was arthur a king or just a battle commander
explorations in arthurian history
the figure of arthur begins as a war hero, the praises of whom are sung in war poems by the celts and the welsh. y gododdin celebrates one particularly brave warrior, then says he was no arthur. the triads are full of wonderful, courageous things arthur did.
the most important early source for arthurs deeds is historia brittonum, written by the monk nennius in the 9th century. nennius calls arthur dux bellorum and tells us of 12 great battles arthur fought. although nennius tells us the location of each battle, those locations are hard to come by these days. scholars are still arguing over the locations. even the agreed-on locations suggest that arthur got around--literally--from scotland to the lowlands of wessex to wales.
he fought everywhere. he won great victories. a strong tradition has him a roman heldover who uses his knowledge of cavalry to rout the saxons ti...
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