Legends of King Arthur and his knights-Source books

King Arthur


  • Celtic myths (such as the Welsh “Raid on Annwfn”)
  • The Mabinogion
  • Legends of the Grail King and the Fisher King
  • Historical documents about the battle at Mons Badis, General Arturius, and other sixth-century subjects some scholars claim are evidence of a historical basis for later legends
  • Welsh/Latin annals attributed to the so-called “Nennius” (i.e., medieval Latin writings mistakenly attributed to this person in outdated scholarship)
  • Oral legends transmitted by Breton conteurs in France between 1100-1175
  • Pseudo-histories written by Geoffrey of Monmouth (circa 1136)
  • French stories of courtly love in medieval romances (such as Tristram and Iseult, or Lancelot and Gwenevere)
  • Religious allegories about the quest for the holy grail, such as the Queste du Sainte-Graal (c. 1210)
  • Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Parzival (c. 1205)
  • Legends of King Mark of Cornwall, Tristan, and Iseult, such as the eleventh-century poems of Eilhart von Oberg and Thomas d’Angleterre, Beroul’s The Romance of Tristan, the anonymous La folie Tristan de Berne, and Gottfried Von Strassburg’s Tristan (c. 1205)
  • Layamon’s Brut (c. 1200)
  • The anonymous Alliterative Morte Arthur and the Stanzaic Morte Arthur (c. 1360)
  • The Pearl Poet’s Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (c. 1375)
  • Chaucer’s “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” (c. 1385)
  • Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur (1469)
  • Spenser’s Faerie Queene (1590-96)
  • Scott’s Bridal of Triermain (1813)
  • Peacock’s “The Misfortunes of Elphin” (1829)
  • Morris’s The Defense of Guinevere
  • Tennyson’s The Lady of Shalott (1832)
  • Tennyson’s Idylls of the King (1885)
  • Mark Twain’s A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (1889)
  • Wagner’s operas
  • E. A. Robinson’s MerlinLancelot, and Tristram (1915-25)
  • T. H. White’s The Sword in the Stone and The Once and Future King
  • Marion Zimmer-Bradley’s feminist/revisionist tales such as The Mists of Avalon
  • A legion of popular films, cartoons, graphic novels, and works of fantasy literature.

List prepared by Dr. L. Kip Wheeler




Inferno by Dante Aligheri-1320

While I was falling back to the low place, before mine eyes appeared one who through long silence seemed hoarse. When I saw him in the great desert, “Have pity on me!” I cried to him, “whatso thou art, or shade or real man.” He answered me: “Not man; man once I was, and my parents were Lombards, and Mantuans by country both. I was born sub Julio, though late, and I lived at Rome under the good Augustus, in the time of the false and lying gods. Poet was I, and sang of that just son of Anchises who came from Troy after proud Ilion had been burned. But thou, why returnest thou to so great annoy? Why dost thou not ascend the delectable mountain which is the source and cause of every joy?

Dracula by Bram Stoker-1897

This then was the Un-Dead home of the King-Vampire, to whom so many more were due. Its emptiness spoke eloquent to make certain what I knew. Before I began to restore these women to their dead selves through my awful work, I laid in Dracula’s tomb some of the Wafer, and so banished him from it, Un-Dead, forever. Then began my terrible task, and I dreaded it. Had it been but one, it had been easy, comparative. But three! To begin twice more after I had been through a deed of horror; for if it was terrible with the sweet Miss Lucy, what would it not be with these strange ones who had survived through centuries, and who had been strengthened by the passing of the years; who would, if they could, have fought for their foul lives..

Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka-1915

One morning, when Gregor Samsa woke from troubled dreams, he found himself transformed in his bed into a horrible vermin. He lay on his armour-like back, and if he lifted his head a little he could see his brown belly, slightly domed and divided by arches into stiff sections. The bedding was hardly able to cover it and seemed ready to slide off any moment. His many legs, pitifully thin compared with the size of the rest of him, waved about helplessly as he looked.

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