Profile[edit | edit source]
Background[edit | edit source]
Guinevere was the daughter of King Leodegrance who married Artoria in a political marriage so as to bring about the outward appearance of a "kingdom" in Britain. She had idolized Artoria from the shadows for ten years before their marriage, from the time Artoria drew Caliburn from the stone until she slew Vortigern and became king. Once they were wed, Artoria revealed the truth of her gender to Guinevere. Guinevere accepted the secret so that Britain could have its ruler. No, she had no choice but to accept it. Guinevere was wise. She knew the effort King Arthur spent on quelling the civil war, and at the same time respected King Arthur from the bottom of her heart. Merlin could not fathom the queen's feelings on the night her ten years of pining came to fruition, only to be told the truth. It must be like the moment you are about to obtain something you love, you are told it is fake, and you will never have it.
They held a grand wedding ceremony that lasted close to seven days and was celebrated throughout the land. It was marriage out of necessity rather than love, where the king was not a man and it was one that would never be consummated. It was felt necessary for the ideal king to have a queen beside "him", as a monarch should be according to the ideals of the populace. The first time upon having an audience with Lancelot, the knight decided to do anything for her including give up his life. Trouble by his intentions, she soon found it was because she had fallen in love with him despite love being the greatest taboo for she who "discarded the happiness of a woman" to play the role of queen.
When Sir Tristan declared “The king does not understand the hearts of men.” and left Camelot, Sir Lancelot wished to lessen the burden for his King, a wish that Guinevere also held. They conversed with each other and came to recognize each other as friends and rely on the other. He felt something rare in how she backed up the King from the shadows, in the strength of her spirit. It was then that Sir Lancelot became attracted to her, and feeling that the burden inside her had become too large, Guinevere told him the truth of the king's gender and birth. While it was an "impossible romance", it should have been possible for the two to follow a path where they could have shouldered their sins while continuing on until the end, but it was hard for Lancelot who served the King with absolute loyalty. Torn between serving his king with chivalrous ideals and discarding it to live for love, Guinevere remained a tormented and ignored woman who continually wept each day. Artoria could never blame her because she considered Guinevere to be holding a greater burden than her own. It was a situation where none of them were "wrong" in their actions, and because they were all "right", it brought about a tragedy.
Agravain, who learned of Guinevere and Lancelot's affair, used that fact to threaten Guinevere. Enraged at this, Lancelot slew Agravain and went through several of his former comrades to reach him. Mordred's intervention in order to shatter the prestige of the King in the eyes of the people brought them to light, making the situation spiral out of control. Although Artoria did not blame either of them for their actions, Guinevere was given a death sentence as per the laws of the land, causing Lancelot to go against the king to save her.
While Lancelot fled to France and was pursued by Artoria, Mordred stayed to command in the absence of the King. She prepared her rebellion and even went as far as to mockingly propose to Guinevere, who thought the idea foolish. Mordred surprised her by revealing knowledge of her fake marriage and showing her face to Guinevere. She fell into a deep self-deprecation for having misguided the "perfect knight" and the affair being revealed brought her great sorrow as she silently cried throughout the days. She was ashamed beyond measure, blaming and questioning her own actions. She was assaulted by words like "unchaste wife" and "traitorous queen", holding herself as a sinner shouldering all the guilt and blame in the world. They did not know the truth about her marriage, so they simply surrounded her and reprimanded her all at once. Lancelot later felt that the only thing he had ever done for his love was to "make her cry forevermore."
Lancelot freed Guinvere from her prison, killing Gareth and Gaheris who were her assigned guards. They fled together to Lancelot's domain, and safe haven finally allowed Guinvere to find rest. As she slept her cheeks were stained with tears; not tears for what happened to her, but tears from her apologies to king for the pain her relationship with Lancelot must have wrought. The other knights knew not of how much the Queen had loved and supported the King. She was called a traitor, called unfaithful, but her heart remained one of a fair maiden. As Lancelot watched her sleep, he believed that Guinevere was no doubt apologizing to Artoria even in her dreams.
Appearance[edit | edit source]
Guinevere is described to have a beautiful countenance, although the depression from the affair being revealed caused her to become more ragged each day.
Personality[edit | edit source]
Guinevere's role was to protect the country for the greater good, but to act as the "queen" was to become a mechanical part simply supporting the King. She could not be a "woman" or even a "human", but only the idea of a "noble and virtuous queen" to stand beside the ideal king. Having eventually consigned herself to playing the part, she discarded everything for the grandiose ideal of supporting the ideals the populace had for thing king. She respected and admired Artoria as a person, but she was a "normal woman" at her core and found it too hard to imitate and keep up with Artoria's way of life. From a young age, she was taught to avoid self-reflection, as was the culture of the time, so she was someone who had little sense of herself as a woman. Ignorant that there was even a true difference between the two sexes, she believed the relationship between a king and queen was something formed purely from ideals. Not even understanding that a different type of attraction could exist between two people, her world was changed and cast into turmoil upon meeting Lancelot. She was constantly torn between her conviction as a queen and the feelings in her soul for Lancelot.
Role[edit | edit source]
Fate/hollow ataraxia[edit | edit source]
When speaking of marriages after the topic is first brought up by Taiga Fujimura, Saber recounts her own wedding as reference for Illyasviel von Einzbern and details her relationship with Guinevere. Saber, having married Guinevere for political reasons did not love her, but she did try to bear Guinevere good will in her own manner. She feels she was unable to sufficiently be a husband because she only married Guinevere in the capacity of a king, so they were only able to betray each other in the end. She feels that Guinevere leading a life of misfortune was in part her fault for allowing Guinevere's honor to be soiled. Despite that, Saber recounts the wedding ceremony as one time where she could earnestly wish for Guinevere's happiness, an extremely blissful moment for Saber as a human.
Fate/Zero[edit | edit source]
Guinevere's affair with Lancelot is recounted in his flashbacks, and he is particularly reminiscent of her crying.
References[edit | edit source]
- Fate/hollow ataraxia - 10/10 - Emiya's - What kind of wedding?
 Fate/Zero material - Encyclopedia: Guinevere [Person's name], p.094
Guinevere [Person's name]
The daughter of King Leodegrance. She married Artoria to bring about the outward appearance of a kingdom in Britain. Though she respected and admired Artoria, and tried her best to imitate her way of life, in the end she was simply too much of a "normal woman" to keep up.
I dare say she was a glasses-wearing girl at heart. You know, the stereotypical kind that's actually really hot when she takes them off.
In accordance with the culture of the time, she was taught from a young age to avoid self-reflection, and so had very little sense of herself as a woman, or even that there was a difference between the sexes. She truly thought that the relationship between a king and queen was something formed solely from ideals. She never could have imagined that a different sort of attraction between people could exist at all. But, that all changed when she met Sir Lancelot.
From that day on she was cast into turmoil, torn between the "tsun" of her conviction and the "dere" of her soul, until finally both she and Lancelot were driven into a predicament from which there was no escape. Such was the fate of a tsundere who risked her life in troubled times. Geez, Camelot was hell, huh? Bahahaha!
- Garden of Avalon Chapter 3
- Fate/Zero Volume 4: Act 16 Part 5 - 03:55:51
- Garden of Avalon - Tales of Knights: Lancelot
- Fate/Apocrypha Volume 3 - Chapter 3