Much has been written about the Grail legends and the Grail’s connection to King Arthur and Joseph of Arimathea. The conundrum has been the connection between the Grail, Arthur and Joseph and what makes all three of them common to Glastonbury. An understanding of the commonality of the Grail, King Arthur and Joseph of Arimathea can only exist by accepting Henry Blois’ authorial output; originally starting with the invention of the Chivalric King Arthur in HRB by fabricating a character called Geoffrey of Monmouth. He then expanded upon and popularised the invention of a Chivalric King Arthur by his impersonation of Wace as the composer of the Roman de Brut and finally in the composition and proliferation of the Grail story through his Nephews wives at the court in Champagne.
Joseph of Arimathea and King Arthur and the Holy Grail’s connection to both of them along with the Grail’s connection to Glastonbury, is directly caused by the propaganda put out by the abbot of Glastonbury i.e. Henry Blois. This transpired while he was alive c 1160-70 in the time the Grail legends appeared. We could resign ourselves to the opinion currently pervading, empirically built on a false foundation of a priori assumtions made by modern scholars, that the salad of mystery surrounding King Arthur, Joseph of Arimathea and the Grail and their incorporation into Glastonbury lore, miraculously materialised by a fortuitous convergence of factors as Valerie Lagorio concludes.
Many scholars before Lagorio have proffered theories about how Joseph lore was established, and it must now become apparent to the reader that for a person of repute who has taken it upon herself to inform and teach others, it is simply facile to conclude Joseph lore at Glastonbury evolved by a fortuitous convergence of factors. Even worse than this rumination is that deliberation has led her students to believe that the prophecy of Melkin has no validity. This is a very ignorant position to maintain and our present expert on the subject of Melkin is Professor Carley who still maintains this birdbrained and moronic view.
What I have attempted to elucidate up to the moment is Henry Blois’ connection to the Matter of Britain, but unless modern researchers accept that Henry Blois is the author of the HRB and the initiator of the Grail legends…. there will be no further understanding of the relationship between our three genres. These three genres obviously link through the prophecy of Melkin and Henry Blois’ knowledge of it, which effected events and lore at Glastonbury. The modern consensus and acceptance of what appears to be random associations will remain a quagmire of pick and mix theories as long as certain baseless a priori positions are defended by modern scholars. It is also necessary to eliminate the fruitless investigations of scholars such as Fiona Tolhurst who concludes that the HRB is essentially a feminine text misunderstanding that it was authored in its original form by Henry Blois NOT Geoffrey of Monmouth and composed initially to complement the crowning of the Empress Matilda.
Much of the cobbling together of accepted conclusions relies upon our current experts’ pet theories. Specifically some erroneous assumptions have mistakenly provided dates for the advent of certain manuscripts which has made it less likely to uncover that Henry Blois could even be eligible theoretically to be the originator of the Matter of Britain, i.e. it is a common assumption that Chrétien is the first to mention the Grail in writing. But Chrétien is surely not the first.
There are so many puzzles perplexing scholars today like the inter-relation of prose Tristan to post Vulgate Roman du Graal, Tristan’s relation to Arthur and Tristan’s lineage being traced back to Joseph of Arimathea that simply is answered by the understanding that Tristan and Isolde was Henry Blois’ first foray into romance literature. Tristan then gets connected to Arthur and Joseph by the same author. That Chrétien invented Camaalot is ridiculous and can only be understood by Henry Blois’ research when composing the original HRB. The name is derived from Camulodunum noted as an ancient city in Britain by Pliny and de-Romanized by Henry Blois in a version witnessed by Chrétien.
That Chrétien is the first to mention the Grail in writing for the main part is based upon Robert de Boron’s mention of Chrétien in his manuscript and the presumption indicates that Robert followed or had heard of Chrétien’s lead concerning the Grail. Chrétien admits that he had seen the book of the Grail so cannot be the inventor of the story.
It is a fact that both Robert and Chrétien heard the same story from Bleheris. Chrétien describes the Grail as a ‘very Holy object’ and Robert supposedly transforms it into a Chalice from Chrétien’s platter. The story emanates from Master Blehis and a certain Blihos Bleheris ‘who knew the whole story’. Let us take an intuitive guess who the author was and why he was referencing a still existing old church (before the Glastonbury fire) and knows of Arthur’s burial location in the Perlesvaus before the disinterment in 1191. It surely does not take a PhD to see Blihos Bleheris is an anagram of H.Blois. If scholars would not ignorantly deny the veracity of Melkin’s prophecy they would realise that through Henry Blois’ possesion of the prophecy the Grail was derived from the Duo Fassula.
The guesswork of modern scholars’ theories and their fallacious ‘red lines’ built up over years based on erroneous deductions, not only denies Henry Blois as the originating author of Grail literature but supplies no comprehensive theory as to how these histoires were transmitted to Chrétien or who wrote the book Chrétien attests to. We should also not forget that Henry Blois hiding his identity as the promulgator of the initial Grail legends was patron to Gerald…. and Giraldus Cambrensis’ Bledhericus is the ‘famosus ille fabulator’ who had lived “shortly before our time”.
It would be a madness to think that a ‘fortuitous convergence of factors’ made Chrétien randomly connect the ‘Glass’ of Glastonbury and coincidentally find it transliterated in French. It is hard not to see that Chrétien de Troyes has heard a version from Henry Blois or Master Blehis when in Erec816 at King Arthur’s court, Erec is married by the Archbishop of Canterbury in front of guests: Along with those whom I have just mentioned came Maheloas,817 a great baron, lord of the Isle of Voirre. In this island no thunder is heard, no lightning strikes, nor tempests rage, nor do toads or serpents exist there, nor is it ever too hot or too cold. Graislemier of Fine Posterne brought twenty companions, and had with him his brother Guigomar, lord of the Isle of Avalon. Of the latter we have heard it said that he was a friend of Morgan the Fay, and such he was in very truth. Davit of Tintagel came, who never suffered woe or grief.
816Chrétien de Troyes, Erec, Vv.(1915-2024A).
817Maeldinus was introduced to us in VM where Insula Pomorum is introduced as being synonymous with Glastonbury; Maheloas a great baron, lord of the Isle of Voirre is introduced by Chrétien and obviously Isle de Voirre is commensurate with Glastonbury through etymology in DA, and the prophecy of Melchinus was also found at Glastonbury. This is a fortuitous convergence of factors!!!
It would also seem beyond the bounds of coincidence that the little known insular VM story of Merlin’s madness where Morgan is mentioned on Insula Pomorum, just happens to be a friend of Guigomar Lord of Avalon. Even more astounding given this glaring coincidence, not one commentator connects the promulgators of Grail stories to Henry Blois as abbot of Glastonbury. In Arthurian literature, the repository of scholars theories regarding the Matter of Britain, not one contributor of many endless theories entertains the connection of interpolations in William of Malmesbury’s DA, with Henry Blois as abbot or the possibility of his composition of HRB and the initial Grail story or its connection to Melkin’s prophecy found at Glastonbury .
Are we supposed to believe this has nothing to do with Master Blihis, Blihos Bleheris, where an anagram of H.Blois and all the BL names connected to the sources of the Grail story are blatently connected? Does this coincidence transpire entirely independently in the Chrétien rendition emanating from the court of Champagne where Henry’s two Nephew’s and their wives (known proponents and promulgators of Grail literature) were situated and were known patrons of Chrétien?
One Arthurian episode appears in Caradoc of Llancarfan’s, Life of St. Gildas and also Chrétien de Troyes’ The Knight of the Cart. The fact that it is in a work by Chrétien becomes relevant once we understand that the court of Champagne818 is hearing of the Grail through a Master Blihis. The point right now is that it is ‘Arthuriana’ which is closely connected with Glastonbury, long before the famed discovery of Arthur at Glastonbury and even ‘Marie of France’ who mentions Avalon c.1160 is not accepted as the same person as Marie of Champagne even though that was her given name before she got married to Henry Blois’ Nephew.
Chrétien himself testifies to the fact that his knowledge of the Histoires came from Master Blihis. Strangely, Robert de Boron prefixes his own name with the title Meistres in one case followed by ‘Bouron’ and secondly as Messires followed by ‘Beron’. ‘Blihos Bleheris’ is Robert de Boron’s ‘greatest teller of tales at court’ and also ‘Blaise’ is given the honour of having recorded Robert’s Histoires.
Modern scholars misunderstanding of the provenance of Grail literature and their blindness to Henry Blois’ relation to Melkin’s prophecy…. where it is witnessed as ‘Geoffrey’s’ inspiration for insula Avallonis (and specifically scholars’ dismissal of the geometric directions to the tomb of Joseph of Arimathea encypted in Melkin’s prophecy), has prevented Joseph or the body of Jesus being re-discovered on Burgh Island. I do not know if I can make it any plainer but because I have followed this theory that the duo fassula is the body that Melkin refers to in the Melkin prophecy, people have chosen to ignore this evidence and prefer to say that I have gone too far. Ontology is not optional to the rationalist!!! Instead, and faced with no answers scholarship has now turned to endless navel gazing and propositions of the most fatuous allegorical rubbish, supposedly derived by scholastic insight and seems to abound in universities where genuine inquiry once existed.
Hundreds of ‘experts’ have tested the shroud of Turin which once covered the body of Jesus, yet, not one scholar admits the image on the shroud was made (formed) in Cedar oil from the human corpse of Jesus as put forward by Goldsworthy.819 But, without accepting that there was a body of Jesus long after his death, how could experts possibly concede that the shroud image was made over time by the body? They could not…. as this would deny the very essence of Christianity.
818In Chrétien’s Lancelot, the Knight of the Cart, it is fairly obvious that he is supplied the material. Since my lady of Champagne wishes me to undertake to write a romance. Here Chretien begins his book about the Knight of the Cart. The material and the treatment of it are given and furnished to him by the Countess, and he is simply trying to carry out her concern and intention’.
819Michael Goldsworthy. And did those feet.
One would have to accept the theory that Jesus’ body existed somewhere on earth which goes directly against the eschatology presented in the Gospels. Scholars deny the image of the Turin Shroud was formed in Cedar oil not because they can definitively say the residue image is not formed from dried Cedar820 oil and anaerobic bacteria deposits. They simply cannot conceive of the body of Jesus on Burgh Island and the Templars having discovered its whereabouts, shortly before they were all exterminated on orders from the pope.
The fact that the Shroud of Turin first appeared in the hands of a Margaret de Charney821 granddaughter of a murdered Templar seems irrelevant to the fact that maybe the Templars discovered the body. Especially if one cannot conceive of the body of Jesus still being preserved in Cedar oil c.1300AD.
Arthurian scholarship, Medievalist scholarship in terms of deducing authorship of the manuscripts we cover in this investigation and expert opinion in the elucidation of the whereabouts of Ictis and academic assessments concerning early Grail literature and its provenance, have all failed in their object to increase learning if persisting theories are upheld.
820Goldsworthy indicates that the scientists have determined that the image is on the shroud is formed from an organic resinous residue surrounding the fibres.
821Geoffroi De Charney was burned at the stake with Jack de Molay, the final Grand Master of the Templars in 1314.
We have the same problem also if our experts on ‘Geoffrey’s’ works refuses to accept that HRB and the Merlin prophecies were not authored by Henry Blois. How may we have any real furtherance of understanding about Arthuriana if the initial instigator of the Chivalric Arthur is denied. Shoaf also chooses to remain ignorant and she ran the ‘Arthurnet’ deciding what dark utterances from scholars go into the canon. If Carley refuses to accept that the Melkin prophecy is a real encrypted document, then ignorance remains the repository of the unconnected.
Nearly every theory put forward by modern scholars about the Matter of Britain is conjectural and cannot be tested. Most certainly the theory which puts Joseph of Arimathea on Burgh Island can be tested. The Devon Archaeological society has taken advice from the ‘expert’. The real problem is that the various disciplines of scholastic endeavour are so protective of their own specialised domain that the various branches remain insular with no cross-over. Hence our three Genres of study remain unconnected.
We can see plainly it is not in the interest of either of Carley or Crick or Cunliffe to expose the truth because the indifference of their so called ‘scholarship’ will be exposed. A set of events of such importance which would expose the ‘Vatican lie’ of a bodily resurrection is being repressed by the very people who profess to enlighten us through their scholastic efforts?822
822A recent discovery of a bible dating as far back as 2,000 years turns modern Christianity on its head. The Gospel of Barnabas indicates that Jesus may not have been crucified (or at least lived) and does not claim him to be the son of God, but instead a prophet. It states that the Apostle Paul was “The Impostor.” In the Book of Barnabas, Jesus wasn’t crucified, but ascended to heaven alive, and Judas Iscariot was crucified instead. Not that this is any more accurate than the four gospels, it shows that there was a discrepancy about where the body of Jesus went from a very early date. With Joseph’s connection to Ictis and Melkin’s prophecy directing us to the body of Abbadare, it should not take academia too long to figure out the rest.
My dissatisfaction at modern scholarship and the establishment’s complacent ignorance having been stated over and over; I hope to elucidate and show the reader how it is that Henry Blois has been able to hide himself as the author of the Matter of Britain while propagating his ethereal propaganda in the trappings of a tale. Therein is hidden a truth which will change modern religion. The real problem is that no-one wishes to find the bodies for fear of the ramifications.
The anonymous author of the primary Grail legends such as Perlesvaus, Chrétien’s Percival and Robert’s source, all drew from one source came from one mind. The not so elusive Master Blehis, Blihos-Bleheris, or Blaise has purposefully secreted his authorship and he has used the same ploy in regard by inventing the persona of Geoffrey of Monmouth advocating a mysterious source book from which his authority is derived. The real problem is that there never was a source book for either HRB or the Grail stories; the inspiration for Henry’s Grail edifice and Geoffrey’s Avalon is the prophecy of Melkin. The sooner this is recognised by experts such as Crick, the sooner the truth will out.
