Merlin Through the Ages: A Chronological Anthology and Source Book

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9780713724684: Merlin Through the Ages: A Chronological Anthology and Source Book

These words appear in a classic medieval French story of the life Merlin, spoken to Sir Gawain, and recorded as the great seer's last call. This Cri de Merlin still echoes in our ears down the ages and across borders and generations, typifying the fascination which the figure of Merlin still exerts in Western culture. Although Merlin and the Arthurian legends are chiefly British and Celtic in basis, such is his importance that the stories have had a great influence across the English, French and German traditions as well as in the Celtic languages. In Merlin through the Ages, noted experts Bob Stewart and John Matthews have brought together an astonishingly wide range of accounts and depictions of Merlin, from the very earliest records, through the medieval and Victorian reinterpretations to the modern depictions in stories and electronic media. The figure of Merlin remains a strong and influential one throughout, from the ancient Celtic myths to the allegorical characterization as Obi Wan Kenobi in the 'Star Wars' movies. Through the editors present such a valuable and wide-ranging array of texts, this is not primarily a scholarly collection. Instead, it is an overview of the Merlin literature for the general reader as well as for the historian, researcher, Arthurian enthusiast and modern seeker after an older knowledge.

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The editors have compiled poems and extracts of tales about Merlin as he has appeared in a range of works throughout time and in different places, from the earliest known material in the sixth century to the 20th century. Their aim is to examine his various roles as magician, guardian, and human archetype. The result is an overview of Merlin literature for the general reader that will provide a solid foundation for anyone seeking out the historical treatment of a fascinating figure. Recommended where fantasy is popular.?Susan Hamburger, Pennsylvania State University, University Park
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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