Looking into Prince Lindworm
The story of "Prince Lindworm" or "Kong Lindorm" is ATU 433B, related to the Animal Bridegroom tale family. Many variants of the Animal Bridegroom story feature serpents, but this one is rather unique. And upon researching it, I soon learned that pretty much everything I knew about this story was wrong.
A lindworm is a dragon usually shown with just two legs, often seen on coats of arms. Although the stories are very different, "Prince Lindworm" begins with a scene almost identical to the start of "Tatterhood." In both, a queen who wants a child encounters an old woman who gives her instructions on getting one. Tatterhood's mother pours water beneath her bed, and the next morning finds a lovely flower and an ugly flower there. Lindworm's mother places a cup upside-down in her garden, and the next morning finds a white rose and a red rose underneath.
In both cases, there's a warning. Tatterhood's mother is instructed not to eat the ugly flower, while Lindworm's mother is told to pick only one (red for a boy, white for a girl). But both are overcome by temptation, because the first flower "tasted so sweet" - the same reason in both versions.
This hunger and greed symbolizes sexual temptation. It also hearkens to myths that blamed women for birth defects - like "maternal impression," the idea that the mother's thoughts or surroundings could influence her unborn child.
For Tatterhood, a connection seems clear: Tatterhood's pretty twin is created by the beautiful flower, and the outwardly repellent Tatterhood by the foul-looking plant. The twins are fundamentally opposite, yet love each other deeply. The same motif drives "Biancabella and the Snake," an Italian tale by Giovanni Francesco Straparola, where a woman gives birth to a baby girl with a snake around her neck. The snake, Samaritana, serves as a supernatural helper to her human sister, Biancabella. She eventually doffs her serpent skin and becomes a woman without explanation. (Italo Calvino collected a folktale, "The Snake," with the same story - except that the snake is merely a helpful animal, not an enchanted sibling.)
In the opposite of these tales with diametrically opposed siblings, there are stories where two women eat of the same food and bear identical children. You find this in the Italian "Pome and Peel" and the Russian tale of "Storm-Bogatyr, Ivan the Cow's Son." In "Ivan the Cow's Son," rather than a woman giving birth to an animal, a cow gives birth to a human.
But Prince Lindworm apparently follows a different internal logic. The queen is hoping to have both a son and a daughter when she eats both roses; this makes sense, even though it's incredibly stupid to disobey instructions in a fairytale. In fact, she eats the white rose first, so you would think she would have a daughter first. However, what she gets is a male lindworm and a baby boy - twins, as in "Tatterhood" or "Biancabella," one perfect, the other monstrous.
The lindworm baby escapes and is not seen again until, years later, the second prince prepares to marry. The lindworm returns; as he is firstborn, he says he should get married first. The royal family obtains a bride for him, but the lindworm eats her on their wedding night. Before you know it, we're on Bride #3, and she quickly deduces that this isn't going to end well for her. However, an old woman gives her advice. Bride #3 is savvier than the queen and follows the instructions exactly. On her wedding night she wears ten white shifts and tells the lindworm to shed one skin every time she takes off a layer of clothing. Once he's removed nine skins, there's nothing left of him but a mass of bloody flesh. She beats him with whips dipped in lye, then bathes him in milk, and finally takes him in her arms. When people come to check on them the next morning, they find her sleeping beside a handsome human prince.
Marie-Luise von Franz interpreted the lindworm as a "hermaphrodite": “a masculine being . . . wrapped up in the feminine or the dragon skin. . . . Prince Lindworm is also a man surrounded by the woman, but he is in the form of a lump of bleeding flesh surrounded by a dragon skin, a regressive form of the union of the opposites.” In alchemy, according to von Franz, hermaphrodites are closely connected to dragons and serpents.
This explanation fails for me. The white rose was eaten first. Surely the feminine element should be at the center of the lindworm's being? What makes scales feminine and blood masculine? The biggest stumbling block is the existence of the twin brother. Why wasn't he affected? Going by the opening scene, it seems to me, the lindworm should either be a princess or have an older sister.
