Gwent and the Arthurian Legend Frank Olding Before discussing Gwent's Arthurian associations it would be wise to clarify one important point. With the figure of Arthur in Welsh literature before Geoffrey of Monmouth's Historia Regum Britanniae ("History of the Kings of Britain") which was written in the 1130's (see below), we are not dealing with the Arthur of the Round Table, damsels in distress and tournaments. The early Welsh Arthur is the archetypal Celtic hero- rough and vigorous, and almost barbarian figure fighting boars and serpents, witches, dog-headed warriors and so forth. He is often seen in conflict with the Church, and echoes the values and life-style of the early "Dark Ages"; we can forget Geoffrey's Christian emperor until much later. Now to his adventures in Gwent and the adjacent areas. Two images of King Arthur by Sally Davies