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One of the most famous English legends is that of King Arthur and the sword in the stone. According to the various versions of the story, the sword could only be pulled out of the stone by the true king of England. A similar, though much less well-known, story can be found in the Italian region of Tuscany, and has even been suggested by some as the inspiration for the English legend. This is the sword in the stone of San Galgano.
San Galgano is reported to be the first saint whose canonisation was conducted through a formal process by the Church. Consequently, much of the San Galgano’s life is known through the documents of this canonisation process, which was carried out in 1185, just a few years after his death. Furthermore, there are also a number of works written by later authors about the saint’s life.
When San Galgano reached the top of Montesiepi, the voice spoke again, commanding him to renounce all his worldly desires. San Galgano, however, objected, saying that this is as easy as splitting stones with a sword. To prove his point, San Galgano drew his sword, and thrust it into a stone. To the saint’s great amazement, the weapon went through the stone like a hot knife through butter, and has been stuck in the stone ever since.
I suppose most cultures have a great hero who will come back again.
originally posted by: SprocketUK
I always regarded the drawing of a sword from a stone as a description of someone forging a weapon from meteoric iron which was known back then to be the highest quality and would make a sword seem magical.
I think pulling a sword out of a stone was a misunderstanding.
originally posted by: grumpy64
a reply to: SprocketUK
Good theory although I watched a documentary which said that the story was referring to the way bronze swords were cast in stone molds as they could not be forged like iron swords. This takes the myth back further to the bronze or even copper age !
originally posted by: Freeborn
It is said that in Britain's darkest hour King Arthur will return.....I wish he'd hurry up because we're in dire need of him at present!