Farewell Camelot

I feel that it is proper and fitting to end today's celebration with a recital of King Arthur's farewell speech. Arthur makes this speech, as he is dying wounded by the sword of his own flesh and blood, Mordred.  Although Arthur is in pain, he demonstrates qualities of a great leader, as he is able to put his pain aside and comfort his knight Bedivere.  Arthur responds to Belivere's expressions of doubt and loneliness, as he is unsure of what he shall do now that Camelot is no more.  Arthur reassures Bedivere and gives him hope by telling him to look to God for strength, through the power of prayer.

“The old order changeth, yielding place to new, 
 And God fulfils himself in many ways,
 Lest one good custom should corrupt the world.
 Comfort thyself; what comfort is in me?
 I have lived my life, and that which I have done
 May He within himself make pure! but thou,
 If thou shouldst never see my face again,
 Pray for my soul. More things are wrought by prayer
 Than this world dreams of. Wherefore, let thy voice
 Rise like a fountain for me night and day.
 For what are men better than sheep or goats
 That nourish a blind life within the brain,
 If, knowing God, they lift not hands of prayer
 Both for themselves and those who call them friend?
 For so the whole round earth is every way
 Bound by gold chains about the feet of God.
 But now farewell. I am going a long way
 With these thou seest-if indeed I go--
 For all my mind is clouded with a doubt--
 To the island-valley of Avilion;
 Where falls not hail, or rain or any snow,
 Nor ever wind blows loudly; but it lies
 Deep-meadow’d, happy, fair with orchard lawns
And bowery hollows crown’d with summer sea,
 Where I will heal me of my grievous wound.”
Sir Alfred Tennyson               Click here to hear me recite a part
Idylls of the King                                      of Arthur's speech

Now, with these words in mind, let us bow our heads
in a moment of silence in honor of King Arthur.
Back to Camelot    Character Analysis     Inside Camelot
Tables and More       Credits