By Monica Brzezinski Potkay; Recorded Books, Inc
Presents an outline of the numerous alternative ways writers of fiction and nonfiction have imagined, and reimagined, the article often called the Grail, from its starting as a strong literary image within the past due twelfth and early thirteenth centuries as much as the current time whilst it keeps to fascinate many that look for the best religious knowledge it promises.
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Extra info for Eternal chalice : the grail in literature and legend
Morgaine in the Great Rite represents the Goddess, who in turn represents the land Arthur will rule. The rite guarantees agricultural fertility. Here Morgaine conceives Mordred, who will help bring down Camelot. B. Arthur rules in peace and stability for many years; the events of his realm are narrated by the women of Arthurian legend: Arthur’s mother, Igraine, raised on Avalon; his wife, Gwenhwyfar, a Christian guilt-ridden over her love for Lancelot; and especially Morgaine, who recounts 55 her love/hate relationship to Arthur.
Several early medieval saints’ lives show Arthur interacting with holy men connected with the history of Glastonbury. Around 1130, Caradoc of Llancarfan’s Life of Gildas makes Gildas—the British writer who is the font of Arthurian legend—a contemporary of Arthur, described as a tyrant who besieges Glastonbury because an abducted Guinevere was being held there by Melwas, king of the Summer Country; this tale may be the inspiration for the Lancelot-Guinevere adultery story that later becomes so central to Arthurian lore.
A fire at the monastery in 1184 destroyed its ancient wattle chapel of St. Mary, the goal of many pilgrims, and the monks needed money for rebuilding, as well as a new shrine. Relics always attracted pilgrims, and the remains of Arthur—not a saint but a famous king—would entice them and their offerings. The fraud was widely accepted in medieval England, at least by those of Saxon or Norman descent. For the Welsh, con58 quered first by the Anglo-Saxons and then by the Normans, Arthur was not dead; they awaited the return of their national redeemer, the famous “once and future king” who would come from Avalon to save them from their foreign oppressors.