• Michael Smith, printmaker, Mythical Britain

Help bring Sir Gawain and the Green Knight to a new audience!


After four years of hard work, I am delighted to announce that my translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight has been accepted by the innovative crowd-funding publisher Unbound.

Those of you who have followed my printmaking will know that I base a great deal of my work on this wonderful poem, which originates in my native North West England.

It is a fabulous work which still resonates today. It has suspense, magic, history, horror, erotica and vivid descriptive qualities. it has interweaving plots whose origins stretch back far into Celtic mythology. Above all, it has a rattling alliterative metre with a rich vocabulary - evident proof that the English language at that time was far more vibrant than we are often led to believe.

Illustrated with beautiful linocut prints

As well as my translation of this masterpiece, I have also created a range of bespoke images featuring characters and moments from the story: Arthur and Guinevere; the arrival of the Green Knight; Gawain's journey; the attempted seduction by Lady Bertilak and of course Gawain's final meeting with his nemesis at the Green Chapel.

Each of the prints in the book is the result of meticulous research. I have based my work on contemporary manuscripts, with clothing and armour reflecting that worn between 1390 and 1410.

As an historian, I have also provided the reader with a useful glossary of words used by the poet, in addition to detailed supplementary notes giving useful information on the contemporary historic and political background to the work.

Help bring this book to life - and have your own name in print as a supporter

This new edition of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight cannot exist without your help; in the manner of eighteenth century works, everyone who pledges support for the book will be mentioned in the back for all time.

Your support will help bring to life a beautifully produced and bound hardback edition of the work which will be like no other. It will be, I like to think, a mediaeval illuminated manuscript for the modern age - and one that can only exist with your help.

If you would like to be a part of this wonderful journey, and be recognised for your support, please do pledge at www.unbound.com/books/sir-gawain

As the Gawain Poet wrote:

If you will listen to this tale but one little while

I shall tell it as tightly as I in turn heard it,

by tongue;

As it’s been stood and stoked

Into a story stiff and strong

With its loyal letters locked

In this land it’s been so long.

Thank you so much,

Michael Smith

#SirGawain #GawainPoet #KingArthur #printmaking #Unbound #GreenKnight #LordBertilak #LadyBertilak #GreenChapel

© 2020, Michael Smith, all rights reserved

Original linocut prints, books  and greetings cards featuring a range of mediaeval themes including: the Battle of Agincourt; Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; King Arthur;;Stonehenge; Viking art; Saxon art; the Sutton Hoo helmet; medieval animals; castles; medieval myths and legends; historic monuments and so much more!

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