There are only two authors who concern us here regarding the early promulgation of Grail literature. Chrétien de Troyes who was a trouvère at the court of Marie de France at Troyes and Champagne in the heartland of the Blois region; and Robert de Boron, who, as we shall see, is either a pseudonym for Henry Blois823 or Henry Blois is the direct source of versified material from which a living Robert de Boron transposed into prose his trilogy.
At this stage I think we can safely say that The High History and Perlesvaus derive from Henry Blois. There may never have been a person called Robert de Boron in reality, but we shall get to that in progression of this investigation. Scholars have always dated Robert’s material after 1191 just because it fits their erroneous theory and it is easier to contrive a time line of events. Robert’s material was contemporary to Chrétien’s material regardless of when Arthur was exhumed. The reason why King Arthur was exhumed at Glastonbury is because Henry Blois had manufactured a Grave there and then interpolated William of Malmesbury’s DA which pointed to where the grave should be found.
823 A versified edition of Robert’s four manuscripts once existed which may have come from Henry Blois. The reason for thinking this is because Robert’s work brings together loose ends found in HRB and consolidates Henry’s position concerning the Grail, Joseph, Merlin, Blaise and a host of other loose ends. I refer the reader back to how ‘Wace’ describes the same geographical location as the one referred to by ‘Geoffrey’ in HRB, yet ‘Wace’ could not get this topography from ‘Geoffrey’s’ words alone. t is a case of one mind’s eye describing the same place.
After the success of the versified HRB supposedly authored by Wace, Henry Blois used a versified version of the Grail legend from which Robert obtained his source material. So too with how supposedly a separate Robert concurs with HRB, Glastonbury lore, and Henry’s invention of Merlin. Too many loose ends tied together; but to a scholar this will be rationalised as a fortuitous convergence of factors.
It is necessary to understand that Henry Blois was a man of immense power, who, due to his blood line and Norman aristocratic connections, commanded influence through the most powerful courts in both England and on the continent. After the death of his brother Theobald and the Empress Matilda, Henry Blois was the last surviving grandchild of William the Conqueror.
We have seen how the HRB went through a transition up until its completed Vulgate form in 1155 and to understand its transmission and the capability of Henry Blois to remain in the shadows as the author, we should also understand that Henry held sway over several monastic institutions where monk scribes resided who were conversant in Welsh, Cornish, French and Latin. Because no manuscript was released in the same environs where it had been copied or produced, the likelihood of it being traced back to Henry was reduced. We can look upon Henry Blois as a courier and propagator of his own propaganda through the monastic system and the courts of Europe and England.
It was possible to spread Arthuriana on the continent which had been transcribed by insular monks and vice versa to spread his French versifications to the Norman aristocracy in Britain without being discovered. A presentation manuscript to a court or to an influential personage could be passed off as an inconsequential gift. Henry nonchalantly could appear as having picked up some manuscript on his travels as he did when depositing the Primary Historia at Bec Abbey; or he could disseminate his propaganda by any such deception. In my opinion this is probably how Helinand in Froidmont had heard of the Grail and the story of it from a British monk.
The copying of any amount of manuscripts to most struggling authors like a ‘realistic’ Geoffrey of Monmouth would have been difficult and costly. As we know, the dedications in HRB are falsified retrospectively and the dissemination of the HRB manuscripts was carried out by the wealth of Henry, not by patronage of the dedicatees as is pretended. With Henry’s influence over various scriptoriums full of monks ready to do his bidding, it is not difficult to see how the edifice which eventually was to become the Matter of Britain was made popular initially as the Arthurian epic presented in the latter half of HRB, popularised on the continent by Wace’s version and brought into legend by the Grail story and its inclusion of Arthur and Joseph of Arimathea. Until the prophecy of Melkin is understood to be Henry Blois’ inspiration for the Grail and Avalon no serious investigation will come to the right conclusion.
By the time HRB manuscripts were being dedicated to grandees who had already died and these dead dedicatees were being referenced post 1155…. ‘Geoffrey of Monmouth’ was also already supposedly dead at that time and no-one could trace him or Walter’s book. There is not a single record of someone talking to a living Geoffrey (excepting the fictitious meeting between him and Theobald of Bec with two spurious witnesses); and any critic or investigator that took offence at what Geoffrey of Monmouth had written if he was accused of writing the seditious Merlin prophecies against Henry II did not comment until after ‘Geoffrey’s’ supposed death.
How the dissemination of Grail literature took off was slightly different in its proliferation of HRB through the monastic system, because an appetite for Arthurian adventure tales had been prompted by the Chivalric Arthur in HRB throughout the ecclesiastical system as witnessed by Alfred of Beverley followed by ‘Wace’s’ versification of iHRB into the courts and popular culture. Arthuriana c.1159-60 was now of some renown in aristocratic circles. The real difference in dissemination is that the stories concerning Arthur, his knights, Joseph and the Grail were shorter and were transmitted by conteurs at court in verse, read from scripts supplied by Henry originally rather than incorporated in the all-encompassing vulgate tome of the more highbrow historicity of HRB or Wace’s protracted verse edition of HRB.
The Grail legend’s popularity was forged not so much through the manuscript but through the trouvère tradition after the initial material had been exposed at the Court of Champagne by Henry. This may well have been carried out by reading from a book to an audience by someone Henry Blois had employed at court or to whom he had given a script. There is even a strong possibility that on occasion Henry disguised himself as a trouvère. It is certain that Henry Blois is the propagator of these stories and therefore even though the evidence in written form suggests that Grail literature emerged in the 1170’s, the origins through Henry were surely proliferated from 1164 -70. By 1170 Henry Blois was old and blind.
There is reasonable evidence, which we will cover shortly, that Robert de Boron’s three prose works were originally derived from versified originals which were read out at the various courts (including Marie of Champagne’s) and this is how Chrétien first came to hear of the Grail…. and its connection to Joseph related by Robert’s material. The very idea of a quest or search for the tomb of Joseph (as we have already covered) was carried out in Montacute by Henry Blois and the fact that the duo fassula is the forerunner or inspiration for the Grail is significant.
The Melkin prophecy acting as an inspirational template is especially highlighted in Glastonbury’s connection to Henry Blois; Henry’s connection to HRB; and Melkin’s prophecy being connected with Glastonbury and Avalon. All these coincidences must lead any sentient scholar to see that the puzzle that Melkin set posterity is Henry’s blueprint for the idea of a quest or search for the Grail.
In other words, the prophecy of Melkin itself is in fact the originator of a quest to find the Island on which the Grail (duo fassula) exists. If one can unlock the riddle, one will find Joseph’s tomb.
For the prophecy to have such ‘coincidence’ in its geometry, it would be astounding, if as Carley suggests, it was put together from various sources. In essence therefore, it would have no cohesion and must be meaningless and yet in reality locates an island in Devon by the data. By whatever method the subsequent material to HRB concerning Arthur, his knights, Joseph and the Grail was transmitted, its initial proliferation in the period from 1159 to 1170 is plainly through the aristocratic court contacts Henry Blois had both in England and France.
If we were to briefly look at the contacts at court where an association to Philip of Flanders is specifically mentioned by Chrétien and of course Marie of France, we can grasp how easy it was for Henry to disseminate his material as his familiar connections were the highest of the aristocracy and they ran the very court milieu where Arthuriana was soaked up.
If for example we take Theobald the Great (Thibaut de Blois 1090–1152), Henry’s brother, who was Count of Blois and of Chartres (as Theobald IV from 1102); and who was Count of Champagne and of Brie as Theobald II from 1125. Henry Blois’ brother held Auxerre, Maligny, Ervy, Troyes, and Châteauvillain as fiefs from Odo II, Duke of Burgundy. He, like Henry Blois was son of Stephen II, Count of Blois, and Adela of Normandy, also Henry’s mother.
After Adela’s retirement to Marcigney in 1125, Theobald had rule over the Blois family properties. However, King Louis VII of France became involved in a war with Theobald by permitting Count Raoul I of Vermandois, the seneschal of France, to repudiate his wife Eleanor and to marry Petronilla of Aquitaine, sister of the (then 1137–1152) queen consort of France, Eleanor of Aquitaine. The Eleanor who was slighted by Raoul was Theobald’s and Henry Blois’ sister and the insult caused a war which lasted two years from 1142–1144 while Stephen was still alive and King of England.
The war was marked by the occupation of Champagne by the royal army and the capture of Vitry-le-François, where many persons perished in the deliberate burning of the church by King Louis. This Ralph I of Vermandois (Raoul) who caused the offence to the Blois brothers was son of Hugh I, Count of Vermandois, and Adelaide, Countess of Vermandois and paternal grandson of Henry Ist of France. Ralph’s uncle was Philip I of France. Through him Ralph was a first cousin of Louis VI of France and a first cousin, once removed of Louis VII of France.
Anyway, under pressure from Queen consort Eleanor of Aquitaine, Louis allowed this Ralph to divorce his wife Eleanor, (the said sister to King Stephen, Theobald and Henry) in favor of Eleanor of Aquitaine’s sister, Petronilla of Aquitaine. However, to connect another grandee in the courtly web; Philip of Flanders reign began in 1157, and he became regent for his father, Thierry, who was frequently on crusade. In 1159 Philip married Elisabeth of Vermandois, elder daughter of this count Ralph I of Vermandois and Petronilla of Aquitaine. Now, more importantly and greatly having a bearing on this investigation…. when Louis and Eleanor’s marriage was annulled in 1152 custody of Marie of France and her sister Alix, was awarded to their father, King Louis. As we know, Eleanor of Aquitaine their mother, married Duke Henry, Count of Anjou and Duke of Normandy, who later became King Henry II of England.
In 1160, when Marie’s father, King Louis, married Adele of Champagne, he betrothed Marie and Alix (his daughter’s by Eleanor of Aquitaine) to Adele’s brothers, Henry and Theobald V (Henry Blois’ two Nephews) not forgetting Adele of Champagne, was the daughter of Theobald II, Count of Champagne, Henry Blois’ brother.
So, as we have mentioned, Henry Blois was the last survivor of the illustrious Blois brothers and uncle to the young Henry and Theobald and they of course were married to daughters of Louis VII and Eleanor of Aquitaine.
Now, this is only a small cross reference which shows the coincidences of the names which are linked to the initial propagation of the Grail stories i.e. Eleanor of Aquitaine, Marie of Champagne (Marie of France)824 and Alix, King Henry II, Philip of Flanders and the count of Poitiers before he became Richard I and their connection to Chrétien and to Henry Blois. The old city of Troyes where Henry Blois’ father had been Count was where Marie held her court, and was the womb of continental Grail literature. It was at Troyes that Chrétien was led to write romances which form the ideals of French chivalry which of course was the zeitgeist of the 1160-70’s.
824See appendix 35
This fascination with Arthuriana had been brought to the fore by ‘Geoffrey’s’ chivalric Arthur in HRB and flourished in the continental courts after the Anarchy was over and Henry II became King; mainly through the introduction of King Arthur by Henry Blois’ impersonation of Wace.
Although I have held to what is reliably known about Wace when I covered the subject earlier, the reader knowing that the Roman de Brut could not be written by the same intellect as Roman de Rou, must bear in mind that the real composer of Roman de Rou could have been much older than we are led to believe by what is in his text and the preamble may have been written by Henry Blois. The Roman de Rou, was, according to Wace, commissioned by Henry II but most of the Roman de Rou is devoted to William the Conqueror and the Norman conquest of England. Wace’s reference to oral tradition and his account of the preparations for the Conquest and of the battle of Hastings are in all honesty doubtfully reliant on documentary evidence or on eyewitness testimony as no eyewitnesses would have been still alive when he began work on the text as gleaned from the preamble i.e. in Henry II era. This again is suspiciously like Henry Blois mode d’ emploi!!
Anyway, back to the proliferation of Grail literature. An ideal of social conduct, the code of chivalry was the aspiration of the aristocracy, the concept of the “honette homme”. That Henry Blois was a part of its emergence is seen in his portrayal of the chivalric Arthur in HRB upholding its moral code and also by the code of conduct mentioned by Henry Blois as the author of GS; especially escorting Matilda to her brother Robert at the beginning of the Anarchy and such episodes as the jousts before the rout of Winchester.
The pastimes of the aristocratic class of readers and courtiers were jousting, hunting, and making love and the poetry of those who entertained them reflected their interests. The descriptions of women famed for their beauty are many throughout Grail literature, but so was the interest of Women in the literature and hence the preponderance of these matters in the poems of love affairs to entertain the leisure hours of such at the court of Marie.
Chrétien’s romances, written in eight-syllable rhyming couplets, treat respectively of Erec and Enide, Cliges, Yvain, and Lancelot, but “Perceval le Gallois”, was composed for Philip, Count of Flanders who had given Chretien the source book of the material c1160-70. What we know of Chrétien we learn from his works. The dedication of Lancelot or the Chevalier de la Charrette informs us the work was composed for Marie de Champagne daughter of Louis VII and Eleanor of Aquitaine. It was Marie who became countess of Champagne by her marriage to Henry’s brother, Theobald’s son also called ‘Henri’ in 1164. Therefore, we can know Lancelot was composed after that date.
The prologue of Perceval or the Conte du Graal is dedicated to Philippe of Alsace who became Count of Flanders in 1168. However, he could have been referred as Count of Flanders before that date as his reign began in 1157, while he acted as regent and co-count for his father.
