E 326K // Literature of the Middle Ages in Translation: Mysteries of the Grail


This region of land serves as the setting for a multitude of Arthurian romances. Such examples include Logres serving as the setting and consequence of Gawain’s quest to search for the bleeding lance in hopes of preventing the land's destruction. The name of the land in not mention many times due to the assumption both the narrator and audience come to know the name of land serving as the background of the story. However, certain characters, such as the Haughty Maid of Logres in Chretien's Perceval, claims to hail from the land. Despite the lack of background over the setting, Logres has been known to be the land emblemizing the very ideals of chivalry and romance.

The name “Logres” has been theorized to have come from a myriad of possible origins. One definition claims the name stems from the Old Welsh word “Lloegr”, a name for the area now commonly known as England. Another account comes from Geoffrey of Monmouth, claiming the name “Logres” was in honor of the land’s ruler, King Locrinus. Locrinus, also known as the Legendary King of the Britons, was the eldest of three sons and son to King Brutus of Troy; the first ruler and founder of Britain. Upon his father's death, the land of his former kingdom was divided amongst the three sons and new names were given to each division in name of their new rulers respectively: Albanactus (Scotland in English), Kamber (Wales), and finally Locrinus (Loegria which became Logres and today, England).

The name of Logres had another meaning more aligned with the spiritual and religious nature of the time. Logres was also the name of a solemn oath each knight must swear and abide to at all times. This oath swears each knight to act honorably, behave justly, and protect the helpless. Logres stood as a chivalric code knights must live by and strive to achieve to serve as a prime example of what man should become. The city of Logres, found in the Story of Merlin, served a similar role; mostly serving as the spiritual center of the Arthur’s kingdom. The city was meant to serve as the spiritual counterpart to the physical and primal nature of the country of Britain. The city served as a beacon to those who had faith in God in hope of being bestowed with heaven’s grace and protection. In a sense, Logres served to be a physical manifestation of God’s kingdom in the physical plane.

Despite Logres being described more in detail it no less serves as a crucial setting for many Arthurian legends and tales. Even today the land is still used as a crucial setting in a strategy game based from the legends themselves.

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