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Edward Burne-Jones.The last sleep of Arthur.jpg
The Last Sleep of Arthur by Sir Edward Burne-Jones
Historia Regum Britanniae
Creator Geoffrey of Monmouth
Genre Arthurian legend
Type Legendary island of the dead
Notable people King Arthur, Morgan le Fay

Avalon (probably from the Welsh word afal, meaning apple; see Etymology below) is a legendary island featured in the Arthurian legend, famous for its beautiful apples. It first appears in Geoffrey of Monmouth's 1136 pseudohistorical account Historia Regum Britanniae ("The History of the Kings of Britain") as the place where King Arthur's sword Caliburn (Excalibur) was forged and later where Arthur is taken to recover from his wounds after the Battle of Camlann. As an "Isle of the Blessed" Avalon has parallels elsewhere in Indo-European mythology, in particular the Irish Tír na nÓg and the Greek Hesperides, also noted for its apples. Avalon was associated from an early date with immortal beings such as Morgan le Fay.



Geoffrey of Monmouth called it in Latin Insula Avallonis in the Historia. In the later Vita Merlini he called it Insula Pomorum the "isle of apples". The name is generally considered to be of Welsh origin, derived from Old Welsh abal "apple" or aball "apple tree" (Middle Welsh aval, avall; Modern Welsh afal, afall), though an Old Cornish or Old Breton origin is also possible. It is also possible that the tradition of an "apple" island among the British was influenced by Irish legends concerning the otherworld island home of Manannán mac Lir and Lugh, Emain Ablach (also the Old Irish poetic name for the Isle of Man, where Ablach means "Apple-bearing" - derived from Old Irish aball "apple" - and is similar to the Middle Welsh name Afallach, which was used to replace the name Avalon in medieval Welsh translations of French and Latin Arthurian tales). All are etymologically related to the Gaulish root *aballo- (as found in the place name Aballo/Aballone, now Avallon in Burgundy) and are derived from a Common Celtic *abal- "apple", which is related at the Proto-Indo-European level to English apple, Russian jabloko, Latvian abele, et al.

In Arthurian legend

In Geoffrey of Monmouth

According to Geoffrey in the Historia and much subsequent literature which he inspired, Avalon is the place where King Arthur is taken after fighting Mordred at the Battle of Camlann to recover from his wounds. Welsh, Cornish and Breton tradition claimed that Arthur had never really died, but would inexorably return to lead his people against their enemies as discussed in King Arthur's messianic return. The Historia also states that Avalon is where his sword Caliburn (Excalibur) was forged. Geoffrey dealt with Avalon in more detail in Vita Merlini, in which he describes for the first time in Arthurian legend the enchantress Morgan le Fay as the chief of nine sisters who live on Avalon. Geoffrey's description of the island indicates a sea voyage was needed to get there. His description of Avalon here, which is heavily indebted to the early medieval Spanish scholar Isidore of Seville (being mostly derived from the section on famous islands in Isidore's famous work Etymologiae, XIV.6.8 "Fortunatae Insulae"), shows the magical nature of the island:

The island of apples which men call “The Fortunate Isle” (Insula Pomorum que Fortunata uocatur) gets its name from the fact that it produces all things of itself; the fields there have no need of the ploughs of the farmers and all cultivation is lacking except what nature provides. Of its own accord it produces grain and grapes, and apple trees grow in its woods from the close-clipped grass. The ground of its own accord produces everything instead of merely grass, and people live there a hundred years or more. There nine sisters rule by a pleasing set of laws those who come to them from our country.[1]

By comparison, Isidore's description of the Fortunate Isles reads:

"The name of the Isles of the Fortunate signifies that they bear all good things, as if happy and blessed in the abundance of their fruits. Serviceable by nature, they bring forth fruits of valuable forests (Sua enim aptae natura pretiosarum poma silvarum parturiunt); their hilltops are clothed with vines growing by chance; in place of grasses, there is commonly vegetable and grain. Pagan error and the songs of the secular poets have held that these islands to be Paradise because of the fecundity of the soil. Situated in the Ocean to the left of Mauretania, very near the west, they are separated by the sea flowing between them."[2]

In medieval geographies, Isidore's Fortunate Islands were identified with the Canaries[3].

