The Druids and King Arthur

A New View of Early Britain


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About the Book

An exploration into the beliefs and origins of the Druids, this book examines the role the Druids may have played in the story of King Arthur and the founding of Britain. It explains how the Druids originated in eastern Europe around 850 B.C., bringing to early Britain a cult of an underworld deity, a belief in reincarnation, and a keen interest in astronomy. The work concludes that Arthur was originally a Druid cult figure and that the descendants of the Druids may have founded the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex. The research draws upon a number of sources, including medieval Welsh tales, the archaeology of Stonehenge’s Salisbury Plain, the legends surrounding the founding of Britain, the cult of the Thracian Horseman, the oracle of Dodona, popular Arthurian mythology, and the basic principles of prehistoric astronomy.

About the Author(s)

Robin Melrose is a retired senior lecturer in English and linguistics at England’s University of Portsmouth. He lives on the Isle of Wight in southern England.

Bibliographic Details

Robin Melrose
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 220
Bibliographic Info: 11 illustrations, 14 maps, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2011
pISBN: 978-0-7864-5890-5
eISBN: 978-0-7864-6005-2
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction      1

1. The Dragon Star      5
2. The Severed Head and the Bone Cave: Religion in Roman Britain      18
3. Arthur’s Voyage: The Spoils of Annwn      42
4. Magic Mounds, Sea People and Shape-Shifters: The Wonderful World of the Mabinogion      66
5. Mounds, Mounds, Mounds: Rubbish Heaps, Hillforts and the Prehistory of Southern England      86
6. Visitors from the East      114
7. Brutus of Troy Town      155
8. Arthur, King of Wessex?      168

Notes      193
Bibliography      203
Index      211