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King Arthur was a legendary British leader who, according to medieval histories and romances, Pyle, Howard (), The Story of King Arthur and His Knights, Illustrated by Howard Pyle, New York: Charles Scribner's Sons; Rahtz, Philip.
Table of contents

So, he simply turns pale and silent when he learns of Lancelot's affair with Guinevere in the Mort Artu , whilst in Yvain, the Knight of the Lion , he is unable to stay awake after a feast and has to retire for a nap. Lacy has observed, whatever his faults and frailties may be in these Arthurian romances, "his prestige is never—or almost never—compromised by his personal weaknesses However, the most significant for the development of the Arthurian legend are Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart , which introduces Lancelot and his adulterous relationship with Arthur's queen Guinevere , extending and popularising the recurring theme of Arthur as a cuckold , and Perceval, the Story of the Grail , which introduces the Holy Grail and the Fisher King and which again sees Arthur having a much reduced role.

Perceval , although unfinished, was particularly popular: four separate continuations of the poem appeared over the next half century, with the notion of the Grail and its quest being developed by other writers such as Robert de Boron , a fact that helped accelerate the decline of Arthur in continental romance. Up to c. The most significant of these 13th-century prose romances was the Vulgate Cycle also known as the Lancelot-Grail Cycle , a series of five Middle French prose works written in the first half of that century.

The cycle continued the trend towards reducing the role played by Arthur in his own legend, partly through the introduction of the character of Galahad and an expansion of the role of Merlin. During this period, Arthur was made one of the Nine Worthies , a group of three pagan, three Jewish and three Christian exemplars of chivalry.

The Worthies were first listed in Jacques de Longuyon 's Voeux du Paon in , and subsequently became a common subject in literature and art. The development of the medieval Arthurian cycle and the character of the "Arthur of romance" culminated in Le Morte d'Arthur , Thomas Malory 's retelling of the entire legend in a single work in English in the late 15th century. Malory based his book—originally titled The Whole Book of King Arthur and of His Noble Knights of the Round Table —on the various previous romance versions, in particular the Vulgate Cycle, and appears to have aimed at creating a comprehensive and authoritative collection of Arthurian stories.

The end of the Middle Ages brought with it a waning of interest in King Arthur. Although Malory's English version of the great French romances was popular, there were increasing attacks upon the truthfulness of the historical framework of the Arthurian romances — established since Geoffrey of Monmouth's time — and thus the legitimacy of the whole Matter of Britain. So, for example, the 16th-century humanist scholar Polydore Vergil famously rejected the claim that Arthur was the ruler of a post-Roman empire, found throughout the post-Galfridian medieval "chronicle tradition", to the horror of Welsh and English antiquarians.

In the early 19th century, medievalism , Romanticism , and the Gothic Revival reawakened interest in Arthur and the medieval romances. A new code of ethics for 19th-century gentlemen was shaped around the chivalric ideals embodied in the "Arthur of romance". This renewed interest first made itself felt in , when Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur was reprinted for the first time since Tennyson's Arthurian work reached its peak of popularity with Idylls of the King , however, which reworked the entire narrative of Arthur's life for the Victorian era.

Round Table

It was first published in and sold 10, copies within the first week. This interest in the "Arthur of romance" and his associated stories continued through the 19th century and into the 20th, and influenced poets such as William Morris and Pre-Raphaelite artists including Edward Burne-Jones. While Tom maintained his small stature and remained a figure of comic relief, his story now included more elements from the medieval Arthurian romances and Arthur is treated more seriously and historically in these new versions. By the end of the 19th century, it was confined mainly to Pre-Raphaelite imitators, [] and it could not avoid being affected by World War I , which damaged the reputation of chivalry and thus interest in its medieval manifestations and Arthur as chivalric role model.

In the latter half of the 20th century, the influence of the romance tradition of Arthur continued, through novels such as T.