Taking a step back: the motif of the enchanted prince removing his animal skin is familiar. In "Hans My Hedgehog," a couple wishes desperately for a child, but their son is born as (wait for it) a hedgehog. He tries several times to take a bride, but the first girl is unwilling and he stabs her with his prickles. The second is willing, and on their wedding night he removes his hedgehog skin to become a handsome man. The same thing happens in the Italian "The Pig King." Both stories are Aarne Thompson type 441, the hog bridegroom. Very often this tale includes a number of false starts to marriage, where the enchanted bridegroom turns horrifyingly violent towards the maidens who reject him.
The removable skin seems more appropriate for serpents, which really do shed their skin, and which in many cultures are symbols of rebirth and transformation. And there is a widespread tale type of snake and serpent husbands, type 433C. Prince Lindworm is unusual in that he must remove multiple skins. His transformation is more involved than these other examples. He must also be whipped and bathed.
The act of bathing suggests baptism, and thus forgiveness of sins and rebirth. (And he needs that forgiveness of sins after all that snacking on maidens.) It's a little more odd that he is bathed in milk. However, there's a widespread tradition of offering milk to snakes. In Hinduism, milk is offered to snake idols, for instance on the feast of Nag Panchmi. So you get Indian folktales like "The Snake Prince," where in order to restore her husband from his serpent form, the heroine must put out bowls of milk and sugar to attract all the snakes and gain an audience with their queen. According to Arthur Evans, a similar tradition of milk offerings for "household snakes" existed in Greece, Dalmatia and Germany. Marija Gimbutas said that this practice persisted in Lithuania up into the 20th century. Snakes actually can't digest dairy products and do not drink milk unless suffering from dehydration.
In the Turkish tale of "The Stepdaughter and the Black Serpent," the heroine serves as a nursemaid for the serpent prince. When he's an infant, she keeps him contained in a box of milk. When he leaves the box, she beats him with rose and holly branches to deter him from hurting her. He eventually wants to take a wife, but kills forty (!) brides one after another. The heroine, chosen as his bride, wears forty hedgehog skins and asks the snake to remove one skin every time she does. After removing forty snake skins, he is left as a human and they burn the snake skins.It's the same tale as Prince Lindworm, except that the order of events is different. There's also no twin brother to complicate things.
"The Stepdaughter and the Black Serpent" was recorded long after Prince Lindworm, but what if it's closer to the original form of the story? I began to wonder if the opening scene and the twin brother were foreign to the essential tale. They certainly do not appear in most variants of the tale type. The Animal Bridegroom, which often begins with the desire for a child, could easily have been combined with similar stories like Tatterhood or Biancabella. The twin brother/missing sister problem would then exist because that element was added later.
Soon after, I learned Prince Lindworm's true origins. Most modern sources call it Norwegian, but it's actually Danish. It was collected in 1854, and the original version is very different.
D. L. Ashliman did an English translation. In the oldest version of "Kong Lindorm," the queen eats both roses, but has only one child - the lindworm. There is no twin brother. Marie-Luise von Franz's premise finally begins to make sense!
The story otherwise proceeds roughly as I knew it, but there is a second half that was completely new to me. Now happily married to the former lindworm, the heroine gives birth to twin boys, but an enemy at court gets her exiled. She uses her own breast milk to disenchant two more cursed men (King Swan and King Crane), before her husband finds out what happened and retrieves her.
"Kong Lindorm" was first published by Svend Grundtvig in Gamle danske Minder i Folkemunde (1854).
A Swedish version, "Prins Lindorm," was published in 1880. This was a very close retelling of the first version, with one important difference: the opening. This time, the queen is given instructions for bearing twins, no mention of whether they will be male or female. She is supposed to carefully peel the two red onions she grows, but she forgets to peel the first one. Storytellers might have added the twin brother because they confused this story with Tatterhood, which - as previously mentioned - has a strikingly similar beginning.
