As a naive and innocent young man, Parzival encounters a group of noble knights in the forest. Overcome by the leading knight’s shining armor, he assumes that the man must be a God. This key turning point in Parzival's life inspires him to seek to become a knight himself, and immediately he embarks upon a quest to find King Arthur’s court and ultimately the Holy Grail. Through his journeys Parzival is to learn many unexpected lessons, discovering qualities of empathy, humility, compassion and ultimately true and selfless love.
Filled with spiritual wisdom and artistic beauty, Parzival is one of the greatest works of world literature. In this concise, accessible introduction to the central Gail story, Eileen Hutchins describes the key characters, including Parzival's father Gamuret and mother Herzeleide, and relates the tale in outline. Her classic study also features commentary on the book’s historical background, essays on its significance today, and a comparison with other Grail Romances.
“An excellent introduction.... [Robin Cook] has remained faithful to the original plot, structure... and themes and has attempted to make Eschenbach's work accessible to the modern reader, however, he hopes his version will inspire the reading of Parzival in its original, poetic form. Having read this book, I was indeed inspired to do just that.”
C O N T E N T S:
Note on the Different Translations
The Historical Background
The Poem of Parzival
Parzival as a Forerunner of Modern Man
The Influence of the Stars as Illustrated in the Poem of Parzival
A Companion of Eschenbach’s Parzival with Other Grail Romances
Eileen Hutchins is warmly remembered as a founding teacher of Elmfield (Steiner) School near Stourbridge, England. She taught, wrote, and lectured extensively on various themes from English literature, especially Parzival.