The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights

Bradley's tale, for example, takes a feminist approach to Arthur and his legend, in contrast to the narratives of Arthur found in medieval materials, [] and American authors often rework the story of Arthur to be more consistent with values such as equality and democracy. The romance Arthur has become popular in film and theatre as well. White's novel was adapted into the Lerner and Loewe stage musical Camelot and Walt Disney 's animated film The Sword in the Stone ; Camelot , with its focus on the love of Lancelot and Guinevere and the cuckolding of Arthur, was itself made into a film of the same name in Retellings and reimaginings of the romance tradition are not the only important aspect of the modern legend of King Arthur.

Attempts to portray Arthur as a genuine historical figure of c. As Taylor and Brewer have noted, this return to the medieval "chronicle tradition" of Geoffrey of Monmouth and the Historia Brittonum is a recent trend which became dominant in Arthurian literature in the years following the outbreak of the Second World War , when Arthur's legendary resistance to Germanic enemies struck a chord in Britain.

Arthur has also been used as a model for modern-day behaviour. In the s, the Order of the Fellowship of the Knights of the Round Table was formed in Britain to promote Christian ideals and Arthurian notions of medieval chivalry. As Norris J. Lacy has observed, "The popular notion of Arthur appears to be limited, not surprisingly, to a few motifs and names, but there can be no doubt of the extent to which a legend born many centuries ago is profoundly embedded in modern culture at every level.

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see King Arthur disambiguation and Arthur Pendragon disambiguation. Main article: Historicity of King Arthur. Main article: Arthur. Wyeth's title page illustration for The Boy's King Arthur See also: List of works based on Arthurian legends.

King Arthur portal. Y Gododdin cannot be dated precisely: it describes 6th-century events and contains 9th- or 10th-century spelling, but the surviving copy is 13th-century. See Rahtz and Carey VII, n. Helsinki , p. On his possessions and wife, see also Ford See Haycock , pp. On the Glastonbury tale and its Otherworldly antecedents, see Sims-Williams , pp. See further, Roberts b and Roberts New York: Overlook Duckworth See List of books about King Arthur.

Bromwich, Rachel; Evans, D. Simon , Culhwch and Olwen. Brooke, Christopher N.

King Arthur and His Knights: Sir James Knowles, Louis Rhead: Books

Budgey, A. Bullock-Davies, C. Burgess, Glyn S. Burns, E. Carley, J. Charles-Edwards, Thomas M. Coe, John B. Crick, Julia C. Dumville, D. Field, P. Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. More filters. Sort order. May 23, Mark Adderley rated it it was ok Shelves: arthurian-studies. This is Malory's Le Morte Darthur, but separated into separate stories and, in the case of one tale The Knight of the Cart actually re-located to a different point in the story. The Grail story is so heavily abridged that it would be incomprehensible to someone who hadn't already read the Morte.

There are much better texts of Malory thann this! Aug 14, Mary Overton added it. Sir Thomas Malory d. During those decades he translated into English and rewrote the French Arthurian romances. Stories of Grail quests, lovelorn knights, and the Round Table had been wildly popular literature in the 12th and 13th centuries.

Eugene Vinaver writes in the 'Introduction' that Malory was 'a man bred up in arms who valued the dignity of knighthood above all else. Most of his knights are men of brief speech and unsophisticated behaviou Sir Thomas Malory d. Most of his knights are men of brief speech and unsophisticated behaviour. They engage in extraordinary adventures, but their motives admit of no sentimental refinement; they are first and foremost men of action Her guilt or innocence is to be determined by the winning knight. If her champion wins, she will be proved innocent. If Sir Mador, her accuser, wins then she is guilty and will die.

Suddenly a disguised knight Sir Lancelot, her lover "came from a wood there And anon Sir Mador's spear brake all to pieces, but the other's spear held and bare Sir Mador's horse and all backwards to the earth a great fall. But mightily and deliverly he avoided his horse from him [freed himself from his horse:] and put his shield before him and drew his sword and bade the other knight alight and do battle with him on foot. And so they came eagerly unto battle, and either gave other many sad [heavy:] strokes, tracing and traversing and foining together with their swords as it were wild boars, thus fighting nigh an hour; for this Sir Mador was a strong knight But at the last this knight smote Sir Mador grovelling upon the earth, and the knight stepped near him to have pulled Sir Mador flatling upon the ground; and therewith Sir Mador arose, and in his rising he smote that knight through the thick of the thighs, that the blood brast out fiercely.

