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Pyrocles: A Villain in The Faerie Queene

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Pyrocles is a hot-headed knight who shows up in book 2 of The Faerie Queen by Edmund Spenser.

He is constantly looking for a fight, seeking out violence, and it gets him into trouble.

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First, he fights her Guyon and loses, then he fights Furor and loses again. This time he is beset with an enchantment that makes him feel like he is entirely on fire (not surprising since his name literally means “troubled with fire”).

He represents the theme of having too much desire for action, a clear extreme in book 2, where the theme is temperance. He is a contrast to his brother, Cymochles, who is the exact opposite.

Both Pyrocles and Cymochles are eventually killed by Prince Arthur.

See our complete list of Arthurian characters for more entries like this one.

Arthurian Bibliography

See also my ever-expanding list of primary and secondary sources.

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Jason is a Mythic Fantasy Author and creator of MythBank. He loves mythology, history, and geek culture. When he's not writing, his favorite hobbies include hiking, chilling with his wife, spouting nonsense words at his baby daughter, and developing this (and other) websites.

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