Then a variant appeared in Axel Olrik's Danske Sagn og Æventyr fra Folkemunde (1913). This was almost identical to the first Kong Lindorm, except that it included the twin brother. However, the storyteller did not otherwise alter the opening, so the birth of twins made no sense. The second half was hacked off, perhaps because the writer didn't want to talk about breast milk, and also because that's where the story starts to drag. This short version was translated into English in 1922, in a book titled East of the Sun and West of the Moon: Old Tales from the North. There, it was thrown in alongside Norwegian stories collected by the famous Asbjornsen and Moe, leading to the confusion around its origins.
So there you have it. The version I knew had been simplified and altered.
Ultimately, the story's sense of confusion stems from careless editing and a misunderstanding of the tale's logic. Adding in a second child obscures the idea of the older tale. In fact, the white rose leads to a daughter, a red rose leads to a son, and both roses together make a giant dragon monster. Simple, right?
Okay, I think it's really about 19th-century sexual mores for women. The queen's intemperance leads to a curse which affects her unborn child and generations to come. She hungered for extra roses (read: she was lustful), so her child is neither man nor woman and can't have a normal marriage. Echoing his mother's method of conception by eating, the only way he can engage with a woman is by devouring her. And his wives die because they are not behaving correctly on the wedding night. When Bride #3 follows proper instructions, she redeems her husband and can look forward to a happy and fruitful marriage. Note that she is still wearing one shift by the end of the cursebreaking ritual, indicating modesty and chastity. This is different from the Indian version, where the girl and the serpent shed the same number of skins. There's also an Oedipal note to it; she must bathe him in milk in order for him to be reborn. That original maternal sin has to be corrected. The longer version even doubles down on the milk motif.
You can read a translation of the original version here, and the popular English version here.
Grimm Reading Podcast
Hi guys! Check out this podcast episode on "Thumbling as Journeyman" at https://grimmreading.podbean.com. The series goes through the tales of the Brothers Grimm, and in this episode they mention Writing in Margins.
The Colors of Snow White
In a motif popular across many cultures, a man or woman of exceptional beauty is described as "white as snow and red as blood." Black is often thrown into the mix as well. The stark, exaggerated colors illustrate just how striking is the person's loveliness. (See my previous blog post: Three White Qualities, Three Black, Three Red.)
Of course, snow isn't as common in every place where this motif appears. The colors are often compared to various objects, each of which can have different connotations.
Snow denotes purity and untouched perfection.
Cheese, milk, or cream. This is very common in Italian variants of "The Three Citrons." As a dairy product, it may be a feminine symbol. Milk symbolizes life. It can signify prosperity and plenty as in the phrase "the land of milk and honey."
The moon suggests celestial beauty. The moon can be a feminine symbol. In some stories, the evil stepmother consults with the sun or moon instead of a magic mirror. The stepdaughter's beauty outdoes both the stepmother and the moon.
Other variants use marble, a lily, a swan, an egg, sugar cane, or the inside of an orange peel. Most of these, like the lily, are associated with purity.
Blood symbolizes life, passion and desire, or a coming of age for women. Combining it with something white (usually snow) creates a dichotomy of purity and desire. The typical motif of a woman pricking her finger, bleeding, and giving birth to a child suggests a sexual interpretation.
This dichotomy shows up in the Brothers Grimm's Snow White. Although her name indicates clean, sterile innocence, she repeatedly disobeys the dwarves' warnings and gives into temptation, such as accepting the poisoned apple. The apple, too, is half white and half red, and she "dies" when she bites into the red poisoned half.
According to Christine Goldberg, there are two types of the blood motif. In one category, the hero is a hunter, and the blood on the snow belongs to the prey animal he has killed. This indicates “qualities of aloofness, cruelty and dominance." It implies that he wants a wife to “subjugate.”
