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AVALON (also written AVALLON, AVOLLON...

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Originally appearing in Volume V03, Page 51 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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AVALON (also written AVALLON, AVOLLON, AVILION and AVELION), in Welsh mythology the kingdom of the dead, after-wards an earthly paradise in the western seas, and finally, in the Arthurian romances, the abode of heroes to which King Arthur was conveyed after his last battle. In Welsh the name is Ynys yr Afallon, usually interpreted " Isle of Apples," but possibly connected with the Celtic tradition of a king over the dead named Avalloc (in Welsh Afallach). If the traditional derivation is correct, the name is derived from the Welsh afal, an apple, and, as no other large fruit was well known to the races of northern Europe, is probably intended to symbolize the feasting and enjoyments of elysium. Other forms of the name are Ynysvitrin and Ynysgutrin, " Isle of Glass "—which appear to be identical with Glasberg, the Teutonic kingdom of the dead. Perhaps owing to a confusion between Glasberg or Ynysvitrin and the Anglo-Saxon Glaestinga-burh, Glastonbury, the name " Isle of Avalon " was given to the low ridge in central Somersetshire which culminates in Glastonbury Tor, while Glastonbury itself came to be called Avalon. Attempts have also been made to identify Avalon with other places in England and Wales. See Studies in the Arthurian Legend, by J. Rhys (Oxford, 1891) ; also ARTHUR (KING) ; ATLANTIS. ... AVARAY, a French territorial title belonging to a family some of whose members have been conspicuous in history. The Bearnaise family named Besiade moved into the province of Orleanaisin the 17th century, and there acquired the estate of Avaray. In 1667 Theophile de Besiade, marquis d'Avaray, obtained the office of grand bailiff of Orleans, which was held by several of his descendants after him. Claude Antoine de Besiade, marquis d'Avaray, was deputy for the bailliage of Orleans in the states-general of 1789, and proposed a Declaration of the Duties of Man as a pendant to the Declaration of the Rights of Man; he subsequently became a lieutenant-general in 1814, a peer of France in 1815, and duc d'Avaray in 1818. Antoine Louis Francois, comte d'Avaray, son of the above, distinguished himself during the Revolution by his devotion to the comte de Provence, afterwards Louis XVIII., whose emigration he o assisted. Having nominally become king in 1799, that prince created the estate of Ile-Jourdain a duchy, under the title of Avaray, in favour of the comte d'Avaray, _whom he termed his " liberator." (M. P.*)
End of Article: AVALON (also written AVALLON, AVOLLON, AVILION and AVELION)
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