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The Medieval Period The Return of Arthur’s Legend ~Sir Gawain and The Green Knight ~Morte D’Arthur and Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, though we’ll cover these.

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Presentation on theme: "The Medieval Period The Return of Arthur’s Legend ~Sir Gawain and The Green Knight ~Morte D’Arthur and Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, though we’ll cover these."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Medieval Period The Return of Arthur’s Legend ~Sir Gawain and The Green Knight ~Morte D’Arthur and Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, though we’ll cover these later.

2 The Middle Ages: 1066 – 1500 The Medieval Period Rise of the Middle Ages Decline of the Roman Empire

3 Western Europe

4 Feudalism Think of a chess set

5 Feudalism Based on mutual obligation Military protection Provide knights in times of war service Fiefs – land grants protection

6 Feudalism Manors The lords estate –  The lord provided the serfs with housing, farmland and protection  Serfs tended the lands, cared for the animals, maintained the estate

7 Feudalism Manors  Peasants rarely traveled more than 25 miles from the manor  Was home to 15 – 30 families  Self-Sufficient community  Peasants heavily taxed, including a tithe – a church tax of 1/10 their income

8 A violent society  Noble’s constantly fought each other  Defend estates  Seize new territories  Increase wealth  Kept Europe fragmented  Glorification of warriors

9 The Age of Chivalry  The mounted Knights were the most important part of an Army  Professional solders – main obligation was to serve in battle  Rewarded with land  Devoted lives to war

10 The Age of Chivalry  Chivalry – a complex set of ideals, demanded that a knight fight bravely in defense of three masters 1. His feudal lord 2.His Heavenly Lord 3.His Lady  Meant to protect the weak and the poor  Be loyal, brave, and courteous

11 The Age of Chivalry Sons of nobles began training at an early age for knighthood  Page – at 7 they were sent to another lord to be trained  Squire – at 14 they act as a servant to a knight  Knight- at 21 they become a knight and gain experience in local wars and tournaments

12 Castles and Keeps Stone castles were encircled by massive walls and guard towers  Home to lord and lady, their family, knights solders, and servants  A fortress of defense

13 Castles and Keeps




17 King Arthur and His Knights

18 The Legend Begins… Arthur is the son of King Uther Pendragon and Igrayne, wife of Gorlois, Duke of Cornwall. Merlin the Magician forced the King to “swear a solemn oath” to allow Merlin to bring up Arthur as he chose. Merlin delivered the newborn unchristened child to Sir Ector. Sir Ector christened the child and raised him as his own, not knowing he was the future king.

19 “Whoso pulleth this sword out of this stone and anvil is rightly King of all England” King Uther died two years after Arthur’s birth, leaving England in turmoil – a country without a king Several years passed, until all the lords of the realm gathered on Christmas Day looking for a miracle to show them who should rightly be King. The “Sword in the Stone” appeared in the church courtyard, bearing the famous inscription.

20 Who would be King? It was decided that a tournament would be held to determine who would win the right to pull the sword out of the stone. Sir Ector and his son, Sir Kay, traveled to the tournament. Sir Kay forgot his sword and asked his younger brother, Arthur to retrieve it. Arthur decided to get the sword that was in the stone and give it to Sir Kay.

21 Arthur becomes King Sir Ector and Sir Kay both knelt down to Arthur and told him of his true identity. The Lords were upset because they did not want a boy who was not of “high blood” to govern their country. The commoners finally cried out that Arthur was the rightful King and should be crowned. Arthur was first knighted, then crowned, by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Arthur swore to his Lords and Commoners to be a true King, and to govern with “true justice.”

22 The Land Called Camelot Arthur ruled in peace for many years… Guinivere, daughter of King Leodegrance, married Arthur Sir Lancelot, son of the Lady of the Lake, Arthur’s “First Knight” Merlin, wizard and advisor to the King Other Knights of the Round Table: Sir Gawain, Sir Galahad, Sir Percivale, Sir Bedivere

23 The Age of Chivalry Arthur and his Knights practiced the Code of Chivalry… C ourage J ustice M ercy G enerosity F aith N obility H ope

24 Le Morte D’Arthur The Death of Arthur Arthur is fatally wounded in a battle with Mordred. Arthur requests Sir Bedivere to throw Excalibur, his sword, into the lake. After Arthur’s third request, Sir Bedivere throws Excalibur into the lake, where it is reclaimed by Lady of the Lake.

25 The Tales of King Arthur Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Le Morte D’Arthur – Sir Thomas Malory The Once and Future King & The Sword in the Stone – T.H. White Camelot, a musical – Alan J. Lerner & Frederick Loewe King Arthur-The Marvel of the Sword – Mary Macleod

26 Truth and Lies “The Untold True Story That Inspired The Legend” –Of Course! It comes from the producers of the honorably accurate “Pirates of the Caribbean” trilogy!

27 What is the importance of legends?

28 Does truth really matter? Do you care if it’s true?

29 What might be lost with historical accuracy? Would the legend be more powerful if it were all historically accurate and verifiable?

30 What might be lost with historical accuracy? We could not add the “true” back story, because it would compete with history. Moving history is a tough task. Moving words is a bit easier…

31 Sources Haskell, Merrie. “People in Arthurian Legend.” Merrie Haskell’s King Arthur Page. November 2002.>8 June 2004. Farrell, Scott. “The Seven Knightly Virtues.” Chivalry Today. 2002 Shining Armor Enterprises. www.chivalrytoday. 10 June 2004. www.chivalrytoday Prentice Hall. Literature. Bronze ed. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey:Prentice Hall, 2000. Price, Brian. “A Code of Chivarly.” The Knighthood, Chivalry, and Tournaments Resource Library. 2003.. 8 June 2004.

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