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Comment: GOOD- VINTAGE SOFT COVER. OLDER BOOK WITH GENERAL WEAR. COVER HAS PENCIL MARK, WORN SPOT. PAGES FLAT AND CLEAN .BINDING TIGHT. SHIPS FROM WA- USPS. "A Vintage book. #V-271" 1945, PAPERBACK- BEDIER. Adaptations; Arthurian romances; Classics; Fiction; General; Historical; Iseult (Legendary character); Literary Collections; Romance; Romances; Tristan (Legendary character)
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The Romance of Tristan and Iseult Paperback – 1960

4.4 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 190 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage Books (1960)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000TXK1KC
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 4.5 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,558,392 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By K. Jump on August 22, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"The Romance of Tristan & Iseult" is one of the foremost chivalric myths of all time. A rich mosaic of the human experience, embroidered with colorful gothic elements like spell-weaving dwarves, love potions, magical bells and even a particularly monstrous dragon, "Tristan & Iseult" is the tale of a heroic knight from fabled Lyonesse who falls madly in love with his King's betrothed through sorcery. Neither Tristan nor his Queen-to-be can resist the magic that possesses them both, and they cannot help but fling themselves headlong into an affair that shakes the very foundations of the Arthurian world.
More than a mere "love story," this is a philosophical exploration of the human soul. Are Tristan and Iseult really guilty of adultery? Do they have a free will? Do they truly love each other, or is their affair nothing but a sorcerous delusion? Is King Mark the villain of the story, or is this a tale beyond conventional heroism or villainy?
Readers familiar with the Arthurian legend will quickly draw parallels between Tristan and Iseult and Lancelot and Guinevere, whose tragic love brought Camelot to its knees. Indeed, Malory cites Tristan (whom he refers to as "Tristram") as a knight of such prowess and nobility that he is second only to Lancelot himself--and a close second at that.
If you are a dreamer, a hopeless romantic, this is the book you've been looking for.
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Format: Paperback
I would not have read Bedier's translation of "Tristan and Iseult" on my own. Throughout my degree, and my previous highschool education, I've come across "Tristan and Iseult" in four different forms before Bedier's, and was so tired of the tale that I thought no one would breathe life into it again for me.
Not so.
Bedier's translation (which was then translated by Hilaire Belloc and completed by Paul Rosenfeld) has repainted "Tristan and Iseult" into a truly living piece of mythology. Presented with exquisite detail, and with portions of the story even my four previous readings had never uncovered, this is, I believe, how the tale was meant to be told.
The achetypal doomed-romance, "Tristan and Iseult" is the well-known tale of the romance between those two lovers, born of a magical philtre, and doomed in the face of Iseult's marriage to King Mark. The age of chivalry practically shines from the pages, and the heart-wrenching story itself is a joy to read, with only a few bumps and jolts of prose along the way (likely, I imagine, translation difficulties).
If you are at all interested in mythology, especially that of Arthurian theme or times, Bedier's translation of "Tristan and Iseult" is the one for you. You won't be disappointed.
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Format: Paperback
"The Romance of Tristan & Iseult" is the tale of one of the earliest pairs of star-crossed lovers in literature, heavily researched and drawing from many versions of the story. Having come across the tale in many forms, from the opera "Tristan und Isolde" to cameo appearances in "The Mists of Avalon," this telling is refreshing and spirited. The authenticity of language, as well as the narrator's own action and moral interpretations make one feel that they are sitting near a fire in the great hall listening to a seneschal tell the tale of doomed love.
"Tristan & Iseult" is fast-paced and beautiful. It is also an invaluable tale to read as an example of the archetypes and symbols of the tragic hero, imbedded Christ imagery, woman on a pedestal, etc.
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The story of Tristan and Iseult (or Isolde) is well known through Wagner's famous opera, but this is the real tale. It isn't embellished, but instead it tells the complete tale clearly and succinctly in a manner reminiscent of the older manuscripts like Beowulf. The story (unlike the current film) does include the magic potion, a typical device of the older legends. The heart-breaking ending may be clear even in the third or fourth chapter, but getting there is a major trip to treasure. To those familiar with Wagner's names, there are some variant spellings, but they don't amount to much. Kurvenal is Gorvenal for example. A most enjoyable book.
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Format: Paperback
I had to read this for a history class and thought I woult dread it, but it is a very nice love story - way better than Romeo and Juliet, and did reflect the changing view of romantic love in literature of the time. I will be keeping it in my library instead of selling it back to the bookstore - and that says a lot!
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By Maritsa on March 14, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A fairy tale, mideavel romance with a dragon, a giant, love potion, murder, deciet, love, loyalty, honor, etc. This translation is beautiful. It reads like butter.
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Hilaire Belloc, the early 20th century Franco-English man of letters, delivers a delightful and sensitive modern English translation of "The Romance of Tristan and Isolde," the classic Dark Ages tragic romance that is a source for Arthurian legend and a precursor of Romeo and Juliet. This Dover Literature edition is a slender paperback with glossy cover, featuring more substantial or heavier paper quality than the Dover Thrift editions. It is quite readable and pleasant if you are interested in this area of literature. It's also MUCH easier to read than "Beowulf" and "Morte D'Arthur." Belloc, himself a poet, writes in a verse style that is easily digestible. This is the rare early medieval romance that is actually FUN to read rather than a slog.
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