The Sword in the Stone

Listen to the Sword in the Stone while you read along! 

Chapter 1: King Uther

LONG AGO IN ENGLAND, a wise and just king named King Uther ruled the land. Times were good and the people lived well.  King Uther called for Merlin the Magician, the most famous wizard in the land, to come to court. Merlin could see into the future, and that is how he knew the good days were not going to last.

But of such news King Uther and Queen Guinevere knew nothing, especially when they welcomed a child of their own into the world, a sweet baby boy.  

At a castle party for the royal birth, Merlin the Magician asked the King to step aside for a word.  Said the Magician, “Sire, there is something you must know. Soon a great darkness will fall over this land.  Your child is in great danger. Allow me to take the baby far away. I will be sure to keep him safe.”

“Merlin!” said the King in surprise. “You are a great magician and you are my friend, too, But there is no way we would let anyone take away our child!”

Sadly, soon after the child’s birth the Queen died.  Not long after that, King Uther was killed in battle. That very night, Merlin swept into the castle and took the child.  

The next morning, the royal nurse went into the nursery and to her alarm found an empty crib. In fear she, the nobles, and all the servants searched everywhere. But the baby was gone!

With no King or baby heir, there was no leader or heir to sit on the throne.  Darkness fell over the land.  Without a leader, no one was setting the laws or settling disputes. Men of high rank fought each other to be the king.  Robbers and bands of wild men ruled the streets of London.  Evil men broke into houses and took what they wanted. Travelers on the roads were jumped and robbed.  The people of England lived in fear.

Far away from the city in a quiet place lived good knight Sir Ector, with his two sons.  His first son was named Garth and the younger son, Arthur, had been adopted as a baby.  Years before, a stranger had come to Sir Ector with a baby and asked if Sir Ector would raise the child.  The old knight took the baby in his arms, glad for a second child. He named the baby Arthur and raised him as his own.

The Sword in the Stone King Arthur Legend of the Sword Story


Chapter 2:  A Stranger No More

When Arthur was ten years old, the same stranger returned to Sir Ector’s home.  The stranger could read and write, and so Sir Ector hired him to teach his two sons. Garth could not sit still for lessons and he stopped coming.  But Arthur listened with wide eyes and learned everything. I bet you guessed by now who was that stranger – none other than Merlin the Magician himself. 

At the end of each day when Arthur finished his chores, it was time for lessons.  Merlin would sit with Arthur for hours on end and teach him about the world. Arthur was a thin lad, not strong like his big brother Garth.  Merlin said not to worry about that - what mattered most was a strong heart inside. Merlin noticed how birds, foxes and deer followed Arthur about.  He could see that the boy's heart was strong indeed.

By the time Arthur was 16, his brother Garth had become a knight and was now called Sir Garth. Arthur was eager to serve his big brother as squire.  With great concern, he took care of his big brother's battle garments and spears.

One day at lesson time, Merlin stood up and turned from the lad.

“What is it?” said Arthur.

“Arthur," said Merlin, "I need to leave you now.”


Chapter 3: The Sword In The Stone

That night, when the night was at its most dark, Merlin went to London’s market square.  He stood in the middle of the square, holding both arms high and he pointed his wand to the stars.

The next morning at dawn when people started to arrive at the market, they discovered something most odd. A white marble block stood in the center of the market square, and upon it a large stone.  What's more, embedded on top of the stone was a golden sword with its top half shining in the sun and the other half buried deep into the rock. None of this marvel had been there the day before!

Even more curious were these words etched on the blade: Whoever pulls out this sword from this stone is the true King of England!

As you can imagine, word spread quickly about the message and the strange sword in the stone.  Men flocked from far and wide to jump up to the white marble block and give the sword a yank. Each one tried but the sword stuck fast. It would not move.

One said in gloom, “There is no man alive who could pull this sword out of the stone!”

“We’ll see about that!” said a voice in the crowd.  The Duke of Cornwall, dressed in silks and ribbons, stepped up to the white marble block.  “Hear ye, hear ye!” he said. “I call for a tournament to be held one month from today for the strongest, finest knights in all of England. There will be contests, prizes, and a grand feast for all!” The Duke said to his wife, the Duchess, “If I know men, this tournament will draw champions from throughout the land.  The winner is sure to be strong enough to pull the sword from the the stone!”  

Said the Duchess, “Good idea, my dear.  We will have a king again, at last!”

The people danced and cheered.  News of the tournament traveled fast.  From castle to village, to every far corner of the land, the news spread until at last, word got to the far-away home of Sir Ector.  Sir Garth heard the news when he was polishing his helmet.