In the other, the blood is an accident after the hero cuts themselves. It implies that they desire a lover or child like themselves, someone who's the color of their blood. Does this make them sympathetic, as people in pain? Or does it mean they're arrogant and in love with themselves? (Goldberg 122)
Rose: Many characters have Rose as a part of their name, such as Snow-White-and-Rosy-Red, or Blanca Rosa. Maybe because it just sounds more appealing than Snow-White-Blood-Red. The rose has long been a symbol of beauty and love.
Hans Christian Andersen's story "The Wild Swans" was based on stories like "The Twelve Wild Ducks" with its heroine Snow-White-and-Rosy-Red. In Andersen's version, the heroine is named Eliza, but roses and other flowers (both white and red) symbolize her innate goodness.
Fire: Snow-White-Fire-Red is from an Italian tale reminiscent of Rapunzel. Like blood, fire can symbolize passion.
Pomegranate: In stories from Africa and the Middle East, rather than snow and blood, the colors are compared to the red and white of a pomegranate. In Ancient Greece, the pomegranate had connections to death as in the story of Persephone. However, in other countries, it's a symbol of abundance and fertility. The pomegranate features heavily in the Song of Solomon, used to describe the lover's beauty.
Ravit Raufman and others suggest that a heroine named Pomegranate creates more sensual, fertile images than Snow White. In this school of thought, Snow White's conception comes from icy, sterile snow and the brutality and passion of blood. Pomegranates are much more inviting.
Cristina Mazzoni analyzes the uses of different fruits in "The Three Citrons," a story type which often features the snow-white maiden. In his version, Giambattista Basile uses the sour, yellow, grammatically male citron. The girl trapped inside is red, white and sweet, more like the grammatically feminine pomegranate. When a later folktale scholar, Italo Calvino, published a version of the story, he named it "The Love of the Three Pomegranates" - perhaps to solve that problem.
Strawberries and apples are also possible metaphors. Italo Calvino found variants of "The Three Citrons" where the girls emerged from nuts, watermelons, lemons, and almost every fruit you can think of. Comparing the girl's whiteness to the inside of an orange peel is a way to connect the metaphor more completely to fruit.
Raven: Very frequently, the black color comes from the feathers of a raven, a magpie, or another bird. Not only can the color black symbolize death and mortality, but the raven lives on carrion and in many cultures is associated with bad luck, death, or the battleground. The raven in Snow White stories is often seen dying or dead, with its blood providing the red color.
Ebony: This occurs in the Grimms' Snow White and a few other tales, but the raven is far more common. Ebony is a valuable ornamental wood which can be carved into intricate and refined shapes because of how hard it is. In versions like the Grimms', the presence of ebony displays the wealth of Snow White's family.
Gold is a less frequent addition to the color theme. It denotes royalty and wealth. In a Celtic story, the Snow White character is named Gold-Tree (and is more beautiful than her mother Silver-Tree).
Tangerine: In the Catalan "La Tarongeta," a queen wishes for a child as white as snow and as gold as a tangerine. As in variants of The Three Citrons, citrus fruits indicate social status and tropical paradises.
Stars, the sun: In the Spanish "The Sleeping Prince," the prince is as white as snow and red as blood, but also as golden as sunlight.
In an Irish tale collected in the 1930s, the main character is called "the Bright Star of Ireland."
In a Snow White-type story from Mozambique, the girl bears a star on her forehead, harkening to widespread stories where a gold star on someone's forehead is a sign of royalty.
Yes, really. Stanislao Prato, in Quattro novelline popolari Livornesi (1880) mentions an unpublished story from Sinigaglia of a girl as white as ricotta and red as blood, with green hair. (pg. 59)
If you're interested in the stories mentioned here, check out my database of stories on the Snow White Project.
King Arthur's Daughters
Did King Arthur have any children? Most people would probably think only of Mordred, his traitorous son/nephew. It's part of the essential tragedy of King Arthur: he's the greatest king of all time, yet he has no heir to succeed him. Except that in many versions of the story, he actually does have other children. King Arthur's Children: A Study in Fiction and Tradition, by Tyler R. Tichelaar, is the most in-depth look at this subject. It's well worth a read.
