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This article discusses the eponymous legendary founder of Britain, Brutus, a descendent of the Trojan Aeneas and first king of Britain. It tracks the emergence of Brutus in historiography and literature from the seventh to the sixteenth centuries, from the Historia Brittonum, via the Brut tradition and Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britannia, to the poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Caxton’s Chronicles of England, Milton’s The History of Britain and Spenser’s The Fairie Queene.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Encyclopedia of Medieval Literature in Britain
EditorsRobert Rouse, Sian Echard
ISBN (Print)978-1-118-39698-8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2017


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