King Arthur - Myth Making and History
by N.j. Higham
King Arthur's story encapsulates the medieval romance and the tragedy of the Dark Ages. Yet legends shroud his life, and to this day scholars cannot agree on his dates, his location or even whether he really existed.King Arthur penetrates both the historical literature and the fantastic legends of this hero, king, demigod. Probing the ever-popular cultural icon, historian N.J. Higham traces the changing face of Camelot from its birth in the ninth century to contemporary films such as Excalibur, Monty Python and the Holy Grail and First Knight. How did the idea of King Arthur evolve? What role was Arthur intended to perform in the political and cultural worlds that constructed him?Higham sheds new light on the genesis of this beloved figure, scrutinizing the first two Arthurian texts: The History of the Britons and the Welsh Annals. His conclusion: historians created Arthur to fit their present political agendas, rather than relying on primary sources. An eye-opening, fresh look at the Arthurian myths, King Arthur follows his kingship's longevity in the popular imagination from the ninth century to the twenty-first.