Arthurian Literature XXVI

Arthurian Literature XXVI

ELIZABETH ARCHIBALD
DAVID F. JOHNSON
Copyright Date: 2009
Edition: NED - New edition
Published by: Boydell and Brewer,
Pages: 228
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.7722/j.ctt7zsssw
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  • Book Info
    Arthurian Literature XXVI
    Book Description:

    The Arthurian material collected in this volume ranges widely in time and space, from a Latin romance based on Welsh sources to the post-Christian Arthur of modern fiction and film. It begins with a tribute to the late Derek Brewer, a reprinting of the classic introduction to his edition of the last two tales of Malory's Morte Darthur. Further subjects covered include a possible source manuscript for Malory's first tale; the "Arthuricity" of the little-known Latin romance Arthur and Gorlagon; images of sterility and fertility in the continuations of Chretien's Conte du Graal/; and early modern responses to Geoffrey of Monmouth's account of Arthur's dealings with Rome. Norris Lacy ranges widely over the evolution of the Arthurian legend, and Ronald Hutton considers representations of both Christian and pagan religion in modern novels and cinema. The volume ends with a bibliographical supplement on recent additions to Arthurian fiction. CONTRIBUTORS: Derek Brewer, Jonathan Passaro, Amanda Hopkins, Thomas Hinton, Sian Echard, Norris Lacy, Ronald Hutton, Raymond Thompson.

    eISBN: 978-1-84615-691-5
    Subjects: Language & Literature

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. GENERAL EDITORS’ FOREWORD
    (pp. vii-viii)
    Elizabeth Archibald and David F. Johnson

    We start this volume with a tribute to the late and much missed Derek Brewer (1923–2008). During his long career he made invaluable contributions to Arthurian scholarship on two fronts: through his own publications, especially on Malory, and through his publishing company D. S. Brewer, founded in 1972. As Boydell & Brewer, it has come to play a crucial part in medieval studies; Arthurian scholars are particularly indebted to him as the ‘onlie begetter’ of the seriesArthurian Studies,now up to its 74th volume, and also of this journal.

    The essays in the present volume deal with subjects...

  4. List of Contributors
    (pp. ix-x)
  5. I INTRODUCTION TO THE MORTE DARTHUR, PARTS 7 AND 8
    (pp. 1-38)
    Derek Brewer

    In 1968 Derek Brewer’s edition of the last two tales of Malory’sMorte Darthurappeared in the York Medieval Texts series published by Edward Arnold. The introduction, which we reprint here (omitting only section VIII, A Note on the Text), is still remarkably fresh and relevant over forty years later. He was ahead of his time in his interest in anthropology, for instance; but he also situated his comments in a broad historical context, referring both to the fall of the Roman Empire and to the effects of the Second World War. His account of what he calls ‘the honourable...

  6. II MALORY’S TEXT OF THE SUITE DU MERLIN
    (pp. 39-76)
    Jonathan Passaro

    Although many scholars have studied Malory and his sources, exploring the way he worked and attempting to determine the extent of his knowledge of Arthurian material, no one has successfully established a link between a particular manuscript and Malory’s work. This paper explores the relationship betweenLe Morte Darthurand Cambridge University Library MS Add. 7071, aSuite du Merlinmanuscript.¹ Malory composedLe Morte Darthurfrom a variety of sources; his main source for the first part of his work – corresponding to Books I–IV in Caxton and the first seventy folios of the Winchester manuscript – is theSuite...

  7. III WHY ARTHUR AT ALL? THE DUBIOUS ARTHURICITY OF ARTHUR AND GORLAGON
    (pp. 77-96)
    Amanda Hopkins

    The story of a knight who changes into a wolf and is trapped in wolf form by a perfidious woman, most often the knight’s wife, occurs in several medieval texts. Probably the best known of these is Marie de France’s narrative lay,Bisclavret.¹ However, in presenting a ‘natural’ werewolf, that is, a man who by nature periodically changes into wolf form, Marie’s tale differs from the other narratives, except forBiclarel,which is closely modelled on it.² The other versions concern a knight whose lycanthropic transformation is not a naturally occurring periodical event, but instead is induced by enchantment, involving...

