Jan. 2nd, 2017
According to Arthurian literature expert Peter Field, Camelot used to stand at the site of an ancient Roman fort called Camulodunum in Slack, West Yorkshire in the UK, which would have been an ideal spot in 500 AD, when King Arthur is argued to have existed as a real-life military expert tasked with defending Briton from invaders."It was quite by chance. I was looking at some maps, and suddenly all the ducks lined up," Field, who taught at Bangor University in the UK from 1964 to 2004, told the BBC.
"I believe I may have solved a 1,400-year-old mystery."
Field presented his findings during the official launch of Bangor University's Stephen Colclough centre for the history and culture of the book last week.
His hypothesis is yet to be peer-reviewed, so to be clear, a whole lot more research needs to be done before we can read too much into it.
It’s also important to note that, despite more than 1,000 years of research, historians and archaeologists have been unable to confirm if King Arthur and Camelot existed outside of the legends at all.
"Despite the fact that the mythological figure has been wildly popular for centuries, no one’s actually been able to prove he existed. But what makes Arthur so intriguing is the way we can tie certain historical places and events to him."But if we take a big leap and assume Camelot did exist, where was it?
Previous research has suggested that it could have been in places like Caerleon in South Wales or Cadbury Castle in England. But so far, there's not been enough archaeological evidence to tie any physical place to the legend.
So Field did additional research based on the historical forts of the time and compared them to the legend of King Arthur. He says the site that best fits Camelot was the modern-day village of Slack.
Looking at Slack today, you'd be hard-pressed to find a reason why someone would want to build a stronghold in what looks to be a mere clearing, but Field says the location was once of great military importance.
Back in 500 AD, Celtic-speaking Britons held back Anglo-Saxon invaders who flooded into the country from the north and west coasts.
It turns out that Slack, which is seemingly in the middle of nowhere, could have been the ideal spot to set up camp to quickly funnel troops to either coast to defend the nation. Its middle-of-nowhere-ness, it turns out, was important.
Here's where it is on a map: