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UK: Archaeologists Discover Tomb of Round Table Knight

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Anglesey| A team of historians and archaeologists proceeding to an excavation on a small island off the north west coast of Wales, have discovered a 6th century britto-roman sepulchre, possibly associated with with a knight of the Arthurian legend. The tomb held an intricately decorated stone sarcophagus, engraved with a latin inscription that reads: “King Pellinore, son of King Pellam, ruler of the kingdom of Listenoise, Knight of the Round Table”.

The large complex was at first thought to have been a roman temple, but a more thorough search of the area enabled the team of Scottish scientists working on the site, to determine it was actually a mausoleum. It took the team more than five weeks of research to finally locate and recover the sarcophagus, entirely carved out of a single block of granite.

King Pellinore is a well-known character of the Arthurian legend and was not, until now, believed to have been based on an historical person. He is most famous for his endless hunt of the Questing Beast, a strange creature has the head and neck of a snake, the body of a leopard, the haunches of a lion and the feet of a hart. He is said to have been actively tracking this monster when King Arthur first meets him. He is also known for breaking the sword Arthur had withdrawn from the stone, while beating the king in a joust.

This puzzling new find is already raising a lot of questions among the scientific community. Modern scholarship has generally assumed that there was some actual person at the heart of the legends, though not of course a king with a band of knights in shining armor. Most experts agreed that it was likely based on some warlord who gained fame as a warrior battling the Germanic invaders of the late fifth and early sixth centuries, while some experts thought the story was entirely fictitious. O.J. Padel for example, in “The Nature of Arthur“, argues that “historical attributes of just the kind that we find attached to King Arthur can be associated with a figure who was not historical to start with.” The discovery of this new tomb, if it proves authentic, could bring a surprising end to a centuries old debate concerning the authenticity of the story, and give rise to a whole new wave of archaeological digsites.

The Round Table was first mentioned by the French poet, Wace, in 1155 and in that account was made round so that all the knights seated around it would have the same stature – a table with no head to sqabble over. In Arthurian legend it wasn’t just an actual table but represented the highest Order of Chivalry at King Arthur’s court. The Knights of the Round Table were the cream of British nobility, who followed a strict code of honour and service.

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