Next in order after Gildas, but not until about the year 800, appears a strangely jumbled document, last edited by a certain Nennius, and entitled
In Nennius' book occurs also the earliest mention of Arthur, who, in a comparatively sober passage, is said, some time after the days of Vortigern, to have 'fought against the Saxons, together with the kings of the Britons, but he himself was leader in the battles.' A list, also, is given of his twelve victories, ending with Mount Badon.
In dealing with Arthur, Geoffrey greatly enlarges on Gildas and Nennius; in part, no doubt, from his own invention, in part, perhaps, from Welsh tradition.
The work is often attributed to Nennius
, a ninth-century Welsh monk, though there is some scholarly argument over this claim.
There is a little background to the colourful tale as in 830AD in his work Historia Brittonum, the Welsh monk Nennius
included a list of Arthur's battles, one of which he located at "The City Of The Legion" - which many have taken to be Caerleon.
Keegan said: "The earliest surviving reference to King Arthur is a history book by a monk named Nennius
who lists 12 of Arthur's battles with names like Celidon, Dubglas, Agned and Badon.
The fresh scientific research has given added support to the theory mentioned in the Historia Brittonum in which a 9th century chronicler and monk, Nennius
, in Wales, described a rescue.
(9) The change of name to the "Red Worm" in the final text may partly involve a reference to the British "Red Dragon." In Nennius
' British History, which Tolkien also cites in Finn and Hengest (46) and several times in the commentary to his and E.V.
(4) The Historia Britonum, "a miscellaneous collection of historical and topographical information including a description of the inhabitants and invaders of Britain," is generally ascribed to Nennius
, a Welsh antiquarian who between 796 and about 830 compiled it.
Although Walter Cahn identifies this book as Nennius
's history, (28) the work referred to in the accompanying text is that of Geoffrey of Monmouth, so it is more likely that this is the work depicted.
Beginning with the work of the Welsh monk Nennius
, and the poets WIlliam Blake and Edmund Spenser, Dixon undertakes an exploration of the alternate history of Britain as imagined through the King Arthur of myth.