Did King Arthur Truly Exist? Essay

790 Words 4 Pages
Did King Arthur Truly Exist?

Who was King Arthur? Most people would tell of a great King; a devoted circle of heroic knights; mighty castles and mightier deeds; a time of chivalry and courtly love; of Lancelot and Guinevere; of triumph and death. Historians and archaeologists, especially Leslie Alcock, point to shadowy evidence of a man who is not a king, but a commander of an army, who lived during the late fifth to early sixth century who may perhaps be the basis for Arthur. By looking at the context in which the stories of King Arthur survived, and the evidence pertaining to his castle Camelot and the Battle of Badon Hill, we can begin to see that Arthur is probably not a king as the legend holds.
While stories about the places
…show more content…
It has proved to be nearly impossible to find on of the grandest courts in all of England.
Arthurian history is vague to say the least, and written records are not always entirely factual. The brief Annals of Wales tells two things of Arthur: he fought at Badon, and he was killed at Camlann in the same battle. These Annals were composed centuries after the time of Arthur, and were compiled from other, earlier sources. A battle between Arthur and Medraut (Modred) is recorded for the year 539 AD. This entry was made after Arthur had already become a legend, and the spelling of the name with an "h" would suggest this, as the evidence from the earliest reliable sources spells the name without an "h". So it is reasonable to believe that this is a very late and unreliable entry indeed.
Since very few individuals could write, stories of Arthur were mainly told by word of mouth. Oral stories did not get written down until later; Geoffrey of Monmouth wrote down the stories as one of the first written manuscript of Arthurian legend in 1139. Word of mouth was the way in which Arthur's story is passed down through the years, and it is safe to assume that during that time, the story transformed and evolved. Stories are embellished and added to, depending on the audience, in order to make it more exciting. As discussed before in this paper, local tradition had placed Camelot in an area that was proven

More about Did King Arthur Truly Exist? Essay

Open Document