Tag Archives: arthurian

Scene Retelling – The Once and Future King – Part 4

Young Knight - Dutch School

Young Knight – Dutch School

This is part 4 of a retelling of a scene from The Once and Future King book series, by T.H. White. To read the preceding part of this story sequence, click here.

What is done, is done

Mordred’s sword did not do the full task of slaying the creature, and the poor beast writhed in pain. Gawain raised his sword and followed Mordred’s action, and then all together the four boys set about the work of finishing the creature off. Continue reading

Scene Retelling – The Once and Future King – Part 3

This is part 3 of a retelling of a scene from The Once and Future King book series, by T.H. White.

A maiden’s power

When a unicorn feels the presence of an innocent young maiden in its wood it responds by coming to greet her.

For our young maiden, Meg, it was an experience beyond expectation. Its neck was full of grace and power, and its mane flowed as though it was underwater. She stopped squirming and dried her eyes as the unicorn trotted through the tall grass towards her. Continue reading

Scene Retelling – The Once and Future King – Part 2

The Once and Future King - Book Cover

The Once and Future King – Book Cover

This is a continuation. To read the first part of this story, click here.

They hatch a plan

One day, while peering out the window watching their mother in the courtyard below the four boys overheard shouting with her servants. It appeared that in her desire to prove to herself she was still a beautiful young maiden she had tried to hunt down a unicorn–a feat which can only be accomplished by a virgin. Their mother, of course, wasn’t, and so spent the entire night in the forest waiting for a unicorn that would never come. She was angry at this, and likely embarrassed in front of the servants, and the sound of her shouting drew particular interest to her boys.

They had not seen her nor spoken with her more than a sentence or two for most of their lives. They felt that there must be something wrong with them for her to not spend any time raising her children. Hearing her so upset gave them an idea of how they could prove their worth. Continue reading

The Unicorn is Attacked - Tapestry

Scene Retelling – The Once and Future King – Part 1

This scene from T.H. White’s The Once and Future King I read years ago stays in my memory. Today I’m retelling it in my own words.

The Unicorn is Attacked - Tapestry

Detail – The Unicorn is Attacked, ca. 1495–1505

Mordred and Gawain had messed up childhoods

I’ve always loved this scene from T.H. White’s Arthurian series. I haven’t read it in several years and am not going to bother rereading it now, since it’s more fun to just tell it from memory.

Want to skip straight to reading the scene? Scroll down to the next header!

To give you a quick background on what you’re about to see, this scene takes place at the beginning of the second book in the series. Elsewhere, Arthur has already drawn the sword from the stone, and is learning how to be king.

His nephews, on the other hand, are still children. They live on the island of Orkney with their mother, who is a witch–the bad sort of witch.

The children by name are Gawain, Gahareth, Agravain, and Mordred.

Gawain is the big, tall, brawny and brave one. He’s a bit dumb, has red curly hair, and enjoys pushing the others around.

Gahareth and Agravain are complete opposites, but we won’t go into too many details for the sake of brevity.

Now Mordred is the odd one. You see, Mordred is supposedly King Arthur’s “nephew”–at least, that’s what everyone thinks.  In truth, he’s more than that: he’s also King Arthur’s bastard incestuous son. Continue reading

Guinevere Goes A-Maying

154-Medieval-Guinevere-A-Maying-Drawing

 

Guinevere gets a moment alone in the wood while she and the knights of the table round are a-Maying.

What would it feel like to have the two most powerful members of the opposite sex vying for your attention day by day?

“So it befell in the month of May, Queen Guenever called unto her knights of the Table Round; and she gave them warning that early upon the morrow she would ride a-Maying into woods and fields besides Westminster. And I warn you tat there be none of you but that he be well horsed, and that ye all be clothed in green, outher in silk outher in cloth; and I shall bring with me ten ladies, and every knight shall have a lady behind him, and every knight shall have a squire and two yeomen; and I will that ye all be well horsed. So they made them ready in the freshest manner… And so upon the morn they took their horses with the queen, and rode a-Maying in woods and meadows as it pleased them, in great joy and delights; for the queen had cast to have been again with King Arthur at the furthest by ten of the clock, and so was that time her purpose.”

– Sir Thomas Malory, “Le Morte d’Arthur”

Mysterious Sketch of Chinese Emperor Resembles King Arthur

Researchers recently found a sketch buried in a Mongolian monastery that resembles a European man.

The head garb worn by the man is that of a Chinese emperor.

Some are now asking if this is a clue as to the flight of King Arthur upon the fall of his once-great kingdom.

153-King-Arthur-Asianified

“Yet some men say in many parts of England that King Arthur is not dead, but had by the will of our Lord Jesu into another place; and men say that he shall come again, and he shall win the holy cross.”

– Sir Thomas Mallory, Le Morte d’Arthur