SWORD AT SUNSET by Rosemary utcliff


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The Arthurian legend has taken on the dimensions of a cult, intensified by the popular success of The Once and Future King and its musical version in Camelot Now comes a serious and scholarly novel, deeply rooted in a long time study of the conflicting myths and legends, the archaeological findings, conclusions that are reflected in a very personal interpretation of the war-leader who sought to hold an ancient civilization against the Saxon marauders. Anyone familiar with the various ersions from Mallory on, will be beguiled by this blend of history and legend and petry. But the important and dominant theme throughout is found in the amazing recreation of the times. Her Arthur is here Artos the Bear, a warrior-knight with his strengths and weaknesses and his immense power over men. At times the effort to identify his companions with the familiar figures of the Round Table and to race the geography of ancient Britain, as the hordes of barbarians attack on many fronts, slows the pace of story. Artos, with his closely knit band of warriors, holds the line against fierce fighters from over the seas. There are peripheral aspects of the story, too, that have moving power:- the securing of stallions from Europe to strengthen the moor pony strains of Britain; the relation of Artos with the beloved uncle who raised him; the flashback to a black thread of hate over two enerations, nurtured by the sister and heightened by the sin she held over Artos; and a new version of an ancient and legendary triangle. This will be a Literary Guild Selection for June which will provide a springboard for perhaps more of a popular market than this particular version of the Arthurian legend might spark on its own.

Pub Date: May 13th, 1963
Publisher: Putnam-Coward-McCann