Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia

Distant Isles

Far Isles, Foreign Isles, Lontaignes Iles, Lontaignes Illes, Lontaines Iles, Lontains, Remote Isles, Strange Isles

An archipelago near the country of Sorelois, mentioned several times in the Vulgate romances.

GalahadJoseph of Arimathea’s son, married the daughter of their king. Later, in Arthur’s time, they was ruled by Clamadeu, and were conquered by Galehaut, whom conquered thirty kingdoms.

One of Distant Isles was the Giant’s Isle, which held the Castle of Tears and was conquered by Tristan. In the Post-Vulgate Merlin continuation and in Malory, the King of the Distant Isles was one five kings who invaded Britain, and who were slain by Arthur’s men at the battle of the Humber.

The Distant Isles were also the home of a Knight of the Round Table named Balynor (Balinor). Some have attempted to identify the Distant Isles with the Hebrides or the Isles of Scilly.

Some evidence points to a Welsh location for Surluse; Holyhead and Anglesey (which are more roundish than long) have already been assigned to King Pellinore on stronger evidence. Islay, Jura, Kintyre, and Arran, in Scotland, certainly answer the description of “long islands”, and the fact that they are far distant from Wales may be secondary to a conqueror of Galeholt’s caliber.

See also
Five Kings | The Legend of King Arthur

Vulgate Lancelot | 1215-1230
Vulgate Estoire del Saint Graal | 1220-1235
Post-Vulgate Suite du Merlin | 1230-1240
Prose Tristan | 1230-1240