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Although the legends of Arthur have been popular throughout Europe from the Middle Ages on, the earliest references to Arthur are actually found in Welsh literature, beginning with the Welsh-Latin Historia Brittonum, which dates from the ninth century. In Arthur in Medieval Welsh Literature, O. J. Padel provides a survey of medieval Welsh literary references to Arthur and emphasizes their importance to Arthurian studies as a whole. Padel considers texts from different genres alongside one another, from the folk legends associated with magic and animals to those portraying Arthur as literary hero, soldier, and defender of country and faith. Other figures associated with Arthur, such as Cai, Bedwyr, and Gwenhwyfar, are also discussed.