Here is a fragment of Le Morte d'Arthur by Sir Thomas Malory:

Thenne alle the barons by one assent prayd the Kynge of accord betwixe the lady Igrayne and hym / the kynge gaf hem leue / for fayne wold he haue ben accorded with her

  1. Does accord between the king and lady mean marriage?
  2. What's the meaning of the phrase in bold?
  • the modern meaning is 'agreement'. metaphorically it could mean marriage but... checking the OED we get a similar quote as an example under the primary (and earliest) meaning:

a. With reference to people: agreement, harmony, reconciliation; an instance of this.

1485 Malory's Morte Darthur (Caxton) i. ii. sig. a.ij, Alle the barons by one assent prayd the kynge of accord betwixe the lady Igrayne and hym.

  • I can only attempt a guess at a more modern reading:

...the king gave him leave, for fain would he have been accorded with her.

  • 3
    I belive the "hem" here is not him, but rather them ("alle the barons"). "Hem" is the older English third-person plural pronoun thought to be the ancestor of modern English 'em. – herisson Apr 13 '17 at 23:06
  • @sumelic Thank you for the link to this great source, can't come off it. – olegst Apr 14 '17 at 6:13

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