FOLKLORIC ANALYSIS OF KING ARTHUR AND ROBIN HOOD WITHIN BRITISH MYTH Britanya Mitinde Yer Alan Robin Hood ve Kral Arthur’un Folklorik İncelemesi


Milli Folklor, vol.139, pp.58-67, 2023 (AHCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 139
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.58242/millifolklor.1188072
  • Journal Name: Milli Folklor
  • Journal Indexes: Arts and Humanities Citation Index (AHCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, International Bibliography of Social Sciences, Linguistics & Language Behavior Abstracts, MLA - Modern Language Association Database, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.58-67
  • Keywords: evolution of folkloric characters, Jesse Harasta, King Arthur, national myths, Robin Hood
  • Hacettepe University Affiliated: Yes


King Arthur and Robin Hood, as two main folkloric figures, play an important role in British national identity especially in the nineteenth century. Throughout centuries, these mythical stories became well-known in the cultural heritage of other countries besides Britain. The lore and depictions of these two characters were not limited to the written and oral literature but came into existence through different mediums such as television, cinema, and computer games. Both the stories of King Arthur and Robin Hood have topical themes re-flecting the political, social, and cultural issues and conflicts in societies and shape the future as timeless arte-facts. In this sense, the major aim of this paper is to present and analyze the evolution of these two folk legends by using various historical and cultural sources to demonstrate the validity of the two characters across time, place, and medium. King Arthur and Robin Hood: The History and Folklore of England’s Most Famous Folk Legends by Jesse Harasta (2009) is used as the basis of the evolution of the lore of the two folkloric characters. The stories and the characters, the subjects of various myths and legends throughout centuries, have also been adapted and used in a variety of works and products transmitting local history of the lore of King Arthur and Robin Hood into global folklore. The political, social, and cultural use, adaptation, and evolution of King Arthur and Robin Hood will be traced starting from their emergence in the medieval ages through the twentieth century when the lore of King Arthur and Robin Hood is transformed through story-telling and added to different structures by using different media. As will be exemplified per the aim of the study though some changes in the presentation of the folkloric characters are present; the major dichotomic human characteristics are preserved. The article follows the trajectory of evolution of two legends into myths, literature, and finally products of popular culture. The work questions whether the divisive line between what is local and authentic versus that which is globalized and thus international is as clear as is presupposed.