
Then in came Sir Kay, the king's seneschal.
"Silence, my soveraignes," quoth this courteous knight,
And in that stound the stowre began still:
Then the dwarfe's dinner full deerely was dight;
Of wine and wassel he had his wille,
And when he had eaten and drunken his fill,
An hundred pieces of fine coynd gold
Were given this dwarf for his message bold.
"But say to Sir Ryence, thou dwarf," quoth the king,
"That for his bold message I do him defye,
And shortlyewith basins and pans will him ring
Out of North-Gales; where he and I
With swords, and not razors, quickly shall trye,
Whether he, or King Arthur, will prove the best barbor:"
And therewith he shook his good sword Escalàbor.
Thomas Percy's Other Poems
Read this poem in other languages
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.
Comments about this poem (King Ryence's Challenge by Thomas Percy )
William Carlos Williams
(17 September 1883 – 4 March 1963)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(August 19, 1902 – May 19, 1971)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
- Christina Georgina Rossetti
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(27 October 1914 – 9 November 1953)
(24 January 1572 - 31 March 1631)
- Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
- The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
- Invictus, William Ernest Henley
- No Man Is An Island, John Donne
- If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
- If, Rudyard Kipling
- I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou
- I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love .., Pablo Neruda
- A Child's Christmas in Wales, Dylan Thomas
- Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night, Dylan Thomas
Poem of the Day
- remplaçable, Lubinda Lubinda
- Human Nature, Merton Lee
- Those Moments Of Weakness لحظات الضعف هذه, MOHAMMAD SKATI
- Money (Cedi), Ghana Green Poetry Foundation
- Off the Rez, Smoky Hoss
- As an emigrant كمهاجر, MOHAMMAD SKATI
- Two Little Boats, Ghana Green Poetry Foundation
- The Golden Swan, Ghana Green Poetry Foundation
- As a passer-bye, MOHAMMAD SKATI
- Love is Blue, Ghana Green Poetry Foundation