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Arthurian Mythology

Pantheon of the Gods

Merlin's Last Prophecy

Creation of Arthurian Mythology

The Adventures of the Holy Grail

The Death of Arthur

In Shining Armor, a Proffesional Criticism

Rhonabwy the Hero

The Lady of Shalott

Code of Honor and Chivalry

Monty Python

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Pantheon of the Gods

Name of God

Sphere of Influence

Aurelius

King of Britain. Older brother of Uther

Brutus

Established a kingdom in Britain

Uther

Married to Igraine, and father of Arthur

Igraine

Married to Uther, bears Arthur and Morgause

King Arthur

Married to Guinevere, and the father of Mordred (by Morgause). He was orphaned when he was a baby and raised byMerlin and Sir Ector. He did not know of his royal heritage and when he was a boy he happened to find a sword stuck in a stone. He pulled it out and this identified him as the rightful king of England. He establishes the Knights of th Round Table to fight for all that is good and proper.

Sir Ector

Arthur's foster father who trained him in war.

Sir Kay

Knight of the Round Table, and son of Ector

Queen Guinevere

Wife of Arthur, and lover of Lancelot

Merlin

A magician and a prophet, he helped raise Arthur and was one of his advisors.

Morgause

Arthur's half sister, and mother of Mordred by him. She was also the mother of Gawain, Agravain, Gaheris, and Gareth by her husband, King Lot. She wanted to be Queen of the Britains, and supposedly was a sorceress.

Sir Mordred

He was a Knight of the Round Table, who killed Arthur. He was also his son.

Sir Gawain

Aknight of the Round Table. He wqas one of Arthur's two favorite knights. He was revengeful.

Sir Agravain

A knight of the Round Table and Sir Gawain's brother.

Sir Gaheris

Knight of the Round Table and Sir Gawain's brother.

Sir Gareth

A knight of the Round Table, he was Gawain's brother.

Sir Lancelot

He was the greatest knight of the Round Table and the other favorite of King Arthur until he was tricked into loving Elaine who gave him a son, Sir Galahad. He then went on one of the most important missions of all time.

Sir Galahad

He was the bastard son of Lancelot and knight of the Round Table who found the Holy Grail.

Sir Percival

A knight of the Round Table.

Sir Bors

A knight of the Round Table.

Sir Pellinor

A knight of the Round Table.

Sir Bedivere

This Round Table knight was the last person to see King Arthur alive.

Sir Caradoc

His wife was the only lady in the Queen's Train who had a good, honest marriage, he was also a Knight of the Round Table.

Creation of Arthurian Mythology

This poem about how Arthur became the King was brief but seemed to follow other myths that I have read as well as the movie, "The Sword in the Stone". It tells of all the bravest knights in the land not being able to take the sword out of the stone. Only the true king, according to the legend, would be able to pull the sword out of the stone. While in search of a sword for Sir Kay, Arthur pulls the sword from the stone and is worshipped as the true king.

Death of Arthur

Arthur, the King of the Britons, fought a war against Mordred his nephew. Mordred was a betrayer to Arthur and became his enemy. Arthur had one the war but he left the battle with a wound. It was not fatal but if it was not taken care of soon it could threaten his life. He had his armor taken off carefully, not to disturb his cut. When he was not ready, Mordred stabbed him witha knife of poison. The King was dying. He rewarded those who served under him. He traveled to a place of rest and died peacefully in the place destined for him

The Dream of Rhonabwy

Rhonabwy was a man-at-arms under Madawc son of Maredudd, whose brother Iorwerth rose in rebellion against him; and Rhonabwy went with the troops of Madawc to put him down. Going with a few companions into a mean hut for a restfor the night, he lies down to sleep on a yellowcalf-skin by the fire, whilehis friends lie on filthy couches of straw and twigs. On the calf-skin he has a wonderful dream. He sees before him the court and camp of Arthur-here the quasihistorical king, neither the legendary deity of the former tale nor the Arthur of the French chivalrous romances. As he moves towards Mount Badon for his great b attle with the heathen. A character named Iddawc is his guide to the King, who smiles at Rhonabwy and his friends, and asks: "Where, Iddawc, didst thou find these little men?" "I found them, lord, up yonder that road." "It pitieth me," said Arthur, "that men of such stature as these should have the island in their keeping, after the men that guarded it of yore." Rhonabwy has his attention directed to a stone in the King's ring. "It is one of the properties of that stone to enable thee to remember that which thou seest here tonight, and hadst thou not seen the stone, thou wouldst never have been able to remember aught thereof."

Code of Honor and Chivalry

Prowess: To seek excellence in all endeavors expected of a knight, martial and otherwise, seeking strength to be used in the service of justice, rather than in personal aggrandizement.

Justice: Seek always the path of 'right', unencumbered by bias or personal interest. Recognize that the sword of justice can be a terrible thing, so it must be tempered by humanity and mercy. If the 'right' you see rings agrees with others, and you seek it out without bending to the temptation for expediency, then you will earn renown beyond measure.

Loyalty: Be known for unwavering commitment to the people and ideals you choose to live by. There are many places where compromise is expected; loyalty is not amongst them.

Defense: The ideal knight was sworn by oath to defend his liege lord and those who depended upon him. Seek always to defend your nation, your family, and those to whom you believe worthy of loyalty.

Courage: Being a knight often means choosing the more difficult path, the personally expensive one. Be prepared to make personal sacrifices in service of the precepts and people you value. At the same time, a knight should seek wisdom to see that stupidity and courage are cousins. Courage also means taking the side of truth in all matters, rather than seeking the expedient lie. Seek the truth whenever possible, but remember to temper justice with mercy, or the pure truth can bring grief.

Faith: A knight must have faith in his beliefs, for faith roots him and gives hope against the despair that human failings create.

Humility: Value first the contributions of others; do not boast of your own accomplishments, let others do this for you. Tell the deeds of others before your own, according them the renown rightfully earned through virtuous deeds. In this way the office of knighthood is well done and glorified, helping not only the gentle spoken of but also all who call themselves knights.

Largesse: Be generous in so far as your resources allow; largesse used in this way dounters gluttony. It also makes the path of mercy easier to discern when a difficult decision of justice is required.

Nobility: Seek great stature of character by holding to the virtues and duties of a knight, realizing that though the ideals cannot be reached, the quality of striving towards them ennobles the spirit, growing the character from dust towards the heavens. Nobility also has the tendency to influence others, offering a compelling example of what can be done in the service of rightness.

Franchise: Seek to emulate everything I have spoken of as sincerely as possible, not for the reason of personal gain but because it is right. Do not restrict your exploration to a small world, but seek to infuse every aspect of your life with these qualities. Should you succeed in even a tiny measure then you will be well remembered for your quality and virtue.

Merlin's Last Prophecy

Queen Morgan le Fay, Arthur's eldest sister had a son called Sir Bagdemagus. She was very angry that he had not received a spot in the Round Table or that he didn't receive awards as Arthur's other nephews had. She confrotted Arthur but was turned away by Merlin's magic. Only the one knight destined for the seat could take it. Queen Morgan le Fay became very angry at this and decided that Merlin had to be put out of the way for her son to take a place in the Round Table. Lady Vivien, a young beautiful women joined up with Queen Morgan le Fay. Lady Vivien convinced Merlin to tell how he did many of his magic. Not far after Merlin was talking with Arthur. He told him that danger was coming from one of his kin and that he won't be able to guard Arthur because his doom was not far ahead. Merlin showed Vivien many other wondors, not knowing that the danger was of her. He taught her how to move great rocks and make caves. In the cave they dined. One their way out Vivien asked Merlin to fetch her kerchief and as soon he was inside she spoke magic words that entombed him in his own magical cave, never to be ssen again.

