Bevois Valley

An area of the city that takes its name from the story of Sir Bevois.

A published story from 1502 ‘The Romance of Sir Bevois of Hamtun’ tells of Bevois,the son of Guy, Earl of Southampton, being sold by his evil stepmother ending up in Armenia.

He escaped and on his way home fell in love with the princess, Josian, was given a magic sword Mortglay and acquired a horse named Arundel.

After a battle with the giant Ascupart poor Josian was saved from being eaten by lions because they were overcome by her beauty and ended up as her guards.

Sir Bevois returned home to claim his birthright. The lions outside the Bargate are a reminder of the tale.

Interestingly, Arundel Castle (near Chichester) has a sword called Mortglay and in 1703 a tomb, said to be that of Sir Bevois, was found during excavations.