He died at Acre in 1191 so the Conte du Graal was started between these dates. My guess would be from 1165-69. Marie was widowed from Theobald’s son Henry in 1181 and Philippe of Flanders is known to have proposed marriage to Marie, but this was long after Henry Blois’ death. The importance of traipsing through these relationships to personages and dates is because of the red lines or a priori false assumptions made by scholars over the last century which assume Joseph and Grail lore and its connection to Avalon arrived at Glastonbury following its propagation on the continent after the discovery of King Arthur’s grave in 1189-91
But still, the proximity of the relationships to the known patrons or propagators must be taken into account when making any conclusions on the provenance of the primal material in Grail literature having come from Henry Blois. Most commentators have expressed the view that this material arrived after 1189 because of the erroneous belief that Avalon at Glastonbury is only possible after Arthur’s unearthing; automatically excluding Henry Blois from being connected with Grail literature or his relationship to Marie of France.
If we can accept that Henry Blois is the instigator of the Grail legends propagated in various forms, separated by characters, episodes and motifs, yet linked purposefully and loosely corroboratively, we can get a better grasp of the transitions through which the tales have been reworked and how it is that scholarship has been left bewildered.
There can be no understanding of the Grail or the Arthurian and Josephian literature which connects it to Glastonbury without including the name of Henry Blois or Melkin. There is simply no present day credible authority on the Grail; although many would put themselves forward as such in an instant. R.S Loomis825 is the closest to being accepted an expert, but in his compendium of rationale regarding Arthuriana and Grail literature826 Henry Blois is not even named. Until scholarship accepts the Prophecy of Melkin as existing in the era of Henry Blois (even though it is not attested until John of Glastonbury’s Cronica) there can be no furtherance in understanding of the provenance of the Grail, Grail Literature or Glastonburyana.827
825Roger Sherman Loomis (October 31, 1887 – October 11, 1966) an American scholar hailed as the foremost authority on medieval and Arthurian literature.
826Arthurian Literature in the middle ages. R.S. Loomis
827As I have stated, Henry Blois’ use of the Melkin prophecy spawned, not only the sacred vessel, and the search for the vessel, but provided the template for Arthur’s body to be found in the future on Avalon and Britain’s eventual re-instatement to God (once the question is asked in Grail legend or likewise when the duo fassula is discovered in the prophecy). Yet, the whole of the Matter of Britain is based upon the genuine burial of Joseph on Ineswitrin. The fact that both the prophecy and Joseph become part of Glastonbury’s later lore does not preclude the existence of the prophecy in the time of Henry Blois; especially when we can plainly see the prophecy’s connection to the etymology of the Graal itself (i.e. sang real); as the medieval mind would naturally think Jesus blood was contained in the one of the vessels mentioned. If the prophecy itself had been included in DA, Henry Blois would have been exposed by all the commonalities which lead back to Glastonbury, but all the commonalities to Henry Blois shows that he originally was inspired by the prophecy of Melkin.
The fact that one single man has been capable of engineering what became known as the Matter of Britain and has been able to keep his identity secret has left all theories which deal with the spawning of Grail literature incomplete. Henry Blois himself was mystified by the item of the Grail (which was based on Melkin’s duo fassula). What we know of ‘Geoffrey’s’ methods in his composition of HRB, we can see that there is barely a single episode or invented personality which we cannot trace to another source for its inspiration. The story King Lear always thought to be highly original to ‘Geoffrey’ was indeed based on the experiences of Henry Blois’ father with his own father. The one story that Tatlock could not find a source for was the story of King Lear based on Henry’s own father’s rejection on his return from the crusades in disgrace and thus is of familiar source. So, if modern scholars can accept Henry Blois as author of HRB, and then concede the Grail stories were propagated by him, it is only one step further to get to the Grail as an icon being based on Melkin’s duo fassula. But if you can’t accept what is obviously in front of you, then like Carley it is simpler to baffle others with hair-brained theories and decree that the Melkin prophecy is a 14th century invention.
We can trace many of the pivotal parts in the Matter of Britain which are inspired by the prophecy of Melkin once it is understood Henry Blois had a copy.828 For instance, one might say the most important inspirational part of the Melkin prophecy to influence events in the Matter of Britain is the burial of a body to be found in the future on Avalon; the mystical location of an island. The same is of course posited of Joseph’s remains in the original Melkin prophecy on Ineswitrin. The forerunner of the Grail itself is the duo fassula and the ‘Quest’ for the Grail itself (or Joseph’s tomb) is part of the purport of Melkin’s puzzle. Therefore, it should not come as a shock that Henry’s Graal is directly related to the duo fassula, or at least the understanding of it by Henry himself once one understands the provenance of the word deriving from Sang real to become San Graal through oral transference. It is Chrétien who has heard Henry Blois’ story not Chrétien who invents the word.
828He must have had a copy because we know the geometry does not apply to Avalon but Burgh Island. It was Henry who converted Glastonbury to Avalon in DA and Perlesvaus.
Henry’s comprehension of Melkin’s words was that there were two ‘vessels,’ one of which held the Lord’s blood. As we know from my previous coverage of the meaning of ‘blood and sweat’ found in the prophecy; the actual wording alludes and directly relates to what constitutes the Turin Shroud itself. It seems to me that Henry’s miscomprehension of the prophecy was that the blood of Jesus would be focused upon as a visualization of an episode of it flowing from Jesus’ body…. as was described in the Gospel of John 19:34. In Robert de Boron’s Percival it leaves no doubt what the Grail vessel contains: And this vessel, called the Grail holds the blood that Joseph gathered as it flowed from His wounds to the earth. It is just macabre to think that one vessel contained sweat and is probably why the Grail became singular. In reality though, the Turin shroud contained both blood and sweat as is stated in the prophecy.
Now, if it is Henry Blois that is the propagator of the legend concerning the Graal and he is doing this in vernacular French and basing it on what he had understood was being alluded to in the prophecy of Melkin, then we should understand that the Graal is based quite simply on sang réal, which in vernacular French translates as “royal blood”; and is based entirely on what Henry assumes has been collected by Joseph of Arimathea at the crucifixion site. Henry Blois as the inventor of insula Avallonis and the person who had substituted its name for Ineswitrin on the unadulterated Melkin prophecy would know that Ineswitrin was in Devon as it is corroborated as such in the genuine 601 charter found also at Glastonbury.
However, because of Henry’s different outlets and modes of transmission for his Grail propaganda; by the time that Chrétien had retold what had been told orally or had been written down by Henry as verse; the sang réal had morphed into a san graal or san gréal by oral transition just as Roi Pecheur may have evolved to or from Roi Pescheor (King of the sinners). Probably through Henry’s initial inability to grasp its dual substance (two vessels), the Grail became a singular ‘un Graal’, but still un san Graal by its connection to Jesus’ sang réal and ultimately by later translation becoming the ‘Holy Grail’.
Henry ties what could be conflated as an ancient Welsh magic cauldron with the concept of the Grail to which Arthur is then connected. It is also Henry Blois’ ploy in both HRB and Grail literature to pretend its source is from antiquity by saying there are ancient volumes or volumes in Latin.
Barber states: The origin of this material is clearly Celtic, but the form in which it is preserved is interesting: these fragments, notably the story contained in the first item above (which is paralleled in the opening scene of Perlesvaus), represent a stage in the evolution of Arthurian romance of which little remains- the Latin versions of Celtic or traditional local stories. How extensive these Latin versions were must remain a matter for conjecture but it is possible that the claims of the romance writers to have used Latin texts should not be totally dismissed; they may well have taken incidents like these from Latin sources and woven into the larger tapestry of their stories.829
829Richard Barber. Was Mordred buried at Glastonbury? The reader may remember Barber was the editor of ‘Arthurian Literature’ for many years and the Latin versions of Celtic or traditional local stories in reference to Grail literature is pure piffle. The only case of this is Henry’s first and early foray into this genre of work in Tristan and Isolde, completed before he even had the germ of an idea about a Chivalric Arthur. Admittedly the Latin versions of Celtic tradition idea for Barber derives from the colophon of Perlesvaus, but that was written by Henry Blois also. ‘The author of the High Book of the Grail even claims that his text is copied from a Latin manuscript which was found in the Isle of Avalon in a house of holy religion which sits atop reaching tides where King Arthur and Queen Guenievre lie’.
Commentators have thus assumed that the source of the Grail emanates from its association with the Celtic otherworld. But this is simply a concept of the Grail caused by the purposeful conflation of Henry Blois to the Spoils of Annwfn. Thus, we hear from Loomis et al. about the Christianization of a Pagan object which is pure piffle. The Cauldron of the chief of the otherworld and the nine maidens who tended it are conflated with the nine sorceress priestesses of Pomponius Mela’s island of Sena and then again with purposeful intent with the nine maidens on Insula Pomorum in VM. One would have to be sedentary not to accept that in chapter 5 of DA it is Henry Blois’ own words which compose the conflation with the Welsh Afallennau: Apple island from avalla in British is the same as poma in Latin. Or it was named after a certain Avalloc who is said to have lived there with his daughters….
To believe, as Gaston Paris did, that Chrétien crossed the channel to obtain his accurate knowledge of places in Western England, or to assume that Joseph d’Arimathie and his ‘vessel’ (fassula) was brought to the Vaus d’Avaron in the west, independent of Henry’s influence, ignores Glastonbury’s connection to Avalon as early as 1156-7 in VM as Insula Pomorum. Especially, when taking into account that the author of the Perlesvaus has understanding of Glastonbury topography and the old church.
Scholarship has been so severely duped by the invention of the persona of ‘Geoffrey’, few have even considered the connection from bishop Henry Blois to Monseigneur Blehis, Master Blihis, or Blihos Bleheris. The common denominator of our three genres of Glastonburyana, Arthuriana and Grail literature is their connection to the Prophecy of Melkin and Henry Blois. If we deny Melkin’s prophecy as a fake and choose to remain ignorant that Henry Blois impersonated Geoffrey, and Henry interpolated DA; then an answer to this salad of material and confused opinion will never unlock the bigger issue that remains hidden in the trappings of a tale.
To deny that the fount of these Histoires came into being at the exact time (i.e. 1160-70 and onward) when Henry Blois was at liberty to expand and embellish his self-motivated propaganda is ignoring the solution to many unanswered problems. Henry Blois developed an historical chivalric Arthur from an unremarkable warlord in antiquity whose worth had been partially aggrandized by Nennius recycled by Lambert of St Omer in his Liber Floridus, and who had been mentioned anecdotally in Saints lives and Welsh poetry, and was a part of an oral tradition of the hope of a conquered populace…. to become part of Henry’s evolving tapestry of ancient British History.
Initially the embellished Arthuriana in HRB was built upon a foundation of an already composed pseudo-history composed as a work initially intended for Empress Matilda and Henry I. It was in 1137 a pseudo-history only; the purpose for which it had been written now made it redundant…. before becoming the Primary Historia found at Bec. This too was driven by the popular cult of Arthur current at the time, obviated by the reference at the end of EAW. The problem with Crick is that she has made a giant assumption that the Leiden manuscript found at Bec is synonymous with the source of EAW. It cannot be. Look at the discrepancies in storyline.
But, the embellishments of Arthur and his Avalon in subsequent Grail literature does not negate the truth or accuracy of the Melkin prophecy or the certainty of Joseph of Arimathea having been buried on Burgh Island and having brought the body of Jesus to Britain…. all deposited in an ancient tin vault. Especially, the Joseph lore is obviated how the circumstances transpired…. when the Island of Ineswitrin happens to be an island known as Ictis, spoken of in the ancient world.
There is substance to these ‘rumours’ of the Britons as attested by Augustine.830 It is impossible to see how the British could prefer their own church over any other, if it did not have its own established tradition which made it separate in its tradition from Rome. The Roman Vatican’s monopoly of power over souls encompassing a third of the population of the Globe rested upon expunging any reference of Britain’s connection to the Holy family in the Roman occupation. This transpired early in Britain’s history, but should not make the geometry in Melkin’s prophecy worthless or deny the blatantly obvious fact that the body of Jesus must exist somewhere. If this is too hard to believe for a Christian, then at least we should recognize that Joseph’s body has not been found. Bodies do not evaporate to Heaven, maybe Spirits do!! They say that knowledge which is readily accepted by the mass is only fully understood when at last the intelligencia has grasped it and articulated it.
Who amongst the British scholars would deny British independence from the Roman church, the early evidence for which is apparent throughout Cornwall from the earliest dawning of Christianity? Most in the modern era believe the English church’s separation from Rome was caused by Henry VIII’s division on some facile point of marriage. This is true but derives from a deeper and subliminal understanding of the British church’s independence from Rome.
The real separation is rather a consequence of the earliest Jews close to Jesus and Joseph, fleeing Jerusalem to join their long-lost cousins from the earlier diaspora. This was the reason Joseph chose to bring Jesus’ body to Britain as he had been here as a tin trader and found the remnants of like-minded people from the diaspora waiting for a Messiah. In all likelihood (but it will be a speculation too far for most), Mary Magdalene was from Britain and this is why she suddenly appears in the New testament accounts (maybe at a marriage) and thereby affecting the decision of the body of Jesus being transported to Burgh Island. To dismiss the link of the Jews from the Diaspora settling Dumnonia, we should only look to names of Jonas King of Dumnonia 530-540 and several named Judicaël King of Domnonia831 also King of the Bretons after the Saxon incursion. The Greek historian Herodotus in the 5th century B.C, referring to the tin trade. in book 3 refers to the ‘Isles in the west’ says ‘I cannot speak with certainty nor am I acquainted with the islands called the Cassiterides from which tin is brought to us….it is never the less, certain that both our tin and our amber are brought from these extremely remote regions, in the western extremities of Europe’.
830“who preferred their own traditions before all the churches in the world”. see chapter36
831See Note 6.
Ptolemy, writing c.140 A.D. says of the British Isles, ’they were peopled by descendants of the Hebrew race who were skilled in smelting operations and excelled in working metals’.
There are still scholars today who believe that the story of the vessel and the ‘Quest’ to find it originally sprang from the mind of Chrétien de Troyes. Why this is still posited seems ridiculous given the testimony of both Chrétien, Robert de Boron and the author of Perlesvaus,832 who all attest to a previous authority… all authorities on the Grail having a similar sounding name to Henry Blois’s surname.
