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The tales of the Arthurian legend are some of the most popular from medieval times and the reason for this is primarily due to their fabulous nature In them are the exploits of heroes and the machinations of villains the workings of sorcerers and the existence of magical objects They embody the noble themes of chivalry and sacrifice as well as those of revenge and evil Action violence and sex are all included and as shall be seen there are many religious connotations as well There are probably few people who are not familiar with the Quest for the Holy Grail even if it is from exposure to the movie by Monty Python The tales as most people know them however are the end result of centuries of change both by the wandering minstrels and the serious authors of the medieval period There exist numerous versions of each tale and these versions are often contradictoryRoger Sherman Loomis was a noted medieval scholar and a large part of the body of his work is an attempt to trace these tales to their origin In going back to the roots of these tales it is possible to see how and where variations took place In Arthurian research there are two main schools of thought The first asserts that these tales have as their basis actual figures who lived in the towns and castles described in the tales and took part in the actions described though obviously with some embellishment The second school posits that these tales represent the evolution of even more ancient legends the towns and castles which are often factual being inserted into the tales to lend them credibility Loomis is a member of the latterThis historiography examines several of the works of Roger Sherman Loomis which span the years from 1926 to 1964 In doing so the nature of the origination of these tales will become evident at least according to Loomis First however
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