Claygreene's Reviews > Idylls of the King

Idylls of the King by Alfred Lord Tennyson
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Aug 02, 12


The best interpretation of Arthurian Romance I've read. Tennyson has married impossibly elegant verse to a series of social morality plays that demonstrate the values of Victorian society. When it's all said and done, the simple plot and character portraits pale feel appropriate for the magisterial language, though they never reach the quality of the words themselves. Standouts among the Idylls are the story of Merlin and Vivienne, Gareth and Lynette, and the Passing of Arthur. Expect to roll your eyes at the performance of caricatural female characters but cheer at the bravery of Gareth, the skill of Lancelot, and the wisdom of Arthur. Not a book for cynics, so check your amateur sociologist glasses before you turn the first page. Open yourself to the lustrous vision of Arthur's world and you will be enchanted from beginning to end.
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