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Book IV, Canto VI

June 16, 2011

Apologies in advance: this is a canto heavy on description and light on action. Scudamour is riding along after his adventures in the House of Care. He encounters the Saluage Knight, or Arthegall. Arthegall mentions that he was bested by a knight with an invincible spear. Scudamour recognizes the description of Britomart (though he does not know her name or status), and realizes that the same knight has taken away Amoret.

Eventually they find her. She quickly unseats Scudamour, and does the same to Arthegall. Then follows quite a few stanzas of fighting on foot. Eventually Arthegall strikes the visor off her helmet, and in stanza 22 he falls in love with the beautiful face before him – “And of his wonder made religion”. For a marvelous moment she continues to hold her sword, threatening, above the kneeling Arthegall…until of course she falls in love with him too. Scudamour calls his name and she knows that it is the same knight she saw in the magic mirror.

This event brings Arthegall, Britomart, and Glauce the squire great joy, but causes Scudamour to ask questions about Amoret. Britomart informs him that Amoret was lost one day in the desert – she just disappeared.

Arthegall and Britomart get betrothed, then Arthegall has to continue his quest, promising to be back within 3 months. Scudamour and Britomart go in search of the lady Amoret.

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