Elaine Sans Per

‘Elaine the Peerless’
Helaine the Peerless, Helayn Withouten Pere, Heleine Sans Pair, Helen, Heliene Sans Per, Helyene Sans Pere, Oisine

Lady of the castle Gazevilte, considered one of the most beautiful women in Arthur’s realm.

She married Persides the Red against both the wishes of both their families.

Persides locked her in Gazevilte in anger when she claimed that she was more beautiful than he was valiant. Persides told her he would let her out when either a more beautiful woman or a more valiant knight happened along – and she stayed in the tower for five years. Elaine’s sister brought Sir Ector (Lancelot’s brother) to the castle, and by defeating Persides, Hector decided the dispute in Elaine’s favor. She was freed from her captivity and they were sent to Guenevere.


Note
Elaine is a French variation of Helen, the name ultimately derives from Greek mythology (e.g., Helen of Troy), and is borne by a number of people in Arthurian romance.


Sources
Lancelot do Lac | 1215-1220
Vulgate Lancelot | 1215-1230