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King Arthur Pendragon (fl. 5th century – c. 537) was a Briton leader who led the defence of his people against the Anglo-Saxon invaders in the early 6th century. He was also a leader of the Order of the Ancients.

Biography

According to legend, Arthur possessed a sacred sword called Excalibur which he pulled from a stone as a young man that proved he was the Britons one true high king.[1] Arthur was also in possession of a mantle that allegedly had the ability to turn the user invisible.[2] Arthur used Excalibur to rally his people as their newly crowned high king of Britain to fight in defense of their lands against the invading Anglo-Saxons.[3] At some point following this, he had his sword placed within an ancient structure beneath Stonehenge with an accompanying note hoping that whoever-so found Excalibur it would serve them well.[2]

Arthur died after being betrayed by his wife, best friend and son.[3]

Legacy

After his death, Arthur Pendragon became an important part of folklore all over England, such that countless places and peoples were said to have interacted with him, regardless the veracity of the claims. Indeed, as the Assassin Shaun Hastings observed in 2020, "In England, 'local lore' always gets back to Arthur somehow".[4] In one notable example from the Viking expansion into England in the 9th century, the shieldmaiden Eivor Varinsdottir of the Raven Clan found a note during her travels claiming that Arthur once fought a woman by the name of Winniwulf Seaxdottir to a draw for the title of "Ruler of the Britons".[5]

Later, Arthur's sword and note were retrieved by Eivor after gathering eleven tablet inscribed with depictions of the Treasures of Britain.[2]

By the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century, a distillery had brewed a wine named after Arthur, which it called Merlin & Arthur Imperial Stout. In 2015, Shaun Hastings tasted this wine and then wrote a tasting note voicing his displeasure at it.[6]

In 2012, Clay Kaczmarek included Walter Crane's illustration of Arthur pulling out the sword in the stone in a set of puzzles he had hidden within the Animus for his successor, Desmond Miles to find. Desmond did so in September of that year,[7] uncovering Clay's message suggesting that the sword of Arthur was in fact a Sword of Eden.[1]

In 2016, Alan Rikkin was of the opinion that Arthur's view of the Templars' role was idealistic and misguided, seeing his failure as proof that the Order was meant to follow a different path in the 21st century.[3]

Appearances

References

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