King Arthur - Summary

King Arthur is a movie based on the legendary Roman leader from the Anglo-Saxon Wars. Although legends about the King vary, the producers of the film claim to present a historically accurate version. Arthur, also known as Artorius Castus (Clive Owen), is a Roman officer and the son of a Roman father and a Celtic mother. He commands a unit of Briton soldiers at the close of the Roman occupation in Britain in 467 A.D. 

Arthur and his men guard Hadrian's Wall against invaders. Begun in AD 122, during the rule of Emperor Hadrian, Hadrian’s Wall is a defensive wall throughout the country of Britain. Bishop Germanus (Ivano Marescotti) sends Arthur and his men on a mission to rescue Marius Honorius (Ken Stott), an important Roman, and his family from capture by the Saxons. Chief Cerdic (Stellan Skarsgard) and his son Cynric (Til Schweiger) lead the Saxons on the quest to capture the Honorius family.

Arthur discovers Marius is holding a woman, Guinevere (Keira Knightley), and a small boy, Lucan, as prisoners. Arthur frees them and takes them with the Honorius family back to Hadrian's Wall. Guinevere takes Arthur to meet with her father and supposed wizard, Merlin (Stephen Dillane). Merlin leads a group of native Britons who are rebelling against Roman rule. Merlin wants Arthur and his men to join them to fight the invading Saxons. 

It is revealed that Arthur's mother dies in a rebel attack when he is a boy so he does not trust Merlin. It is also shown, in a flashback, that Arthur's famous sword, Excalibur, marks his father's burial mound. Arthur pulls it from his father's grave in an effort to rescue his mother during the attack. 

Although Arthur does not trust Merlin, he is angry with Rome for leaving its subjects to the mercy of the Saxons. Arthur is enraged when he learns that Bishop Pelagius has been executed by Bishop Germanus’ order. Pelagius teaches about the equality of all men and inspires Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. Arthur and his men forsake Roman citizenship and join the rebels to fight the Saxons. Will Arthur and his knights be victorious in their battle?

In this story behind the movie, learn about the man behind the Arthurian legends. Take a journey back to the 6th century and learn how the Britons “invite” their invaders into their land. Meet Ambrosius Aurelianu, another great Roman leader from the Anglo-Saxon Wars.


Keywords: Merlin, King Arthur, Guinevere, Hadrian Wall, Ambrosius Aurelianu, Excalibur, Saxon, Marius Honorius, Lucan, Emperor Hadrian, Bishop Germanus.

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Author: Carole D. Bos, J.D. 5183stories and lessons created

Original Release: Jul 01, 2004

Updated Last Revision: May 15, 2017

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"King Arthur" AwesomeStories.com. Jul 01, 2004. Nov 18, 2019.
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