Camelot is famous in legend

Camelot occurs in many versions of the legend of King Arthur. (Or just Arthur, according to Bernard Cornwell).  It was the capital from which Arthur and his warriors (or knights) rode out to fight against all kinds of evil and the invading Anglo-Saxons. It is mentioned in several Mediaeval accounts and in Tennyson’s poems but Geoffrey of Monmouth and earlier writers do not mention it. Geoffrey places Arthur’s capital at Caerleon.

Did Camelot exist?

If Arthur existed, he must have lived somewhere! If he was a king or a warlord, he would very probably had a stronghold of some kind. I have posted about Arthur previously. I believe he existed, but I also believe that people have taken legends about other heroes and attached them to Arthur, once he became famous.

Where was it?

The legends do not say where Camelot was, nor give us any helpful clues. There are many contenders, including Tintagel, Caerleon and Chester, among the more credible suggestions. Personally, I think it was Colchester, which was the pre-Roman capital of Britain. The Romans called it Camelodunum. What a clue! I call that city Camelot in my forthcoming novel Spirit of Iron and its sequels. They are set in the first century AD, before, during and after the initial Roman invasion of Britain. That is well before Arthur would have existed. Therefore, if you prefer a different location for Arthur’s capital, it need not affect your enjoyment of the novels – I hope!

Map of most of pre-Roman Britain. Camelot could have been in one of many places or none!

Map of most of pre-Roman Britain. Camelot could have been in one of many places or none!