Origin of the name ASTOLAT.
Etymology of the
Meaning of the baby name ASTOLAT.
A name from Arthurian legend, a legendary city of Great
Britain. Said to be identical with Shalott ("shallot (the onion)")
and Alclut, the name of the rock of Dumbarton.
The names in
the poem are Celtic. "Shalott," says Professor Rhys, of
Oxford, is identical with "Escalot," or "Astolat;"
and the original of this name, he thinks, is probably Alclut,—the
old Welsh name of the rock of Dumbarton, in the Clyde, near Glasgow.*...
* Professor Rhys is an authority, and not to be
questioned. But I had hitherto supposed "Shalott" to be
the same word that we still have in "shallot," or "shalot,"
a kind of onion, from the Latin ascalonia, a shallot, the
feminine of Ascalonius, belonging to Ascalon, a city in
Palestine,—through the Old French eschalote, or eschalotte.
The form eschalote is a variant, or corruption, of the Old French
escalogne, a shallot. The Latin form is not final: back of
it, there is the Greek Ασκάλων.
(Vide Skeat's Etymological Dictionary,
s. v. shallot, shalot.) (Poet Lore, v.4, 1892)
The Lady of
Who is this? and
what is here?
And in the lighted palace near
Died the sound of royal cheer;
And they crossed themselves for fear,
All the knights at Camelot:
But Lancelot mused a little space;
He said, "She has a lovely face;
God in his mercy lend her grace,
The Lady of Shalott."
Shalott: Tennyson apparently softened the name Astolat into this
form. One legend places it in Surrey, another on Dumbarton Rock in
Scotland. (Jones Readers by Grades, Jones, v.8, 1904)
... Now speak we of
the fair maid of Astolat, which made such sorrow day and night, that she
never slept, eat, nor drank; and always she made her complaint unto Sir
Launcelot. So when she had thus endured about ten days, that she
felt that she must needs pass out of this world. Then she shrove her
clean and received her Creator; and ever she complained still upon Sir
Launcelot. Then her ghostly father bade her leave such
thoughts. Then said she, "Why should I leave such thoughts? am
I not an earthly woman? and all the while the breath is in my body I may
complain. For my belief is that I do none offense, though I love an
earthly man; and I take God unto record, I never loved any but Sir
Launcelot du Lake, nor never shall; and a maiden I am, for him and for all
other. And sith it is the sufferance of God that I shall die for the
love of so noble a knight, I beseech the high Father of heaven for to have
mercy upon my soul; and that mine innumerable pains which I suffer may be
allegiance of part of my sins. For our sweet Savior Jesu
Christ," said the maiden, "I take thee to record, I was never
greater offender against thy laws, but that I loved this noble knight, Sir
Launcelot, out of all measure; and of myself, good Lord! I might not
withstand the fervent love, wherefore I have my death."... (The
Warner Library, Cunliffe, v.6, 1917)