King Arthur’s seneschal, known of in the French romances
as Messire Queux, or Maitre Queux or Kuex. He is prominent
in Malory’s Le Morte d’ Arthur. In the tale of Kilhwch and Olwen
in the Mabinogion, he is identified as a person whose ‘‘breath
lasted nine nights and days under water’’ and who ‘‘could exist
nine nights and nine days without sleep.’’ A wound from his
sword could not be cured; he could make himself as tall as the
highest tree; and so great was his body temperature that during
rain whatever he carried remained dry. Originally a rain and
thunder god, he apparently degenerated through a series of
mythological processes into a mere folk hero.