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Old November 10th, 2012, 01:57 AM   #61

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I resume this thread to add a suggestion about the epic battle at Camlann.

One of the most repeated ideas is that this place should to be identified with the Roman Castrum at Camboglanna.

It's a typical castle of the Roman age and the dimensions are also very regular [120 x 120]. Its location in the the north, today Castlesteads, makes it really a remote place for a so important battle.

In fact, one of the counterarguments about this identification is just the position of the fortress. Why to go so north to fight the last battle?

If this was the right historical path to follow, I should add an arrow to my "migrating Arthurian court" from Wales to north, or may be it was after such a defeat that the Roman British power decided to limit its sphere of influence to the Welsh region. [Always in the field of the hypothesis, of course].

In any case, is credible that Camboglanna was among the places of the main battles of the ending Roman British civitas agains the invaders and the Barbarians in the north?

Some links:

http://www.iromans.co.uk/castlesteads

http://www.dur.ac.uk/resources/archa...stlesteads.pdf
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Old November 10th, 2012, 04:47 AM   #62

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Arthur was not a king until Geoffery of Monmouth reinvented him in his spectacularly fictional History of the Kings of Britain in the 12th century. Even his contemporary scholars said Geoffery was talking out of his backside. He may well be an amalgam of the various Arthur's found in the historical record (I know of nine) who were each credited with various deeds, some impressive, others not.

Camelot is one of the mythos inventions of Chretien De Troyes, a storywriter of the middle ages who specialised in Arthurian tales (he also invented the Grail, though he died before he told us what it was, and thirty years later Robert De Boron rewrote the story to christianise the Grail, creating the association with the Cup of the Last Supper - all fictional props for a story that have become 'real' in peoples minds)

There is a possibility that Chretien knew about Camelodunum and used that as inspiration but there is no real connection between the supposed castle and any site in England or elsewhere.

Gildas in fact does not mention Arthur at all although he does give one tantalising hint that one of his british tyrants, Cunoglasus, was 'the Bear's chariot driver' in his younger days (Arth is a root wood meaning 'Bear').

The overriding message of folklore is not of a chivalrous king at all. Arthur comes across as a violent loose cannon who nonetheless get rewarded for his service. Nennius refers to himn as Dux Bellorum ("Duke of Battles") which is an indicator that Romano-British society still employed roman titles and positions even though the islands were split into m.inor kingdoms.

Quinevere is as historical as Arthur (he apparently freed her from abduction by siege assault), but I'm afraid Lancelot was another invention of Chretien de Troyes.

Last edited by caldrail; November 10th, 2012 at 04:54 AM.
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Old November 10th, 2012, 05:08 AM   #63
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One of the first mentions of him in poetry calls him 'emperor', which suggest he was a battle-leader proclaimed by his troops in victory - however small the forces they remembered that drill. I suspect he was Ambrosius Aurelianus dressed in a bearskin for a 'signum' and called 'Arth' (bear) by his British-speaking soldiers. As to all the other codswallop, it makes for good stories, if you like that sort of thing.
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Old November 10th, 2012, 08:06 AM   #64

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Lancelot is a so well built personage that its historical reality is difficult to believe, anyway sometime it happens that the oddity is real ...

A part this, the entire Arthurian legend has been enlarged, improved and adapted many times until to reach a very fascinating image of a perfect King with a perfect Court, but with human defects ready to ruin all [a story ready for a novel].
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Old November 10th, 2012, 08:27 AM   #65
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The poem I mentiond (Gereint filius Erbin) was evidently written when the Germans hadn't yet invaded Devon, which takes it back, I think, to the days when the troops remembered Rome:

en Llogporth y gueleis y Arthur
guir deur kynynint a dur
ameraudur lliwiaudir llawur.

En Llogporth y llas y Gereint
guir deur a adir Diwneint
a chin rillethid ve llatysseint.

At Llongborth I saw Arthur,
where brave men struck down with steel,
an emperor, a director of toil.

At Llongborth Gereint was killed,
and brave men from Devon's lowland;
and before they were killed, they killed.
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Old November 11th, 2012, 08:37 AM   #66

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I am no linguist Iolo , but some of the old translations i see baffle me.

for example the last line of the 2nd verse " a chin rillethid ve llatysseint " if that says and before they were killed, they killed.... should we not at least see the word representing "killed " twice on this line ?????

If Geraint was a royal person and chin (Kin ?) and ethid (something to do with ethos, ethnicity ??) then could the last word not be more like what it actually looks like maybe Lady Saint.......? ad that this is saying Geraint was kin to a highly placed Lady.
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Old November 11th, 2012, 08:52 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ib-issi View Post
I am no linguist Iolo , but some of the old translations i see baffle me.

for example the last line of the 2nd verse " a chin rillethid ve llatysseint " if that says and before they were killed, they killed.... should we not at least see the word representing "killed " twice on this line ?????

If Geraint was a royal person and chin (Kin ?) and ethid (something to do with ethos, ethnicity ??) then could the last word not be more like what it actually looks like maybe Lady Saint.......? ad that this is saying Geraint was kin to a highly placed Lady.
'Rilletid' and 'llatysseint' (Note the bits that relate to our modern 'lladd' - to kill). The 'ysseint' bit is just a third person plural verb ending. 'Cyn' means 'before' still. No - allowing for my (slight) dyslexia the words and the translation are correct.
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Old November 11th, 2012, 01:17 PM   #68

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I sit corrected Iolo , i wish i had time to learn some welsh ,i would love to be able to read some of these old tales in the original, but thank you for your time , and the explanation

just noticed the similarity of your word llad for kill , did the Welsh write the lliad ?, a good title for that tale would be " the Killings"

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Old November 12th, 2012, 04:42 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ib-issi View Post
I sit corrected Iolo , i wish i had time to learn some welsh ,i would love to be able to read some of these old tales in the original, but thank you for your time , and the explanation

just noticed the similarity of your word llad for kill , did the Welsh write the lliad ?, a good title for that tale would be " the Killings"
It would, but, alas, no!
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Old November 12th, 2012, 05:02 AM   #70

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I imagine it's likely that Arthur was a Roman officer who held out for a while against the Saxons. It's interesting that a civilised society could fall to pagan barbarians and that the barbarians had no interest in living in towns./bothered to rebuild them. It's also interesting that the local Britons, after the legions had been recalled, hired barbarians to fight the barbarians rather than create their own military force.

After Vortigern went on the rampage and the Saxons started taking land things soon fell apart. If only more sources other than Bede et al could be found, it is a fascinating and rather complex period of history.

Vortigern Vortigern
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