There is little other rational explanation as to the sudden appearance of Un Graal except it having originated from sang réal to become san Greal. The fact that Helinandus c.1210 explains the meaning of this previously unknown word as a dish833 has commonalities with the rationalisations of Chrétien and Robert de Boron who both derived their understanding from Henry, who clearly had to understand it as a vessel…. as in the Prophecy of Melkin. That Helinand finds the need to provide an explanation shows there was still uncertainty to the meaning of Un graal forty years after Henry’s death. Between Henry’s initiation of a sang réal which morphed to a san graal to Un graal there is a period of transformation from Henry Blois’ terming the vessel ‘the vessel of the Holy Blood’, which over the 40-year period since its inception and arrival into the public domain, Helinand thought needed clarification. The Grail’s initial derivation must be found in Henry’s interpretation of the Melkin prophecy as a vessel containing the blood of Christ.
832William Nitze on the subject of Perlesvaus: A priori, there can be no doubt that the writer had in mind the twelfth-century Glastonbury with its hill or Tor and its well-known Lady-chapel.
833At this time a certain marvellous vision was revealed by an angel to a certain hermit in Britain concerning St. Joseph the noble decurion who deposed from the cross the body of our Lord, as well as concerning the paten or dish in which our Lord supped with his disciples, whereof the history was written out by the said hermit and is called ‘Of The Graal’ (De Gradali). Now a platter, broad and somewhat deep is called in French ‘gradalis’ or ‘gradale’, wherein costly meats (with their sauce) are want to be set before rich folk by degrees (gradatim), one morsel after another in divers orders, and in the vulgar speech it is called graalz, for that it is grateful and acceptable to him that eateth therein, as well.
There is no-one in their right mind who would attest that the prophecy of Melkin was meant to bolster a cult of Joseph at Glastonbury when half of the text seems unintelligible or irrelevant until deciphered in 2010 by Kim Yale. Logically, why make a fraudulent text which is not relevant to the purpose? On the other hand, it would be a freak of coincidence if a geometrically oriented puzzle about an island was randomly constructed (even from various sources) and when every word of the prophecy was utilised (and could be found to have relevance); it then constructed a geometrical line that just happened to locate an Island in Dumnonia (the very island being donated by the King of Devon in the 601 AD charter).
So, besides constructing a line on a map which adheres to exact measurements, we then find that all the other words and numerical data in the prophecy is relevant, (otherwise we could not construct the line which is the point of the Prophecy). The St Michael line of churches sited along the line we are sent to bifurcate also (not by coincidence) has two other churches dedicated to St Michael on the very line which we are encouraged to construct. One at the point on the hill at Montacute….for which I have maintained Henry carried out a search because he was aware of its association with Joseph of Arimathea (as Father Good relates). The other St Michael church was actually on Burgh Island as Camden attests.834 Given that coincidence…. it would be silly to think that whoever laid out this design was not cognisant of the solution to Melkin’s prophecy.
834Camden: ‘where the Aven’s waters with the sea are mixed; Saint Michael firmly on a rock is fixed’ refers to the River Avon arriving at the sea around Burgh Island.
The churches were certainly in place long before John of Glastonbury recycles the Melkin prophecy. Since many of the Crusaders were Templars and were predominantly from the courts of Europe and would have heard of the Grail…. it is hardly surprising that they discovered what is today called the Turin Shroud having decrypted Melkin’s prophecy and located the tomb on burgh Island previously. They could only achieve this if the Melkin prophecy existed and had been deciphered. The Roman church organised the Templar’s demise, because by locating the body of Jesus (and being able to produce the burial shroud), the Roman religion would become redundant.
The very aim of every scholar is to find a niche of expertise and own it for one’s life; to be an expert on some subject. Like a baton, the field of scholarship involving our three genres has been passed on and our experts are so well read on the voluminous opinion concerning the Matter of Britain that it is virtually impossible to independently arrive at any other conclusions than those built by previous generations. Each budding graduate’s understanding is guided by the construct of their mentors. The scholastic community, by not recognising Henry Blois as the common denominator has, over the generations, built their own erroneous edifice which has no definitive conclusion and thus Lagorio’s astounding ‘Fortuitous convergence of factors’ conclusion and thus Carley’s ultimate crime in condemning the Melkin prophecy as a fake. If the foundations collapse the very essence of scholarship is seen for what it is. The same goes for religion.
This aside, what I can maintain is that the original connection of the Graal to Arthur made by Chrétien and the propagation of the Grail’s existence in connection with Joseph in French literature by Robert de Boron, both stem from Henry Blois and his knowledge of the Prophecy of Melkin found at Glastonbury when he was abbot there.
A Grail, wondrous but not explicitly holy, first appears in Perceval le Gallois, an unfinished romance by Chrétien de Troyes and additions to Perceval are six in number and two of these are referred to as prologues. These are the Elucidation and the Bliocadran. The Elucidation survives in only one manuscript and the Bliocadran in two. The Elucidation is an anonymous poem which was written to serve as a prologue to Chrétien’s Perceval setting the scene by advising reticence about the secrets of the ‘Grail’ and providing a note of warning which is ascribed to our Master Blihis obviously from whom the tale is derived.
In the Bliocadran, prologue Perceval’s father, unnamed in the story of the Conte du Graal (Perceval) of Chrétien de Troyes, is actually named ‘Bliocadran’.
There are details in the Bliocadran apart from the name of the prologue which show the relationship with Henry Blois’ Grail romances. For example, Perceval’s father had eleven brothers in the Joseph of Robert de Boron and the Perlesvaus also both obviously composed originally by Henry. It seems obvious that the Bliocadran was composed with the same knowledge of Robert de Boron’s work and the Perlesvaus which obviates a common author given the BL prefix. Henry’s father just happens to have eleven offspring.
The two sisters born in chronological order prior to Henry Blois’ birth were Alix born in 1095 who married Renaud III of Joigni and then Adelaide i.e. Adela of Blois (not Normandy) born 1167 who married Milo Viscount of Troyes. This would then mean Henry Blois the originator of the Bliocadran was probably born in 1169 three ‘years’ before his father died. In the Bliocadran prologue ‘Bliocadran’ dies in a tournament three ‘days’ before Perceval is born.
Perceval’s mother recounts to her departing son the story of his father, which she hitherto had hidden from him. Perceval’s father had been wounded and ruined Just like Henry’s father Stephen who died in 1102, three ‘years’ after Henry was born At the age of about seven Henry was sent as an oblate to the monastery in Clugny which was surrounded by Forests. In the Bliocadran, seven months later, the mother flees with her son to the ‘waste forest’. Perceval’s mother hides him away in a ‘waste forest’ to protect him from chivalry (supposedly for its constant threat of death through tournaments and crusade). ‘Bliocadran’ is a knight who is not to be deterred from returning to tournaments or war even after the deaths of kin or the impassioned pleas of a pregnant wife .i.e Adela Henry’s mother in reality.
In effect we see that Henry is composing his story of Perceval in the Bliocadran based on his own family history just as we saw in the Vita Merlini where Henry is bemoaning the ‘nineteen’ fruitful years of his brothers reign in the forests where Merlin finds himself going mad; which is where Henry gets his motif for the Gaste Foret or the ‘Waste Forest’; which was part of the huge hunting forests of Burgundy. Seven months after the death of ‘Bliocadran’ in this tournament and the birth of her son, the lady decides to flee to the Gaste foret to protect Perceval from chivalry. She tells her people she is going on a pilgrimage to Saint Brandain d’Escoce (Saint Brendan). However, a month before, she had secretly sent out loaded wagons and carts ahead of her departure; just as Henry Blois had done, asking his confidant and friend Peter the venerable to transport all his mobile wealth to Clugny. We might remember also Barinthus from the Navigatio Sancti Brendani Abbatis is the name of the man who escorts King Arthur to Insulam Pomorum. Is this all too coincidental for the rational mind to dismiss?
However, Chrétien’s lack of sense of proportion and at times proper motivation of many disorganized episodes is indicative of his having heard such stories second hand from which he has used the characters and motifs. This may well have stemmed from hearing Latin Grail poetry and similar stories in vernacular. This might explain some tangles and plot contradictions with similar episodes recounted at different times. But I fear the real issue is that Chrétien was outclassed and struggled to make his stories as exciting and as well crafted as our Cicero; and thus, at times just steals icons from an original histoire recounted by a contour at the court of Champagne but having originated from the muses of Henry Blois.
The Perlesvaus835 itself (High History) with its disjointed branches seems to be a compilation of pre-existing more complete histoires. Henry Blois himself had no duty to continuity which is evidently apparent in the evolving transitional versions of HRB and can be largely held responsible for many of the contradictions found in chronologies concerning Grail literature as a whole. It is virtually impossible to divine which constituent parts of Grail literature stemmed directly from Henry himself given the fact that his motivation is often that of conflation.836
835It is lovely to witness what scholars such as Nitze have come up wth in the past: I have brought this and additional evidence together here with the hope of settling not only the terminus a quo of the Perlesvaus, which is certainly 1191, but also its approximate terminus ad quem. The Perlesvaus again and again refers to the scribe or recorder of the Latin original as Josephus. He is known as le bon clerc and le bon hermite and it was he who celebrated the first mass (at Glastonbury). Who can this person be? Heinzel (Franzasische Gralromane, p. 107) suggests that it is no other than Josephus Flavius, the Jewish historian. ” What makes this hypothesis extremely plausible is the fact that for the passage on the apostle Philip, cited above, the De Antiquitate’ refers us to Freculf: Supposing that the author of the earliest redaction of the Perlesvaus was associated with Glastonbury, the choice of Josephus as sponsor for his work could easily have been inspired by Freculf, inasmuch as Freculf was mentioned as authoritative in the standard work on the antiquity of the abbey. In the light of these facts, we are justified in accepting the view of Baist, expressed in 1892 and in 1895 (though without the evidence), that the Perlesvaus was composed in the interest of Glastonbury Abbey. Further, it is certain that the work was not composed until 1191 and probably within a reasonable time after this date, inasmuch as the text dwells on the presence of Guenevere’s and Arthur’s tombs within the Lady-chapel, novelement feste a phrase which can only refer to an event still fresh in the minds of contemporaries.
836Commentators have pondered over the introduction of chess into Perlesvaus, but if I am correct about Henry having first written Tristan and Isolde…. it too has allusions to the game also. The story of the Chess board is elongated in Gautier’s continuation of Perceval, but it does indicate to me that Perlesvaus preceded Chrétien’s stories. I will be castigated for positing this as a theory, but I believe it was Henry who improvised an earlier game which resembles chess and named all the pieces on the board, which gives us our current game today. A castle, a knight, a bishop, a king and queen and all the little people; a game designed in Henry’s era.
What we can be certain of is that the Grail itself (as it exists in the Melkin prophecy) was misunderstood by Henry Blois, but Grail is based directly on its perceived description in Melkin’s Prophecy in Henry’s promulgation of references to it. What can also be stated as a certainty is that Robert de Boron’s association of Joseph of Arimathea with the Grail stems directly from Henry Blois having read the Prophecy of Melkin. This of course will be verified when the tomb is opened and the prophecy is validated.
We should not dismiss the coincidence of Henry Blois being abbot of Glastonbury and no mention of that place in HRB. This would only be for one reason. The fact that Melkin’s prophecy turns up there to be recycled by John of Glastonbury is not by chance either. John of Glastonbury obviously had a copy of Perlesvaus and other output from Henry no longer extant today. Arthur and his knight’s connection to the Grail is directly a consequence of Henry Blois having read the Prophecy of Melkin and Henry’s authorship of HRB. Henry invented the chivalric King Arthur in HRB and without the Melkin prophecy there would not have been the object of the Grail or the manufactured grave of Arthur at Glastonbury.
Robert de Boron’s reference to a ‘vessel’ more commonly than the ‘Grail’ stems from the fact that whatever Robert’s source was, (whether oral or written), it was more directly connected to the fassula description. Robert had also heard of the object known as the Grail, as it had already gone through the transition from sang réal to San Greal, yet both Chrétien and Robert have heard of the object second hand. From this point we might deduce that it is Henry himself who has made the confusing transition from Christ’s blood to a Holy Vessel. Maybe Robert’s vessel of the last supper was a Henry Blois invention or not; but to my mind, the fact that Robert introduces Bron, smacks of a Henry Blois conflation which ties the Grail to the Welsh Bran just as he had done in VM by locating Merlin Caledonius with Rhydderch. These would not have been efforts or associations made by Robert.
However, in the Mons manuscript we find the Bliocadran prologue concerning Perceval’s father. Just looking at the name sends up an alarm in its similarity to other phonetic names commencing with ‘Bli’ and their association with the Grail. In the Bliocadran prologue a composition of 800 verses, Percival is not even mentioned. The Bliocadran/Bliocadron is in direct contradiction to Chrétien’s family history as told by Perceval’s mother, yet the poem has come from a common source; in that La Gaste Forest (The Waste Forest) has the same name.
The point is that, understanding Henry’s disregard for the superfluity of detail, adds to the very aura of in-preciseness and legendary all-inclusiveness upon which the Matter of Britain is built. Chrétien does not name Perceval’s father, yet the Didot Perceval calls him Alain le Gros.837Much of the hodge-podge detail of names in contradictory situations and episodes, throughout the surviving Grail literature, has nothing to do with this investigation. It may lead one to deduce that the original form of the various stories/episodes told by Master Blehis to have been transmuted in the 1160’s orally. So, Percival was originated by Henry and this story was taken up by Chrétien. It is so evident that Robert’s work has to be very closely aligned with Henry Blois which I will get to shortly. But in Robert’s Percival his story is the way Henry Blois deals with the subject of the Grail removed from Joseph’s association with it and thus it becomes mystical more than religious .i.e. to Henry both were derived from Melkin’s prophecy a real duo fassula and a real Joseph of Arimathea sepulchre, but Percival was about the search and the adventures along the way (very much part of Henry’s life).