“Arthur!” he called out.  Arthur was in the woods, feeding birds from his hand.  He set down a pile of seeds for the birds and another for the squirrels, then ran fast to see his brother.

“There you are!” said Garth.  “There's a tournament in London.  We must set out at once!”

Arthur couldn't be more delighted - he had never been more than a few miles from home.  He resolved to be the best squire ever for his brother! The lad ran back into the house.  In the courtyard his father, Sir Ector, was getting the horses ready.

Sir Ector and his sons rode through London on their way to the tournament.  Riding through the market square, something shiny glinted in the sun. “That sword looks like it goes right into the stone,” said Arthur.  “But how can that be? That's impossible.” Strangely, guards were standing all around it.  But why?

The father and his two sons reached the tournament. The young knight Sir Garth ran to get in line to register.  His father Sir Ector greeted many old friends – dukes, earls, barons, counts and countesses. Arthur sat in their tent, polishing his brother’s helmet till it shone bright.

A bugle sounded.  The tournament was about to begin! “Get my sword, Arthur!" said Garth.  

“Right away!” said Arthur.  But where was it? Arthur looked around in panic.  HIs brother's spear, battle-axe and dagger were right where they should be.  But where was the sword? “Garth…?” he said. “How about a battle-axe?”

“What are you talking about, Arthur?" said his brother impatiently.  "You know I need my sword!”  

“I'll have it in a moment!” said Arthur. 

“Be quick about it!” said Garth.

Arthur ran back into the tent.  Maybe he left Garth’s sword there?  He searched through the bag of armor and weapons.  How could he let such a thing happen? Then he had an idea.


Chapter 4: The Market Square

Very fast, Arthur hopped on their horse and rode back to the market square.  The guards were not there anymore – they must have all gone to watch the tournament.  

Arthur stepped onto the marble block.  “Let’s see if that sword can get unstuck.”  He took hold of the handle of the sword. He moved the sword a bit.  “Hey!” he thought, “it’s looser than I thought.”

With one big tug, the sword slid out.  Arthur was thrown back but the sword was safe in his hands.

The Sword in the Stone King Arthur Legend of the Sword Story

“I will be sure to bring it right back,” he resolved.  Arthur tucked the sword under his chest and raced to where his brother was waiting.

“Here it is,” he said, panting, and he handed the sword to his brother.

Garth took one look.  “Oh!” he said in surprise.

“What?” said Arthur nervously.  But his brother had dashed out of the tent. Soon after, he heard his brother’s voice outside.  “Father, you must see this!” Garth and his father stepped in the tent. 

“Look!” said Garth.  He pointed to the sword.

Sir Ector stared.  His face turned white.  “Garth,” said the father, facing his older son, “where did you get this sword?”

“It is mine!” said Garth, holding it close.  

“Garth!” said the Father again in a low, stern voice.  “I will ask you one more time. Where did you get this sword?”

The young knight’s head dropped down.  “It was from Arthur,” he said.  “He lost my sword and somehow he found this one.”

“Arthur?” The father turned to his younger son.  “How is it that you came by this sword?”

“I’m sorry!” said Arthur.  “Father, I'll put it right back, I promise.  I only meant to borrow it when I pulled it from the stone!”

“You must take us to where you found this sword, Arthur.  At once!” The three of them rushed over to the market square.


Chapter 5: Now It's Back

Arthur climbed onto the marble block.  “It came from here,” he said. He lifted the sword over his head.  

Then he dropped the blade back into the stone. “Now it’s back in the stone.  Everything's all right now, isn't it?"

“Hey!” said Sir Garth.  “I still need a sword!”  He jumped up onto the marble block and grabbed the hilt of the sword.  He pulled and pulled, but it didn't move.

Garth shouted to Arthur, “What did you do to it?”

“Nothing!” said the lad.

“You must have done something!” cried Sir Garth.

“Hush, both of you!” said the father.  “It's better if no one sees or hears us.”

But it was too late.  A crowd had already started to gather.

“Hey, did you pull that sword out of the stone?” called one villager. 

"Yes," said Arthur, "I did."

“Hey, did you pull that sword out of the stone?" called one villager.  

“Do it again!” called another.  

“Yes, let’s see it!”  "Let's see you do it!"  "Show us!"

Arthur put his hands around the golden handle.  With one tug, the blade slid out.

“Who are you?” called another voice. “What’s your name?”

“Arthur,” said the lad.

“Wait a minute, put that sword back!” A tall knight pushed forward from the crowd.  “Anyone can pull it out, once it’s already been pulled!”

