King Arthur Essay

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King Arthur

The Arthurian legends are well known in today's society. However, very few people know of the "real" Arthur -- who he was and what his accomplishments were. This paper will establish a difference between legend and truth, show evidence to support and explain who the real Arthur was, and shed some light on the sometimes confusing Arthurian legends.

To establish any sort of idea that there was, in fact, a "real" Arthur, it is imperative to look over the legendary Arthur and his impact on different cultures. Arthur's beginnings are shrouded in mystery, though it is generally accepted that he is the bastard child of Uther Pendragon and Ygerna. Ygerna was not married to Uther, but to Gorlois at the time of Arthur's
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However, after the Normans came to Britain, there was an intensification of the Arthurian legend, possibly due to the fact that the Normans saw Arthur as a hero against the Saxons and therefore glorified him in their text.

Arthur is considered a hero in almost every text that mentions him. In spite of this, though, more was written about adventures of his knights than of him personally (Chambers 155). It is said that Arthur existed not only to kill Saxons but also to be a Christian champion who killed pagans as well. Previous to anything the romantic French poets wrote about him, Arthur was glorified in writing for conducting aggressive wars, during which he conquered "fantastical" places. If he had, in fact, conquered real places, there would have been more written on these conquests since by the time he was active it would have been more controversial for him to attack and conquer foreign countries. However, there are three major battles that Arthur is connected to. One of the most controversial is the war that Arthur fought with the Roman empire. It is suggested by Geoffrey of Monmouth that Arthur's motivation to fight the Roman emperor did not come from the fact only that the emperor was seen as a pagan and sinner against God, but also because there was a rivalry between Arthur's "new" nation as opposed to Rome's old, worn-out nation. The Roman war is considered a "principal artery" of Arthurian legend, possibly next only to the

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