837One could posit the name derived from the work by Henry’s friend Suger on Louis Le Gros
If transmitted by manuscript, such as an original Queste, Perlesvaus or Grail book…. then intertwined with Henry’s already existing oral tradition imitated by Robert and Chrétien; and then embellished by subsequent continuators cross referencing the original output of Henry; it seems fairly pointless looking for an original, as this ground has been amply ploughed by French and German commentators in the past 200 years.
If Henry Blois’ verse manuscripts ever existed and were read by conteurs at court, it is only the later versions by Chrétien which we are left with and these probably have their own embellishments incorporated. Where Robert de Boron’s trilogy is concerned only a rational mind would understand that these are in storyline what Henry Blois has written. This is why it is difficult to say if Robert de Boron is real and if he is…. has Robert made a prose version of the trilogy originally composed by Henry in verse.
Whereas HRB has survived in the continuity of the monastic system (through its seemingly more historical content and Latinity), Grail literature cannot be said to have survived in the more fractured court system.
Whatever we are to make of the Bliocadran as a work, we can see many similarities which tie the work to Henry Blois. Bliocadran had twelve brothers and Glastonbury was populated by one of twelve brothers; a certain Glasteing who found his sow sucking ‘old church apples’ there. Apart from the relevance for the apples linking Pomorum to insula Pomorum of VM fame and Glastonbury (through the apples) with Avalon…. the twelve brothers had several territories in Wales.838 One of which was Gower and the other Kidwelly and this Bliocadran was the father of Perceval. There is only one father of the original Grail hero!!
838Glast, the supposed eponymic founder of Glastonbury abbey, in the DA and my uncle’s discussion (Romania, XXVII , 531) Ferdinand Lot, on his twelve descendants, erroneously given by William of Malmesbury as his “brothers”.
There is a designer and since we know Henry is Abbot of Glastonbury and ultimately this all concentrates itself at Avalon or the Vaus d’Avaron or the vales of Avalon it is hardly surprising that the protagonist is per-ce-val (singular) ‘through this vale’ and its in a book called Perlesvaus per-les-vaus (plural) ‘through the vales’. You have to give Henry credit for a good sense of humour!!!! The Story of Perceval was Henry’s way of including the quest or search for the Grail which he had carried out in his early life i.e. the purchase of Looe island, the search at Montacute, the travel to Salgoem, the cliffs above Burgh Island etc, but now portrayed in the form of a mystical procession based on his ecclesiastical upbring of a monkish mass. Because Henry Blois did not have the answer to what the Duo fassula was or could locate Ineswitrin to find Joseph’s grave; nor did Perceval but he was blamed for not asking the question. It is hardly surprising then that we hear of Perceval le Blois.
The whole edifice of the Matter of Britain is built on tangential coincidences which taken as a whole have to have been interrelated by an architect. The literary composer who evolved the design from unconnected works mentioning Ynis Gutrin to an Isle de Voirre; and the anachronism of Arthur’s connection to Joseph, had a ‘fortuitously’ long life. The fact that early Grail stories all tie back to Glastonbury as Avalon is by design over time. If we look at the sequence of events tied to Henry’s agenda’s, we can witness its interconnectedness as we were supposed to by design; but derived by one mind. Henry constructed the Matter of Britain as it could only take shape by design.
If the evidence so far in this work were put before a judge to ascertain if Henry Blois wrote the HRB, interpolated William of Malmesbury’s DA, composed Life of Gildas, and was the composer of Grail literature; Henry Blois would be found guilty on all charges. However, firstly what we have before us are corrupt judges who choose to isolate the evidence into three different areas simply because they are incapable of assimilating the whole evidence and therefore never see the whole picture. Secondly, they have set rules whereby only under certain conditions may the evidence be put forward because these are the rules of the judges and they must be obeyed and to hell with the truth.
If it had not been for the great fire at Glastonbury in 1184, where so many books were destroyed, I am sure Henry Blois’ part in the manufacture of the false historicity which constitutes the Matter of Britain would have been discovered many years ago. The strange circumstances of a man who wrote an utterly unique book and who was in the unique position to do so; with a unique intelligence at an opportune time in history and who was in possession of a unique prophecy…. made it possible to compose a unique legend. No crime committed (except the second biggest lie in history) so, why look for a culprit? It is only when the relics of Joseph are exposed, that the Roman crime will be revealed and then Henry’s part in the Matter of Britain will come to light.
Do we really live in an age where a conclave of Cardinals, some of which have abused young boys, are capable of choosing a man in each generation who is deemed infallible?839
839Observations upon the Prophet Daniel. Issac Newton commenting on the fourth beast: By its eyes it was a Seer; and by its mouth speaking great things and changing times and laws, it was a Prophet as well as a King. And such a Seer, a Prophet and a King, is the Church of Rome……..With his mouth he gives laws to kings and nations as an Oracle; and pretends to Infallibility, and that his dictates are binding to the whole world; which is to be a Prophet in the highest degree.
Henry Blois seeing his fate and the potential destruction of his powerbase after the 1155 royal council meeting conducted at Winchester (at which the invasion of Ireland was discussed), put plan into action to escape the pending revenge from King Henry II and had Peter the Venerable carry all his transportable wealth to Clugny a month prior to his departure. In verse 635 of the Bliocadran prologue: One whole month before, the lady had taken her treasure, which abounded in silver and gold, and sent it out of the land.
In the Elucidation, in line 12 we hear of “Master Blihis”. Blihos-bleheris, (anagram H.Blois) is mentioned in Chrétien’s Eric and Enid.840 What has come down to us is a mixture of Henry Blois’ own tongue in cheek play on words of his own name included in his literature and the genuine reverberations of Henry Blois having stood in French courts in disguise or having employed someone to read his verse under the name of Master Blehis. It is not by accident or coincidence the Bleheris who, according to Wauchier, had ‘told tales concerning Gawain and Arthur’s court’; and the Master Blihis, ‘who knew the Grail mystery’, and gave solemn counselling about its revelation; the Blihos-Bliheris, ‘who knew the Grail, and many other tales’; the Bréri, ‘who knew all the legendary tales concerning the princes of Britain’; and the famous story-teller Bledhericus, of whom Gerald of Wales speaks, are all coincidental concoctions. These are not separate people, or mere inventions of the separate writers. It would seem as if Henry, may well have deserved the title ‘famosus ille fabulator’, and it is not by chance that the similarity of his name appears in many forms in connection and as an authority on the Grail.
The ‘master’ of Master Blihis has its derivation from ‘Monseigneur’ through Monsieur and even Blaise, the writer of the supposed ‘Grail’ book posited by Robert de Boron is ‘master’ of Merlin.841 Wauchier the continuator of Chrétien refers to what he thinks is the original author by name and calls him ‘Bleheris’ the first time. On the second occasion he states specifically that this Bleheris was of Welsh birth and origin, ‘né et engenuïs en Galles’. He says this in connection with a tale being told to a certain, Comte de Poitiers, whose favourite story it was, saying ‘he loved it above all others’. This anecdote infers that it was not the only tale the said ‘Bleheris’ had recounted to the Count.842
840‘Tristan who never laughed sat beside Bliobleheris’.
841Robert de Boron’s prose Merlin from the Modena Manuscript. So said Merlin to his master Blaise, explaining what he had to do. Merlin called him ‘master’ because he had been such a support and guide to his mother.
842We can see that there is a possibility of three candidates for which the ‘Count of Poitier; could apply. Henry Blois might have entertained as his Compte de Poitiers (which was synonymous with Poitou), and in the Middle Ages became part of Aquitaine; Louis VII of France (1137–1152) obtained the title through marriage to Eleanore and can be discounted as the Compte to whom Wauchier refers. Henry II of England (1152, 1156–1189) obtained the title through marriage to Eleanore of Aquitaine. William IX (1153–1156) son of Eleanor and Henry II of England was only two when he held the title. Richard Ist, (son of Eleanor), also held the title (1169–1196). Henry II would have most probably been referred to as King of England post 1154, and we know that Henry commenced his Grail literature in the era 1158-70. So, one might assume the likely candidate for Wauchier’s reference to the Count is the future Richard I, especially with his connection to Marie of France. Certainly, our Bleheris was not interested in Grail literature while he was at Clugny as there is not a hint of evidence in VM (which was written at this time). ‘Count of Poitier’ is a reference to Richard I where Wauchier refers to him retrospectively as he is known to have had an avid interest in Arthur and was versed in poetry. He had, while in prison, written Ja nus hons pris or Ja nuls om pres, which is addressed to his half-sister Marie de Champagne (read Marie of France) and he wrote it in song, in French and Occitan versions.
From the beginning of Henry Blois’ impersonations, he bases the source of all his Arthuriana in Wales; as he does also through the persona of a Welsh ‘Geoffrey’. He continues this façade as the original Chrétien/Wauchier’s storyteller. However, Robert’s Blaise is firmly placed in Northumberland. Henry Blois had differentiated his Merlin Ambrosius of HRB fame to create a new Merlin Sylvestris or Merlin Caledonius in VM.
This was solely to tie in with Welsh poetry and the mention of Myrddin Wyllt ,Myrddin Emrys, who became Merlinus Caledonensis, or Merlin Sylvestris by association with such people as Rhydderch who came from the Old North of Britain and by connection to Taliesin etc. This indicates that Robert de Boron’s Blaise (who was Merlin’s master) was in fact the newer Merlin Caledonius fabricated while Henry was at Clugny in 1155-8.
The ‘Elucidation’ prefaces the account of the Grail Quest by a solemn statement of the gravity of the subject to be treated as:‘God moveth the High story of the Graal. And all they that hear it ought to understand it, and to forget all the wickednesses that they have in their hearts’. These stark warnings are said to have come from a certain Master Blihis, concerning whom we hear no more. Scholarship needs to accept that the phonetic coincidence of the name Blaise, ‘master’ of Merlin and Master Blihis (given the likeness to a genuine Monsiegneur Blois) and the coincidence of the similar sounding Bliobleheris, Bliocadran, Blihos-Bliheris, Bréri, Bledhericus is beyond coincidence as a source originator. The name must have stemmed historically from a ‘real’ Henry Blois as the propagator of Grail literature who covertly disguises his association to these Histoires.
It seems pointless to rearrange and correct certain a priori standpoints made by commentators such as Heinzel, Birch-Hirschfeld, Nitze, Bruce, Lot, Nutt, Potvin, Pauphilet, Loomis etc. who have tackled this subject and who have all conceded to the existence of an archetype or common theme, yet not one of them implicates Henry Blois as author. The same a priori that Carley and Logario have erroneously set up on the work of Baist and Nitze before them as a red line, prevented any of the above researchers finding a solution to the Matter of Britain; yet none thought to look at the similarity of the name of the propagator and think ‘well that’s a coincidence’; especially since Avalon is at Glastonbury and the abbot was called Henry Blois and ‘Blihos’ is an anagram of his name!!!!
Now, if we accept there is no mention of Glastonbury in HRB and there is no mention of Glastonbury in Grail literature yet both genres concern themselves with Avalon and Arthur; surely, we might look at a common composer of both genres and for a person who wishes to hide his connection to both. Henry Blois is without doubt intricately connected to the third of our genres under scrutiny i.e. Glastonburyana as the dedicatee of DA; and the fact he was abbot shortly before Giraldus recognises Glastonbury as Avalon, must be recognised as the era that the transition took place between William of Malmesbury’s death in 1143 and Gerald’s account c.1192-3.
Considering all that we have covered previously, it does not take spurious conjecture to implicate Henry Blois. I can only conclude that it is Henry Blois himself who interpolated the DA. It is after all, the interpolations in DA which provides the very glue by which the whole Matière de Bretagne is transformed from fable into the possibility of having realistic historical provenance. Arthur’s historicity depends upon him being unearthed and therefore with certainty we can say it was Henry who manufactured the grave, given the evidence in DA and Perlesvaus both implying where King Arthur is buried before he was exhumed.
The curiosity and fame surrounding Arthur’s character was spread abroad by Henry Blois in HRB in England and in France through his impersonation of Wace and Arthur’s connection to the Grail in romance literature. The possibility that Henry Blois had initially searched for Joseph at Glastonbury (given the prophecy was found there) is augmented by his name’s association with the Montacute fiasco in the form of the De Inventione; allowing that Henry Blois was Dean of Waltham also and had a motive to create such a concoction. If Henry Blois wasn’t looking for an island on which Joseph might exist, then why would Henry appropriate Looe Island in 1144. The answer is he was looking for an island in Dumnonia because he knew Ineswitrin was there as a King of that domain had granted the island to Glastonbury!!!!
Henry secretly attached the leaden cross on the underside of Arthur’s grave slab at Glastonbury in between the two pyramids while probably inferring to other monks present that they were involved in a simple re-interment of a saint. He added a primate skull and tibia and a lock of blonde plaited hair which must have been in the ground some time as it fell apart when touched. He then waited until the monks (and himself) were dead.
On Henry Blois’ death and the release of DA amongst all the books donated to the Abbey of Glastonbury by Henry, the interpolated contents just became part of Glastonbury lore, and became accepted as having been written by the great historian William of Malmesbury 30 years previously as the interpolations in GR version B paralleled with interpolations in DA.
Most modern scholarship has centred upon the inter-relationships of the various early Grail works in an attempt to identify Grail literature’s primordial form by comparing the various works. Comparing Grail episodes…. looking for a source…. is as futile as Crick’s work on Geoffrey of Monmouth HRB manuscripts without discovering who the originator of the HRB was and without knowing of the evolving nature of the scripts and the reasoning behind mentioning the dedicatees and Walter.
