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their own hero, their hero of art and of the soul, a Celtic
chieftain who may have fought with success against the West Saxons
in the year 520, but whose cause was doomed to early defeat. In the
second place, we must recall?what I have already suggested?that the
story of Arthur took on something of the nature of an organism, a
complex growing thing of life. One may sometimes see through the
microscope mysterious elemental creatures, groups of protoplasmic
cells, which draw others to themselves, unite with them to form one
organism where before there were two or three, or again subdivide
to form many where there was one. Like this, in a sense, is the
history of the Arthurian saga. Once more, we must remember that the
story was transmitted through a number of different agencies, going
back to sources in both Welsh and continental regions, and
exhibiting corresponding differences of detail. For Great Britain
the most influential single source was the version made in Latin by
old Geoffrey of Monmouth, in the first half of the twelfth century,
which was later paraphrased in both French and English versions of
wide-spread importance. At length Sir Thomas Malory, about the year
1470, made his new romance, called the Morte Arthur, which again
brought together materials from many different origins, became a
new store-house of romance for modern England, and is incomparably
the finest piece of English writing of its age. These two writers,
Geoffrey and Malory, Tennyson refers to in his Epilogue to the
Queen,in which he speaks of their King Arthur as morally
unsatisfying, compared with the ideal king that he has undertaken
to depict. The Arthur "of Geoffrey's book" or "of Malleor's" was
Touch'd by the adulterous finger of a time That hover'd between war
and wantonness, And crownings an...
General Books LLC
|Country of origin:
Raymond Macdonald Alden
||246 x 189 x 5mm (L x W x T)
||Paperback - Trade
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