Layamon


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Lay·a·mon

 (lā′ə-mən, lī′-) fl. 13th century.
English poet who wrote The Brut (c. 1205), the first account in English of King Arthur and his knights.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Layamon

(ˈlaɪəmən) or

Lawman

n
(Biography) 12th-century English poet and priest; author of the Brut, a chronicle providing the earliest version of the Arthurian story in English
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

Lay•a•mon

(ˈleɪ ə mən, ˈlɑ yə-)

n.
fl. c1200, English poet and chronicler.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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The first great English writer of the stories of Arthur was named Layamon. He, too, was a priest, and, like Wace, he wrote in verse.
Like Wace, Layamon called his book the Brut, because it is the story of the Britons, who took their name from Brutus, and of Arthur the great British hero.
Layamon finished his book towards the end of the twelfth century or the beginning of the thirteenth.
But although Layamon wrote his book in English, it was not the English that we speak to-day.
We know very little of Layamon; all that we do know he tells us himself in the beginning of his poem.
That, in words such as we use now, is how Layamon begins his poem.
Layamon wrote his Brut more than a hundred years after the coming of the Normans, and although his poem is in the main alliterative, sometimes he has rhyming lines such as "mochel dal heo iwesten: mid harmen pen mesten," that is:--
At times, too, Layamon has neither rhyme nor alliteration in his lines, sometimes he has both, so that his poem is a link between the old poetry and the new.
Layamon tells many wonderful stories of Arthur, from the time he was born to his last great battle in which he was killed, fighting against the rebel Modred.
This is how Layamon tells the story of Arthur's death, or rather of his "passing": "Arthur went to Cornwall with a great army.
You see by this last line that Layamon has forgotten the difference between Briton and English.
[Footnote: Laghamon's name is generally written 'Layamon,' but this is incorrect.