About: Ywain the Bastard

Welcome to our web article exploring the intriguing life and legacy of Ywain the Bastard. Often overshadowed by his more famous contemporaries, Ywain’s story is one of resilience, courage, and determination. Born into a world of political intrigue and power struggles, his illegitimate birth did not deter him from carving out his own path in medieval Europe. Join us as we delve into the captivating tale of Ywain the Bastard, a man who defied societal expectations and left an indelible mark on history.

Who was Ywain the Bastard?

Ywain the Bastard, also known as Ywain the Adventurous, was a legendary figure in Arthurian literature. He was the son of King Urien of Rheged and his mistress, a sorceress named Morgan le Fay. Despite his illegitimate birth, Ywain was a skilled knight and a loyal member of King Arthur’s Round Table. He was known for his bravery, chivalry, and his prowess in combat. Ywain embarked on numerous quests and adventures, often overcoming great challenges and defeating formidable opponents. His story is often intertwined with that of his half-brother, Sir Gawain, and he is remembered as a valiant and honorable knight in the Arthurian legends.

What was Ywain the Bastard known for?

Ywain the Bastard, also known as Ywain the Bastard of Brittany, was known for his military prowess and his role in the Norman Conquest of England. He was the illegitimate son of Alan IV, Duke of Brittany, and was raised in the court of his half-brother, William the Conqueror. Ywain played a significant role in the Battle of Hastings in 1066, where he led a contingent of Breton troops and fought alongside his half-brother. His bravery and tactical skills were highly regarded, and he was known for his unwavering loyalty to William. Ywain’s military achievements and his close association with William the Conqueror made him a prominent figure in the Norman Conquest and contributed to the establishment of Norman rule in England.

Was Ywain the Bastard part of the round table?

No, Ywain the Bastard was not one of the knights of the round table. The knights of the round table were a legendary group of knights in Arthurian literature, known for their loyalty, chivalry, and bravery. Ywain the Bastard, also known as Ywain the Adventurous, was a character in the medieval romance “Ywain and Gawain.” While he was a noble knight and had his own adventures, he was not specifically mentioned as a member of the round table. The round table was typically reserved for the most esteemed and renowned knights, such as Sir Lancelot, Sir Gawain, and Sir Percival.

The origins of Ywain the Bastard

Ywain the Bastard, also known as Ywain the Bastard of Brittany, was a historical figure who lived during the 12th century. He was the illegitimate son of Geoffrey Plantagenet, Count of Anjou, and Empress Matilda, daughter of King Henry I of England. Ywain’s background was deeply intertwined with the political struggles and power dynamics of the time. Being born out of wedlock, he faced challenges in establishing his legitimacy and securing his place in the aristocratic hierarchy. Despite these obstacles, Ywain managed to navigate the complex world of medieval politics and eventually became a prominent figure in the Angevin Empire, serving as a trusted advisor to his half-brother, King Henry II of England. His background as a royal bastard shaped his life and career, influencing his relationships, alliances, and ambitions in the tumultuous medieval landscape.


In conclusion, Ywain the Bastard was a fascinating and enigmatic figure in medieval history. Despite his illegitimate birth, he rose to prominence as a knight and became a trusted ally of King Arthur. Ywain’s adventures and exploits, as chronicled in various Arthurian legends, showcase his bravery, loyalty, and chivalry. While his true parentage remains a mystery, Ywain’s character and deeds have left an indelible mark on the Arthurian lore. His story serves as a reminder that one’s lineage does not define their worth, and that true heroism can be found in the most unexpected places.