Perceval” story refers to a set of behavior that we should all adopt, such as:
– Complete obedience to his mother, as she planted in him all the good qualities that brought him to what he is now.
– Not caring about talking about any work I do, but letting my work speak for me, and then the result will be bigger and stronger.
– We must take care of everything that is right, such as supporting the weak, courage, and honesty, and indeed the results will be good.


The father and two elder brothers of Perceval had fallen in battle or tournaments,

and hence, as the last hope of his family, his mother retired with him to a solitary

region, where he was brought up in total ignorance of arms and chivalry. He was

allowed no weapon but “a little Scots spere,” which was the only thing of all her lord’s

fair gear that his mother carried to the wood with her.

In the use of this, he became so skillful that he could kill with it not only the animals

of the chase for the table but even birds on the wing. At length, however, Perceval was

roused to a desire for military renown by seeing in the forest five knights who were

in complete armor.

He said to his mother, “Mother, what are those yonder?”

“They are angels, my son,” said she.

“By my faith, I will go and become an angel with them.” And Perceval went to the road

and met them.

“Tell me, good lad,” said one of them, “sawest thou a knight pass this way either today or yesterday?”

“I know not,” said he, “what a knight is.”

“Such a one as I am,” said the knight.

“If thou wilt tells me what I ask thee, I will tell thee what thou askest me.”

“Gladly will I do so,” said Sir Owain, for that was the knight’s name.

“What is this?” demanded Perceval, touching the saddle.

“It is a saddle,” said Owain.

Then he asked about all the accouterments which he saw upon the men and

the horses, and about the arms, and what they were for, and how they were used.

And Sir Owain showed him all those things fully. And Perceval, in return, gave him such

information as he had.

Then Perceval returned to his mother and said to her, “Mother, those were not angels, but honorable knights.”

Then his mother swooned away. And Perceval went to the place where they kept

the horses that carried firewood and provisions for the castle, and he took a bony,

piebald horse, which seemed to him the strongest of them. And he pressed a pack into

the form of a saddle, and with twisted twigs, he imitated the trappings which he had

seen upon the horses. When he came again to his mother, the countess had recovered

from her swoon. “My son,” said she, “desirest thou to ride forth?”

“Yes, with thy leave,” said he.

“Go forward, then,” she said, “to the court of Arthur, where there are the best and the noblest and the most bountiful of men, and tell him thou art Perceval, the son of Pelennor, and ask of him to bestow a knighthood on thee. And whenever thou seest a church, repeat there thy paternoster; and if thou see meat and drink, and hast need of them, thou mayest take them. If thou hear an outcry of one in distress, proceed toward it, especially if it be the cry of a woman, and render her what service thou canst. If thou see a fair jewel, win it, for thus shalt thou acquire fame; yet freely give it to
another, for thus thou shalt obtain praise. If thou see a fair woman, pay court to her, for thus thou wilt obtain love.”

After this discourse, Perceval mounted the horse and, taking a number of sharp-pointed

sticks in his hand, he rode forth. And he rode far in the woody wilderness without food

or drink. At last, he came to an opening in the wood where he saw a tent,

and as he thought it might be a church, he said his paternoster to it. And he went

towards it, and the door of the tent was open. And Perceval dismounted and entered

the tent. In the tent, he found a maiden sitting with a golden frontlet on her forehead

and a gold ring on her hand.

And Perceval said, “Maiden, I salute you, for my mother told me whenever I met a lady,
I must respectfully salute her.”
Perceiving in one corner of the tent some food, two flasks full of wine, and some boar’s flesh roasted, he said, “My mother told me, whenever I saw meat and drink, to take it.” And he ate greedily, for he was very hungry.

The maiden said, “Sir, thou hadst best go quickly from here for fear that my friends should come and evil should befall you.

But Perceval said, “My mother told me wheresoever I saw a fair jewel to take it,”
and he took the gold ring from her finger and put it on his own, and he gave the maiden his own ring in exchange for hers; then he mounted his horse and rode away.

Perceval journeyed on till he arrived at Arthur’s court. And it so happened that just

at that time, an uncourteous knight had offered Queen Guenever a gross insult for

when her page was serving the queen with a golden goblet, this knight struck the arm

of the page and dashed the wine in the queen’s face and over her stomacher.

