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There is one that can ruin King Arthur's plans. One that can come between them. We all have our secrets and, unfortunately for Guinevere, I know hers.
Morgana on Lancelot

Lancelot du Lac is the ninth episode of the fourth series of Merlin which was first broadcast on the 26th of November 2011. It marks the return and the second death of Lancelot.


Sir Lancelot makes a shocking return from the dead and old feelings reignite, making Gwen fight temptation to avoid committing an unspeakable act of betrayal that would destroy the legacy of Camelot forever. With heads and hearts at stake Merlin soon becomes suspicious. Can a man of honour break oaths and defy death or is there something more than meets eye?


Arthur tells Agravaine he wishes to marry Guinevere despite everyone's opinion.  This worries his uncle and he goes to Morgana.   Agravaine startles her and she puts a dagger to his chest, but she withdraws it when she sees who it is.  Agravaine tells her the King's plan to marry and Morgana starts to worry and become angry. "I will not see that woman upon my throne!" she says.

Lancelot Resurrection

Lancelot Resurrection

Lancelot's resurrection

Morgana searches for the Dochraid who tells her how to use a coin to raise a Shade, a shadow of a dead person.  She raises a Shade of Lancelot in the Pool of Nemhain and he goes to Camelot to try and win the heart of Gwen (who by then has accepted Arthur's proposal).  Lancelot returns to Camelot and everyone is overjoyed by his return but Merlin grows suspicious.  Gwen stays loyal to her future husband, so Morgana gives Agravaine an enchanted bracelet to make Gwen love Lancelot again.  Agravaine gives Lancelot the bracelet who gives it to Gwen as a "wedding gift" for her marriage, wishing her a happy life with Arthur.

409 1

Merlin and Arthur see Lancelot for the first time since his death.

Merlin discovers Lancelot's shade nature and, believing Morgana resurrected him and Lancelot may harm Arthur,  is prepared to use magic to stop Lancelot when he participates in a tournament.  However, during the tournament, Lancelot, although he initially wounds Arthur, yields his weapon, refusing to harm Arthur.  Merlin is relieved Arthur is alive but when he spots Gwen going to visit Lancelot, his suspicions increase.


The shade revealed by necromancy

Lancelot gets Gwen in the Council Chambers in the dead of night.  Merlin tries to stop Lancelot with his magic but since Lancelot is a shade, he is unharmed and he knocks Merlin unconscious.  Agravaine summons Arthur to the council chambers and they, along with the recovered Merlin, catch Lancelot and Gwen kissing.  Enraged by this, Arthur attacks Lancelot and they engage in a fierce battle. Lancelot attempts to kill Arthur but Merlin disarms Lancelot with his magic, giving Arthur a chance to kill Lancelot.   Gwen gets between the two and Arthur immediately stops.  Lancelot and Gwen are thrown in separate cells and Gwen pulls off the bracelet and throws it away, freeing herself from the enchantment.


Guinevere tries to stop the fight between Arthur and Lancelot

Merlin 4x09 "Lancelot and Gwen kiss" scene

Merlin 4x09 "Lancelot and Gwen kiss" scene

The kiss between Lancelot and Gwen

Gwen is later brought to the Council Chambers and Arthur angrily asks her what she was doing with Lancelot and why she would betray him in such a manner.  Gwen apologises for her actions, telling Arthur she has always loved him but somehow got drawn towards Lancelot after his return without knowing what she was doing. Arthur has Gwen banished from Camelot, unwilling to have her executed for her betrayal.

409 4

Guinevere apologises to Arthur

Merlin tells Gaius Morgana always wanted to get rid of Gwen and they should tell Arthur Lancelot is a shade but Gaius tells him it will not clear Gwen's apparent betrayal.  Agravaine later goes to Lancelot's cell and gives him an order from Morgana to make Lancelot kill himself.  Merlin tells Arthur Gwen is a good person even though she betrayed him but Arthur tells him while he loves Gwen, he can never trust her, leaving Merlin frustrated.

Merlin 4x09 "Lancelot's Death" scene

Merlin 4x09 "Lancelot's Death" scene

Lancelot's Death

Agravaine then tells Arthur about Lancelot's death and Arthur, who still respects Lancelot as a man of honour, orders Lancelot's body to be buried.  Merlin goes to a lake and puts Lancelot's body in a boat and  frees Lancelot's soul from Morgana's control, bringing him back to life for a moment.  The true Knight sees Merlin and says feebly "Merlin, thank you."Merlin gives a weak smile and Lancelot dies peacefully.  The boat on which he is laying is set off over the lake and towards the mountains.  Merlin sets the boat alight using Magic and has a tearful farewell with his past friend.


Main Cast

Recurring Cast


26 November 2011 at 8.15pm on BBC One



  • This episode, along with the finale, is Colin Morgan's favourite episodes of Series 4[citation needed].  It is also one of producer Johnny Capps' favourite episodes.  The episode has also received a lot of praise from crew working on the episode, as well as critics, with website DigitalSpy stating, "First of all, let's get this out of the way - 'Lancelot du Lac' is one of the best episodes Merlin has ever produced."
  • According to Lancelot, he was saved by the Madhavi people who found him in one of the silk routes high in the Feorre Mountains in Cenred's kingdom.
  • With 6.01 million viewers, it became the most watched Merlin episode of Season 4, but then, The Sword in the Stone: Part One overtook it with a massive 7.13 million viewers.
  • "Lancelot du Lac", translates to "Lancelot of the Lake", in English.
  • This episode marks Morgana's third attempt to prevent Gwen from becoming Queen.  The first was Queen of Hearts, the second was The Darkest Hour and this episode is the third in which she is successful... or so she thinks.
  • The Dochraid first appeared in this episode, she would later appear in the following series, Series 5.[1]


View the transcript here.

Previous story: Lamia | Following story: A Herald of the New Age

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Series 4
The Darkest HourThe Wicked DayAithusaHis Father's SonA Servant of Two MastersThe Secret SharerLamiaLancelot du LacA Herald of the New AgeThe Hunter's HeartThe Sword in the Stone


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