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King Arthur And Merlin Essay

Merlin is a popular character when it comes to the stories of King Arthur andother stories dealing with the Arthurian age. In most of the stories writtenabout him they refer to him as the magician, kingmaker, and prophet.

We alsoknow him as the one that takes care of Arthur from birth, who set him on thethrone, who established him there in the early days of his reign as king. Whilemost books agree that he knew King Arthur and watched over him from birth, whatwas he really, was he a magician with a beard in a tall pointed hat and longcloak with a magic wand that performed magic or was he a prophet that could forsee the future as portrayed in the “Crystal Cave” or was he something else. In the “Crystal Cave” Merlin is portrayed as a prophet that can see into thefuture with the help of the pattern of crystals in the cave that he discovered. Here he is not portrayed as a magician but rather it shows us his technicalabilities, like when he moved “Hele Stone” of Stonehenge with the machine hebuilt, rather then raising the whole stone or causing it to fly through the airor float across the sea.

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He is then portrayed as the “kingmaker” when at theend he is given Arthur to raise and teach so he would be ready to take over thethrown when he got older. Merlin may also be known as a lover “LastEnchantment”, when while under Arthur’s rule, Merlin retires to thewilderness and there is attacked y a subtle poison given to him by Morgause, heis later nursed back to health by a young girl named Ninian. After that Ninianbecomes Merlin’s pupil until in the end when his powers begin to fade and shetakes over the role of guardian of Arthur’s realm. “Merlin’s morepassionate side is also showed in a book written by James Branch Cabell. In thebook titled “Something About Eve” Merlin is summoned along with King Solomonand Odysseus to give an account of himself before the passes ?into the realmsof the otherworld’ to discover the true meaning of his life, here Merlinconfesses that he was happy for a long time in his tower, until he saw hispeople of the Arthurian age begin to break each other and to become filled withhate and lust and barbarity.

But even then he lingers on, happy with his childlove and peace of his tower, only now does he seek enlightenment in theOtherworld, where he might find failure of his dream. “(Stewart, 96) Merlin forwhatever reason does not cease to be concerned with this world and the peoplewho live in it. Merlin’s love of women, sometimes moralized into a sexualweakness, is a reflection of his otherworldly father’s love for his mother. This in turn relates to one of the most ancient mythical themes, and like allMerlinic lore is intimately concerned with both environment and the spiritualintimations found in all religions, magic, and mysticism. Thus the varioussexual convolutions of Merlin in the modern fiction are not merelymisunderstandings of the source of material but are explorations of a universaltheme expressed through the mediating figure of Merlin. Merlin is also seen as ateacher, like in Parke Godwin’s “Firelord”.

Here Merlin is in a senseArthur’s own inner self, able to show him a vision of the future, of the greatking and warrior whose presence draws the very utmost effort from the men whofollow him, the man that Arthur is to become, driven by the Merlin within. InT. H. White’s “The Sword in the Stone” Merlin teaches by example, turningArthur into animal, fish, or bird. Doing so he learns many things, from hisencounter with a great pike that lives beneath the walls of hisfoster-father’s castle, he learns that power for its own sake leads nowhere.

Arthur as a bird discovers that boundaries are an illusion fought over withoutreason. All that he learns allows him to portray his good character as he pullsthe sword from the stone that made him king. Him being a teacher is also seen inthe “Crystal Cave” when he is given Arthur at birth to teach because he didnot have a father that wanted him, and so his mother thought that giving thechild to Merlin would be the wisest thing to do. In Catherine Christians “TheSword and the Flame” it has Merlin arranging for Arthur to acquire his second,more famous sword, Excalibur. Instead of him receiving the sword from the Ladyof the Lake, Merlin assists in its forging by an ancient Smith God from a lumpof meteorite.

“That the shaping of King or sword may extend beyond a singlelifetime is shown in those versions of the story where Merlin or Arthur comeagain, after a long sleep, in Avalon or the Hawthorn Tower, to continue the workleft unfinished at the end of the Arthurian Age. ” (Stewart, 99) When writingabout Merlin there are three aspect that author’s look into, the bright youth,the mad prophet and shaman, and the wise elder. All three are concerned with theinteraction of spiritual and magical powers, with a strong emphasis in the worksof John Cowper-Powys and C. S.

