As I have said in previous blog posts, I LOVE Arthurian legends. I’ve been reading them since I was a child and I have been fascinated with the knights, the magic, the chivalry, and the drama. They’ve got it all.
Recently, I found that as much as I love reading Le Morte de Arthur aloud to my students and discussing it in detail so that they get it (yes, it’s a challenge and a process but they always end up loving it); I wanted to make life just a little bit easier. Maybe it’s the 2020-2021 year dragging me down- who knows.
So, I took it upon myself to make a modern vernacular and grammar friendly translation that would be student friendly. It took several weeks to complete and it was a HUGE undertaking, but I loved it so much. I felt like taking the time to translate it in such detail brought my understanding of the text to a whole new level. So much so that I am even thinking of have students do just a single chapter translation next year!
I focused solely on Book XX (the outing of Lancelot and Guinevere’s love and the crumbling of the Round Table) since we usually read Sir Lancelot du Lake beforehand and discuss his actions in both. Is he truly a hero? Do his poor actions in Book XX outweigh all of his great deeds previously? What do they think of Arthur being more upset that he’s loosing his best bro than his wife? It leads to some really stellar conversations. Pairing it with First Knight afterwards is always a fun as well!
If you find yourself wishing you could share the Le Morte de Arthur with your students but don’t feel like spending hours (like this crazy gal did), please feel free to check it out here.