The Representation of the Questing Beast: An Analysis of Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur and T.H. White’s The Once and Future King.
This thesis discusses the representation of the Questing Beast in Sir Thomas Malory’s Le Morte D’Arthur (1469-1474) and T.H. White’s modern adaptation of Malory’s work entitled The Once and Future King (1938-1941). Moreover, the Old French Arthurian narratives Perlesvaus, the Post-Vulgate Cycle, and the Prose Tristan are analysed in order to determine the possible origin of Malory’s Questing Beast. By comparing and contrasting the representation of the Questing Beast in The Once and Future King to Le Morte D’Arthur, in terms of appearance, context, and meaning, this thesis argues that even though the description of the appearance of the Questing Beast is identical in both works, the treatment of the Beast and the context in which the Beast appears are entirely different. The analysis of The Once and Future King in light of Le Morte D’Arthur will help scholars to understand how medieval Arthurian history was perceived in the 1900s.
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