There can be no understanding of the construction of HRB or of the relationship between Primary Historia, First Variant and other variants and Vulgate versions, unless the events behind the production of each edition are elucidated. If nothing is known of the author (except what has been left behind to misdirect his contemporaries and posterity); it is likely the naive researcher will be duped.
What I find truly irritating is that Crick says at the beginning of her book: It is known that a manuscript was at Le Bec at an early stage, but not what proportion of continental copies stem from manuscripts introduced in the twelfth century. The research should be…. which copies closely replicate the differences found between EAW and the variants. For example, since this is the earliest known copy, is there another copy which closely resembles what Huntingdon describes in EAW regarding Arthur’s fight with Mordred…. which differs greatly from Vulgate.
Crick could then realise that Vulgate through variants evolved from Primary Historia. Also, where we have an edition with ‘historia Britonum a Galfredo Arturo Monemutensi de Britannica lingua in latinum tralslata, rather than making deductions based on the content one should be alert when one sees Monmouth in the title or the cover story that ‘Geoffrey’ is just translating the book from the Briton tongue, in effect distancing himself from HRB’s actual composition, because Henry Blois is covering his tracks, but at the same time relating back to the original Bec copy which had Galfredo Arturo as author without the Monmouth provenance.
As a generalisation, what makes most scholars slow to connect the dots is how their limited practical knowledge relates to reality.843 It is this use of common sense over conditioned and unquestioned loyalty to predecessors’ opinions, (all of them quoting in reverence of each other’s learning), which has hampered the progression in understanding of the three genres we have discussed. Some experts still maintain that Chrétien is the inspiration behind the Grail or worse, that Robert is the inventor of Joseph and the vessel and its connection to Avalon.
843As we saw above Barry Cunliffe’s notion of the ingots being found inshore of the rocks at the head of the Yealm is ridiculous; in that, a coastal navigator setting off with a very precious cargo and capable of sailing 25 km, would hit the first obstacle in the mouth of the estuary. This can happen when the crew are drunk like the ‘White ship’ incident but doubtful c.350 BC or when the incident actually transpired which was recorded by Strabo. To understand the practicalities which determined Burgh Island as the Ictis of old, one has to understand seamanship and what makes Burgh Island the ideal landing spot. Firstly, it is an Epmorium which ‘provended’ tin as the classical writers suggest central to the largest tin deposit in Belerium for tin streamers; and secondly, a perfect place to land at all states of the tide; and it is semi hidden from seaward and not apparent as an island. Mount Batten by comparison is not an easy place to beach and more practically it does not dry out with the tide over land which ‘carts’ can traverse at low tide as Diodorus recycles from Pytheas. Any one remotely competent of handling a small vessel would keep well clear of landing a craft at St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall except when tidal conditions are perfect. A Phoenician trader could land under almost any sea condition and tide at Burgh Island by comparison. Strabo tells us why the ingots are inshore of the rocks in the Erm entrance close to Ictis yet Barry chooses to ignore this very relevant episode to Ictis with an island fitting Diodorus’ description of Ictis two miles away.
The denial of the accuracy of the data cached in the Prophecy of Melkin by Carley is an act of ignorant negligence. By Carley’s own admission, he is entirely in the dark as to the prophecy’s meaning. The Island’s location is plainly indicated in the prophecy once it is decrypted. If one can’t accept that Melkin uses nautical miles as a measurement of the numerical value of 104 stated in the Melkin prophecy, then you will not accept Pytheas’s accurate calculation of the latitude of Marseille in 350 BC.
If one can’t accept the Beltane line, then how did the St Michael line appear? If Meridianum Anglum is not there, then how is that when it is bifurcated at 13 degrees two other St Michael churches pop up on the line, one at Montacute, the other on Burgh Island/Ineswitrin. It is paramount to understand that these are the only two places in the world connected to Joseph’s burial and they both align (positioned) with the resultant 104-mile line; This line which Melkin has instructed us to identify is the solution to Melkin’s prophecy which ultimately pin points Burgh Island and Joseph of Arimathea’s sepulchre. The island in the Melkin prophecy (Ineswitrin) is the same island which was donated by the Devonian King to Glastonbury and on it is the body of Joseph of Arimathea and what is currently understood as the Grail (i.e. the duo fassula). We even have a reason for the Island’s donation to Glastonbury at the Saxon incursion.
The singular most important event which has confounded Grail questors and researchers into the truth behind the Matter of Britain is Robert’s account of Joseph of Arimathea. It is Joseph’s connection to the Grail and how his association to Glastonbury came into being which has been accounted a fortuitous convergence of factors by Lagorio.
I hope now that the reader is cognisant of the fact that Melkin’s prophecy is the key to the Grail. There would have been far less confusion if Henry Blois had not substituted his own invention of Avalon onto the prophecy in place of Ineswitrin. But it is HRB’s corroboration of the existence of Avalon which has tricked scholarship into believing that the island and the prophecy itself are also a fabrication based on the fact that Geoffrey’s work is a composite fiction.
However, rather than the truth being understood, we are left with two gross fabrications of Henry’s; one being the chivalric King Arthur and the other Arthur’s fictitious association with Avalon. These became cemented both in history and in location by the discovery of Arthur’s body. We now know who planted the body of a bogus King Arthur. This is no way belies the fact that Joseph was buried in Britain on Burgh Island, but it was Henry himself as the original source of Robert de Boron’s material who brought Joseph and the ‘Grail’ into connection with the mysterious Avalon, just as it was he himself who had promoted Avalon as Glastonbury in DA.
We should therefore look specifically at Robert de Boron and how much of his work can be seen to be more aligned and closer to what may have originally existed as one strain of Henry’s propaganda.
The most poignant point to be made about Robert de Boron’s Joseph d’ Arimathie is that it is a compilation of known history from the Gospels and embellished Apocrypha…. interwoven with a rationalisation of the truths which exist in the enticing description of the duo fassula found in the Melkin prophecy. The tantalising suggestion that Joseph’s remains as indicated in Melkin’s prophecy are somewhere extant in Britain on Avalon can only be connected to Robert’s mention of the Vaus d’Avaron. Few commentators have tried to understand how it is that Joseph is even posited as being buried in England and have summarily dismissed the possibility because of scholarships flawed assumptions concerning the Melkin prophecy. Henry Blois understood that Joseph of Arimathea came to Britain and died here and was buried on an island. There is no doubt he went looking for the Island of Ineswitrin.
The piffle which the scholastic community has written about Robert’s part in the Christianisation of the Grail (in whatever form and by whoever) is redundant. The Grail of Henry Blois’ muses, was always associated with Jesus. Henry has done his best to make an association with previous Welsh literature in conflating the Grail with the cauldron. The Grail is in fact Jesus’ body which was brought by Joseph of Arimathea to Burgh Island/Ictis to be buried in a secret vault that Joseph had knowledge of through his tin merchant connections with the community which protected and operated Ictis. It is this proposition which has sent scholars into a spin.
Henry Blois did not understand fully Melkin’s prophecy, but he did make the connection that if the blood and sweat of Jesus existed somewhere, it must be in a vessel. One would expect his deduction; because of the wording of the Melkin prophecy that the blood and sweat was in two separate vessels. The only way one could imagine two vessels containing the fluids of Jesus is through some macabre recuperation by a disciple. The supposed disciple would have been collecting droplets of sweat from a suffering suspended Jesus. So, more than likely, Henry Blois just refers to the one vessel of Blood which he imagines was collected after Jesus was speared. The grim connotation in collecting sweat is therefore eliminated along with the spurious vessel that supposedly contained it.
Henry Blois splices together two of his inventions. He introduces the round table firstly through Wace’s Roman de Brut and then an extension where the table of the last supper comes into conjunction with a singular vessel to be that used by Christ at the last supper. Un grail entre ses deus mains une damoisele tenoit.
The fact that the Modena manuscript E.39 of the Biblioteca Estense in Modena contains the entire trilogy of Joseph, Merlin and Perceval may be purely coincidental given Henry’s past association with Modena; but more likely it is just another way for Henry to propagate disparate material which would eventually collide far away from its source yet have corroborative detail on the arch outside of Arthur’s existence at Glastonbury. This might implicate Henry having a closer tie to Robert than is commonly understood!!
There is something highly suspicious about Robert de Boron’s telling of these three tales which seems to correlate very closely with Henry’s known output in HRB and Henry’s obvious association to Avalon, Joseph and Melkin. Blaise, the recorder of events which we are led to believe are in ‘the Grail book’, provides the whole trilogy with a provenance to the 12th century listener. ‘Geoffrey’ had used the same gambit of a source book from Walter in HRB. The Grail book provides the reasoning behind how it is that the various tales have been recorded and have been passed through time to be heard by listeners in the twelfth century.
However, the whole histoire of Joseph is partially corroborated in the acts of Pilate and the Gospel of Nicodemus and the rest of the story can be accounted by Merlin who exists at different points in time and has related the account to the recorder Blaise.844 The ambiguity that the redactor of the Modena manuscript has left us reflects a previous rationalisation of Henry Blois which has been foisted on Robert: ‘My lord Robert de Boron, who tells this story, says, like Merlin, that it is in two parts, for he could not know the story of the Grail’. I believe the implication is that Henry has let us know that the story concerning Joseph and the Grail has been related by Merlin; and then Blaise and Merlin have recorded their own contemporaneous events in the sixth century and hence the provenance of the record. All so neat…. and one must ask, why is Robert explaining what is so obviously an invention of Henry Blois?
844Meanwhile Merlin went to Northumberland to tell Blaise of these events, and Blaise wrote them down- and it is by his writings that we have knowledge of them still. In Robert de Boron’s prose Merlin this sentence is repeated twice so that all understand the provenance and transmission of the Grail stories…. much as Henry had used the authority of Walter’s book in the supposed translation which constitutes HRB. In effect, what we are supposed to believe is that, a time traveller (Merlin) relates to Blaise in the sixth century what had transpired after the crucifixion. By this clever concoction we now can believe in the events being recorded as we understand how the tale was transmitted.
Robert refers to the ‘High book’ just as Chrétien speaks of the book given him by Count Philip of Flanders which does suggest a written source created by Henry. However, the references are ‘to hear’ or to ‘hearing the book’ and supposedly Merlin instructs Blaise to set it down in a book ’for many people who hear my words will benefit from them’ and ‘the book of the Grail will be heard most gladly’. Henry’s greatest asset in the proliferation of his edifice is summed up by Merlin saying ’all who would willingly hear this book and have it copied’…
Alas, unlike the HRB, it was not copied as the Vulgate HRB had been in the monastic system for obvious reasons…. and with Henry’s failing health and the onset of blindness in his last year, much of the Grail episodes in their original form were transferred orally while Henry was alive and matbe some corroborative works such as Perlesvaus were burnt in the fire in 1184. Considering the definite agendas which are dealt with in Robert’s trilogy; I would say that Robert is putting into prose what Henry Blois had originally created in verse. Robert like ‘Geoffrey’ seems a bit ‘sketchy’for someone whose work is so brilliant. If indeed Philip of Flanders had the verse book perhaps Henry Blois wrote under the assumed name of Robert de Boron, because it is Robert who rationalises Blaise and we know Blaise is Henry Blois. Just like ‘Geoffrey’ rationalises Archdeacon Walter and Walter never had a source book.
It is not Robert’s place to think out how the tale arrived logistically, but just to tell the tale if it indeed had been told by Blaise. It would be Henry’s task to do this in making it seem as if there could be some truth in the tale by rationalising how Blaise could know the tale.
The only person in that era who knew of the possibility that Joseph is connected to Britain and may be buried on an island is Henry because he had the Melkin prophecy. So, it is more likely he is trying to rationalise to the listener how this tale could possibly be told and hold true unless he explains the chronology of events and how ‘Blaise’ got his information. One very solid reason, apart from the huge consolidation attained in the trilogy to link this with Henry’s mind, is the fact that Blaise is written into the text as part of the explanation of how the story reached the twelfth century.
In all the other accounts where Master Blihis and Bliho-Bleheris etc are involved, they are just referenced as the source but not an integral part of the rationalisation in the text. Anyway, we should not be dwelling on how Robert got his work because it is stated it was from Blaise and we know who Blaise is. Chrétien on the other hand as a living person is not ‘sketchy.’ It is probable that Henry Blois even references Chrétien so as to seem like another contour.
Henry Blois could not link back Joseph to the Vaus d’Avaron without the Melkin prophecy as this was his…. and only his template. So, obviously, if a real Robert did write the prose versions, it would seem Henry would have written the verse versions first. I am on the fence with either outcome. But one should consider the glaring coincidence.
Robert’s prose trilogy found in Paris, BnF,fr 7489(c) and Modena(e) with the coincidence of Joseph going to Avalon with the Grail in the text, with an engraving on the archivolt of an event which had taken place at Glastonbury, just seems too coincidental that there is not some underlying close connection to Robert. Even though these texts date from c.1230 and are heavily revised it does not mean a previous copy did not exist there. Why at Modena?
So little is known about Robert de Boron and most assume that he wrote between 1202 and 1212 mostly due to the connection of the Lagorio and Nitze845 thesis. But Robert says: At the time I related the history of the Grail with my Lord Gautier in peace who was of Mont Belyal, it had never been related And (en cui service je suis). Many have taken this to be that Boron, a village situated eleven miles from Montbéliard must be the Mont Belyal. A certain Gautier de Montbéliard set out for Italy in 1202 and took part in the fourth Crusade and died in the Holy land in 1212.
