First published in 1938, this study explores the reception of the mythology of King Arthur by modern poets and playwrights. More specifically, the author explores the lineage of the legendary material since the first edition of Malory in 1485, exploring a vast range of artists who have made use of it: Spenser, Milton and Dryden, Wordsworth, Tennyson, Hardy, Matthew Arnold, and even Wagner.
The conclusion is that although the myths have never occupied as central a place as the Classical or Biblical heritage, nonetheless the tales of King Arthur will continue to encapsulate romantic ideals and aspirations.
Table of Contents
1. Introductory 2. Arthur in the Chronicles and in Malory 3. Arthur in the Sixteenth, Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries: Spenser, Milton, Dryden 4. Arthur in Modern Times: Scott, Tennyson, Masefield 5. Gawain 6. Merlin 7. Lancelot 8. The Welsh Tradition 9. The Holy Grail: Earlier Versions 10. The Holy Grail: Modern Versions 11. Balin and Balan 12. Wagner: Parsifal, Lohengrin, Tristan 13. Tristan: Sources and Malory 14. Tristan: Tennyson and Swinburne 15. Tristan: Other Modern Versions 16. The Arthurian Legend in Satire 17. Summary and Conclusion Appendices: A: Chronological Summary of Original Poems, Plays and Prose Works after 14855 which have Arthurian Subjects B: The Arthurian Legend in the Decorative Arts C: List of Important Reference Books including Texts