Servant of the Greek knight Cliges and a notably skilled craftsman.
John built the special tomb in which Cliges’ love, Empress Fenice, was buried after she faked her own death. The tomb was designed to keep Fenice alive until Cliges could excavate her. John then gave Cliges and Fenice asylum in his tower. John did this on his master's promise to set him, his wife, and their children free forever more; later, apparently while still waiting for Cligés to keep his promise, the serf showed the courage of a knight and the arguing power of a lawyer when facing Emperor Alis, who threatened him with death and torture if he did not reveal where Cligés and Fenice had fled after being discovered.
Following Alis' death, the trustworthy John was in the party that came from Greece to Britain to hail Cligés as the new emperor of Greece and Constantinople. Presumably Cligés rewarded his former serf richly.
Either Chrétien de Troyes intentionally painted John as a most remarkable serf, or else John's case might make us re-examine the supposedly servile role and potential of "underlings" in Arthurian romance.
John of Glastonbury
In the mid-fourteenth century, John Seen, a monk of Glastonbury Abbey, composed his Cronica sive Antiquitates Glastoniensis Ecclesie ('Chronicle or the Antiquities of the Church of Glastonbury'), a comprehensive history of his monastery from earliest times to his own day.
In his chronicle, John included a detailed account of the 1190-91 discovery of King Arthur's body in the abbey cemetery and several Arthurian genealogies. More important, he quoted fragments from the hitherto unknown prophecy of Melkin the Bard, in which the Grail of French romance tradition reappeared in a metamorphosed form as two cruets containing the blood and sweat of Jesus.
John the Baptist
Jahans, Jehan, Jehans Baptistres
The biblical priest who baptized Jesus Christ and was beheaded by Herod. The sword used in this decapitation is identified with the Grail Sword in Perlesvaus.
Prester John | The Legend of King Arthur