Howard Pyle illustration from the 1903 edition of The Story of King Arthur and His Knights

Journal of the Sydney Society for Scottish History: Vol 14 (2013)


This paper will explore how motifs of Scotland and Scottishness are portrayed in medieval versions of the Arthurian Legend. I will discuss how the context of what is alleged to be the first literary reference to Arthur, found in a poem, dated to the sixth century by scholars mourning the death of warriors from the kingdoms of Gododdin and Rheged in Southern Scotland, is very different to the portrayal of the Scottish faction, King Lot of the Orkneys and Lothian and his family, in Sir Thomas Malory’s Marte Darthur, written in 1470. Whereas in Y gadaddin, warriors settled in the southern regions of Scotland, are praised and compared to an Arthur, who is portrayed as the ultimate exponent of fighting prowess, in Sir Thomas Malory’s Morte D’arthur, it is the family of Lot who set in motion the events that lead to Arthur’s final battle on Salisbury Plain where he is mortally wounded by his son, Mordred, and his glorious civilization is swept away.

Although the first mention of Arthur could be in a Scottish poem, by the end of the medieval period, the Scottish characters in Malory have an ambiguous status. To arrive at how this literary turnaround occurred, the history and context of Arthurian literature must be explored and this is a journey that takes us throughout Britain. It only by following the development of the legend that we can come to understand how the Arthurian legend, whose literary life seems to begin in Scotland, is fully integrated into the literary lore of England and how the Scottish characters associated with the legend are problematized.

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Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries had its humble beginnings as an idea of a few artisans and craftsmen who enjoy performing with live steel fighting. As well as a patchwork quilt tent canvas. Most had prior military experience hence the name.


Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries.


Vendertainers that brought many things to a show and are know for helping out where ever they can.

As well as being a place where the older hand made items could be found made by them and enjoyed by all.

We expanded over the years to become well known at what we do. Now we represent over 100 artisans and craftsman that are well known in their venues and some just starting out. Some of their works have been premiered in TV, stage and movies on a regular basis.

Specializing in Medieval, Goth , Stage Film, BDFSM and Practitioner.

Patchwork Merchant Mercenaries a Dept of, Ask For IT was started by artists and former military veterans, and sword fighters, representing over 100 artisans, one who made his living traveling from fair to festival vending medieval wares. The majority of his customers are re-enactors, SCAdians and the like, looking to build their kit with period clothing, feast gear, adornments, etc.

Likewise, it is typical for these history-lovers to peruse the tent (aka mobile store front) and, upon finding something that pleases the eye, ask "Is this period?"

A deceitful query!! This is not a yes or no question. One must have a damn good understanding of European history (at least) from the fall of Rome to the mid-1600's to properly answer. Taking into account, also, the culture in which the querent is dressed is vitally important. You see, though it may be well within medieval period, it would be strange to see a Viking wearing a Caftan...or is it?

After a festival's time of answering weighty questions such as these, I'd sleep like a log! Only a mad man could possibly remember the place and time for each piece of kitchen ware, weaponry, cloth, and chain within a span of 1,000 years!! Surely there must be an easier way, a place where he could post all this knowledge...

Traveling Within The World is meant to be such a place. A place for all of these artists to keep in touch and directly interact with their fellow geeks and re-enactment hobbyists, their clientele.

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