Tragic Hero

Arthur Pendragon; Fit For A King? Arthur was crowned king not only at a young age but also completely unexpectedly. Arthur did not ask to be king, he was still a child and did not feel he was worthy of such a position. Arthur’s lack of confidence and trust in himself defines him as a king and his ability to rule. Arthur’s dependency on others proves to be King Arthur’s tragic flaw. As a child Arthur was brought up as Sir Kay, his foster brother’s, Squire. He grew up serving to others demands, it was never necessary for him to make his own decisions. Arthur just did what he was told and tried to please Sir Kay.
This flaw first appears in the book The Sword and the Circle, Sir Kay tried to take credit for pulling the sword out of the stone when in reality Arthur had been the one to retrieve it. Sir Kay took all the glory and was going to allow him to be unjustly crowned. Arthur did not speak up or question Kay’s story; He did not receive the credit he deserved until Sir Kay admitted to not being the one to have relinquished the sword. Even after Arthur was appointed king he did not make decisions on his own. He had Merlin by his side to help him. When Merlin left King Arthur to rule on his own Arthur did not know what to do.
He was left in a state of uncertainty and fell into what seemed like depression. Also In the book The Sword and the Circle, Arthur discovers the love affair between Lancelot and his wife, Guinevere, and punishes them both but Lancelot ends up rescuing Guinevere. Sir Lancelot asks for King Arthur’s forgiveness and as much as Arthur would like to Gawain will not allow him to accept the apology. Later Sir Mordred and Sir Gawain convince Arthur to go to war against Lancelot. This leads to the splitting of the Knights of the Round Table and the battle between Sir Mordred and King Arthur, which eventually lead to King Arthur’s death.

If Arthur had stood by his decision and was not so easily convinced by Gawain the battle could have been avoided and Arthur could have changed the course of his and his kingdom’s fate. On many other accounts King Arthur’s decisions depended on the influence of others, this being one of his tragic flaws can be held accountable for the downfall of King Arthur and his Kingdom. Although technically Arthur was born to be king he did not possess the attributes to be one. He had to compensate in other ways to make up for his weakness, but overall this personality fluke immobilizes Arthur from becoming the great king he had the potential to be.

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