**** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE **** **** ROTATE ****

Find this Story

Print, a form you can hold

Wireless download to your Amazon Kindle

Look for a summary or analysis of this Story.

Enjoy this? Share it!


The Legend Of Sir Dinar
by [?]

“For a moment only,” he said, “because I have ridden far to-day.”

But “No” she said, and hung a little more heavily upon his arm, and still the music went on. And now, gating upon her, he was frightened; for it seemed she was growing older under his eyes, with deep lines sinking into her face, and the flesh of her neck and bosom shrivelling up, so that the skin hung loose and gathered in wrinkles. And now he heard the voices of his companions calling about the door, and would have cast off the sorceress and run to them. But when he tried, his arm was welded around her waist, nor could he stay his feet.

The three knights now, seeing the sweat upon his white face and the looks he cast towards them, would have broken in and freed him: but they, too, were by enchantment held there in the doorway. So, with their eyes starting, they must needs stay there and watch; and while they stood the boards became as molten brass under Sir Dinar’s feet, and the hag slowly withered in his embrace; and still the music played, and the other dancers cast him never a look as he whirled round and round again. But at length, with never a stay in the music, his partner’s feet trailed heavily, and, bending forward, she shook her white locks clear of her gaunt eyes, and laughed a third time, bringing her lips close to his. And the poison of death was in her lips as she set them upon his mouth. With that kiss there was a crash. The lights went out, and the music died away in a wail: and the three knights by the door were caught away suddenly and stunned by a great wind.

Awaking, they found themselves lying in the glade where they had come upon the three red pavilions. Their horses were cropping at the turf, beside them, and Sir Dinar’s horse stood in sight, a little way off. But Sir Dinar was already deep in the forest, twirling and spinning among the rotten leaves, and on his arm hung a corrupting corpse. For a whole day they sought him and found him not (for he heard nothing of their shouts), and towards evening mounted and rode forward after the Sancgrael; on which quest they died, all three, each in his turn.

But Sir Dinar remained, and twirled and skipped till the body he held was a skeleton; and still he twirled, till it dropped away piecemeal; and yet again, till it was but a stain of dust on his ragged sleeve. Before this his hair was white and his face wizened with age.

But on a day a knight in white armour came riding through the forest, leaning somewhat heavily on his saddle-bow: and was aware of an old decrepit man that ran towards him, jigging and capering as if for gladness, yet caught him by the stirrup and looked up with rheumy tears in his eyes.

“In God’s name, who art thou?” asked the knight. He, too, was past his youth; but his face shone with a marvellous glory.

“I am young Sir Dinar, that was made a knight of the Round Table but five days before Pentecost. And I know thee. Thou art Sir Galahad, who shouldst win the Sancgrael: therefore by Christ’s power rid me of this enchantment.”

“I have not won it yet,” Sir Galahad answered, sighing. “Yet, poor comrade, I may do something for thee, though I cannot stay thy dancing.”

So he stretched out his hand and touched Sir Dinar: and by his touch Sir Dinar became a withered leaf of the wood. And when mothers and nurses see him dancing before the wind, they tell this story of him to their children.