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King Arthur: Fact Or Fiction

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King Arthur is a legend that is known the throughout the world. It is loaded with chivalry and romance. To most people it is just a romantic story of a king and his adventures involving magic, where good conquered evil. If there were no historical basis for the legend, there would be no arguement that he existed. This legend however is thought to have been based on an actual person.

Certain historical items show that King Arthur couldn't have existed. The development of the story of King Arthur is interesting. Like any good story, it gets better in the telling over the years. His name was first written by Nennius in the 9th century. It was a single paragraph written in Latin and was thought to have been taken from an even older Welsh story. The Welsh story may have been centuries old and would have been past down by word of mouth. The paragraph concerns itself with the twelve great battles that were fought by Arthur.

The first evidence we have concerning the stories was a collection of legends written in Brittany in their own language. By the middle of the twelfth century the legend began to developed through the work of Geoffrey of Monmouth. His work entitled "Historia Britonum" was the first real reference to the legends connected with King Arthur. Geoffrey of Monmouth stated the original Brittany work was the inspiration for his. Not long after Geoffrey of Monmouth's work, the Norman chronicle writer, Wace, translated the work into Norman French. Near the end of the twelfth century, a writer by the name of Walter Map took the work of Wace and others and romanticised them into French. It was his writing of the old stories that were mainly responsible for legend we have today. Very early into the 13th century, the parish priest of early in Worcestershire wrote the poem now known as "Brut". Written in Old English, as opposed to early Anglo Saxon, he again developed the story making Arthur the hero we love



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