In the oldest Welsh sources, Arthur frequently has a son who dies young. Through the centuries, sons of Arthur popped up in romances now and again. Daughters of King Arthur are a much rarer subject, but not totally unknown.
The medieval legend of St. Ursula recounts how a British princess led eleven thousand virgins on a pilgrimage, only for them all to meet death as martyrs. There have been many retellings - one of them "De Sancta Ursula: De undecim milibus Virginum martirum," usually attributed to a monk named Hermann Joseph writing in 1183.
This version gives a prodigious list of names for Ursula's companions. One, mentioned in a single line, is Nathalia, "[f]ilia etiam Arthuri regis de Britannia" (daughter of Arthur, king of Britain).
There's very little to go on here. It's hard to say whether this is even the King Arthur we're looking for. The author tosses in a multitude of famous names from many different eras. There are royal names like Canute, Pepin and Cleopatra, and saint names like Columbanus, Balbina and Eulalia. Some of them might be traditionally connected to Ursula, but with others, one feels the author was using whatever names he could think of at the moment.
Anyway, a hypothetical historical Arthur would have lived around the late 5th to early 6th century. Ursula's date of death is usually given as 383, way too early.
Whatever her parentage, Nathalia is presumably martyred with the rest of the virgins at the end of the story.
In the Icelandic Thidrekssaga, composed in the first half of the 13th century, the titular Thidrek seeks a bride: Hild, daughter of King Artus of Bertangaland (Brittany). She falls in love with Thidrek's nephew Herburt instead. This is really only a footnote in the story and Hild isn't mentioned afterwards. There are other versions of the story, but this is the only one to connect the Hild character to King Arthur. The incident echoes the story of Tristan and Isolde.
Artus also has two sons in the Thidrekssaga, named Iron and Apollonius. Iron marries a woman named Isolde and has a daughter of his own, also named Isolde, who would be Arthur's granddaughter.
From the 14th century Icelandic Samsoms Saga Fougra (Saga of Samson the Fair). King Arthur of England and his queen, Silvia, have a son named Samson and a daughter named Grega. Unlike her brother, Grega is mentioned only once, when she's named in the introduction.
This is, however, King Arthur in name only. There's nothing to connect it to Arthurian canon except that it includes the Arthurian motif of the magical chastity-testing mantle.
A 14th-century Breton lai. Emaré is the daughter of a great emperor named Artyus and his late wife Erayne. Artyus is "‘the best manne / In the worlde that lyvede thanne," but he's also temporarily stricken with lust for his daughter, like the king in Donkeyskin. The story is peopled with names from Arthurian legend. Artyus is a form of "Arthur." Tristan and Isolde are mentioned as an example of famous lovers, and other characters have names like Kadore and Segramour. Erayne is reminiscent of Elaine or Igraine.
"Emare" is really not an Arthurian story, though. It takes place in France and Rome. Emare marries the king of Galys, which could be Wales but is more likely Galicia in Spain. There is a distinct lack of England.
The names are probably intentional references which set the stage and put readers in mind of Arthurian settings. This was common in many lais. The connections are interesting, but I would consider this the wrong Arthur.
Archfedd, Archvedd, Archwedd
In the Welsh genealogical tract Bonedd y Saint we get this line:
"Efadier a Gwrial plant Llawvrodedd varchoc o Archvedd verch Arthur i mam" (Efadier and Gwrial, children of Llawfrodedd the knight and Archfedd daughter of Arthur, their mother)
This is the only appearance of Archfedd, and it’s unclear if her father is the Arthur. On the other hand, Llawfrodedd is one of Arthur’s warriors in Culhwch and Olwen and The Dream of Rhonabwy. Also apparently he had a really nice cow.
The “Bonedd y Saint” genealogy was compiled in the 12th century and the earliest example survives from the 13th. However, Archfedd is a later addition from manuscripts written from 1565 to 1713. Many of these manuscripts were copied from each other.
