Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia

Esclabor the Unknown

Astlabor, Escalibore, Esclabort, Scalbrino, Scalabrone

A pagan king from Babylon or Galilee who journeyed to Rome as a tribute from his homeland. While in Rome, he saved the life of the emperor. He eventually traveled to Britain, where he also saved the life of King Pellinore.

He entered Arthur’s service and fathered Palamedes, Safir (Safere), Seguarades, nine to eleven other sons (including, possibly, Sir Suziano), and the maiden Florine. He had a brother named Aphasar the Unknown.

Arthur gave him his epithet after he discovered that Esclabor was a heathen (Arthur had assumed that he was Christian). Esclabor was eventually baptized.

All of his sons, except those named above, were slain by the fearsome Questing Beast. He had an enemy called the Count of the Plank, but the Count was killed by Safir. During the Grail Quest, he adventured with Palamedes and Galahad, helping to repel King Mark’s first invasion of Logres. He committed suicide after Palamedes was slain by Gawaine.

Post-Vulgate Queste del Saint Graal | 1230-1240
Palamedes | c. 1240
Prose Tristan | 1230-1240
La Tavola Ritonda | 1325–1350
Le Morte Darthur | Sir Thomas Malory, 1469-1470