The Book of Merlyn

The Book of MerlynThe Book of Merlyn was an interesting end to the Arthur story.

It began with a brave boy learning and ended with a depressed, old king; in both he is learning something. Arthur has met the ants, he has met the geese, and he is to see them again, learn again, and understanding.

Arthur is depressed by Mordred’s declaration of war and knows the kingdom, along with his reign, is ruined. His great joy is Merlyn, whom he has not seen in years. This will be the last time he sees Merlyn, who is soon to be trapped by his lady-love, Nyneve.

The king is taken to meet all his old friends, but finds discomfort at his friends’ teaching. The animals say that man is good for nothing but war and depression. Upon hearing these  words, Arthur replies, “I suppose man might as well throw himself off a cliff for all his use.” The animals urge him to see past their former words and to forgive them for stating such things in his presence.

All the animals turn to Merlyn, uttering many a reproach. Not at all moved, Merlyn replies that what he has stated is true. Arthur sighs and asks if man is good for anything. Merlyn replies that, for all their anger and malice, men are good to animals. They are a companionable pair and are quite loyal to the other.

At the end of the book, a hedgehog takes Arthur to the top of a hill and points out nature. The book ends with the small tale of how the great king’s story has managed to fall into your hands.

Skillfully written, I enjoyed it very much. T. H. White has rated a good author in my mind and I hope that any reader who picks it up shall enjoy it as much as I have.

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