The Adventures of the Holy Grail

The story begins with Joseph of Arimathaea, a wealthy Jew to whose care Christ's body is given for burial and who, according to some stories, also obtains the cup used by Christ at the Last Supper. While he is washing the body to prepare it for the tomb, some blood flows from the wounds which he catches in this vessel. After the disappearance of the body, Joseph is accused of stealing it, is thrown into prison and deprived of food. Here Christ appears to him in a blaze of light and entrusts the cup to his care. He then instructs Joseph in the mystery of the Mass and, it is said, certain other secrets, before vanishing, Joseph is miraculously kept alive by a dove which enters his cell every day and deposits a wafer in the cup. He is released in A.D. 70 and, joined by his sister and her husband Bron, goes into exile overseas with a small group of followers. A table called the First Table of the Grail is constructed to represent the Table of the Last Supper (a fish is laid in Christ's place) at which twelve may sit down. A thirteenth seat, representing the place of Judas, remains empty after one of the company tries to sit in it and is swallowed up. (This seat is thereafter referred to as the Siege Perilous.)

According to some versions, Joseph then sails to Britain, where he sets up the first Christian church at Glastonbury, dedicating it to the Mother of Christ. Here the Grail is housed, and serves as a chalice at the celebration of the Mass in which the whole company participate, and which becomes known as the Mass of the Grail.

In other versions Joseph goes no further than Europe, and the guardianship of the cup passes to Bron, who becomes known as the Rich Fisher after he miraculously feeds the company from it with a single fish, echoing Christ's feeding of the five thousand. The company settles at a place called Avaron (perhaps the same as Avalon, the Celtic name for the Otherworld, also identified with Glastonbury) to await the coming of the third Grail Keeper, Alain.

A temple is built on Muntsalvach, the Mountain of Salvation, to house the vessel, and an Order of Grail Knights comes into being. They sit at a Second Table, and partake of a sacred feast provided by the Grail; a form of Mass also takes place at which the Grail Keeper, now called King, serves as priest. Shortly after, he receives a mysterious wound, variously said to be in the thighs or the genitals, caused by a spear and attributed to one of several different causes among which are the loss of faith, the love of a woman against a vow of chastity, or an accidental blow struck by a stranger in self-defense. Hereafter the guardian is known as the Maimed or Wounded King, and the country around the Grail castle becomes barren and is called the Waste Land - a state explicitly connected with the Grail King's wound. The spear with which he is struck becomes identified with the Lance of Longinus, the Roman soldier who in Biblical tradition pierced the side of Christ on the cross. This spear, the Grail, a sword and a dish-shaped platter (which in more primitive versions of the story may have borne a human head, and which later becomes confused with the Grail itself) constitute the objects, called Hallows, to be found in the Grail castle.

By this time we have reached the age of Arthur, and the scene is set for the beginning of the quest. The Round Table is established by Merlin the enchanter as the Third Table (from which the Grail itself is, however, absent) and a fellowship of knights led by Arthur meet around it, bound by the rules of chivalry. At Pentecost the Grail makes an appearance, floating veiled in a beam of sunlight, and the knights pledge themselves to go in search of it. There follow a series of initiatory adventures involving most of the fellowship, especially Lancelot, Gawaine and Bors. Two others - Perceval (Parzival or Parsifal), nicknamed the Perfect Fool in token of his innocence, and Lancelot's son Galahad, who is from the beginning singled out for special significance by being permitted to sit unscathed in the Siege Perilous - are given particular emphasis, their adventures forming the greater part of the narrative from this point.

Of the many who set out from the Arthurian court at Camelot, few catch more than a glimpse of the elusive Grail. A series of tests are set for each knight, and their nature explained by a succession of hermit figures who are always at hand in the deep wood where the questers often find themselves. Lancelot comes agonizingly close to the holy vessel, but is turned away, temporarily blinded, because of his adulterous love for Arthur's queen. Gawaine reaches the Grail castle, but fails as it is his nature to fail, being too much in the world and without the simplicity or the spiritual qualities required of the true quester.

