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By his late twenties, Geoffrey certainly seems to have travelled eastwards to become a secular Austin canon at the Collegiate Church of St. He was a member of the college community there, and a tutor of some kind, for at least the next twenty years - witnessing a number of charters during his residence - but he turned to writing not long after his arrival.The 'Prophecies of Merlin' appear to have been a series of ancient Celtic prophecies which, at the request of Alexander of Salisbury, Bishop of Lincoln, Geoffrey translated into Latin, perhaps with some additions of his own.

Modern historians tend to be slightly more sympathetic.

Parts of Geoffrey's work certainly seem to have their origins in ancient Celtic mythology, others could have come from works by authors such as Gildas, Nennius, Bede and also the Mabinogion.

At the end of 1150, Geoffrey appears to have come into the possession of further source documents concerning the life-story of his original subject, the bard, Myrddin (alias Merlin). (1991) "Geoffrey of Monmouth, Historia Regum Britanniae and Brut y Brenhinedd" in R. (ed.s)'s The Arthur of the Welsh Cardiff: University of Wales Press Thorpe, L.

Unfortunately, these did not line up terribly well the information he had given about this man in his 'History of the Kings of Britain' - perhaps indicating that this part was either invented or, more probably, that Merlin's name had been rather over-eagerly attributed to an otherwise unknown Royal adviser. (ed.) (1996) The New Arthurian Encyclopedia, London: Garland Publishing Inc. (1976) "Introduction" in Geoffrey of Monmouth's The History of the Kings of Britain, London: Penguin Books Ltd.

Local tradition makes Geoffrey a Benedictine monk at Monmouth Priory, if not the actual prior.

However, this seems to be due to a misidentification with his contemporary, Prior Geoffrey the Short of Monmouth.

Merlin appeared again, as an advisor to Kings Ambrosius and Uther, but the work was most notable for its extensive chapters covering the reign of the great King Arthur.

Since the 17th century, however, its author has been largely vilified as an inexorable forger who made up his stories "from an inordinate love of lying".

Certainly 'Geoffrey's Window' at which he is said to have sat and written his famous works and 'Geoffrey's Study' used as a schoolroom within the Priory Gatehouse are only of late 15th century date.

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