Then he said, “If any have boldness to avenge this insult to Guenever, let him follow me to the meadow.”

So the knight took his horse and rode to the meadow, carrying away the golden goblet.

And all the household hung down their heads, and no one offered to follow the knight

to take vengeance upon him. For it seemed to them that no one would have ventured

on so daring an outrage unless he possessed such powers, through magic or charms,

that none could be able to punish him. Just then, behold, Perceval entered the hall

upon the bony, piebald horse with his uncouth trappings. In the center of the hall stood

Kay the Seneschal.

“Tell me, tall man,” said Perceval, “is that Arthur yonder?”

“What wouldst thou with Arthur?” asked Kay.

“My mother told me to go to Arthur and receive a knighthood from him.”

“By my faith,” said he, “thou art all too meanly equipped with horse and with arms.”

Then all the household began to jeer and laugh at him. But there was a certain damsel

who had been a whole year at Arthur’s court and had never been known to smile.

And the king’s fool had said that this damsel would not smile till she had seen him, who

would be the flower of chivalry. Now, this damsel came up to Perceval and told him,

smiling, that if he lived, he would be one of the bravest and best of knights.

“Truly,” said Kay, “thou art ill taught to remain a year at Arthur’s court, with choice of society, and smile on no one, and now before the face of Arthur and all his knights to call such a man as this the flower of knighthood;”

and he gave her a box on the ear that she fell senseless to the ground. Then said
Kay to Perceval, “Go after the knight who went hence to the meadow, overthrows him and recover the golden goblet, and possesses thyself of his horse and arms, and thou shalt have a knighthood.”

“I will do so, tall man,” said Perceval.

So he turned his horse’s head toward the meadow. And when he came there, the knight

was riding up and down, proud of his strength and valor and noble mien.

“Tell me,” said the knight, “didst thou see anyone coming after me from the court?”

“The tall man that was there,” said Perceval, “told me to come and overthrow thee and to take from thee the goblet and thy horse and armor for myself.”

“Silence!” said the knight; “go back to the court and tell Arthur either to
come himself or to send some other to fight with me; and unless
he does so quickly; I will not wait for him.”

“By my faith,” said Perceval, “choose thou whether it shall be willingly or unwillingly, for I will have the horse and the arms and the goblet.”

Upon this, the knight ran at him furiously and struck him a violent blow with the shaft of his spear between the neck and the shoulder.

“Ha, ha, lad!” said Perceval, “My mother’s servants were not used to play with me in this wise, so thus will I play with thee.”

And he threw at him one of his sharp-pointed sticks, and it struck him in the eye

and came out at the back of his head so that he fell down lifeless.

“Verily,” said Sir Owain, the son of Urien, to Kay, the Seneschal, “thou wast ill-advised to send that madman after the knight, for he must either be overthrown or flee, and either way, it will be a disgrace to Arthur and his warriors; therefore, will I go to see what has befallen him.”

So Sir Owain went to the meadow, and he found Perceval trying in vain to get the dead

knight’s armor off in order to clothe himself with it. Sir Owain unfastened the armor,

helped Perceval to put it on, and taught him how to put his foot in the stirrup and use

the spur; for Perceval had never used stirrup nor spur but rode without a saddle

and urged on his horse with a stick. Then Owain would have had him return

to the court to receive the praise that was his due, but Perceval said,
“I will not come to the court till I have encountered the tall man that is there to revenge the injury he did to the maiden. But take thou the goblet to Queen Guenever, and tell King Arthur that, wherever I am, I will be his vassal and will do him what profit and service I can.”

And Sir Owain went back to the court and related all these things to Arthur

and Guenever and to all the household.

And Perceval rode forward. And he came to a lake on the side of which was a fair

castle, and on the border of the lake, he saw a hoary-headed man sitting upon a velvet

cushion, and his attendants were fishing in the lake. When the hoary-headed man

beheld Perceval approached, he arose and went into the castle.

Perceval rode to the castle, and the door was open, and he entered the hall.

And the hoary-headed man received Perceval courteously and asked him to sit by him

on the cushion. When it was time, the tables were set, and they went to meat.

And when they had finished their meat, the hoary-headed man asked Perceval

if he knew how to fight with the sword.

“I know not,” said Perceval, “but were I to be taught, doubtless, I should.”

