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Mantle of Tegau Eurfron (also known as the Mantle of Fidelity or Mantle of Eurfon or Eurvron)


The Mantle of Tegau Eurfron is one of the Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain. (It was not originally on the list, but was added in later accounts) Only a proper lady could wear it, it would not fit an unchaste woman. It is one of several objects that can determine whether a person is virtuous or lacking redeeming qualities. A variant of the mantle is the subject of the ballad of The Boy and the Mantle.

In the story, a boy came to King Arthur's court with a mantle that could prove the fidelity of any woman who wore it. If a chaste woman donned the mantle it would retain it's shape, but if an unfaithful wife put it on it would change colors, shorten, or tear itself to shreds.

All the ladies of the court tried on the mantle including King Arthur's own wife Guinevere but only Tegau Eurfron, the wife of Caradoc had proven faithful. Initially the mantle began to shrink, until she confessed that she had kissed her husband Caradoc once before they were married, at which point the mantle resumed its natural shape.

Upon seeing this, Guinevere questioned the accuracy of the mantle and the chastity of Caradoc's wife. The young boy rebuked her for her accusation, but to prove that the men were equally lacking in chastity, he produced the skull of a wild boar, proclaiming that an unfaithful man could not carve it with a knife. None of the men who tried could carve the skull, although several knights threw their knives under the table and said they had none. The boy then produced a cup that only a faithful man could drink from without spilling. Again, none of the knights could drink from the cup save Caradoc.

The complete list of Treasures:

Car Morgan Mwynfawr
Cauldron of Dyrnwch
Cebystr Clydno Eiddin
Coat of Padarn
Dyrnwyn
Gren a desgyl Rhygenydd Ysgolhaig
Gwyddbwyll Gwenddoleu ap Ceidio
Hogalen Tudwal Tudclyd
Knife of Llawfrodedd
Mantle of Arthur
Mantle of Tegau Eurfron
Mwys Gwyddno Garanir
Ring of Eluned
The Horn of Bran the Niggard

You might have noticed that there are 14 treasures in the list. The Mantle of Tegau Eurfron and the Ring of Eluned were later added to the list, and the Crock and Dish of Rhygenydd the Cleric were combined into a single treasure which makes fourteen.

Arthurian, England, Ireland, Mythology, Welsh


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