Thopas

(Sir). Native of Poperyng in Flanders; a capital sportsman, archer, wrestler, and runner. He resolved to marry no one but an “elf queen,” and set out for fairy-land. On his way he met the three-headed giant Olifaunt, who challenged him to single combat. Sir Thopas got permission to go back for his armour, and promised to meet him next day. Here mine host interrupts the narrative as “intolerable nonsense,” and the “rime” is left unfinished.

An elf queen wo! I have, I wis,
For in this world no woman is
Worthy to be my mate.

Chaucer: Rime of Sir Thopas.

Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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