I would ask why the author has put Mont Belyal instead of Montbéliard, a typical Henry Blois ploy and the fact that Montbéliard is near Autun and Clugny (see Note 4). Henry surely knew it was called Montbéliard. He knows this area in the Blois region and would have passed through Boron/Montbéliard. He might have known a lord Gautier or son and even stayed with him before going into the Aravis range on one of his several trips to Rome. Because of the content of Joseph d’Arimathe and Merlin we know Henry has to be the source, Joseph is derived from Melkin’s prophecy and Merlin from HRB and VM. But what dates this is the fact that Henry has Chretien and ‘Robert’ writing about Perceval and the story of the Grail. So, my guess would be that Henry versified all Robert’s Trilogy if we hold to the adage ‘Verse is first’ and had a jongleur read it at the court of Champagne. It really makes no difference if Robert846 existed as a person and he put the trilogy into prose or from where Chrétien or Philip got his book; the main point is all the seedling of the Grail come from Henry. There is no alternative!!!!! Because he had Melkin’s prophecy in his possesion!!! Until scholars wake up to this certain fact they will be scratching their heads for another two hundred years.
845William Nitze. Robert de Boron Enquiry and Summary. It was Robert who connected the Grail story with Biblical history and thus gave the imulse to its complete Chritianization. Absolute rot !!
846As in Robert de Boron’s Joseph (Le fil Alein atendera), the father of the Grail hero is Alain whereas in Perlesvaus the Grail hero’s father is Glais li Gros, who has twelve sons linking back (in Henry’s mind) to Glas who had twelve sons in the interpolations in DA. If we know these interpolations are from Henry Blois, then the question is how did Perlesvaus arrive at this similarity except they have a common author.
The Melkin Prophecy originally was the only other document with Ineswitrin named on it; the other was the 601 charter which was 100% genuine. So, that makes the prophecy genuine; but unless scholars realise there has been a change of name to Avalon on the Melkin prophecy and unless they realise HRB and Arthur’s involvement with Avalon was written by Henry they will never see through the fog to understand that the 601 charter which relates to Ineswirin also relates to the prophecy of Melkin. Carley will certainly never get there because he dismisses the geometry.
We know the Prophecy of Melkin is a real encoded document because of what Island it indicates by geometry in Devon. So, the Melkin prophecy with Avalon on it could only come from Henry Blois as Abbot of Glastonbury composer of HRB’s Avalon, because Robert de Boron i.e. Henry Blois puts Joseph in connection with Avalon (vaus d’Avaron). It will take years for a scholar to get this because the Melkin prophecy has been decreed a fake!!!!!
For all those sceptics who have doubted Giraldus’ assertion concerning Glastonbury’s already established synonymy with Avalon in 1189-91, we surely have corroboration here as Robert’s Vaus d’Avaron can hardly be construed as anything else but the marshlands surrounding Glastonbury…. and it is hardly likely that Robert ever visited Glastonbury. So, at what date did Robert hear or read Henry’s versified editions or is there a Robert in reality?
There is so much in Robert’s trilogy that ties closely with Henry Blois’ agenda, I would assume that through ‘Robert’s’ clearer presentation of Henry’s propaganda (tying up loose ends and consolidating)847 and taking into account Henry’s attempts to conflate and align his earlier HRB with his secondary agenda concerning Avalon, Joseph and the Grail; it would almost seem as if Robert’s rendition of events is remarkably close to how we might imagine Henry’s own consolidation would be. It could be that somehow Robert’s histoires are a direct reflection of Henry’s post 1158 developments of the Grail saga. You would have to be a scholar to think the Glastonbury monks could draw such a neat circle and compose Perlesvaus which even William Nitze with the only correct a Priori of his thesis on the On the chronology of the Grail romances admits the author had in mind Glastonbury A priori, there can be no doubt that the writer had in mind the twelfth-century Glastonbury with its hill or Tor and its well-known Lady-chapel.
847For Instance: It was then that Merlin began to make mystical pronouncements of which the book of his prophecies was composed.
All is conjecture if the bottom denominator, the common thread, the solution to the matter of Britain is not realised in its designer at the outset. In the thirty years or so from Henry’s death to c.1200, what seems to be three early sources are known to stem from Master Blehis or Monsigneur Blois (or some phonetic residue of his name) i.e. he was still known as the original propagator of the Grail by the various continuators and repetiteurs and re-workers. How is it that continuators of Chrétien are using a common source and still referencing an oral tradition of Master Blehis? Yet, it seems also that Henry must have committed at least two strains of Grail literature to writing?
Certainly a case may be put forward for Chrétien, Robert and the writer of the High History all acting as repetiteurs of a previous account, but what strikes me most about Robert’s work is the similarity of how he presents events and consolidates technical positions i.e. the logistics of how the account survived through time; stepping in with how Henry Blois would similarly have consolidated these conundrums. Basically, whatever took place…Robert did not think up the trilogy as Nitze insists, but if he had not written his trilogy then the whole will not have gone full circle. Without Robert’s trilogy there is a void in the Matter of Britain which could never be filled without Robert’s work. For this reason alone I believe Henry Blois is Robert writing under a pseudonym which would not be the first time!!!
Henry Blois maybe has an idea that the body of Jesus was brought to Britain, but understands from the Melkin prophecy that one or two vessels connected to Jesus exist in Joseph of Arimathea’s sepulchre on an island. Henry understands how a vessel needs to be tied back into the crucifixion episode (because the vessel contains the blood of Jesus according to the prophecy in his possession); and he links this to the vessel he associates with Jesus at the last supper. He then has Pilate say to Joseph: ‘I have a vessel of his given to me by one of the Jews who were present at his capture’. This motif is derived from Henry himself as a rationalisation of the word ‘vessel’ found in the prophecy and its connection to Joseph.
Also, another telling factor that the Melkin Prophecy pre-empts Robert de Boron is that; in the vessel is the blood of Jesus, just as is stated in Melkin’s prophecy. And our lord replied: Joseph, you must be its keeper…Joseph was on his knees and our Lord handed him the vessel and he took it, and our Lord said: Joseph, You are holding the blood which contains three powers…
Of course, modern scholars’ assessment is that the Melkin prophecy is composed on Chrétien and Robert’s Grail stories simply because Adam of Damerham does not mention the Melkin prophecy in his writings. Adam of Damerham does not mention it because he does not understand it!!! Just like William of Malmesbury. It was not in DA because the obvious connections to the Grail being synonymous with its source material i.e. the duo fassula would leave a trail back to Henry Blois and his other interpolations in DA would be then clearly exposed.
Now, one other vital part about the Melkin prophecy’s duo fassula is that one vessel contains sweat, the other blood; or at least that was the literal translation as understood by Henry Blois. So, it is hardly surprising to find a reference to the sweat of Jesus, knowing Henry’s technique of encompassing as many ways of joining disparate information so that conflation occurs. Robert de Boron has Veronica meet the lord when: the people who were leading the prophet through the streets, his hands tied, followed by the Jews. And he asked me to wipe away the sweat that was running down his face. It is hardly likely that Glastonbury monks in the fourteenth century are going to invent the duo fassula (two vessels) to incorporate some version of Robert’s Grail story so they can possess both blood and sweat in two ‘cruets’.
Strangely enough, considering the duo fassula is in fact Melkin’s reference to a ‘doubled fasciola’ (i.e. the Turin Shroud); it is a huge coincidence that the cloth with which Veronica wiped the lord’s face is the ‘Veronica cloth’ when she says: when I got home and looked at the cloth, I found this image of his face. This anecdotal episode was obviously invented also to coincide with the ‘Veil of Veronica’.
The Veronica Sudarium was in place by 1011 when a scribe was identified as keeper of the cloth. Giraldus, after a visit to Rome made direct reference to the existence of the ‘Veronica’. Henry was never aware of the cloth with the Lord’s image doubled on it, (i.e. the Turin shroud); but it was found by Templars after he had died; and is the very reason the Roman Church had the Templars wiped out on Friday 13th October 1307 by means of the forces of the French King.
Since the Templars entered the tomb of Joseph and removed the shroud, one can only imagine they had deciphered the Melkin prophecy and discovered that the end of the 104-mile line terminated on Burgh Island. Since De Charney’s granddaughter was the first to own the Turin shroud, it must have been found by De Charney. In 1307 de Charney was arrested, along with the entire Order of Knights Templar in France, and in 1314 was burned at the stake.
Some organisation since the initial discovery of Joseph’s sepulchre on Burgh Island has aligned those St Michael churches; especially the two St Michael churches (no longer extant) which were on the 104-mile line to be the only two possibilities as locations mentioned in historical documents where Joseph is said to be buried i.e. Montacute or Ineswitrin. This in itself is a remarkable coincidence as this is very line decrypted in the Melkin Prophecy which terminates on an island 104 miles from the bifurcation point in Avebury Sperula and yet the churches were aligned at angle of 13 degrees to the St Michael line which is the old Beltane line. In effect some organisation has built chrches to replicate Melkin’s geometry.
The only person who would have reason to substitute the name of Ineswitrin on the Melkin prophecy would be Henry Blois as he had planted the grave of Arthur and had the leaden cross fabricated to indicate and corroborate that Glastonbury was Avalon (where King Arthur was to be unearthed at some future date).
The original propagator of the Grail stories (i.e. Henry) knew of what the Grail consisted in his own mind through his muses using the duo fassula as a template; and so all future continuators concocted a mystification of the object and its powers But henry mystifies the Grail on purpose as Robert: Then Jesus spoke other words to Joseph which I dare not tell you- nor could I, even if I wanted to, if I did not have the High Book in which they are written: and that is the creed of the great mystery of the Grail. And I beg all those who hear this tale to ask me no more about it at this point…
The reader must now have suspicions about Robert. Henry is referencing his own ‘High Book’ or Perlesvaus just to confuse as there are no other words that warrant this king of precautionary air it is simply to create drama and imply the the High book recors the Lord’s words and connects him to the mystery of the Grail. Don’t forget the Grail is Henry’s invention and he has no more idea about the icon he has invented than his audience except he knows it is in Joseph’s sepulchre on Ineswirin which he has now brought to Avalon.
Henry is uncertain of the duo fassula’s function or what the duo fassula exactly is; except by his misunderstanding of what he conceives to be the description given in the prophecy. So, he weaves his impression of it into the story by asking the very question he has asked himself. ‘What purpose does it serve’? In the end he has Percival ask the Fisher King: Sire by faith you owe me and all men, tell me the purpose of these things I see.
In Joseph d’ Arimathie it is made clear that the object was a vessel first and then received the name of ‘a Graal’: And what can we say about the vessel we have seen…what shall we call it? Those who wish to name it rightly will call it the Graal….and hearing this they said, ’this vessel should indeed be called the Graal’. Now, if the reader was not suspicious before that Robert is Henry Blois, this should confirm it. We know the derivation of the word Sang R al being misheard as san Graal when Henry first made public the stories in court by having them read by Jongleurs. Above it is Henry Blois having heard talk of his stories now states: ’this vessel should indeed be called the Graal’.
Why, would the Glastonbury monks, (who Carley proposed fabricated the prophecy of Melkin), go from an established ‘Un’ Graal to ‘Duo’ vessels in the fourteenth century? The mystery of the vessel (from which Henry has understood as Vassula) in the Melkin prophecy, precedes the naming of the Graal ….coming from Sang Rèal through San Graal (in oral recounting) and thus Holy Grail.
The other odd thing about ‘Robert’s’ account of Joseph is the introduction of Petrus and his letter. This is an important point for scholars in understanding that the Prophecy of Melkin is the template for much of the Matter of Britain. The point of the letter existing is to explain the existence of the prophecy of Melkin which Henry knew would appear in Avalon. Petrus is miraculously inspired to take the letter to the west, to the ‘vales of Avalon’. Petrus says: You never saw a message more entrusted than this. I shall go to the Vales of Avalon. Now if the message or letter is mentioned to rationalise the existence and contents of the prophecy of Melkin by Henry Blois originally, it would not be difficult to accept that the person who changed the location on the prophecy is the same as the person constructing an episode of how it arrived in Avalon.848 (We should not forget Avalon is a construct by Henry Blois as composer of HRB based on the name of the Burgundian town).
848The real reason for the prophecy’s arrival at Glastonbury is of course its link to the 601 charter and the very reason the Island of Ineswitrin was donated to Glastonbury. The link of Ineswitrin has for evermore been obscured by Henry having changed the name of the island to Avalon about which the prophecy is written on the Melkin prophecy.
Henry must have been aware of the tin trading connection of Joseph in Cornwall because Henry acquired Looe Island thinking it might be the Ineswitrin mentioned in connection with Joseph’s sepulchre and so he would have had no difficulty in working out why Joseph was in Britain in the first place.
Petrus was told to deliver the vessel to Britain by the Lord’s will and obviously Bron was to be the next guardian because Henry was conflating the Welsh Bran with his invented Bron (just as he had made it appear in VM as if Merlin really did have a Welsh or northern Briton provenance, paralleling Welsh bardic material). It also seems fairly plain that Robert is trying to rationalize or give meaning to an anecdotal part of a previous rendition of a story that once existed concerning the Roi Pescheor (the king of the sinners) i.e. Jesus. Somehow it would seem in oral transition the name became the Roi pecheur and ultimately ended up as the ‘Rich Fisher King’ with another account where Bron is the Grail keeper.
Robert de Boron, who is supposedly unaware of the association of Joseph’s burial in Britain (spelled out by the Melkin prophecy) has Joseph end his days in the land and country of his birth which is never specifically stated; but Henry knew Joseph was buried on Ineswitrin not Arimathea. No-one has ever determined where Arimathea was. We in posterity are left with only one choice according to Henry’s muses. When we find Joseph, to deduct he was born in Britain. Why, if Henry does not stipulate where Joseph’s burial location is, I wonder why he even brings it up. Freudian or what!!!!
Another odd coincidence that implies the originator of the Joseph histoire is more informed of a connection to the Melkin prophecy than Robert de Boron is evident in the Merlin histoire. Blaise is told to write the Book of the Grail by Merlin and: when you have done this great work for Joseph and his ancestors and descendants, and have earned the right to be in their company, I will tell you where to find them and you will see the glorious rewards that Joseph enjoys because he was given the body of Christ.
