- Visualizing Camelot: An Introduction
- Visualizing Camelot in Everyday Life
- Visualizing Camelot at the Movies
- Visualizing Camelot in Popular Culture
- Visualizing Camelot: Major Authors
- Illustrated Malory Editions
- Ashendene Press Malory and "The Barge to Avalon"
- Retellings of Malory
- Illustrated Tennyson Editions
- Tennyson's Influence on Popular Art and Culture
- Tennyson, Watts, and the Strength of Ten
- Art Based on Malory and Tennyson
- Illustrating Mark Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
- Reworking Twain's Connecticut Yankee
- T. H. White
- Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
- Children's Books
- Visualizing Camelot through Iconic Images
- Women Illustrators
- Credits and Acknowledgments
- 2024 Events and Programming for Visualizing Camelot
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
The twentieth and twenty-first centuries have seen a profusion of illustrated editions, translations, and adaptations of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. The publication in 1923 of a facsimile of MS Cotton Nero A.x, in which SGGK uniquely appears and in which there are four illuminations of scenes from the poem, was followed two years later by the monumental 1925 edition of the Middle English romance by J. R. R. Tolkien and E. V. Gordon, which no doubt contributed to the interest in the poem.
The appeal of the illustrated versions is also due to the wonders it suggests, such as the frequently depicted gruesome, grinning severed head of the Green Knight, a favorite of illustrators of retellings for children. The vitality of the poem, with its scenes of seduction, its lively hunts (particularly the most dangerous and dramatic, the boar hunt), its symbolism, its elaborate parallel structure, its contrast of court and nature, its joy in life—all offer rich subjects for illustration. Two private press books are particularly noteworthy for their images, the first by The Lion and Unicorn Press, illustrated with lithographs by Roy Morgan (1956); the other by the Golden Cockerel Press (1952), illustrated with six color engravings by Dorothea Braby.
Among the British and American playwrights and novelists, including popular genre writers who have adapted Sir Gawain and the Green Knight to drama or fiction, are David Harsent, whose verse play Gawain (1991) was written as a libretto for music by Harrison Birtwistle, and American novelist Thomas Berger, whose novel Arthur Rex (1978) includes an episode retelling Sir Gawain and the Green Knight in a thoroughly modern fashion. Largely because of its bawdy scenes, Berger’s tale was published in Playboy as well as in the novel.