Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 1 of 8 from 1860 edition

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4                  THE BOY AND THE MANTLE.
but one further back in a line of tradition which curiosity will never follow to its source. "We shall content ourselves with noticing the most remarkable cases of the use of these and similar talismans in imagi­native literature.
In the Roman de Tristan, a composition of unknown antiquity, the frailty of nearly all the ladies at the court of King Marc is exposed by their essaying a draught from the marvellous horn, (see the English Morte Ar­thur, Southey's ed. i. 297.) In the Roman de Perce­val, the knights, as well as the ladies, undergo this pro­bation. From some one of the chivalrous romances Ariosto adopted the wonderful vessel into his Orlando, (xlii. 102, sq., xliii. 31, sq.,) and upon his narrative La Fontaine founded the tale and the comedy of La Coupe Enchantie. In German, we have two versions of the same story,—one, an episode in the Krone of Heinrich vom Tiirlein, thought to have been borrowed from the Perceval of Chretien de Troyes, (Die Sage vom Zaubcrbecher, in "Wolf, Ueber die Lais, 378,) and another, which we have not seen, in Bruns, Beitrage zur kritischen Bearbeitung alter Handschriften, ii. 139 ; while in English, it is represented by the highly amus­ing " bowrd," which we are about to print, and which we have called The Horn of King Arthur. The forms of the tale of the Mantle are not so numerous. The fabliau already mentioned was reduced to prose in the sixteenth century, and published at Lyons, (in 1577,) as Le Manteau mal tailU, (Legrand's Fabliaux, 3d ed.,i. 126,) and under this title, or that of Le Court Mantel, is very well known. An old fragment (Der Mantel) is given in Haupt and Hoffmann's Altdeutsche Blatter, ii. 217, and the story is also in Bruns Beitrage.