Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia

Clamadeu’s Mentor

This graying knight of Clamadeu’s advised him that an attack would conquer Beaurepaire, since Clamadeu’s forces were strong and well fed, while Blancheflor’s people were weak with hunger and long siege. Clamadeu’s mentor may have been a sound military strategist, but Percivale and a chance-arriving ship with a full cargo of food defeated his planning.

D.D.R. Owen translates this character as Clamadeu’s major-domo, but while the OED gives “major-domo” as the title of the highest royal official under the Merovingians, its earliest example of the word in English usage is dated 1589; moreover, a comparison of “major-domo” with “seneschal” in the same dictionary shows an overlap of office and functions, and Clamadeu already had a seneschal in Engygeron. Possibly the “major-domo” served as acting seneschal while Engygeron was besieging Beaurepaire for his master – but then, who watched things at home while the “major-domo” accompanied Clamadeu to the siege site?

Ruth Cline simply renders this character as an aging knight who had trained Clamadeu and become his counselor.