Only three succeed in finding the Grail and participating, to varying degrees, in its mystery. They are Galahad, the stainless, virgin knight, Perceval, the holy fool, and Bors, the humble, 'ordinary' man, who is the only one of the three to return to Camelot with news of the quest. Perceval, after first failing and wandering for five years in the wilderness, finds his way again to the castle of the Wounded King (who is sometimes his uncle, as well as the Fisher King, the guardian of the way to the Waste Land) and by asking a ritual question - usually, 'Whom does the Grail serve?' - brings about his healing. (The answer, never explicitly stated, is the King himself, who is kept alive, though in torment from his wound, beyond his normal life-span.) Once healed, the King is permitted to die, and the waters of the Waste Land flow again, making it flower, Galahad, Perceval and Bors continue their journey, eventually reaching Sarras (perhaps a corruption of Muntsalvach) the Heavenly City in the east, where the final mysteries of the Grail are celebrated and where the three knights take part in a Mass in which the vessel is again used as the chalice; Christ appears first as celebrant and then as a radiant child and finally, in the Host, as a crucified man. After this, Galahad dies in an odour of sanctity and the Grail is taken up into heaven: Perceval goes back to the Fisher King's castle to rule in his place, leaving Bors to return alone to Camelot.

 

In Shining Armor, a Proffesional Criticism

The knights only lived as long as they did because of theirpeculiar mode of fighting. The ideals of chivalry have lived long past the time of the knights and feudalism that gave birth to them. The chivalric inheritanc includes the basic warrior virtues, the human ideals of Christianity, courtly love, and holy war. All of these are very inmportant to understand because they contain both good and evil. The basis for chivalry were the physical characteristics of the mounted warrior, the first appearance of the word chivalry in the Song of Roland means strength, not the common meaning. Roland was the model for chivalry. He was fearless and wreckless. Roland was fighting for money but also for his lord. His death demonstrated and proved Roland's disdain for his enemy. Michael, the knight's patron angel descended and led him to heaven.

The Lady of Shalott

This myth is of a magical women who lives inside a tower. If she left this tower she would perish. One day she sees Sir Lancelot riding by. She falls in love with him and leaves the tower even though she would die. The Lady of Shalott dies. Sir Lancelot sees her dead body and pronoiunces that she was very beautiful.

Monty Python

Another Version of the Creation (or not) of Camelot

LAUNCELOT

(he points)

Look, my liege!

They all stop and look.

ARTHUR

(with thankful reverence)

Camelot!

CUT TO shot of amazing castle in the distance.

Illuminated in the rays of the setting sun.

Music.

CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and the group.

They are all staring with fascination.

GALAHAD

Camelot ...

LAUNCELOT

Camelot ...

GAWAIN

(at the back, to PAGE)

It's only a model.

ARTHUR

(turning sharply)

Sh!

(to the rest)

Knights! I bid you welcome to your new home! Let us ride ...

to Camelot.

CUT TO interior of medieval hall. A large group of armoured

KNIGHTS are engaged in a well choreographed song-and-dance routine of

the very up-beat 'If they could see me now' type of fast bouncy number.

The poorer verses are made clearer by CUTTING to a group of knights actually

engaged in the described task while the line itself is sung. They sing:

KNIGHTS

We're knights of the round table

We dance whene'er we're able

We do routines and chorus scenes

With footwork impeccable.

We dine well here in Camelot

We eat ham and jam and spam a lot.

We're knights of the Round Table

Our shows are formidable

But many times

We're given rhymes

That are quite unsingable

We're opera mad in Camelot

We sing from the diaphragm a lot.

Booming basses. A routine where two XYLOPHONISTS play parts of

KNIGHTS' armour producing a pleasing effect.

KNIGHTS

In war we're tough and able.

Quite indefatigable

Between our quests

We sequin vests

And impersonate Clark Gable

It's a busy life in Camelot.

SINGLE MAN

I have to push the pram a lot.

CUT BACK TO ARTHUR and BEDEVERE and COMPANY as we had left them.

ARTHUR

No, on second thought, let's not go to Camelot.

KNIGHTS

Right!

ARTHUR

It is a silly place.

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