Primary Sources: Le Morte D’Arthur Book I Chapters V and VI — 5 Comments

  1. “The French Book” is a good dodge for a man riffing on a lot of texts before him. A lot. Apparently “French” means “everything I could get my hands on.” To Malory, French fries would be pretty much anything cut up and deep fried.

    The sword in the stone is in one early manuscript identified as “Clarent” a.k.a. the sword of peace. Same source calls the watery tart’s sword “Caliburn,” the sword of war. I’ve had Clarent in the background of a bunch of my games from time to time; I didn’t give it the same bonuses you’ve picked. 😉

    • I figure Malory maps most easily to the oldest iterations of D&D that I can think of, back when men were real men and +1 to hit and damage swords were a big deal, none of this wimpy modern +6 vicious stuff.

      • I agree. Malory is a straight-up AD&D analogue. The sword-in-the-sword is your standard +1 sword, as befitting the fact that it’s just sitting out there in a yard stuck in a rock. Excalibur, on the other hand, is like some crazy +5 vorpal sword. Now, I note that Malory is AD&D, not original D&D, because obviously all the texts that he plagiarized based Le Morte on were original / basic D&D.

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