King Arthur Pages
Marriage to Guinevere
Drawn from the Stone or received from the Lady of
Thomas Malory’s Morte d’Arthur has both versions
with both swords called Excalibur. Other versions
have two different swords.
Excalibur or Caliburn (Caledfwlch in Welsh and mentioned in the Mabinogion) is the legendary sword of King Arthur, sometimes attributed with magical powers or associated with the rightful sovereignty of Britain.
Sometimes Excalibur and the Sword in the Stone
(the proof of Arthur's lineage) are said to be the same weapon, but in most versions they are considered separate. One Theory postulates that the name Excalibur was originally derived from the Latin phrase Ex calce liberatus, "liberated from the stone.” The sword was associated with the Arthurian legend very early.
There are two originally separate legends about the sword's origin. The first is the "Sword in the Stone" legend, originally appearing in Robert de Boron's poem Merlin, in which Excalibur can only be drawn from the stone by Arthur, the rightful king.
comes from the later Post-Vulgate Suite du Merlin,
which was taken up by Sir Thomas Malory. Here, Arthur
receives Excalibur from the Lady of the
As Arthur lies dying, he tells Sir Bedivere (Sir Griflet in some versions) to return his sword to the lake by throwing it into the water. Bedivere is
reluctant to throw away such a precious sword, so twice he only pretends to do so. Each time, Arthur asks him to describe what he saw. When Bedivere tells him the sword simply fell into the water, Arthur scolds him harshly. Finally, Bedivere throws Excalibur into the lake. Before the sword strikes the water's surface, a hand reaches up to grasp it and pulls it under. Arthur leaves on a
death barge with the three queens to Avalon, where as
his legend says, he will one day return to lead in
Malory records both versions of the legend in his Le Morte d'Arthur, and confusingly calls both swords Excalibur.
King Arthur &
The Round Table
Merlin & The Tree of Life
Merlin the Magician
Born circa 400 CE ; Welsh: Myrddin;
Latin: Merlinus; English: Merlin.
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