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Publisher's Summary

Reveals the long-forgotten prequel to the Grail mythos and how it has profound resonance with modern times 

  • Includes the complete text of the Grail prequel, The Elucidation of the Grail, a 13th-century poem newly translated by Gareth Knight and Caitlín Matthews 
  • Examines the forgotten story of the Faery Wars and the role of Well Maidens in the Grail story 
  • Discusses the Seven Guardians of the Stories, the Grail Kings and Anti-Grail Kings, the Rich Company, the Courts of Joy, and the otherworldly Land of Women  

Unveiling the long-forgotten prequel to the Grail quest stories, Caitlín and John Matthews examine The Elucidation of the Grail, a forgotten 13th-century French text, and show how it offers the key to understanding the sevenfold path of the Grail and the deeper stories beneath the Christian Grail narrative.  

Beginning with a new translation of The Elucidation by foremost esotericist Gareth Knight and Caitlín Matthews, the authors provide a complete commentary on the poem, revealing a startling alternative cause of the Wasteland and the Grail quest, one which has a profound resonance with our own times. They examine the forgotten story of the Faery Wars and explain the Faery Accord, an agreement that once existed between humans and the Faery and upon which the spiritual and physical health of the land depends. The offering of the Grail and its regenerative powers by the Maidens of the Wells - Faery women - was part of this Accord. King Amangons and his men violated the Accord, through their abuse of the Well Maidens and other evil actions, causing the wasting of the land. The Knights of King Arthur seek to avenge the Well Maidens and rebirth the Grail to restore access to the lost paradisiacal “Courts of Joy” held in ancestral memory. On their quest, they encounter the Rich Company whose greed keeps the Knights occupied in long wars of attrition, yet their quest to restore the generous hospitality of the Wells - the true Grail, the Faery Grail - continues.

In addition to the Faery Accord and Knights’ quest, the authors examine the Seven Guardians of the Stories, the Rich Fisher, the Courts of Joy and paradise lost, and the otherworldly Land of Women. They show how this lost book of the Grail reveals themes familiar to the modern world and offers hope of healing the rift between the worlds of Faery and human as well as restoration of our natural belonging to the land.

©2019 Caitlín and John Matthews, PhD. All Rights Reserved. (P)2019 Inner Traditions Audio. All Rights Reserved.

Critic Reviews

“This splendid book will lead you on an exhilarating quest to discover the roots of the Holy Grail in the realm of Faery. Written with scholarly rigor and imaginative depth, it is a triumph of the mythic potency of the Grail and the profound sustenance it offers the soul.” (Mara Freeman, author of Grail Alchemy and Kindling the Celtic Spirit)

“Any book written by these authors is worth noting, but this is a real tour de force. The Lost Book of the Grail takes us right into the heart of the Grail tradition. It addresses a key, very cryptic text ironically called The Elucidation, and step-by-step we are invited into its secret heart. We are shown the central act of wounding, which devastates the union between human beings, the sacred land, and the Sidhe, who are guardians of the secret life of the land. We are shown the branches of story that lead us into the restoration of the flowing life and love that are the hallmarks of the presence of the Grail. There is so much in this book; it’s sure to become a classic work for all who seek to heal the wasteland and seek the Grail. Thoroughly recommended.” (Ian Rees, psychotherapist and program director of the Annwn Foundation)

“This book is a wonderful new exploration of a little-known work in the rich cycle of Grail legends that elucidates with a new translation and commentary. A product of scholarly work that shows great erudition, it is also a pleasure to read and easily accessible to the general public. Caitlín and John Matthews are unparalleled experts on the Grail and Arthurian legend. Their work shows a whole range of insight that comes from a lifetime of study.” (Krešimir Vukovic, Ph.D., postdoctoral fellow at the Catholic University of Croatia)

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A Real Treasure!

This book is about a grail text that serves as a prequel to Parcival. It is as informative as it is a pleasure to listen to. In all my years as an Audible.com subscriber, This is hands down the best book I have ever purchased!

2 people found this helpful