Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia

Meliant of Lis

Meliant of Liz
Melian, Melians, Melianz, Mellianz, Meljanz of Liz, Miljanz

The King of Lis and one of Arthur’s Knights of the Round Table, according to Chrétien de Troyes and Wolfram von Eschenbach.

He was raised by a lord named Tiebaut or Lyppaut, and he fell in love with his foster-father’s daughter, Obie. When Obie rejected his love, Meliant became enraged and declared war on Lyppaut, summoning many knights – including his uncle Bagdemagus and his cousin Meleagant – to his aid. Gawain joined Lyppaut’s defense. Gawain captured Meliant in the battle and made him the prisoner of Obie’s sister Obilot. Oblilot, in turn, gave him to her sister. Meliant and Obie reconciled, and the war was ended. Later, as an ally of Arthur, Meliant was captured in a battle at the castle of Logres.

In Perlevaus, we learn that Meliant’s father, the lord of the Waste Manor, was killed by Lancelot. Here, Meliant is presented as an antagonist to Arthur who harbors hate for all of Arthur’s court. He joined forces with Brien of the Isles and Kay, who were at war with Arthur. Meliant was mortally wounded by Lancelot at the battle of Pennevoiseuse.

The Prose Lancelot credits him with being one of only five men to ever cross the perilous North Wales Bridge into Sorelois. In the Livre d’Artus, he marries Florée, daughter of King Alain of Escavalon.

Meliant of Lis could easily be the origin of any of the other Meliants. A character similar to Wolfram’s Meliant appear in Heinrich von dem Türlin as Fiers of Arramis.

Erec | Chrétien de Troyes, late 12th century
Perceval, or Le Conte del Graal | Chrétien de Troyes, late 12th century
Perlesvaus | Early 13th century
Parzival | Wolfram von Eschenbach, 1200–1210
Lancelot do Lac | 1215-1220
Vulgate Lancelot | 1215-1230