Tales of King Arthur

Lightly he grasped the handle of the sword with one hand, and it came forth straightway! Then, glad that his brother should not be without a sword, he swiftly gat upon his horse and rode on, and delivered the sword to Sir Kay, and thought no more of aught but the splendid knights and richly garbed lords that were at the jousts.


—From King Arthur's Knights by Henry Gilbert.

The stories of King Arthur and his Court have entertained young and old alike for over a thousand years. In this lesson, students will discover how historical events gradually merged with fantasy to create the colorful tales we enjoy today. They will read some of the more familiar stories, learn about the code of chivalry of the Round Table, ponder the symbolism of the Holy Grail, and then choose a favorite Arthurian character for a bit of role-playing.

Guiding Questions

Who was King Arthur and how did his legend evolve?

What were the ideals of the knights of the Round Table?

Learning Objectives

After completing this lesson, students will be able to: Describe King Arthur and the knights of the Round Table,

Explain the historic and the mythical aspects of the Arthurian legend,

Discuss the rules of chivalry honored by Arthur's knights,

Relate several familiar tales associated with King Arthur,

Explain the significance of the quest for the Holy Grail