The Portuguese novel Memorial das Proezas da Segunda Távola Redonda (Memorial of the Deeds of the Second Round Table), by Jorge Ferreira de Vasconcelos, was first printed in 1567. Here, Sagramor Constantino (a combination of Sir Sagramore and Arthur's canonical successor Constantine) takes the throne after Arthur's death. He marries "infante Seleucia que el rey Artur ouve em Liscanor filha do conde Sevauo sua primeyra molher" - the princess Seleucia who King Arthur [begat?] on Liscanor daughter of Count Sevauo, his first wife. It seems Liscanor died in childbirth.
The author didn't pull those names out of nowhere. In the Vulgate cycle, Lisanor is the daughter of Count Sevain and the mother of Arthur's illegitimate son Loholt. Similarly, in Thomas Malory's Morte d'Arthur, Lionors, daughter of Sanam, is the mother of Arthur's illegitimate son Borre. This would make Seleucia the full sister of Loholt and/or Borre. However, she was born in wedlock and is Arthur's legitimate heir.
Guinevere (or Genebra in this version) is conveniently removed from the scene when she dies in childbirth with Sir Lancelot's twins, Florismarte and Andronia. Many other second-generation knights appear around Sagramor Constantino's resurrected Round Table.
It's rare enough for stories to include Arthur's daughters. Seleucia is particularly rare in that she succeeds Arthur's throne. Sagramor and Seleucia may even have their own child - near the end, they appear accompanied by a Princess Licorida who is eight years old. Unfortunately, I do not know of any English translations.
Baedo (Badda, Baddo, Bado, Bauda, Badona)
Baddo was the wife of the Visigothic Spanish king Reccared. She was present at the Third Council of Toledo, 589. She was not Reccared’s first wife. Their son was Suintila or Swinthila (ca. 588-633). Little else is known about her.
Almost a thousand years later, in 1571, Esteban de Garibay y Zamalloa’s Compendio Historial described her thus: "Badda, dizen, auer sido hija de Arturo Rey de Inglaterra" (Badda, they say, was the daughter of Arthur, King of England).
Other Spanish and Portuguese manuscripts followed suit, many of them quoting Garibay. Differing sources call her father Fontus (Annals of the Queens of Spain).
The link to Arthur may have been drawn because of the similarity of her name to the Battle of Badon, one of the battles historically associated with Arthur. If nothing else, Queen Baedo could have lived in the same century as an Arthur who fought at Badon, if a bit late to be his daughter.
Sir Thomas Urquhart's Pantochronachanon (1652) says Arthur had a daughter named Tortolina, who married a man named Nicharcos and begot a son named Marsidalio born in 540. This work traces Urquhart's family tree back to Adam and Eve and is probably intended as a parody.
Sir Laurence Gardner in Bloodline of the Holy Grail (1996) says with no sources that Tortolina was actually Mordred’s daughter.
The Irish “Mhelóra agus Orlando” has survived in three manuscripts dated between the 17th and 18th centuries (one manuscript is dated 1679).
Melora is Arthur and Guinevere's daughter who falls in love with Orlando, the prince of Thessaly. When he is enchanted by his rival, Melora disguises herself as the Knight of the Blue Surcoat and travels the world to save him. This romance includes strong fairy-tale elements. It might have been influenced by Ariosto's epic Orlando Furioso (which also features a maiden knight) or by another Irish romance, The Tragedy of the Sons of Tuireann (with its globe-trotting quest for magical objects).
Melora is one of the more well-known daughters of Arthur, but still deserves much more attention.
Arthur and Queen Dollalolla's daughter in Henry Fielding's "Tom Thumb" (1730). This satirical play features nonsense names and comically tragic deaths.
The warrior daughter of Arthur with the fairy queen Guendolen, in Sir Walter Scott's The Bridal of Triermain (1813). Merlin casts her into a magic sleep until her true love awakens her centuries later. (Incidentally, Geneth is also a Welsh name meaning "girl.")
