Tristan (Celtic Legends) Descended from many different traditions and literary cultures, the doomed-love story of Tristan and Isolde that resonates most strongly with us is from the Celtic legend, transcribed by Thomas of Britain in the 11th century and thereafter woven into the commonly known medieval romance that appears in Sir Thomas Malory’s Arthurian tales. Tristan is a young nobleman and the nephew of King Mark of Cornwall, who sends him to Ireland to escort the beautiful Isolde back to him, Mark, to be taken in marriage. Due to the (somewhat) accidental ingestion of one of those omnipresent medieval love potions, Tristan and Isolde unwittingly, i.e., innocently, fall in love. Although Isolde marries King Mark, she and Tristan continue their unsanctified affair, until discovered by Mark. While he keeps Isolde as his wife, he banishes Tristan from the country. Tristan subsequently marries another, but after falling gravely ill, he sends for Isolde and asks her to come to him. He tells her that if the returning ship’s sails are white, he will know she is coming; if black, he knows she is not. His wife, in her own understandable distress, sees the white sails approaching and tells Tristan that they are black. Tristan dies of grief and Isolde, upon her arrival and knowledge of this fact, dies of a broken heart herself. A classic tale of love, honor and duty, this legend has stayed with us for centuries, kept alive not only by the famous Arthurian legends, but also by poetry, fiction, and opera.
Tristan - a song by Dead Can Dance
Tristan - a song by Patrick Wolf
Tristan und Isolde - an opera by Richard Wagner
Captain Tristan Am I (Michael Sharp) - Captain Tristan has hoisted his pirate flag and come to free the world's children from the vile clutches of the Greebly Greeb Grommels. Recommended for ages 9-12.
Tristan & Isolde: The Warrior and the Princess: A British Legend (Jeff Limke) - From an ancient legend comes a love story for all time. Strong and brave, Tristan is the nephew of King Mark of Cornwall and one of his finest English knights. Mark sends Tristan to Ireland to bring home the king's bride, the princess Isolde. While in Ireland, Tristan slays a dragon and wins Isolde's hand for his uncle. But through a twist of fate, Tristan and Isolde fall in love on the voyage back to Cornwall. Will Tristan and Isolde each do their duty as a loyal knight and a promised bride? Or will they follow their hearts and risk many dangers to be together? Recommended for ages 9-12.
Tristan's Bedtime Story (Caroline Formby) - Grandma's bedtime story helps Tristan go to sleep and teaches us about the origins of life on earth and evolution. Recommended for ages 3-7.
Tristan's Temper Tantrum (Caroline Formby) - Awakening from a thousand year slumber, baby Tristan finds that nobody wants to play with a bad-tempered volcano. Recommended for ages 3-7.
Famous People Named Tristan - Tristan Wilds (actor); Tristan Murail (French composer)
Famous People who Named their Son Tristan - Alan Bates (actor); Janet Jones (actress); Natasha Henstridge (model/actress); Wayne Gretzky (hockey player)
Tristan - We cannot find any historically significant people with the first name Tristan.