Study Guide

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court Chapter 3

By Mark Twain

Chapter 3

Knights of the Table Round

  • The Yankee listens to the knights telling their stories, and realizes that they do not set out to fight injustice, but instead engage in "duels between strangers" who have no real reason to fight. In other words, they're jerks.
  • Sir Kay tells how Sir Launcelot once killed seven giants with one stroke and set 142 maidens free. He's totally lying, though.
  • Kay then tells how Launcelot came upon him fighting nine foreign knights and stepped in to defeat them all. Fancy, right? But Launcelot didn't stop there. Nope—he then put on Kay's armor and beat sixteen more knights, before beating another thirty-four, ultimately sending every single one of them back to Camelot as prisoners. Um… Kay's still lying, guys.
  • The Yankee notes how Guenever keeps giving Launcelot the sexy-sexy look, which would "have got him shot in Arkansas"… whatever that means.
  • Merlin enters the court and Clarence quietly curses him as a bad storyteller.
  • Merlin begins telling a tale concerning Arthur and the knight Sir Pellinore, which soon puts the whole court to sleep.