King Arthur
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TINTAGEL - KING ARTHUR COUNTRY
KING ARTHUR
King Arthur by Michael Williams....The Arthurian Centre
Links To Interesting Web Sites

 
 


According to one legend the infant Arthur was thrown by the waves on the beach by Merlin's cave. King Arthur's time in history was in the fifth century. He is identified with the known history of a Celtic chieftain of the period who led his countrymen in the West in their resistance against Saxon invaders.
Many believe that Arthur was of a mixed Roman and British parentage. It is always difficult to prove if Arthur did exist but certainly there was
a great warrior in the West of England who had some kind of fortress where Tintagel Castle, (King Arthur's Castle) is today.
The original fortress has gone but archaeologists have found proof in their diggings on the Tintagel Castle, that fifth century citizens lived on the site.
The replacement Castle was built between 1230-1236 & is now nearly 800 years old. Within two hundred years the Castle was in ruins & remains so to this day.
Earl Richard of Cornwall paid for the construction of the Castle & it is owned by the Duke of Cornwall.
For many years it has been managed by English Heritage, who are the agents for the duke.

 

 
A Fascinating Article On King Arthur by Michael Williams
Tintagelweb would like to thank Michael for this exclusive article
 
 

KING ARTHUR by Michael Williams
 
 


King Arthur is a fascinating historical story. For hundreds of years Arthur people have been telling versions of Arthur, but they are more profound than just good yarns.
Only a powerful theme, only something answering to some deep sense of British character - and need - would have been sustained for so long.

When we think of Arthur, we do not think of just one character. In our mind's eye we see a whole theatre of people and places, themes and ideals.
We can almost hear the clash of sword in battle. There alongside the King is Guinivere, his Queen, and his wise man Merlin. We see Camelot: royal mysterious Camelot.
We see too Lancelot, pledged to noble aims but ... there is the round table., the magical sword Excalibur and a great deal more.
The ifs and buts: the impossibility of it all, and yet the probability.

More than eight centuries ago a Welsh monk, residing in Oxford. wrote the first bestseller in the history of British publishing.
The author was Geoffrey of Monmouth and his handwritten book was titled 'History of the Kings of Britain'. Only after Geoffrey of Monmouth - and indeed because of him - did the Arthurian theme really come to life. The Welshman enabled succeeding writers to develop and expand. We in Cornwall naturally think Geoffrey chose wisely in selecting Tintagel as the birthplace of Arthur . A dramatic fortress on a wild stretch of coastline, it is a place to fire the imagination.

Cornwall has so many Arthur place names - or locations with a related Arthurian story - that we feel bound to ask the question: ' Can there be smoke without fire?'

There is a story which we like to think is true. It dates back to the thirteenth century when a certain abbot was speaking to a congregation of monks.
Many of his congregation had fallen asleep; some were even snoring. In desperation, the abbot raised his voice and declared: 'I will tell you something new and great. There was once a mighty king whose name was Arthur ...' Those eighteen words had an electrifying effect. His congregation, who could not stay awake to hear his wise thoughts on holy matters, were agog at the mention of that magical name: Arthur.

Here in Cornwall we know something about the strength of feeling on matters concerning Arthur. In 1146 some canons of Laon Cathedral were in Cornwall an a fund-raising mission. They came to Bodmin. They brought with them an image of Our Lady which they believed had the ability to heal the sick. A man with a withered arm came hoping to be healed.  'Just as the Bretons are wont to wrangle with the French on behalf of King Arthur, the man began to dispute with one of our company, saying Arthur was still living.'
A furore erupted, 'it came to bloodshed' and no cure could be performed.

In Cornwall we therefore understand there is often no grey area in many an Arthurian debate.
The blood and broken bones of that market place in Bodmin are vivid reminders of that fact.

There is one man who has no hesitation on the subject of Arthur.
Paul Broadhurst, diligent researcher into Arthurian matters and the author of an excellent book, titled 'Tintagel and the Arthurian Mythos', says this: "There is no doubt that there were many kings called Arthur and this has caused the confusion. Arthur is a Kingship title like Pharaoh or Caesar."

In his thoughtful, thought-provoking book Mr Broadhurst has included a map of the Round Table of Cornish Power Houses - and there among them is Tintagel Castle.
He has written "This arc of sites are grouped around the central point of Stowe's Pound (on Bodmin Moor above The Hurlers) suggests a circular pattern or sphere of influence."

I happen to believe the case for ghosts is so overwhelming it scarcely warrants any form of intelligent opposition. The thousands and thousands of sightings cannot all be the vision of the neurotic or the charlatan. In my researches into the subject, I have interviewed more than two hundred people, and some of them are-or were - very down-to-earth types. So, if we accept that the ghost of Arthur has been seen at Tintagel we must therefore presume, reasonably enough, that Arthur once lived.

A few years ago Fate kindly put me an a particular path. and it is quite possible I have, in fact, met the "real" Arthur. That path is called psycho-expansion. This technique allows people to explore and develop their sense of awareness, a technique which enables the mind to move in time and space. Personally, I have not undergone psycho-expansion, but I have interviewed people in the state of regression - travelling back in time. Those critics who cannot accept reincarnation, will be unable to accept psycho-expansion because the subject, in regressing, goes back to a former life or lives - some say they also have the ability to go forward in time and can therefore tell us what lies in the thing we call the future.

The most remarkable claim inside Barney Camfield's group is that one member was King Arthur in a former life. A Westcountry housewife with brown eyes, 1 have interviewed her twice. On both occasions she regressed to Arthur's time. She sees nothing strange or inconsistent in that she once was a man.  'Some people come back to this life many times,' she explained, ' and in very different forms ... there seem to be no rules, save those of cause and effect.' She went on to explain: 'Arthur had this great charisma. But he wasn't the chivalrous character that some of the story-tellers would have us believe. As a young man he was keen on women and fathered as many as fifteen children in various parts of Britain by various women.'

Historically, the Victorian era was an important watershed in Arthurian matters. W.H. Auden called Tennyson the man who 'had the finest ear, perhaps. of any English poet.'  Fact is Tennyson breathed great vitality into the whole Arthurian romance. 'Poetry', as he once reflected, 'is shot-silk, with many glancing colours. Every reader must find his own interpretation according to his ability, and according to his sympathy with the poet.

'The power of romance is that it fits itself anew to every period. Each one takes up again the underlying legend of Arthur and more or less deludes itself with the nation that the latest version is the truest. But every century must still read its own emotion. and its own colours into the past.'
Those words still have a truly relevant ring. 'Arthur lives on...' That is the feeling we get an we go from place to place.

Moreover, on such a journey we, ourselves, may change, for Arthur has always embodied the highest, the best aims of the human spirit. and many of his battles against the Saxon invaders are symbolic of our own battles in life. The search for the Holy Grail is, in fact, our inner journey.

 In King Arthur Country in Cornwally co-author and Bossiney Books editor Brenda Duxbury, recalled the magic of the atmosphere of Scilly. those Island outposts, a Cornish contender for Avalon when she reflected: 'When you have left behind the pressures and demands of everyday life-that grosser living that takes so much of our time - and in your search arrive at these final outposts, there you have to stay, for there is no place beyond. And as you fall under the spell of these islands, you realise more and more that now there is no other place to search for the Holy Grail - all our problems have to be resolved within ourselves.' 

Michael Williams

 


King Arthur Statue
 

Camelford, Cornwall. PL32 9TT. UK
Tel: 01840 212450 E-mail: joeparsons@btconnect.com Website: www.arthur-online.co.uk
'King Arthur’s Stone’ & Last Battlesite c. AD 540
Part of ‘ King Arthur’s Cornwall Discovery Trail
'


On the B3314 at Slaughterbridge, near Camelford.
Follow the brown tourism signs to ‘ King Arthur’s Stone’ from the A39 or B3266

** Look out for the new ‘ King Arthur’s Cornwall Discovery Trail’ leaflet **

 

  • Land of Arthur Exhibition, brass rubbing, Grail trail & video.
  • Shop selling local gifts & refreshments.
  • Beautiful woodland and riverside walks to 6th c. Stone & Battlefield.
  • Play & picnic area with wooden castle. Dogs welcome.
  • Ongoing archaeological dig.

Web Sites Of Interest About King Arthur
Your Arthurian Quest For King Arthur
King Arthur -Man of The Age

 Arthur And Tintagel
King Arthur and the Early British Kingdoms: History and Legend
The Mystic Realm of King Arthur
King Arthur And The Holy Grail
      


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