November 12, 2009

Tristan und Isolde--From the Wagner Opera

Our baby boy officially has a name! Tristan Scott Ellis! Tyler agreed to it last night. Tristan has been my favorite name for a boy since before Tyler put the stipulation in that boys are named T. Scott Ellis.

Here is some background on the name Tristan.

Tristan & Isolde
The most well-known story of Tristan, is Tristan and Isolde. It is a Celtic love story about star-crossed lovers, often thought to be one of Shakespeare's influences for Romeo and Juliet as well as an influence for the story of Lancelot and Guinevere. In my favorite version of the story, from the poem by Algernon Charles Swineburne (also the inspiration for the 2006 movie, Tristan & Isolde), Tristan is adopted by Lord Marke after his family is murdered in an Irish raid. Tristan grows to become a brave knight. He leads a raid against the the Irish to free slaves and is stabbed with a poisoned sword. He is believed to be dead and sent off in a funeral boat that washes up in Ireland. He is found by Isolde, Princess of Ireland, and secretly nursed back to health, though she says she is Bragnae, a hand maiden in the court. They fall in Love, but Tristan leaves Ireland when his boat is found.

King Donnchadh, Isolde's father, decides he will hold a tournement with Isolde being the prize. He intends to disavow her and wage war with the British tribes, already in a shakey peace forged only to keep the Irish at bay. Lord Marke, having lost a hand in the battle that saved Tristan's life as a child, sends the newly returned Tristan in his place to win the Irish princess and peace for Britain. Tristan wins and Isolde removes her veil to reval herself to him, only to lear she was won for Lord Marke. Tristan refuses to tell Marke the truth because the marriage means peace for Britain. Eventually, Tristan and Isolde begin an affair. Isolde's father uses this as the reason to wage war, with the help of a few British traitors. Lord Marke, sends Tristan and Isolde off together once he learns the true story of Tristan's "death". Tristan sneaks back to help with the battle against the Irish and, ultimately, sacrifices himself to help defeat them. Isolde, as the legend goes, disappeared into the forest, never to be seen again.

Sigh. What a love story!

Sir Tristan
Tristan appears in the Arthurian legend, as well. He was a Knight of the Round Table who searched for the Holy Grail. His skills as a warrior were only matched by Lancelot.

Meanings
There seem to be LOTS of meanings for this name. Everything from "tumult" to "noisy" to "bold" to "sad". Another meaning I found was "Arthurian hero." I like "bold, " so that's the one I'm going with.

I'm so happy he finally has a name! It makes him seem more real.

1 comment:

Wammy said...

I'm not sure...I'll have to ask Emmy when she comes home from work, but I think that is exactly the name she picked out. I love it. And by the sounds of the meaning fo the name...he will rank right up there with his second cousin Bryce is "Meanness". I love him already. Tell him his Great Aunt Jan can't wait to get her hands on him.