Prose, Poetry, and Tales of the Past

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Medieval Literature - The Dark Ages  and the Bards

English Medieval literature had, so far as we know, no existence until Christian times of the Dark Ages when Latin was the language of English literature. The Anglo-Saxon’s saga was initially passed by word of mouth from one generation to another by English, Welsh and Irish bards. The origins of King Arthur’s stories is attributed to older Welsh legends and Celtic Myths told by the Bards, who contributed to Medieval literature.


-The Romantic Arthurian Legend

Tales told by the Bards were transferred into book form, and the romantic stories of the Arthurian legend and the ideals of courtly love became part of Medieval literature. The primary source of information about King Arthur and the Arthurian Legend is written by a Welsh cleric and author called Geoffrey of Monmouth. He wrote a fictional book called Historia Regum Britanniae King's of Britain in 1136. Other stories about King Arthur and the Arthurian Legend were written in the Welsh  'Black Book of Caernarvon' in 1250. Other books called Historia Brittonum by Nennius, the Annales Cambriae, the Chronicon Anglicanum, and the Welsh Mabinogion also references the Arthurian Legend and King Arthur.


Alchin, L.K.

Medieval Life and Times

e.g., Retrieved January 16, 2009, from

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