By: Sarah Hearn
Planning already is underway to mark the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on Nov. 22. Commemorative events in Dallas and in churches across the country are being organized. TV host Bill O’Reilly releases a new book, "Killing Kennedy: The End of Camelot," this fall, and a feature movie, “Parkland,” is planned for release next fall.
“As people ponder the legacy of President Kennedy and his ‘Camelot,’ it’s a good time to revisit the original Camelot of King Arthur legend, and I have compelling new evidence about where it may have been located,” says art expert Terry Stanfill, author of Realms of Gold: Ritual to Romance, realmsofgoldthenovel.blogspot.com, a novel of ancient history and modern romance that posits her new theory about Camelot.
In 1953 archaeologists near Châtillon-sur-Seine., France discovered a massive bronze krater in the grave of a Celtic woman. Although the Krater was discovered in Burgundy, it was cast in Southern Italy circa 510 B.C. and made its way to Vix, a village at the foot Mont Lassois, once Latisco, an important Celtic trading citadel. Bianca Evans Caldwell, a writer for a New York art magazine, came upon the Krater accidentally and becomes obsessed with the great vessel and with the princess-priestess buried with it. Since then, Bianca has returned to the museum in Châtillon-sur-Seine six times to admire the Krater of Vix.
It is July, 2007, and Bianca finds herself in Venice for a family wedding, where she meets Giovanni de Serlo, an Italian archaeologist. Neither Bianca nor Giovanni wanted to attend the wedding but they both felt a family obligation to be there and soon become friends. After the weekend Bianca returns to New York City, Giovanni to Puglia, where he is working on an excavation.
When Bianca enters her apartment she finds it has been ransacked, although nothing seems to have been stolen. She finds a strange symbol written on a scrap of paper in her kitchen, and learns that it might be a Mafia warning. After more frightening and puzzling occurrences Bianca decides she must leave New York. She flees to Italy to visit Giovanni, who had promised to drive her to Calabria to see the site of the no longer existing Sybaris, in ancient times a city notorious for its wealth and luxurious living. At Sybaris, Giovanni shows her his secret find in an old farmhouse, a discovery which startles Bianca.
Giovanni and Bianca learn that they might now be in danger if they remain, and decide that they will make the journey from Sybaris to Châtillon-sur-Seine, Burgundy, following the ancient route of the Krater.
As the story unfolds Bianca begins to write about the Krater, how, why and with whom it made its journey from the south of Italy to be buried in the earth of Vix.
When they arrive in Châtillon-sur-Seine they learn of yet another remarkable recent discovery atop Mont Lassois. Bianca's intuitive conclusion of what the Krater meant to the ancient Celts, and its connection and significance to Arthurian legend is bonds the two together in a romance that will be forever.
“The Arthurian legend is so ancient, and yet it has been one of the most enduring interests in Western civilization,” she says. “It’s exciting to think that after all of these centuries, we have a strong case for a real Camelot.”
Educated in Medieval history, Stanfill has traveled extensively through Asia and Europe,
particularly France and Italy, and researched the art and artifacts. She offers this primer on King Arthur, including her own surprising theory about the true location of the original Camelot.