And therewith he strode to him to have pulled off his helm off his head. And so Sir Mador prayed that knight to save his life. And so he yielded him as overcome, and released the queen of his quarrel [accusation:]. Nov 10, Jordan rated it really liked it Shelves: fantasy , classics. This was a fun read. It wasn't what I was expecting; there wasn't much Arthur and it needed more Merlin. He was hardly present at all, just briefly in the beginning. There must be other stories or books with more Merlin because there didn't seem to be enough here to account for all the stories behind him.

Still, I enjoyed it. Nov 01, Genevieve rated it did not like it. Ok, ok, I know this is classic literature but I just could not get myself through it. I can only take so much of nobility having their honor offended and self righteously smiting each other down. Which, by the way, does not always mean they die. At least I learned that much. Maybe I'll try it again at a later point in my life. As much as i wanted to enjoy this book, i found it mostly to be very repetitive. The majority of the book seems to consist of good knight sees damsel in distress from bad knight, knights fight, good knight wins repeat ad infinitum.

Only the improvement towards the end quest for the Holy Grail onwards saved this book from being truly dull. View 2 comments. Jan 25, Anilecia rated it liked it. I understand how people could have trouble reading this book. I almost put it down after the first couple of stories because it was incredibly boring, but those are the tales of secondary character knights Sir Galahad, etc. Once you get to the stories of principal characters, it becomes much more interesting. I was amazed at how often everyone "smote" one another.

I like the Arthur stories, but it can be a bit repetitive after a while. A lot of damsels wandering through the forest and then of course the "smiting". Mar 14, Melissa rated it liked it. This was not my favorite. I can't figure out if it was the language or just that I thought the stories were toned down from the French original.

Learn English Through Story - King Arthur And The Knights Of The Round Table Audiobook

It is interesting though the differences that were made between this one and The Death of King Arthur. Feb 11, Kristi-Joy rated it liked it Shelves: fiction , reading-goal I am really glad to be familiar with the original English-language Arthur myths. However, they were not what I was expecting. Still, well worth reading. Dec 19, Ami Samsuri rated it did not like it. I did not like this at all.

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Are knights supposed to be hot-tempered and without a conscience? Jun 20, Jeffrey rated it it was amazing Shelves: literature. Hey, it's the Malster. Malory specifically relates the stories of Sir Gawain, Sir Tor, and Sir Pellanor as a means of introducing the concept of chivalry. Arthur is nearly betrayed by his sister Morgan le Fay, but he is helped by Nineve, a sorceress who learned her magic powers from Merlin before killing him. Although the war requires several battles, Arthur and his knights win and return to Guinevere and the other wives.

Soon after, Launcelot establishes himself as the greatest knight in all the world by his virtue, loyalty, and bravery. At the same time, Sir Gareth, Gawain's brother, proves valiant in his adventures. Tristam also known as Tristan , who is son of King Melyodas de Lyones and the sister of King Mark of Cornwall, is then introduced, and his adventures unfold. He kills Sir Marhault to free his uncle from a debt owed to King Angwyssh of Ireland, and then falls in love with Isode also known as Isolde , Angwyssh's daughter.

Isode marries Tristam's uncle Mark, but Tristam and Isode remain lovers. Tristam is exiled by Mark, which means he can no longer use his true identity; thus, he fights as The Knight with the Black Shield.

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Tristam duels and beats many of Arthur's knights, but is eventually thrown in prison and becomes ill. He escapes and eventually meets and fights Launcelot in a duel predicted by Merlin. They become the best of friends. Launcelot, who is in love with and completely loyal to Guinevere, rides one day in search of adventure. He kills a dragon, sees the Grail, and is tricked into lying with Pellas' daughter Elayne, with whom he has a son, Galahad.

Guinevere, upon hearing of the affair, has Launcelot banished from court; Launcelot then wanders from place to place in his grief.