NIGHTBRINGER | The Arthurian Encyclopedia

Ystorya Dared

“The Story of Tared”
The Tale of King Arthur and the Emperor Lucius

This medieval Welsh prose narrative is one of the Welsh Triads and is found in the manuscript known as Peniarth MS 47, dating back to the sixteenth century. It is important to note that Ystorya Dared is a relatively late addition to the Arthurian legends and not part of the early Welsh Arthurian tradition.

The story revolves around King Arthur’s confrontation with the Roman Emperor Lucius Tiberius in a war known as the War of the Hengist. In this tale, the Roman Emperor demands that Arthur and his knights pay tribute to Rome. Arthur, refusing to submit to the Emperor’s demands, raises an army to face the Roman invasion.

One of the key locations mentioned in Ystorya Dared is Caer Gai. This place is identified as Arthur’s court and is described as being located along the Severn River. As mentioned in my previous response, some versions of the legend connect Caer Gai to Dindraithof (Llancarfan) in Wales, though this association is not found in the early Arthurian texts.

In the ensuing conflict between Arthur’s forces and the Romans, Arthur emerges victorious. The tale showcases Arthur’s military prowess and his position as a formidable leader of the Britons.

It’s important to understand that Ystorya Dared is just one of the many Arthurian tales and traditions that developed over time. Arthurian legends are a complex tapestry of narratives that evolved across various cultures and time periods, incorporating elements from Welsh, French, English, and other traditions.

The Welsh Triads, including Ystorya Dared, provide valuable insights into the medieval Welsh perception of Arthur and his significance as a legendary figure. However, these tales are part of a larger and multifaceted Arthurian literary tradition that has captivated audiences for centuries.

See also
Arthurian Sources | Nightbringer