Perceval & Joseph d'Arimathie c. 1210
This portal was curated by:

ROBERT DE BORON

Robert de Boron (also spelled in the manuscripts "Roberz", "Borron", "Bouron", "Beron") was a French poet of the late 12th and early 13th centuries, who is most notable as the reputed author of the poems Joseph d'Arimathie [fr] and Merlin. Although little is known of him apart from the poems he allegedly wrote, his works and their subsequent prose redactions had a strong influence on later incarnations of the Arthurian legend and its prose cycles, particularly due to their Christian back story for the Holy Grail.
DATABASES
Robert de Boron (also spelled in the manuscripts "Roberz", "Borron", "Bouron", "Beron") was a French poet of the late 12th and early 13th centuries, who is most notable as the reputed author of the poems Joseph d'Arimathie [fr] and Merlin. Although little is known of him apart from the poems he allegedly wrote, his works and their subsequent prose redactions had a strong influence on later incarnations of the Arthurian legend and its prose cycles, particularly due to their Christian back story for the Holy Grail.
Robert de Boron, Boron also spelled Borron, (flourished 13th century), French poet, originally from the village of Boron, near Delle. He was important for his trilogy of poems (Joseph d’Arimathie, Merlin, Perceval). It told the early history of the Grail and linked this independent legend more firmly with Arthurian legend, using the prophetic figure of Merlin, with his knowledge of past and future, as the connecting link.
According to Robert, the Grail is the cup used at the Last Supper and also the cup in which Joseph of Arimathea caught the drops of Jesus's blood after the crucifixion. Joseph has created the Grail Table in memory of the Last Supper; strangely, he gives the Grail to his brother-in-law Bron, who takes it with him into "the far west," to the vaus d'Avaron, or vale of Avalon. Now, Robert did not say Glastonbury here. But about the time he was writing, the bones of "Arthur" and "Guinevere" were found at Glastonbury, complete with the identifying cross and the sign that said Avalonthe Glastonbury-as-Avalon connection was off and running. Later stories would have Joseph himself founding the church at Glastonbury.
Despite being famous for his cycle of Arthurian Romances centred around the Holy Grail, next to nothing is known about the Burgundian known as Robert de Boron. His works reveal that he was a poet in the employ of one Gautier, who has been identified as Gautier de Montbeliard, the Lord of Montfaucon. Robert presumably hailed from Boron - a small village about fifteen miles from Montbeliard - where he appears to have been a cleric of some sort. In 1202, his master is known to have taken part in the Fourth Crusade from which he never returned, dying abroad ten years later. So Robert's Arthurian trilogy must have been written in the very late 12th century, probably after the Glastonbury monks' 1191 "discovery" of King Arthur's body, since Robert's 'Vales of Avalon' would seem to be in Somerset.
A Burgundian knight and poet. His only known work is Le Roman du Graal, consisting of three long poems--Joseph d'Arimathea, Merlin, and Perceval. Of these three poems, only the Joseph and the first five hundred lines of the second remain. However, there are prose versions, which some believe may have been written by Robert before he turned them into poetry. Of these, the best known is the Didot Perceval, so called for the man who owned the manuscript. Though Robert claimed to be the first to write about the Grail, his poems date later than Chretien de Troyes' Perceval, left uncompleted ca. 1191. However, Robert's romance is the earliest known source for the belief in the Joseph legend, which would later impact subsequent retellings of the myth of the Grail.
Visit our special guest curator
Related Portals:
 
Related Portals: