|King Arthur is the figure at the heart of the Arthurian legends.
Was King Arthur a historical figure or merely legend? Modern scholars
have assumed that there was some actual person at the heart of the legends,
though not of course a king with a band of knights in shining armor.
The design of an order of the best knights in the world that figures in
the major versions of the legend from Malory to Tennyson to T. H. White.
Central to the myth is the downfall of Arthur's kingdom.
King Arthur was the son of Uther and defeated the barbarians in a
dozen battles. Subsequently, he conquered a wide empire and eventually
went to war with the Romans. He returned home on learning that his nephew
Mordred had raised the standard of rebellion and taken Guinevere, the queen.
After landing, his final battle took place.
The saga built up over the centuries. Malory's Le Morte D'Arthur
would become what many considered the standard 'history' of Arthur. In
this, we are told of Arthur's conception when Uther approached Igraine
who was made, by Merlin's sorcery, to resemble her husband. The child was
given to Ector to be raised in secret. After Uther's death there was no
king ruling all England. Merlin had placed a sword in a stone, saying that
whoever drew it out would be king.