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Lewis. Merlin born of a moral mother and anotherworld spirit according to the chronicles acts as the mediator for deeppowers manifesting through the land into human consciousness. His threefoldappearance is initially that of the lifetime of any person, youth, adulthood,maturity, but into each of these aspects is channeled the most potent dynamicpower, imagery, and mystery of each life phase. As a youth, he is the eternalchild, of spiritual purity, as a mature man he is the wild fervent power ofmagic or transforming consciousness, as an elder he is the epitome of wisdom,learning, transcendent knowledge, and experience. ” In fictional worksunconnected to one another, this coherence out of diversity is apparent andoccasionally the deep ancient god-form appears, the non-human power behind thesemi-human Merlin.

This power may also take a number of shapes. But what isremarkable is that authors of quite different style, cultural background andquality of work may be imaginatively aware of its existence. There is nochronicle source for Merlin as a god or titanic power, only a few hints in earlyWelsh poetry. Later romances and chronicles were divided between the magician ofArthur’s court and the increasingly orthodox image of a diabolical being,though there is no mention of Merlin linked to Arthur in the early sources, andcertainly no question of evil. “(Stewart, 82) Merlin has remained dark andmysterious despite everything.

Yet somehow, none of those who have chosen towrite about him have been able to resist asking the question of whom or what heis. Answers they have come up with are different from author to author,picturing him as god or jester, as a prophet, wiseman, as an old lover as analien being brought to earth on cosmic business, as a wondrous child or as acharlatan and a liar and a madman. But always, between the disguises, we glimpseanother face, that of an old pilgrim and wanderer, sent here long ago to guideand guard the destiny of kings and of men. We perhaps know Merlin best in hismost familiar appearance, him being the wise and foresighted wizard who standsbehind Arthur in the early days of his reign who acts as advisor and councilorto the young king until he himself is ensnared by a beautiful young woman whobecomes his apprentice. The different aspects of Merlin Merlin is a popularcharacter when it comes to the stories of King Arthur and other stories dealingwith the Arthurian age. In most of the stories written about him they refer tohim as the magician, kingmaker, and prophet.

We also know him as the one thattakes care of Arthur from birth, who set him on the throne, who established himthere in the early days of his reign as king. While most books agree that heknew King Arthur and watched over him from birth, what was he really, was he amagician with a beard in a tall pointed hat and long cloak with a magic wandthat performed magic or was he a prophet that could for see the future asportrayed in the “Crystal Cave” or was he something else. In the “CrystalCave” Merlin is portrayed as a prophet that can see into the future with thehelp of the pattern of crystals in the cave that he discovered. Here he is notportrayed as a magician but rather it shows us his technical abilities, likewhen he moved “Hele Stone” of Stonehenge with the machine he built, ratherthen raising the whole stone or causing it to fly through the air or floatacross the sea.

He is then portrayed as the “kingmaker” when at the end heis given Arthur to raise and teach so he would be ready to take over the thrownwhen he got older. Merlin may also be known as a lover “Last Enchantment”,when while under Arthur’s rule, Merlin retires to the wilderness and there isattacked y a subtle poison given to him by Morgause, he is later nursed back tohealth by a young girl named Ninian. After that Ninian becomes Merlin’s pupiluntil in the end when his powers begin to fade and she takes over the role ofguardian of Arthur’s realm. “Merlin’s more passionate side is also showedin a book written by James Branch Cabell. In the book titled “Something AboutEve” Merlin is summoned along with King Solomon and Odysseus to give anaccount of himself before the passes ?into the realms of the otherworld’ todiscover the true meaning of his life, here Merlin confesses that he was happyfor a long time in his tower, until he saw his people of the Arthurian age beginto break each other and to become filled with hate and lust and barbarity. Buteven then he lingers on, happy with his child love and peace of his tower, onlynow does he seek enlightenment in the Otherworld, where he might find failure ofhis dream.

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“(Stewart, 96) Merlin for whatever reason does not cease to beconcerned with this world and the people who live in it. Merlin’s love ofwomen, sometimes moralized into a sexual weakness, is a reflection of hisotherworldly father’s love for his mother. This in turn relates to one of themost ancient mythical themes, and like all Merlinic lore is intimately concernedwith both environment and the spiritual intimations found in all religions,magic, and mysticism. Thus the various sexual convolutions of Merlin in themodern fiction are not merely misunderstandings of the source of material butare explorations of a universal theme expressed through the mediating figure ofMerlin. Merlin is also seen as a teacher, like in Parke Godwin’s “Firelord”. Here Merlin is in a sense Arthur’s own inner self, able to show him a visionof the future, of the great king and warrior whose presence draws the veryutmost effort from the men who follow him, the man that Arthur is to become,driven by the Merlin within.

In T. H. White’s “The Sword in the Stone”Merlin teaches by example, turning Arthur into animal, fish, or bird. Doing sohe learns many things, from his encounter with a great pike that lives beneaththe walls of his foster-father’s castle, he learns that power for its own sakeleads nowhere.

Arthur as a bird discovers that boundaries are an illusion foughtover without reason. All that he learns allows him to portray his good characteras he pulls the sword from the stone that made him king. Him being a teacher isalso seen in the “Crystal Cave” when he is given Arthur at birth to teachbecause he did not have a father that wanted him, and so his mother thought thatgiving the child to Merlin would be the wisest thing to do. In CatherineChristians “The Sword and the Flame” it has Merlin arranging for Arthur toacquire his second, more famous sword, Excalibur.

Instead of him receiving thesword from the Lady of the Lake, Merlin assists in its forging by an ancientSmith God from a lump of meteorite. “That the shaping of King or sword mayextend beyond a single lifetime is shown in those versions of the story whereMerlin or Arthur come again, after a long sleep, in Avalon or the HawthornTower, to continue the work left unfinished at the end of the Arthurian Age. “(Stewart, 99) When writing about Merlin there are three aspect that author’slook into, the bright youth, the mad prophet and shaman, and the wise elder. Allthree are concerned with the interaction of spiritual and magical powers, with astrong emphasis in the works of John Cowper-Powys and C. S. Lewis.

Merlin born ofa moral mother and an otherworld spirit according to the chronicles acts as themediator for deep powers manifesting through the land into human consciousness. His threefold appearance is initially that of the lifetime of any person, youth,adulthood, maturity, but into each of these aspects is channeled the most potentdynamic power, imagery, and mystery of each life phase. As a youth, he is theeternal child, of spiritual purity, as a mature man he is the wild fervent powerof magic or transforming consciousness, as an elder he is the epitome of wisdom,learning, transcendent knowledge, and experience. ” In fictional worksunconnected to one another, this coherence out of diversity is apparent andoccasionally the deep ancient god-form appears, the non-human power behind thesemi-human Merlin.

This power may also take a number of shapes. But what isremarkable is that authors of quite different style, cultural background andquality of work may be imaginatively aware of its existence. There is nochronicle source for Merlin as a god or titanic power, only a few hints in earlyWelsh poetry. Later romances and chronicles were divided between the magician ofArthur’s court and the increasingly orthodox image of a diabolical being,though there is no mention of Merlin linked to Arthur in the early sources, andcertainly no question of evil.

“(Stewart, 82) Merlin has remained dark andmysterious despite everything. Yet somehow, none of those who have chosen towrite about him have been able to resist asking the question of whom or what heis. Answers they have come up with are different from author to author,picturing him as god or jester, as a prophet, wiseman, as an old lover as analien being brought to earth on cosmic business, as a wondrous child or as acharlatan and a liar and a madman. But always, between the disguises, we glimpseanother face, that of an old pilgrim and wanderer, sent here long ago to guideand guard the destiny of kings and of men.

We perhaps know Merlin best in hismost familiar appearance, him being the wise and foresighted wizard who standsbehind Arthur in the early days of his reign who acts as advisor and councilorto the young king until he himself is ensnared by a beautiful young woman whobecomes his apprentice.

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King Arthur And Merlin Essay
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Merlin is a popular character when it comes to the stories of King Arthur andother stories dealing with the Arthurian age. In most of the stories writtenabout him they refer to him as the magician, kingmaker, and prophet. We alsoknow him as the one that takes care of Arthur from birth, who set him on thethrone, who established him there in the early days of his reign as king. Whilemost books agree that he knew King Arthur and watched over him from birth, whatwas he really, was he a m
2021-02-12 07:52:49
King Arthur And Merlin Essay
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