  8. IV THE AESTHETICS OF COMMUNICATION: STERILITY AND FERTILITY IN THE CONTE DEL GRAAL CYCLE
    (pp. 97-108)
    Thomas Hinton

    Chrétien de Troyes’ final, unfinished Arthurian romance, theConte del Graal,has captured the imagination of many scholars over the years. One such enthusiast is the anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss, who has revisited it several times through the course of his career.¹ Lévi-Strauss used Chrétien’s narrative as the exemplification of ‘Percevalian’ myths, which he viewed as being inversely symmetrical to ‘Oedipal’ myths in their treatment of the theme of communication.² Oedipal myths are characterised by accelerated communication: the hero has the answer to the Sphinx’s riddle, but this communicative success becomes excess in the breaking of the generational taboo of incest....

  9. V ‘WHYCHE THYNG SEMETH NOT TO AGREE WITH OTHER HISTORIES ...’: ROME IN GEOFFREY OF MONMOUTH AND HIS EARLY MODERN READERS
    (pp. 109-130)
    Siân Echard

    The first edition of William Camden’sBritannia,printed in 1586, contains only two illustrations. The first is a careful rendering of the inscription, in letters described as ‘barbaric’ andquasi Gothicum,on the Glastonbury Cross, discovered along with Arthur’s tomb in the 1190s.¹ The second is a drawing of an archway from the church of St John sub Castro at Lewes, inscribed with what Camden (1551–1623) calls ‘rude little verses, in curved work, in obsolete character, which announce that a certain Magnus, formerly of the Danish royal blood, is buried there’.² Stuart Piggott points out that early modern textual...

  10. VI ARTHURIAN TEXTS IN THEIR HISTORICAL AND SOCIAL CONTEXT
    (pp. 131-148)
    Norris J. Lacy

    The invitation to present a plenary lecture at the congress of the International Arthurian Society was naturally a distinct honour, but I hesitated before accepting.¹ I feared that the conference theme that I was invited to discuss (and that constitutes the title of the present essay) might easily prove either too simple or too difficult. On the one hand, if we simply seek correspondences between specific literary artefacts and historical or cultural forces, we will undoubtedly find a great many, but that, by itself, will tell us little that was not already self-evident. Moreover, some of the connections may well...

  11. VII THE POST-CHRISTIAN ARTHUR
    (pp. 149-170)
    Ronald Hutton

    For most of his literary career, Arthur has been the Christian hero of a Christian people, and this role has taken two different forms. The first is that in which he appears in his earliest recorded personification, as the champion of the post-Roman British against heathen Anglo-Saxon invaders. It features in the earliest known source to mention him, the ninth-centuryHistoria Brittonum,where he fights bearing the image of the Virgin Mary, and is found, on and off, into the mid twentieth century, where it is the theme of John Masefield’s novel,The Badon Parchments.The second form is that...

  12. VIII THE ARTHURIAN LEGEND IN LITERATURE, POPULAR CULTURE AND THE PERFORMING ARTS, 2004–2008
    (pp. 171-214)

    This, the fifth supplement toThe New Arthurian Encyclopedia,extends up to 2008 and, like earlier supplements, includes material overlooked in the past. When other work by an author has been discussed before, we have added a parenthetical reference:NAEforThe New Arthurian Encyclopediaand the first two supplements, which were published together in the 1995 Updated Edition;AL18 and 22 for the third and fourth supplements, which were published inArthurian Literature XVIII(2001) andXXII(2005) respectively. (To assist users in locating entries, we are preparing a cumulative index of all the supplements; it will be...

  13. Back Matter
    (pp. 215-219)