And the hoary-headed man said to him, “I am thy uncle, thy mother’s brother; I am called King Pecheur. Thou shalt remain with me a space in order to learn the manners and customs of different countries, and courtesy and noble bearing.
And this do thou remember if thou seest aught to cause thy wonder, ask not the meaning of it; if no one has the courtesy to inform thee, the reproach will not fall upon thee, but upon me, that am thy teacher.”

While Perceval and his uncle discoursed together, Perceval beheld two youths enter

the hall bearing a golden cup and a spear of mighty size, with blood dripping from its

point to the ground. And when all the company saw this, they began to weep

and lament. But for all that, the man did not break off his discourse with Perceval.

And as he did not tell him the meaning of what he saw, he forebore to ask him

concerning it. Now the cup that Perceval saw was the Sangreal, and the spear

the sacred spear; and afterward, King Pecheur removed with those sacred relics into

a far country.

One evening Perceval entered a valley and came to a hermit’s cell, and the hermit

welcomed him gladly, and there he spent the night. And in the morning he arose,

and when he went forth, behold! A shower of snow had fallen in the night, and a hawk

had killed a wild fowl in front of the cell. And the noise of the horse had scared

the hawk away, and a raven alighted on the bird. And Perceval stood and compared

the blackness of the raven and the whiteness of the snow and the redness of the blood

to the hair of the lady that best he loved, which was blacker than a jet, and to her skin,

which was whiter than the snow, and to the two red spots upon her cheeks, which were

redder than the blood upon the snow.

Now Arthur and his household were in search of Perceval, and by chance, they came that way.

“Know ye,” said Arthur, “who is the knight with the long spear that stands by the brook up yonder?”

“Lord,” said one of them, “I will go and learn who he is.”

So the youth came to the place where Perceval was and asked him what he did thus,

and who he was. But Perceval was so intent upon his thought that he gave him

no answer. Then the youth thrust at Perceval with his lance, and Perceval turned upon

him and struck him to the ground. And when the youth returned to the king and told

how rudely he had been treated, Sir Kay said, “I will go myself.”

And when he greeted Perceval and got no answer, he spoke to him rudely and angrily.

And Perceval thrust at him with his lance and cast him down so that he broke his arm

and his shoulder blade. And while he lay thus stunned, his horse returned back

at a wild and prancing pace.

Then said Sir Gawain, surnamed the Golden-Tongued because he was the most courteous knight in Arthur’s court: “It is not fitting that any should disturb an honorable knight from his thought unadvisedly; for either, he is pondering some damage that he has sustained, or he is thinking of the lady whom best he loves. If it seems well to thee, lord, I will go and see if this knight has changed from his thought, and if he has, I will ask him courteously to come and visit thee.”

And Perceval was resting on the shaft of his spear, pondering the same thought,

and Sir Gawain came to him and said: “If I thought it would be as agreeable to thee

as it would be to me, I would converse with thee. I also have a message from Arthur

unto thee, to pray thee to come and visit him. And two men have been before on this errand.”

“That is true,” said Perceval, “and uncourteously they came, and they attacked me, and I was annoyed thereat” Then he told him the thought that occupied his mind, and Gawain said,

“This was not an ungentle thought, and I should marvel if it were pleasant for thee to be drawn from it.”

Then said Perceval, “Tell me, is Sir Kay in Arthur’s court?”

“He is,” said Gawain, “and truly, he is the knight who fought with thee last.”

“Verily,” said Perceval, “I am not sorry to have thus avenged the insult to the smiling maiden.

“Then Perceval told him his name and said, “Who art thou?”

And he replied, “I am Gawain.”

“I am right glad to meet thee,” said Perceval, “for I have everywhere heard of thy prowess and uprightness, and I solicit thy fellowship.”

“Thou shalt have it, by my faith, and grant me think,” said he.

“Gladly will I do so,” answered Perceval.

So they went together to Arthur and saluted him.

“Behold, lord,” said Gawain, “him whom thou hast sought so long.”

“Welcome unto thee, chieftain,” said Arthur.

And hereupon there came the queen and her handmaidens, and Perceval saluted them.

And they rejoiced to see him and bade him welcome. And Arthur did him great honor

and respect, and they returned towards Caerleon.

The End