In the fairytale Childe Rowland, first published in 1814, King Arthur has four children including Rowland and a daughter named Ellen. I've written about Childe Rowland and its dubious ties to Arthurian canon here. Basically, the collector of the tale heard a version that included Merlin, and added in Arthur, Guinevere and Excalibur himself.
The daughter of Arthur and Ginevra (Guinevere) in “Edgar,” a dramatic poem in five acts by Dr. Adolph Schütt, published in German in 1839.
The play evidently takes place during the time of the Heptarchy, the seven kingdoms of Anglo-Saxon England from the 5th to 10th centuries. Arthur is king of the Silures (an ancient British tribe settled in southeast Wales.) Edgar is an English prince, unjustly banished, who becomes a knight of the Round Table and falls in love with Princess Iduna. Although she returns his affections, her father has promised her to whichever knight accomplishes the mightiest task. Iduna is apparently an only child, as the aged Arthur is anxious for her to marry a man who will make a good king. Edgar marries her by the end of the play, of course.
A rather scathing review (from what I can tell via Google Translate) calls the five acts "building blocks to a temple for the god of boredom."
Apparently, a daughter of Arthur named Poppet appeared in the 1853 pantomime "Harlequin and Tom Thumb; or, Gog and Magog and Mother Goose's Golden Goslings." Like Huncamunca before her, she fell for Tom Thumb.
Saint Tryphine is the subject of a Breton legend with similarities to the story of Bluebeard. Usually, her husband's name is Conomor, and Tryphine and her son Tremeur are venerated as martyrs. In 1863, folklorist François-Marie Luzel collected a mystery play with eight acts, in which Tryphine is merged with Guinevere as the wife of King Arthur. This is not the Bluebeard-style legend. The villain of the story is Tryphine's brother Kervoura, who sets out to remove Arthur’s legitimate heirs so that he can inherit the kingdom. First he kidnaps Tryphine’s newborn son and accuses her of infanticide. Arthur is about to have her executed, but she survives in hiding for six years, until Arthur accepts her innocence and takes her back. She gives birth to his daughter. Kervoura’s still at it, though, and frames Tryphine for adultery. Fortunately, her son has survived and exposes the truth just before she can be executed.
The boy might be named Tremeur, but that name isn’t used. When he returns to the narrative, he is referred to only as “the Malouin,” or inhabitant of Saint Malo, where he was secretly raised.
Arthur and Tryphine’s daughter is mentioned in the sixth act and disappears for the rest of the play. I don’t think she gets a name. Her birth enforces that Arthur is still in need of a male heir, and gives Kervoura a chance to gain Arthur’s confidence moving into the final act.
It ends with the villains punished and the royal family of Arthur, Tryphine and the Malouin reunited. In this scene of family unity, it’s strange that the youngest child isn’t mentioned. One wonders whether she died or whether, since the crown prince has returned, she’s simply not important. There’s also the possibility that the daughter appeared in some productions despite not being mentioned in Luzel's transcript.
In Jean Cocteau's 1937 play, Les Chevaliers de la Table Ronde, Guinevere has a son and daughter named Segramor and Blandine. Arthur believes they are his. Segramor is actually Guinevere's son with Lancelot. Blandine, the fiancee of Gauvain (Gawaine), is evidently Arthur's biological daughter.
When searching for daughters of Arthur, it can be easy to stumble across daughters of the wrong King Arthur. In some of these examples (e.g. Emare or Grega), the authors are simply borrowing names and motifs from Arthurian tradition to craft original stories. On the other hand, there are stories like Melora's or Seleucia's.
There could be other works which give Arthur a daughter, but which haven't come to light yet. That may be because they're too obscure or because they're written in other languages. I hope to see translations of such works in the future. And with modern retellings, daughters of Arthur have made more frequent appearances than ever before.
Researching folktales and fairies, with a focus on common tale types.