Attempts to find the person (if any) behind the legend of
King Arthur have been going on for a long time. The
search has revealed many interesting facts and it has
also led to sharp disagreements. The Discovery of King
Arthur presents an investigation that broke the deadlock.
Arthur emerged from it with a firmer status in history.
He was also more interesting - more like his legend -
than once appeared likely. It became possible to see
better why he became the kind of figure he did. The delay
in running him to earth was due to the nature of the
problem he posed. Medieval authors who gave him his
literary grandeur fitted him into what they claimed was
Britain's history several centuries later. Not much of
that history can stand up in the light of present day
knowledge - it is mostly legend. So historians who looked
for Arthur swept the medieval matter aside and searched
for him in the scanty older records. But the search was
inconclusive. A convincing answer called for a different
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