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Thursday, December 12, 2013
King Arthur as Scottish Warlord
It is reasonable
that Arthur was a warlord positioned north of Hadrian’s Wall whose family and
household was cut loose when the Romans withdrew. They would have seen themselves as Roman
Allies at the least.
It is also
reasonable that a similar argument can be made for Wales at the same time with
quite as much material evidence to support the claim.
It is even
reasonable that the two story lines became largely entangled over time and
covered two separate personalities reacting in the same way to the military
vacuum. Any such well positioned warlord
and family would and could dominate for perhaps generations from those two
That and a lot
of good stories made for ample material for Geoffrey of Monmouth to lift and wrap into a history of England.
It appears that the weight of evidence is placing Arthur and Lancelot ( The Angus ) in this southern stretch of Scotland and this understanding will ultimately prevail. Avalon becomes the obvious Iona.
Arthur ‘was a Scottish warlord’
Adam Ardrey claims that Arthur was actually Arthur
Mac Aedan, the sixth-century son of an ancient King of Scotland. Picture: TSPL
WELCOME to MacCamelot. King Arthur was a Scottish,
pre-Christian warlord whose remains are buried on Iona, according to a new book
by a Scots historian.
Author Adam Ardrey claims that instead of the
romantic English king of legend who lived at Camelot – which is often said to
be Tintagel in Cornwall or in Wales – Arthur was actually Arthur Mac Aedan, the
sixth-century son of an ancient King of Scotland, whose Camelot was a marsh in
He also suggests that Arthur pulled the sword
Excalibur from a stone at Dunadd near Kilmartin, died near Falkirk and was
buried on the Hebridean island of Iona, which he declares to be Avalon.
Ardrey, an amateur historian who works as an
advocate in Edinburgh and previously wrote a book claiming Merlin the wizard
was actually a politician who lived in the Partick area of Glasgow, spent years
investigating his theories and says that they can be proved “beyond reasonable
doubt”. The assertions in his book Finding Arthur: The True Origins Of The Once
And Future King are strengthened by the discovery in 2011 of what some experts
believe is King Arthur’s round table in the grounds of Stirling Castle.
Ardrey says he not only believes Arthur is buried in
Iona but would love to see the site excavated to look for proof.
“The legendary Arthur is said to be buried in an
island in the western seas – Avalon – but in the south of Britain there are no
islands in the western seas,” he says.
“Iona fits all the criteria. It’s an island where
hundreds of kings were buried. Some say 128. Other members of Arthur Mac
Aedan’s family were buried there too.
I say Arthur was also buried there.”
Ardrey states that Camelot is a nondescript
marshy area north of Dunadd, an ancient hill fort in Argyll, where the sword
in the stone “scene” was enacted.
He believes that the number of connections between
Argyll and Arthur are so numerous that he has met Argyll and Bute Council
several times in the hope of establishing an Arthur tourist trail in the area.
A spokesperson for the council said: “Argyll and
Bute’s rich and varied cultural history attracts many admirers and
Dr Ardrey’s books are an example of that. The council has not entered into any
agreement with Dr Ardrey.”
He said that he also believes Arthur’s 12 battles
were fought on different sites across Scotland, including Stow in the Borders,
where he says the Battle of Guinnion took place, and the Battle of the City of
the Legions, which he says was fought on the site of the Roman fort of
Trimontium in Melrose.
“The litmus test
for Arthur is the 12 battles and the battle list,” he said. “I was able to
identify all of them geographically, as well as historically place them in
context. Six of them are even in a straight line. Everything fits into
He also asserts that the Battle of Camlann, at
which Arthur was believed to have been killed, was fought at Camelon, near
Falkirk, just 12 miles south of Stirling and the Round Table.
The legend of Arthur developed in the Middle Ages
largely through the popularity of Historia Regum Britanniae, a 12th-century
text written by Geoffrey of Monmouth that related his story in fanciful and
Many historians have attempted to link Arthur with
Cornwall and Tintagel Castle, and in 1998 an ancient stone bearing a
sixth-century inscription similar to the name Arthur was unearthed at the castle,
the mythical birthplace of the legendary king.
It was hoped that the discovery could prove that
King Arthur had his headquarters at the site of the ruined castle on the north
coast of Cornwall, but the findings – of a piece of slate inscribed with the
name Artognov – Latin for the English name Arthnou – remained inconclusive.
However, in 2011 it was believed that Arthur’s Round
Table may have been unearthed by Glasgow University archaeologists
investigating the King’s Knot in the grounds of Stirling Castle.
The book also asserts that Arthur became the victim
of an establishment conspiracy which was determined to recast him as an English
It also claims that, as a Scottish man of the
druidic “Old Way”, he was the last of his kind holding out against a zealous
“I am hoping the book provokes debate and
discussion,” said Ardrey. “But if I’m right, then 100 years of British history
needs to be rewritten.”