Wolfram von Eschenbach

Parzival

In English translation with illustrations courtesy of the Birmingham Museums.

Sir Galahad at the Ruined Chapel

‘Sir Galahad at the Ruined Chapel’
Dante Gabriel Rossetti (English, 1828 – 1882)

Lights before the Grail were borne;
No mean things, but bright as dawn

Wolfram von Eschenbach, 'Parzival - Book V'


Chronology

List of Characters

Book I - Gahmuret and Belacane

Book II - Gahmuret and Herzeloyde

Book III - The Young Parzival

Book IV - Parzival and Condwiramurs

Book V - The Grail Castle

Book VI - Vengeance on Sir Kay

Book VII - Gawain at Bearosche

Book VIII - Gawain at Schanpfanzun

Book IX - Parzival and Trevrizent

Book X - Gawain and Orgeluse

Book XI - Terre Marveile

Book XII - The Garland

Book XIII - King Arthur’s Expedition

Book XIV - Gramoflanz

Book XV - Feirefiz, the Infidel

Book XVI - The Grail King


About This Work

‘Parzival’ is dated, from internal and circumstantial evidence, to the first decade of the 13th century. The work is written in the East Franconian dialect of Middle High German. Its author Wolfram von Eschenbach was a contemporary of Gottfried von Strassburg, creator of the epic ‘Tristan’. Wolfram was Bavarian, and Hermann I of Thuringia appears to have been a major patron. ‘Parzival’ is an extensive development of Chrétien de Troyes’ unfinished ‘Perceval’, the first extant version of the Grail theme, though Wolfram, perhaps mischievously, claims an unknown poet, named Kyot, from Provence, as his source. ‘Parzival’ is a fine and representative work from the richest period of Medieval German poetry which, as well as ‘Tristan’, includes the courtly love-lyrics of the Minnesingers.


Translated by A. S. Kline © Copyright 2020 All Rights Reserved

This work may be freely reproduced, stored, and transmitted, electronically or otherwise, for any non-commercial purpose.

Last Modified 11th April 2020