Excalibur, Sword of King Arthur
Legend of King Arthur
Fiction or Fact ?
We have heard so much about King
Arthur in our contemporary legends and stories that it is hard not to believe in
the mystical court of Camelot with its intrigues and magic. Yet King Arthur is lost
in the mists of time in written documentation. Was he a legendary figure or a historical
figure? An actual early British leader may have been the inspiration which led to
the legends as this man's feats were remarkable.
For those who seek the historical man, I present to you Artorius, Dux Bellorum, of Briton, a soldier and valiant leader of men. He was a simple soldier who was documented as leading 12 battles in the 6th century, the most famous being a battle called The Battle of Mount Badon. He is never referred to as 'Rex', which means 'King' in Latin, but as 'Dux Bellorum', which means "Leader of Battles". He was apparently a man of legendary skill and leadership who is credited with killing 960 men on his own during this battle. The Anglo-Saxon army was soundly defeated and it was a great victory for the Roman-Britons. Another significant battle was his last called the Battle of Cambron, dated 537-539, where Artorius dies along with Medraut (Mordred).
The most common form of communication in the late 5th and early 6th century was the bards who embellished their songs and tales. This could have been the beginning of the mythic character that regales our hearts with his bravery and life, King Arthur of the Britons.
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