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The Women Behind King Arthur The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley is not only an example of a Medieval Romance but also tells the story of the women who stood behind King Arthur during his infamous reign in the Middle Ages This novel explains the reasoning and decisions that Arthur made in the womens perspective The Mists of Avalon is a twist on the Arthurian tales as told by the four women instrumental to the story Gwenhwyfar his wife Igraine his mother Viviane the Lady of the Lake High Priestess of Avalon and his sister and lover heiress to Avalon Morgaine The story is told by each as they saw it happen The struggle between Christianity and the religion of Avalon is a central part of the story and Arthurs loyalty to and betrayal of Avalon another part In this novel the legend of King Arthur is for the first time told through the lives the visions and the perceptions of the women central to it The Arthurian world of Avalon and Camelot with all its passions and adventures is revealed as it might have been experienced by its heroines by Queen Gwenhwyfar Arthurs wife by Igraine his mother by Viviane the majestic Lady of the Lake High Priestess of Avalon and most important by Arthurs sister Morgaine who has come down to us as Morgaine of the Fairies a sorceress who in this epic retelling of the story plays a crucial role both in Arthurs crowning and destruction Above all it is a story of profound conflict between Christianity and the old religion of Avalon The term Medieval Romance does not necessarily mean that the piece using it contains any sort of romance Most Medieval Romance pieces told the tales differently from those of the realistic novel In other words the plots like those of the romance 1 divide
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