Merlin: Magician, Myth or Mystery?
Merlin was a great wizard and also a Magician featured in Arthurian legend (King Arthur is a legendary British leader of the late 5th and early 6th centuries). Merlin was first appeared in Historia Regum Britanniae (in English, The History of the Kings of Britain, originally written in Latin) book written by Geoffrey of Monmouth (c. 1100-c.1155). This book is based on an amalgamation of previous historical and legendary figures. He also combined some other stories like a North Brythonic prophet, Myrddin Wyllt and a madman with no connection to King Arthur. At the end of war between Romano-British leader Ambrosius Aurelianus to the form the composite figure he called Merlin Ambrosius.
Arthurian legends are actual based on the books written by the cleric and poets of the medieval era or the Middle Ages. All this Arthurian legends and myths about “the one, true King of the Britons” – King Arthur – and the mystical magical and prophetic world of Merlin were used by Kings of England to verify their claims to the both the Welsh and English thrones.
The name Merlin was actually derived from the Welsh Myrddin the name of the poet Myrddin Wyllt, one of the leader sources for the later legendary shape. So the Geoffrey of Monmouth make a character named Merlinus (which mean Merlin). There are another many stories for how Merlin name was derived. In Third Series of Welsh Triads it said that that Clas Myrddin in the starting name of the Merlin. The story suggested by The Celticist A. O. H. Jarman he suggested that the Welsh name Myrddin was derived from the toponym Caerfyrddin, the Welsh name for the town known in English as Carmarthen (which was earlier known as Moridunum in Roman Countries).
According to Geoffrey’s source Merlin is completely based on the historical war leader Ambrosius Aurelianus. But Geoffrey did not explain anything related to Merlin’s background. But according to Nennius (Welsh monk of the 9th century) Ambrosius was founded when the Vortigern (British King) who was trying to establish a tower. But the tower always collapsed before it completed. At that time a wise man came to meet Vortigern and he was gave a solution to him that to ‘sprinkle the blood of a child who born without father.’ According some legend Ambrosius is such type of child, but before he became king he revealed real fact why every time tower is collapsed? According to him the tower is actually establishing on a lack where actually two dragons who fought for a battle representing the struggle between the Saxons and the Britons, which struggle suggested that the tower would never stand under the leadership of Vortigern, but only under that of Ambrosius. Geoffrey repeats this story in Historia Regum Britanniæ with some additions, and gives the fatherless child the name of the prophetic bard, Merlin…!! So actually he made a character based on Ambrosius. Is it real? But, Geoffrey actually keep separate this new character from Aurelius Ambrosius.
According to some early legend Merlin was a son of a a demon and of a human woman. Some legends also describe Merlin as a half human. Merlin was mysterious and unpredictable and they also think that sometimes changing his shape and passing long periods as a bird, a cloud, or something else…!! He also desired and seduced women. By the 1200s, however, the influence of Christianity was reshaping the Arthurian legends, and Merlin became a more respectable figure—a wise old man who supplied moral guidance as well as magic.
When King Arthur was a young boy, the powerful wizard Merlin prepared him to become Britain’s ruler. In later years, Merlin became King Arthur’s trusted adviser and helper. Geoffrey added new topic which tie up with Merlin and King Arthur in Historia Regum Britannia. In this topic he wrote that Merlin helped to bring stones for Stonehenge. Stone which used in Stonehenge was imported from the Preseli Hills in south-west Wales and Ireland.
Nobody, know more about the Merlin’s private life. Merlin falls in love with Nimuë (or the Lady of the Lake). But Nimuë don’t love him, and she really doesn’t care about Merlin. She just wanted to know about him different magic tricks. And when she feels that now she learned enough then she trapped Merlin in an underground cave from which he could never escape.
In the true history of Merlin Magician the historical Merlin was describe as a he was not a rough Magician, but he was a character from a cutting edge and he also know about the astrology, prophecy, and little about natural magic. Merlin helped to put British history into world history. Merlin the Magician has remained an enthralling and curious individual since he was first introduced in the twelfth century. Merlin was always remembering as a great magician of ancient time. A main belt asteroid (The asteroid belt is the region of the Solar System located roughly between the orbits of the planets Mars and Jupiter, originally discovered by American astronomer Edward L. G. Bowell in 1980) is named 2598 Merlin in honor of the legendary wizard.
There is no historical evidence that Merlin the Wizard existed. But many legend gives their different opinion on is Merlin really exist or not? Regardless the proof of his existence, we can surely understand that the person has spread into the folklore and into the heart of the British society.