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Summary

Compiled in Middle Welsh during the 12th and 13th centuries, The Mabinogion is a mesmerizing panorama of fantasy, romance, tragedy and humor. Blending Arthurian romance, Welsh legend and mythology, it tells tales of heroic knights, fair maidens, dramatic battles and magical beasts across 12 fantastical stories. These comprise the 'Three Welsh Romances', Arthurian tales that also appear in the work of Chrétien de Troyes; the myths of Branwen, Pwyll Manawydan and Math; and the five 'native tales', which include a romance about the Roman emperor Magnus Maximus. It continues to inspire writers today and is said to have influenced Alan Garner's The Owl Service and J.R.R. Tolkien's The Silmarillion.

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Public Domain (P)2019 Naxos Audiobooks

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Excellent in all ways

Brilliantly narrated in many very good accents and styles. Not an English person mispronouncing all the names :-)

23 people found this helpful

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Overwhelming!

In all senses, overwhelming! The Mabinogion is phantasmagoric, a marathon and at times very monotonous. I have come to it with a smattering of Arthurian stories under my belt from the French and German medieval traditions ( Chretien de Troyes, Wolfram Von Eschenbach…). I was not prepared, in my ignorance to find the same tales cropping up, albeit with name-changes: Perceval is Peredur; Eric is Owein, for example. Fascinating stuff. And much, much more which has nothing to do with Arthur, feeling very ancient indeed. There is magic and mystery and many familiar “fairy tale” motifs.
You have to “hear your way in” to these stories, particularly when they come at you thick and fast, and at such length. Actually, they SCREAM storytelling - the sort of tales told by a roaring fire in the midst of winter. Listening to the whole lot like this, let alone reading the weighty text, are clearly not the best way! There is a reason for the endless repetitions… .
Irrelevantly and obviously, the compilation all feels very Welsh - and it takes a native Welsh speaker to master the pronunciation of names, as is done here. Lady Charlotte Guest’s translation can get very annoying and cliche’d, whilst in the main being completely OK ( I think there is an excellent modern version, published by Penguin, but sadly no acceptable Audio version).
If you like a good tale and wish to enlarge your creative experience, then the Mabinogion is for you!

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  • lucindy h.
  • 20-03-21

Best one I found

This is the best version I have found on audible!! Love the narration above all!

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  • A Person With An Opinion
  • 08-10-21

Welsh Folklore

The Mabinogion was a set of eleven Arthurian tales from Welsh legend. One of the stories involved a man that was chasing a woman that rode a horse. No matter how fast his servant’s horse ran he could never catch her until he ask her to stop. Most the stories were filled with task that someone had to complete to obtain something that they wanted. Another story was intwined with the magic of a witch for a King to gain a throne. Another story is about the Black Knight who fights against Arthur’s men until he is defeated. At the end, one of the characters enters King Arthur’s court, but out side of that King Arthur only exist on the tongues of characters. The book was hard to follow and very dry at time, but did have spots that were intriguing. This is a book of that I might have to read against to get the full gist of the stories. I seemed to retain only bits and pieces of the stories. This book was a follow up to The Path of Druidry because it mentioned The Mabinogion so often in a way reverencing it as a Druid holy book. However, I dod see some begets listed in it that reminded me of the Bible but as a whole couldn’t see any connection that should have formed a religious connect within the stories. Myth, folklore, yes, religion, no. And thst was the main reason that I read the book was to get a better understand of its connection with modern and ancient Druids, but I found nothing significant.