Study Guide

Bellamour, Claribell, & Melissa in The Faerie Queene

By Edmund Spenser

Bellamour, Claribell, & Melissa

Bellamour and Claribell, the king and queen of Castle Belgard that turn out to be Pastorella's long lost parents, are united by the root word "belle," meaning beautiful. Beauty and happiness seem to generally govern this household, where, after a tumultuous courtship, Bellamour and Claribell live happily ever after.

The discovery of the daughter (also super-pretty) only adds to their happiness. Melissa, the handmaiden to Claribell, is a pivotal figure in recovering Pastorella, since she was the one ordered to abandon Pastorella as a baby and knows about a tell-tale birthmark on her shoulder. Her name comes from the word for both "honey" and "bee" and thus her sweetness nicely connects to the beauty and happiness associated with that castle. Aww. We want to go to there.