I am not sure when or where I first encountered it, but the theory that the Arthurian cycle of legends might be rooted in the mythology of Scythia and the Sarmathians instantly struck me as not only plausible but almost certainly correct. The Sarmatians and the closely-related or identical tribe of Alans introduced armored heavy cavalry using the shock charge with lance to Europe: the Sarmatian hypothesis would neatly explain several otherwise very peculiar features of the Arthurian material, including the fact that even very early versions insistently describe a style of war gear and knightly combat with slashing swords on horseback that would not become actually typical in Europe until the later Middle Ages. The Sarmatian Hypothesis reads, in outline, like this: The Arthurian material developed around a large unit of Sarmatian heavy cavalry about known to have been deployed to Britain as military colonists in the early second century CE, attached to the Legion VI Victrix. Scott Littleton and Linda Malcor. The book, alas, proved a severe disappointment. It is probably the worst-argued case for a strong and attractive idea I have ever seen.
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Scott Littleton. Details if other :. Thanks for telling us about the problem. Return to Book Page. Preview — From Scythia to Camelot by C. Scott Littleton ,. Linda A. This volume boldly proposes that the core of the Arthurian and Holy Grail traditions derived not from Celtic mythology, but rather from the folklore of the peoples of ancient Scythia what are now the South Russian and Ukrainian steppes.
Also includes 19 maps. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. Published April 28th by Routledge first published May 1st More Details Original Title. Arthurian Characters and Themes. Other Editions 7. Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about From Scythia to Camelot , please sign up. Be the first to ask a question about From Scythia to Camelot.
Lists with This Book. Community Reviews. Showing Average rating 3. Rating details. More filters. Sort order. Sep 04, Ron rated it it was ok Shelves: history , arthuriana.
Littleton and Malcor have made a fresh contribution to the study of Arthurian legends. They examine both the sources and outcomes of northeast Iranian additions to the fables so popular and influential in western culture. Though many modern scholars acknowledge the contribution of Sarmatian and Alan cultures to the corpus of Arthurian history and legend, few have explained the connection in such detail. Unfortunately, the product is less than it appears.
Littleton and Malcor try to attribute all Littleton and Malcor have made a fresh contribution to the study of Arthurian legends. Littleton and Malcor try to attribute all aspects of Arthurian legend to Northeast Iranian traditions, even to the point of seemingly inventing or twisting evidence see below. Their one-size-fits-all approach becomes most strained the closer it approaches Arthur. Their case seems much more plausible, and less dependent on hearsay, as they relate it to Lancelot, Grail, Fisher King legends.
Their Sword in the Stone hypothesis is pure speculation—plausible and entertaining, but thinly supported. Since they seldom delineate such scenarios, the unwary reader may assume many such are supported by scholarly documentation. In fact, their theories intermix with cited materials in a way which defies unsorting.
At first glance the impressive quantity of chapter endnotes and appendices gives the appearance of solid scholarship.
Closer examination shows the notes and appendices as much padding as relevant material. Also, the author's penchant for multiple, consecutive notes from a single source and notes for expository material weaken what is assumedly well-documented research. The numerous genealogies entertain, but add little to their thesis. A word about sources. Lacy et al. The revised and expanded Encyclopedia was not referenced. Feb 03, A.
Campbell rated it it was ok. A hefty batch of notes refer to postulations from midth-century or earlier authors who were exactly that-- postulators. We find a hefty reliance on Continental matter, not much from historical Britain, either during the late Roman or post-Roman periods.
But worst of all, the book falls short of thorough research. This Alano-Gothic connection could have helped discover such items as Alanic hauma cups grails with bear-shaped handles. In fact, the bear a "protective" figure, and on the Equites Taifali Seniors' shield was known as "artos.
In truth, Iasyges were Saraumatae, not related to Alans or Sarmatians. Artorius Castus had the rank of "praefectus castrorum" while stationed in Britain, that of an old vet, an officer who no longer commanded alas but puttered around as "keeper of the castle. All of these facts, not speculations, were available, especially in the official Notitia Dignitatum, an illustrated Roman record still extant. But then again, evidently it's more fun to speculate and be a little radical View 2 comments. May 08, Svetlana Tchernykh rated it it was amazing.
View 1 comment. Mar 12, Nick Boldrini rated it it was ok Shelves: arthurian. Not having enough knowledge of all the details, its difficult to assess this accurately as to its reasonableness as an argument, and how much the evidence supports. However, just reading it critically, the style of argument was often weak and stretching the argument, and in some places was self-admitted pure conjecture. Interesting, but not convincing. Bill rated it really liked it Aug 26, John rated it it was amazing Mar 01, Banyon Norton rated it liked it Jul 05, Elizabeth Alexander rated it it was amazing Oct 02, Peter Henne rated it really liked it May 28, Kay rated it did not like it Sep 19, Duncan Scott rated it really liked it Dec 14, Xerxes Goodarzie rated it it was amazing Aug 22, Scott Holmes rated it liked it Nov 01, Beth rated it liked it Oct 24, Pagan Harlow rated it it was amazing Sep 27, Dani rated it liked it Jun 24, John Ervin rated it it was amazing Oct 14, Cyd rated it it was amazing Apr 01, Paul Vittay rated it it was amazing Apr 18, Charles rated it really liked it Dec 10, Heather rated it really liked it Oct 21, Chad rated it really liked it Oct 02, Daniel LeFebvre rated it it was amazing May 19, Linda Malcor rated it it was amazing Sep 04, Ashton D rated it liked it Oct 20, Richard rated it liked it May 24, Demetra rated it liked it Sep 18, Katie rated it it was amazing Aug 15, Dan rated it really liked it May 03, There are no discussion topics on this book yet.
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From Scythia to Camelot - C.Scott Littleton & Linda A.Malcor
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From Scythia to Camelot with Thud and Blunder