There is only one document which purports to show where one can ‘find’ Joseph (when deciphered), so how is Robert on the same track unless it came from Henry Blois and his knowledge of the Melkin prophecy.
Another achievement of the Merlin histoire is that it makes out that Blaise originally wrote down the story concerning the Grail, but very cleverly infers that there is another book which could be construed as the book ex Britannia (from where Uther and Pendragon have come from), which coincides with what is ambiguously implied in HRB.
In Robert’s Merlin we hear: Merlin had commanding influence over Pendragon and his brother Uther. When he (Merlin) heard that his predictions were to be written down he told Blaise and Blaise asked him, ‘Merlin will their books be similar to the one I am writing?’ ‘Not at all’ replied Merlin they will only record what has happened’. Merlin returned to the court… It was then that Merlin began to make mystical pronouncements of which the book of his prophecies was composed.
I hope the reader now understands what I mean about full circle. Basically, this just adds credence to Henry’s works on the prophetia assuring us and the contemporary audience Merlin saw into the future. ‘Not at all’ like now… because Blaise is recording the past. It really does not take the sharpest knife to cut through Henry’s corroborative synthesis. But scholars are still saying ‘Oh I can’t accept that, but I can accept that’ and accusing me of coming up with this as if there is no proof. One scholar even asked me ‘where is the proof’; I did not dare respond with where is yours as I already have an entire library of misguided concocted theories from thousands of authors over the last 200 years.
So, just like HRB’s historicity and credence is bolstered by Merlin corroboratively confirming ‘Geoffrey’s’ historicity in HRB by recounting past events seemingly confirmed, we now hear of Blaise corroborating what Merlin has given witness of how events transpired in the past. Merlin the great ‘corroborator’ is not being used by ‘Robert’ but the inventor of Merlin and the Prophecies which seem to revolve to an alarming degree about Henry Blois. So why ever would any scholar in the past, not even have suspected that Robert’s, source was Henry Blois; because of Logario’s reversed theory about Joseph material filtering back to Glastonbury!!!
Since the prophecies of Merlin were constructed by Henry Blois, this adds to the supposition that Robert’s account is in fact a propagandist consolidatory account in ‘Robert’s’ trilogy composed by Henry Blois; which in all three Histoires helps to square many ambiguities and contradictions, but in actual fact tosses the salad even more.
Also, as I have maintained, the ‘round table’ first mentioned by ‘Wace’ is in fact a device of Henry’s, (given the fact that it miraculously appears at Winchester), we also see in Robert’s Merlin that: our lord bade him (Joseph) make a table in memory of the last supper…. and then there is a third table. Know then, that our Lord made the first table, and Joseph the second and I (Merlin) in the time of Untherpendragon ordered the making of the third. One would think that the man who had the table made for Winchester is the man who started the whole façade about the various tables and Utherpendragon decides to ‘have it made at Carduel in Wales’. A veritable quagmire and this is early Grail literature!!! It is simply no good or logical as one scholar has done, to accept that Henry Blois wrote the prophecies of Merlin and the HRB without accepting that the DA was interpolated by Henry Blois or the Grail stories were composed by him. This work is not a pick and mix it is step in the right direction toward solving the Matter of Britain.
There is only one prophecy as such which speaks of the spiritual restoration of the land of Britain (as long as one does not think it applies to a climatic condition), and also refers to the blood of Jesus. This of course is the prophecy of Melkin. The Melkin prophecy, as we know, refers to spiritual blessings once the tomb of Joseph has been opened to the whole world.
It is not by coincidence then that Robert (who has his source as Henry Blois) informs us…. that once the question concerning the Grail has been asked: the Fisher King will at once be healed. Then he will tell him the secret words of our Lord before passing from life to death. And that knight will have the blood of Jesus in his keeping. With that the enchantments of the land of Britain will vanish, and the Prophecy will be fulfilled.
Given the Fisher King’s inter-changeability with Joseph of Arimathea in later Romance…. Robert has three major pieces of Melkin’s prophecy in one sentence. To which other prophecy might this refer?
Given also, Henry’s love of Castles…. is it not odd that Chrétien’s Percival also mentions the Fisher King who directs Percival to the Grail Castle? Both Robert and Chretien have heard from a common source.
It is during the feast in the castle at every course where the procession containing a candelabra, a bleeding lance, and the Grail are all brought through. No-one, not even Henry knows what the duo fassula refers to…. but Henry knows it is connected to Jesus, hence the lance, and so to spice the salad further…. the missing Menorah also. Most interestingly of all in Robert’s Perceval is the processional of the Grail:
And as they were sitting there and the first course was being served, they saw a damsel, most richly dressed come out of the chamber; she had a cloth about her neck, and in her hands she carried two small silver platters. After her came a boy carrying a lance, which shed from its head three drops of blood. They passed before Perceval and into another chamber. After this came a boy bearing the vessel that our lord had given Joseph in prison; he carried it in his hands with great reverence.
It seems again a remarkable coincidence that in Melkin’s prophecy the common understanding which we are led to interpret (without deciphering) is that there are two vessels one of them silver: Joseph has with him in his sarcophagus two vessels, white and silver, filled with the blood and sweat of the prophet Jesus.
Even though the vessels are differentiated from the vessel that our lord had given Joseph in prison which is the Grail; in Robert’s Percival we can witness a closer relationship to the origins of the Grail having been established from Melkin’s prophecy. But one can only see this relation if we ignore the fatuous proposition that Glastonbury followed a tradition hailing from continental Grail literature.
It is quite ridiculous that if Robert and Chretien wrote c.1165-80 and Arthur’s Avalon was already commensurate with Insula Pomorum c.1155-7 in VM (which inferred Glastonbury in Somerset)…. that it took until 1345 until John of Glastonbury composed a supposed ‘composite prophecy’ about Joseph’s sepulchre on an island; especially, when Robert de Boron infers the ‘message’ which pertains to Melkin’s prophecy (as we have just covered) was sent to ‘the Vaus Avaron in the West’ by Joseph over a hundred and eighty years before John decides to include it or even invent it as Carley sometimes believes.
We should not forget that the experts have informed us that the Melkin prophecy which concerns Joseph and Avalon has little to do with an Island in Britain but a certain al-Malik al-Zahir Rukn al-Din Baybars al-Bunduqdari, Sultan of Egypt and Syria, who had captured the fortress of Safed. You would need a PhD just to make this stuff up!!!
Again, in Perceval, a beautiful woman says to Percival: You were at the house of your Grandfather the rich fisher King and saw pass before you the vessel that contains the lord’s blood which is called the Grail. Given the preceding evidences, the prophecy of Melkin and its mention of Jesus’ blood surely precedes the Grail and its connection to Joseph and is the model upon which the sang réal became the Grail… by way of verbalisation to San Graal.
If one assumes the Melkin prophecy is the product of an assimilation of French Grail material…. a composite; the real purpose of which supposedly relates material about Baybars and a fortress in Syria and yet at the same time is supposed to have been composed to locate Joseph’s sepulchre at Glastonbury through its composite propaganda about a line from the old church; the question is therefore: should we defer to the experts and deny there is any relevant geometry in the Melkin prophecy which points to Burgh Island?
Why did the supposed fourteenth century monk’s make it so complicated that even our brightest peers today look to the East when Robert says Avalon is in the West. One would think the monks who intended us to comprehend that Joseph’s sepulchre was at Glastonbury could at least use relevant vocabulary to aid their propaganda.
The two silver platters are become part of the relics which make up the Grail: And did you not see the Grail and the other relics pass before you. Know then that if you had asked what the Grail was for, your Grandfather the King would have been healed of his infirmity and restored to health and the prophecy that our lord made (about) Joseph would have been fulfilled.
Is it not by coincidence that there is mention of a prophecy and Joseph? I can understand how our modern scholars believe that the Melkin prophecy with the duo fassula full of the blood of Jesus…. along with its having a connection to Joseph, could have been formed from the descriptions of the various pertinent parts in Robert’s work. How is it accounted as unimportant that mention of the number thirteen randomly associated with the figure of 104 in the Melkin prophecy, along with the random inclusion of a non-translatable word like sperula is just all coincidence? One digit added to these numbers and the geometry in Melkin’s prophecy which locates Burgh Island would be unsolvable.
Do these vague numbers for which scholars have no explanation for their inclusion into a bogus prophecy exist for any other reason than measurements? These vagaries of Geometry just happen to construct a line which falls on an island in Devon and moreover passes through Montacute. Are we silly enough to believe that they coincidentally (completely randomly) form a line on a map104 nautical miles long which just so happens to bifurcate an English Meridian within a sperula. Especially when the end of the constructed line (of stated length and angle), created by following the instructions, indicates precisely Burgh Island which I have identified has a connection to Glastonbury’s Ineswitrin. We are informed that Joseph’s relics are to be found there.
Robert’s version of events in the trilogy we have covered reflects closely Henry Blois’ own propaganda. ‘Blaise’ is the authority by which the account of the Grail reaches us: But Chrétien de Troyes says nothing of this- nor do the other trouvères who have turned these stories into jolly rhymes. But we will tell only what matters to the story: the things that Merlin dictated to his master Blaise who lived in Northumberland…and he had Blaise record these adventures for the worthy people who would be eager to hear them told. And we find in Blaise’ writings dictated with authority by Merlin…
Henry Blois is the instigator of the main content of Robert’s work. As Henry does with Huntingdon and William of Malmesbury in the HRB colophon, he does to Chrétien de Troyes and other trouvères who have turned these stories into jolly rhymes; He dismisses their output because he is the originator. Robert has no motive for consolidating corroboratively the persona of Merlin found in ‘Geoffrey’s’ HRB and in VM confirming his invention of Merlin Caledonius from Northumberland. Robert goes well beyond a story-teller’s expansion of events found in HRB in confirming parts which were blatantly invented by ‘Geoffrey’ concerning Brennius and Belinus.
So, Merlin the time traveller dictates to Blaise and we get the meistre in the service of lord Gautier belittling Chrétien and other trouvères for their lack of knowledge of the Joseph and Grail story.
It is Henry Blois who has supplied the original main content of Robert’s work as he is seen to be adding credence to Henry’s own pseudo-history. Then the city was surrendered and Brenes was crowned emperor and the Romans paid him tribute. That is why it seems to me that you should have lordship over the Romans; you should be emperor of Rome. But one thing more sire; remember how Merlin came to your court the very day you became King. He said there had been two Kings of Britain who had been King of France and Emperor of Rome…
Robert de Boron has no motive whatsoever to complement and add credibility to Henry Blois’ false history found in HRB. There is a whole historical section inserted in Perceval to corroborate and give flesh to that which had been questioned concerning the historicity of HRB and even Arthur himself…. and the question of whether he died or not:
Mordred was killed there and so was the Saxon King who had harboured him. And King Arthur was mortally wounded, struck through the chest with a lance.849 They gathered about Arthur, grieving bitterly but he said to them, ‘stop this grieving for I shall not die. I shall be carried to Avalon where my wounds will be tended by my sister Morgan’. So, Arthur was borne to Avalon, telling his people to wait for him, for he would return.
One thing is a certainty; there is only one person who knew before the unearthing of Arthur’s body in 1189-91 where the body was going to be found. He was the person who had inserted in DA where Arthur’s and Guinevere’s tomb was located. There is only one person who would have added the Vera Historia to a Variant edition and would know that Arthur had been hit by a lance.850 There is only one person who could have known that Arthur and Guinevere were laid in Avalon as specified in the colophon to Perlesvaus.851 This is the same person who pretends to be Wace: Arthur himself was wounded in his body to the death. He caused him to be borne to Avalon for the searching of his hurts. He is yet in Avalon, awaited of the Britons; for as they say and deem he will return from whence he went and live again. Master Wace, the writer of this book, cannot add more to this matter of his end than was spoken by Merlin the prophet.
Scholars could accept that Perlesvaus was written before or contemporaneously with Robert or Chretien’s work because of certain story-line commonalities; but it is still denied by most. This has had to be denied, because the construct of present-day scholar’s theory of chronology concerning the Grail texts would be seen as unfounded if Perlesvaus existed before Arthur’s disinterment. Let me state for the record, the source of Robert’s work or Robert’s work itself was NOT composed after Henry Blois’ death.
849This is also found in the Vera Historia de morte Arthuri in a copy of First Variant HRB.
850See Chapter 32 Vera Historia de Morte Arthuri
851‘The author of the High Book of the Grail even claims that his text is copied from a Latin manuscript which was found in the Isle of Avalon in a house of holy religion which sits atop tidal waters reaching to it where King Arthur and Queen Guenievre lie’.
Concerning Perceval and his quest for the Grail; the nature of the quest should be understood to be modelled upon Henry’s own quest to locate the tomb of Joseph. The quest for the Holy Grail is based on Henry’s potential find of the island just as it is portrayed in Melkin’s prophecy as a quest (in deciphering the code). The secondary subject of the Grail in the Melkin prophecy (i.e. the duo fassula not Joseph’s sepulchre) is entwined by location in the same quest. Find Joseph’s relics and you find out what he brought with him from the Holy Land.
What the Melkin prophecy portends most clearly is that it is formatted as a quest to first find an island and then a tomb and then uncover some mystical object. What one has to do is unlock the riddle by asking the right questions and one will undoubtedly find both the remains of Joseph and the truth about the Grail on Burgh Island which directly relates to events after the crucifixion.
The outcome of the discovery of Jesus body will be that all the three major world religions will have to reassess their understanding of the prophets of Israel. The experts will still insist that the Prophecy of Melkin is a fake to save face. They will say the instructions in the prophecy are groundless. They will insist there is no tomb on Burgh Island. They will even prevent a search taking place. Let him who denies the tomb exists before he pillories me852 or this rambling exposé, be certain that Joseph’s tomb is not there…. for it will be opened at the appointed time.
852Cicero. ……nor should I fear the imputation of arrogance while speaking the truth.