“Go ahead.  Put it back, son,” said a voice.  It was the Duke of Cornwall, the one who had called for the tournament.

“All right,” said Arthur. He slipped the blade back into the stone with ease.

“Let me at it now!” said Duke.  He jumped up and grabbed the handle of the sword.  But pull and tug as he might, the sword would not move.  Not a bit.

Another knight tried.  Then another. None could move the sword. Some waited, thinking the longer they waited, surely the sword would loosen and they would have a better chance.  But when each man took his turn, the sword did not budge.

“Let the lad try now,” said the Duke of Cornwall.  “Arthur, go ahead.” 

Arthur stepped up to the stone again - in one motion, he freed the blade.  This time, he held the sword high above his head.  The blade flashed in the sun.  Amazed, the crowd did not know what to think.

This time, he held the sword high above his head.

One voice called out, “Our new King!”

“That kid?” called another voice from the crowd. “That skinny boy to rule over us?” "No way!" shouted another voice.

“Stop!” shouted a commanding voice. All eyes turned around.  It was Merlin the Magician.  “I know this boy. I know his heart.  There is no one in England who has a heart bigger and stronger than his.  The sword has told us that this young man is to be the next King of England. And there is something else you must know!”  The crowd hushed.  “This lad,” said Merlin, pointing to Arthur, “is the true child of King Uther.  HE is the missing baby!”

Cheers began to ring out.  “Hail, King Arthur!” called a voice.  "All hail, our new King!"   

Sir Ector fell to his knees.  Then Sir Garth. One person after another fell to their knees.  All cheered. At last, a king had been chosen. A fresh young king and a new day for England!



Posted in Bedtime Stories, STORIES FOR KIDS.


  1. I think that this story is trying to say that just because you’re not strong doesn’t mean that your heart can’t be strong and it’s not always about the muscles it’s about your heart and what it can be strong about.

  2. I think the lesson in this story is that sometimes it does not matter whether you are strong with muscles, it matters that you are strong in heart!

  3. This story is trying to tell us that even though we are not strong or big, our heart and mind should be strong and big.

  4. The message of the story is that you can try your hardest but the outcome would be the same as everything is fixed, so why bother?!

  5. I think this story is trying to show us that you don’t have to be the most popular or the best at something to be a leader. You don’t need to be strong to have a strong heart and mind.

  6. I like how Arthor was so honest to the crowd and said I have pulled it out. Arthor was the only one who could pull the sord out. I think this story is trying to show us that we can do many things that other people sadly cant but they can do things we cant.

  7. I love reading these stories to my son for bed time. I’m a voice actor and I hope that he enjoys listening to it just as much as I do reading it to him.

    Thanks for having this website easily available.

  8. Question 1
    Answer: Because Arthur is a nice person and smart, that matters because the king needs to be a good person to lead the people.

    Question 2
    Answer : Arthur never expected win a Principal’s Award.

  9. Question 1: Why did Merlin the Magician say Arthur had a heart that was big and strong? Why did it matter?
    Answer: Because Arthur was a nice person and smart, and that’s matter because the king need to be a good person to lead the people.
    Question 2: Arthur was surprised he was made king. Tell about a time when something very good happened to you that you were not expecting.
    Answer: I never expected to win a Principal’s Award, but in 4th grade I won the award!

  10. He could help the kingdom and not let it fall.

    One time when we went on a vacation we did not know if we had a tickets and when we got there a guy was giving them out off his season pass.

  11. 1.Merlin knew that Arthur came from royalty. Merlin notice how the animals follow him. so people will follow him as well. It matter because he was suppose to be king one day.
    2. When my nannie gave me a huge amount of money for no reason. it wasn’t Christmas or my birthday. i was so very grateful.

  12. cause he saw how the animals were following him.cause it showed that Arthur was very powerful.

    one day we were at the mall and somebody dropped their money i picked it up and gave it to them and they gave me sum of the money.

  13. 1.) he would be the next king
    2.) me and my team mates won a tournament and we were all exited. One of the happiest days I’ve had, especially when it’s with people you love.

  14. 1. because he would get followed by the animals and you need more than brains to be a king time i was messing around and i threw a basketball from one side of the gym to the other and made it i was just trying to pass the ball but it was awesome and all my friends cheered

  15. 1. He said that Arthur would listen to his teachings and was very interested in what he taught. He thought that Arthur would someday be a great man.

    When my dad brought home a puppy and I was not expecting one. I knew one was coming, but i was expecting that day. I was really happy and surprised.

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