Key words£ºKing Arthur, Guenevere, Lancelot,  Round Table  
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Genre£ºlegend Topic£ºGuenevere Words:970
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ESL,  English,  Story,  Tale,  Legend, Folktale, Myth, Fable, Learning, Teaching

Arthur was secretly seeing Guenevere,
daughter of King Leodegrance.

How Arthur married Guenevere

-Told by Sir Roland
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Author£ºShaun Flewellen Source£ºstudents.ou.edu  
Nation£ºEngland Date£º2008-9-7


(Queen Guinevere, by William Morris. 1858)
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At the age of twenty-eight, Arthur had finally found his path to becoming a noble and respected king. Men throughout the country honored him for his courage and for his leadership. Arthur had gathered a very impressive collection of knights that served in his court. Most notable of them all was Sir Lancelot.

Arthur still had an urge that all men feel. He felt lonely, for he was without a queen. I (Sir Roland) myself had already married your grandmother, and Sir Kay was on his second wife. Arthur was last of the trio to be without a wife. Although few people knew it, Arthur did have a love. Arthur was secretly seeing Guenevere, daughter of King Leodegrance.

King Leodegrance was a friend of Arthur's late father. Uther Pendragon had even given Leodegrance the great round table, which was said to hold one hundred and fifty knights with ease.

Arthur and Guenevere kept their young love secret from all, except Kay and me. Arthur was fearful to bring Guenevere into Camelot, because he did not want her to be harmed. Arthur still had wars to fight and enemies who wanted him dead. He did wish to bring his love into a place that saw so much war.

After many weeks, Sir Kay and I were finally able to convince Arthur to marry Guenevere. They had been seeing each other for nearly a year, and we both knew that he loved her. Arthur was very excited when he finally made the decision to ask for her hand in marriage. He ran out into the courtyard and proclaimed to all his love for her.

"Knights, make ready for travel," Arthur said. "At tomorrow's dawn we make our way to the land of Leodegrance. It is on that day that I shall ask the Lady Guenevere for her hand in marriage."

On the next day, Arthur, Kay, Lancelot, myself, and one hundred of the greatest knights in Camelot made ready for a five hour long voyage to the caste of Leodegrance.

"My lord, tell me about your future queen," Lancelot asked Arthur.

"Lancelot my friend, she is the most beautiful women in God's world," Arthur responded. "Her hair flows of the shades of brunette and blond. Her eyes are the most beautiful of brown that they could enchant a sorcerer. Her face and her smile make the world sing a sweet melody of her beauty."

"It appears that you are deeply in love with this lady, my lord," said Lancelot.

"Yes, my friend," replied Arthur. "I have never felt a love so great. My heart beats harder each step we draw closer."

After a long journey we drew near the gates of Leodegrance's kingdom. We were welcomed with open arms. Leodegrance was pleased to see Arthur traveling to his kingdom.

"Full King for not even ten years and already you come begging at my gate?" Leodegrance joked. "It is good to see you again, friend. How can I be of service to you?"

"It is good to see you too, my lord," Arthur responded. "I wonder if I my speak with your privately?"

What Arthur and Leodegrance said only they know. What I do know is that the news to both was quite joyous. After talking and negotiating for nearly two hours, they both slammed through the doors laughing and drinking malt liquor.

"All gather round for a celebration," Leodegrance announced. "Guenevere, come here. I have some news for you."

Arthur saw his love, and he completely melted. He told me later that it felt like he was seeing her for the first time.

"Guenevere," Arthur said as he knelt on one knee, "I would like you to honor me by being my queen."

This of course was most untraditional, as kings normally sent for wives or had servants give the engagement announcement for them. Arthur showed true compassion and love for Guenevere.

"My lord," Guenevere gasped, "I do not know what to say!"

"Well, say yes, of course," Leodegrance proclaimed.

"Yes," responded Guenevere. "Of course I shall marry you, for I have loved you for many months now! I have known this day would come since the first time you sat with my father."

"It is settled then," Arthur excitedly announced. "We shall be married in Camelot on the Sunday after next. All citizens of both kingdoms shall be invited. It will be the most joyous occasion England has every seen."

Two days later we gathered our things to be on our way. Guenevere would travel with us to become comfortable with her new home. Before we left Leodegrance gave Arthur an unexpected wedding gift.

"Arthur my lad," said Leodegrance. "I have no land or riches that would be fit for a king like yourself. I do have a gift that you may indeed enjoy."

Leodegrance walked Arthur to a draped object. He then removed the drape to reveal the Round Table.

"As you may know, your father gave this to me. Damn good man he was. One of the best men I ever knew. It would only be fitting if this great table were to go to you, I think that is the way your father would have wanted it."

"Thank you, my lord. This is a great gift, one that shall not soon be forgotten. If ever you are in need of my services, my arms are yours. Now I must be off. We shall see you in ten days!"

"Very well, lad, I shall see you soon."

Ten days later Arthur and Guenevere wed. The round table was placed in the huge banquet hall in King Arthur's Court. It would serve as a table of equality. At Arthur's table no man was better than the one who sat next to him. No man sat at the front or the head. All were equal.


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(King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table)

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*The Round Table: In the legend of King Arthur, the Round Table was a mystical table in Camelot around which King Arthur and his knights sat to discuss matters crucial to the security of the realm.


Discussion£º

1. Who was Uther Pendragon? 

2. Why did Arthur and Guenevere kept their love a secret?

3. Why did King Arthur and his knights go to the caste of Leodegrance?

4. What did Leodegrance give Arthur a wedding gift?

5. Why was the Round Table so special?

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