Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Round Table

The Round Table was a gift to King Arthur from his future father-in-law, King Leodegrance, who had received it from Arthur’s father, King Uther Pendragon (see p. 84). Other sources say King Arthur himself had it made to prevent quarrels about seating arrangements. The Round Table had seats for 150 knights, and when a knight proved worthy to sit at it, he found his name set miraculously on his chair in letters of gold by the magic of Merlin the wizard. Only one seat, the so-called Siege Perilous, would remain empty, until either Sir Perceval or Sir Galahad—depending on the source— arrived to claim it. In some versions it is by sitting in this danger seat that the Grail hero dooms the land, thereby requiring the Grail Quest to put things right. This recalls the Welsh story of Pryderi, nephew of Bran, who brings desolation on Dyfed by sitting on a perilous mound after a banquet.

No comments: