Although his body grew since his childhood days, the adult Lancelot was still concerned with trying to overcompensate for his feelings of insecurity. He was proud not of himself, not of his thoughts, but of his deeds. It seems the only true answer is that Lancelot was ugly.
“‘You see, Arthur, I had a lot of troubles on my mind which being a famous fighter seemed to make up for, a little, and when that was gone it felt as if there was nothing left to me.'”(p.463) This proves that the reason Lancelot was so keen on being a champion was to make up for his troubles.
He felt that his good deeds would counteract his malfeasant nature.
He was clinging to the dream that he would be able to become the best of them all and conquer his fears. He wanted to be the best knight in the world…, and he wanted one other thing which was still possible in those days.
Lancelot worked for a goal that he had to attain in order to prove to himself that he was not impure. He wanted, through his purity and excellence, to be able to perform an ordinary miracle…”(p.323) Lancelot had to prove to himself that he was not evil.
So he went forth to go questing, hoping that the good deeds he would do would balance out his impurity and flagitiousness.
Finally, Lancelot flat out states that the only reason why he performed great deeds was to make up for his troubled soul.Lancelot wanted to be a knight because he felt that he was a depraved, lubricious soul.His hideously twisted visage was a sure sign to him that deep in his inner self he was an evil person.In the beginning of their love, Lancelot felt badly about it.He felt that their relationship was making him impure, and so he went out to be a hero.In conclusion, Lancelot’s childhood was a seedbed for his wretched self-image, but also a seedbed for his skills.Indeed, if he had not been so unconfident, he would not have worked as hard as he did, because the only reason he wanted to be a knight was to show that he was more than just a repugnant, vile-looking ape. He tried to be the best, and tried almost too hard. “‘I had spent all my childhood, when I might have been chasing butterflies, learning to be your best knight. I used to feel so proud, inside myself, because I knew that I was top of the averages. But I had nothing else to be proud of.'”(p.463) In this statement we learn definitively that Lancelot was only proud of his deeds.For example, when he killed Gareth and Gaheris, he could not admit that it was an accident. With every mistake comes the realization that he is imperfect, and will no longer be able to perform miracles, which just makes him more insecure.Instead, he put the blame directly on his own shoulders. Another example comes before Mordred seizes control of the kingdom.He could only take pride in his deeds, for they were the only truly good things that he had, and once they were gone there was nothing left.Another example is Lancelot’s affair with Guenever.