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Arthur was the first born son of King Uther Pendragon and heir to the throne. Igraine, Arthur’s mother, was married to Gorlois, the Duke of Tintegal when.

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Presentation on theme: "Arthur was the first born son of King Uther Pendragon and heir to the throne. Igraine, Arthur’s mother, was married to Gorlois, the Duke of Tintegal when."— Presentation transcript:

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2 Arthur was the first born son of King Uther Pendragon and heir to the throne. Igraine, Arthur’s mother, was married to Gorlois, the Duke of Tintegal when Uther desired her. With the help of Merlin the Wizard, Uther deceivingly seduced Igraine by taking the form of her husband, resulting in the conception of Arthur. On the night of the seduction, The Duke died in battle. Igraine then became Uther’s wife. ARTHUR’S PARENTAGE

3 In exchange for Merlin’s help in the seduction of Igraine, Uther promised the child Arthur to Merlin. Being that these were very dangerous times, Merlin advised Uther that the baby Arthur should be raised in a secret place and that no one should know his true identity. Merlin foresaw the impending death of Uther and warned him about the danger that would bring to Arthur. As predicted, Uther fell ill and died. MERLIN’S HELP

4 As Merlin feared, when King Uther died there was great conflict over who should be the next king. Merlin used his wizardry to set a sword in a stone. Written on the blade of the sword were the words: “Whoever pulls this sword from the stone is the rightful king of Britain.” He then sent word to all the barons and knights to gather for a tournament to determine who would be king. THE SWORD IN THE STONE

5 They each tried to withdraw the sword from the stone but failed. Until Arthur, unknowingly and by accident, effortlessly withdrew the sword. On seeing Arthur with the sword, he was proclaimed king of the Britons. ARTHUR BECOMES KING

6 There is much debate whether Arthur was an actual historical person. In literature, there is no single depiction of Arthur as he is a combination of characters described by many different authors over a 1500 year span. ARTHUR AS KING

7 There are 3 basic character descriptions of Arthur: 1. Arthur as an epic hero. The earliest depiction of arthur is that of a fierce, feared warrior, capable of tremendous prowess in hand to hand combat. Think Beowulf! 2. A second image of Arthur is that of a “peripheral figure” as in Sir Gawain & the green knight. Here Arthur is not the main character but a symbol of Camelot and the chivalric code. TYPES OF ARTHUR

8 3. Arthur as a naïve victim of fate. In later writings of the Arthurian legends (for example Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur), Arthur is depicted as a 2-dimensional character who is stubborn, naïve, and unaware (as exampled by the affair of Guinevere and Lancelot), and is swept up in events beyond his control. Even the way in which he becomes king is fated.

9 Arthur’s knights were known as the knights of the round table, and included his nephew Sir Gawain and his most admired knight Sir Lancelot. ARTHUR’S KNIGHTS

10 Arthur and the Knights’ base was at a place called Camelot. Here he built a strong castle. His knights met at a round table, thereby earning the name Knights of the Round Table. They carried out acts of chivalry and fought against strange beasts. They also went on a quest for the Holy Grail.

11 The character of King Arthur is larger than life. Whether an historical Arthur actually existed or not, we are left today with a mythological character, memorable and interesting due to his virtues as well as his mistakes. ARTHUR’S LEGEND

12 LOYALTY IDENTITY LOVE BETRAYAL CHIVALRY REDEMPTION ROLE OF WOMEN THEMES

13 Is Chivalry a realistic ideal? What is more important, love or fidelity? Can a person truly attain redemption after committing grave sins? What does it mean to be loyal? Is revenge ever noble? The depiction of women: curse or blessing? THEMATIC IMPLICATIONS


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