An Arthurian knight whose story, Garel von dem blühenden Tal, was written by Der Pleier in the thirteenth century.
Present at Arthur’s court when King Ekunaver of Kanadic delivered a declaration of war, Garel accepted a mission from Arthur to scout Kanadic and report on Ekunaver’s forces. Along the way, he was sidetracked by a number of adventures; he saved the castle Merkanie from a malicious attack; he liberated the prisoners of Duke Eskilabon of Belamunt; he slew the giants Purdan and Fidegart; and he saved Queen Laudamie of Averre (Laudame) from the demon Vulganus.
After this last trial, he married Laudamie and became the king of Averre. During each adventure, he gained allies and subjects, all of whom pledged their support in the war against Ekunaver. By the time he reached Kanadic, his army was large enough to defeat Ekunaver before Arthur’s forces even arrived. For this, he was richly rewarded by Arthur. He settled down in Averre with Laudamie and became noble and generous king.
Der Pleier seems to have gained inspiration for Garel from Der Stricker’s Daniel of the Blooming Valley, although Garel’s name first appears in Hartmann’s Erec and Wolfram’s Parzival as a Knight of the Round Table. He may be connected with Greu of the French Livre d’Artus.
Daniel of the Blossoming Valley | The Legend of King Arthur
Erec | Hartmann von Aue, late 12th century
Parzival | Wolfram von Eschenbach, 1200–1210
Garel von dem blühenden Tal | Der Pleier, 1240-1270