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TheHeartofMerlin.com presents the International Merlin Conference 2020. The aim of this event is to create conversation and community during this time of worldwide crisis. This conference will happen on April 18 and the entire event will happen online. Speakers will include John and Caitlín Matthews, Adam Ardrey, Mark Walker. Justin K Prim, Stephen Holden and more TBA.

The legend of Merlin has been popular since early Medieval times and his story, along with the characters he's inspired (Gandalf, Dumbledore, and Obi Wan Kenobi), remain popular to this day. In the last few years, Merlin has seen an enormous amount of attention and popularity between the Merlin TV series and several movie that have touched on the Merlin story such as Guy Ritchie's King Arthur as well as the upcoming adaptions of The Sword in the Stone and T.A. Barron's The Lost Years of Merlin. This conference offers the chance to learn more about the history, legend, and lore of history's favorite wizard through a series of presentations by authors and scholars.

This one-day event will take place on Saturday April 18 and will begin at 10AM BST. The entire conference will be broadcast over the internet so that each talk can be enjoyed safely at home while social distancing. There will be a Q&A at the end of each talk so that attendees can ask questions and offer comments to the speakers.

Software Details :

The conference will be held through the Zoom teleconferencing software. Once you've purchased a ticket, you will recieve an email with a link to download the sofware as well as a code that will allow you to enter the conference room on the day of the event. 

Limited to 100 tickets. Tickets can be purchased online at https://merlinconference2020.eventbrite.com


Speakers and Events :

The Poems Of Myrddyn Wyllt

This talk present completely revised and reworked translations of the poems attributed to the 6th century bard, Myrddyn, also known as Myrddyn Wyllt (The Wild). In this presentation I will give a brief introduction to the poems followed by readings of several of these, read by myself and Caitlín Matthews.


John Matthews (Oxford, UK) is a New York Times bestselling author who has written more than one hundred books on myth, faery, the Arthurian Legends, and Grail Studies. John has appeared on the History Channel and Discovery Channel, and he was an advisor and contributor on Jerry Bruckheimer's film King Arthur. His upcoming book is titled The Book of
and due to be released in July of 2020.
The Historical Merlin: Case Closed

In this presenation, author Adam Ardrey offers to prove (a) that ‘Merlin’ was a man of late 6th century Scotland, and (b) that he is famous today because he led the opposition to Christianity (with all of its superstition, supernaturalism, misogyny, oppression and anti-scientific, anti-gay, and anti-intellectual stance).



Adam Ardrey is the author of Finding Merlin - The Truth Behind the Legend of the Great Arthurian Mage as well as Finding Arthur: The True Origins of the Once and Future King. He is a writer and lawyer, and has previously worked in television.
Geoffrey’s Marvellous Merlin:

The name Merlin first appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth’s 12th century History of the Kings of Britain and later in his epic poem The Life of Merlin (Vita Merlini). In this talk, Mark Walker reveals how Geoffrey’s conception of the character developed and, in the poem, transcended his sources to create a fascinating portrait of a warrior, scholar and all-round Renaissance man.

Mark Walker is a Classics teacher, writer, and editor of Vates: The Journal of New Latin Poetry. His English verse translation of Geoffrey’s Vita Merlini was published by Amberley in 2011. He holds an MA in Classics from Lampeter University.

The Legend of Merlin and the Sites of His Madness

This presentation will recount the story of Merlin through the British sites that he is linked to as well as his poetry. This talk will look at different aspects of Merlin's character and how they relate to the ancient poetry attributed to Merlin as we journey through the sacred Merlin sites of Wales, Scotland, Cornwall, and England.



Justin K Prim is an American writer, teacher, and gem cutter. He has travelled all over the world, studying various types of meditation techniques, psycho-spiritual healing therapies, as well as gemcutting. In 2015 he embarked on a 4 month pilgrimage through the UK to explore the sacred sites of Merlin. His journey is in the process of being published as The Heart of Merlin.
The Rearguard at Erydon

This talk explores the aftermath of Arfderyd and the possibility that the battered remnants of Gwenddoleu`s army held together, in retreat, to form up once more against the forces of Gwrgi and Peredur.



Stephen Holden completed his degree with Early English Medieval History in 2011 and since then has developed a keen interest in the people, places and battles of the dark ages. Originally from Cumbria, he currently lives in Switzerland and is a fellow founder of a number of historical groups on Facebook.




Aside from live presentations, the day will also include:
A 7-minute video depicting J.S. Blackie's 1885 poem Merlin and Kentigern: A Legend of Tweeddale narrated by Martin Joseph O’Neil. Prof John Stuart Blackie FRSE (28 July 1809 – 2 March 1895) was a Scottish scholar and man of letters. He was born in Glasgow and was educated at the New Academy and afterwards at the Marischal College, in Aberdeen. He was a Radical and Scottish nationalist in politics, of a fearlessly independent type; possessed of great conversational powers and general versatility, his picturesque eccentricity made him one of the characters of the Edinburgh of the day, and a well-known figure as be went about in his plaid, worn shepherd-wise, over one shoulder and under the other, wearing a broad-brimmed hat, and carrying a big stick.

A 28-minute lunchtime video interlude of Melvyn Bragg's In Our TIme - Merlin Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the legendary wizard Merlin. He was sired by an incubus and born of a virgin; he was a prophet, a shape-shifter, a king-maker and a mad man of the woods. Before Gandalf there was Merlin: the power behind Arthur and a literary sensation for centuries. In a literary career spanning 1500 years, Merlin, or originally Myrddin, put the sword in the stone, built Stonehenge, knew the truth behind the Holy Grail and discovered the Elixir of Life.



  © 2020 The Heart of Merlin / Justin K Prim  
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