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Legend of King Arthur

This essay will examine the legend of King Arthur, exploring the reasons for our fascination with him, even today. Is he the ôperfectö king, the king for all time? The history of how the legends and myths surrounding this most famous King of the Britons evolved will be presented first. Then, a most famous and historical source of the legends, Sir Thomas MaloryÆs Le Morte DÆArthur, will serve as the primary text, (with passing references to others), to analyze the heroic traits attributed to this ôonce and future king,ö traits which have been enshrined in the epic traditions of western culture. The thesis of this essay is that Arthur is the ôperfectö king of the western world because he is its most enduring mythic figure. And as a mythic figure, he has actually been created by the west, and has evolved with its urgent need for a heroic code. Thus, it is as an epic hero of mythic proportions that ArthurÆs ôliving,ö mythic characteristics have evolved.

What traits make Arthur the ôperfectö king? In keeping with epic tradition, the first interesting trait of King Arthur (one reflecting western cultural values) emerges from the nature of his birth, his infancy, and his early childhood instruction. In a word, he is of high birth, but is taken away and raised anonymously. The fates watch over him, however, so he becomes student of a great teacher, Merlin, the great prophet, who embodies his education with both selfless spirituality and inevitability. Arthur is carefully schooled and prepared for the important duties required of him because of his noble birth. The æperfectÆ young Arthur is, then, teachable and humble. He is unaware of his noble birth but has the heroÆs potential for greatness.

Secondly, Arthur is the ôperfectö king because of his bravery. As the ruler of Camelot, and founder of the brilliant and shining ôKnights of the Round Table,ö ArthurÆs bravery is legendary, and an essential qu...

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Legend of King Arthur. (1969, December 31). In LotsofEssays.com. Retrieved 23:32, August 07, 2020, from https://www.lotsofessays.com/viewpaper/1711815.html