Connection to Glastonbury

Around 1190 Avalon became associated with Glastonbury, when monks at Glastonbury Abbey claimed to have discovered the bones of Arthur and his queen. It is in the work of Giraldus Cambrensis we find this connection made for the first time and it clearly draws on Geoffrey:

What is now known as Glastonbury was, in ancient times, called the Isle of Avalon. It is virtually an island, for it is completely surrounded by marshlands. In Welsh it is called 'Ynys Afallach', which means the Island of Apples and this fruit once grew in great abundance. After the Battle of Camlann, a noblewoman called Morgan, later the ruler and patroness of these parts as well as being a close blood-relation of King Arthur, carried him off to the island, now known as Glastonbury, so that his wounds could be cared for. Years ago the district had also been called 'Ynys Gutrin' in Welsh, that is the Island of Glass, and from these words the invading Saxons later coined the place-name 'Glastingebury.' [4]

Though no longer an island in the twelfth century, the high conical bulk of Glastonbury Tor had been surrounded by marsh before the surrounding fenland in the Somerset Levels was drained. As Gerald says Glastonbury's earliest name in Welsh was Ineswitrin (or Ynys Witrin), the Isle of glass, a name noted by earlier historians which shows that the location was at one point seen as an island. The discovery of the burial is described by chroniclers, notably Giraldus Cambrensis, as being just after King Henry II's reign when the new abbot of Glastonbury, Henry de Sully, commissioned a search of the abbey grounds. At a depth of 5 m (16 feet) the monks discovered a massive treetrunk coffin and a leaden cross bearing an inscription : Hic jacet sepultus inclitus rex Arthurus in insula Avalonia. ("Here lies renowned King Arthur in the island of Avalon"). Accounts of the exact inscription vary, with five different versions existing the earliest is by Gerald in "Liber de Principis instructione" c.1193, and he says he saw the cross, and it read: "Here lies buried the famous King Arthur with Guinevere his second wife in the isle of Avalon". Inside the coffin were two bodies, who Giraldus refers to as Arthur and "his queen"; the bones of the male body were described as being gigantic. The account of the burial by the chronicle of Margam Abbey says three bodies were found the other being of Mordred.[citation needed] In 1278, the remains were reburied with great ceremony, attended by King Edward I and his queen, before the High Altar at Glastonbury Abbey, where they were the focus of pilgrimages until the Reformation.

The Glastonbury burial is tainted with the suggestion of forgery as an example of Pseudoarchaeology. Historians today generally dismiss the authenticity of the find, attributing it to a publicity stunt performed to raise funds to repair the Abbey, which was mostly burned in 1184.[5] Long before this William of Malmesbury, a historian interested in Arthur, said in his history of England "But Arthur’s grave is nowhere seen, whence antiquity of fables still claims that he will return."[6] As William wrote a comprehensive history of Glastonbury De antiquitae Glatoniensis ecclesie around 1130 which discussed many pious legends connected to the Abbey, but made no mention of either Arthur's grave or a connection of Glastonbury to the name Avalon, stating firmly it was previously known as Ineswitrin, this raises further suspicions concerning the burial. It is known for certain the monks later added forged passages to William's history discussing Arthurian connections.[7] The fact the search for the body is connected to Henry II and Edward I both Kings who fought major Welsh wars means scholars also believe that propaganda too may have played a part.[8] Gerald, a constant supporter of royal authority, in his account of the discovery clearly aims to destroy the idea of the possibility of King's Arthur's messianic return: "Many tales are told and many legends have been invented about King Arthur and his mysterious ending. In their stupidity the British [i.e Welsh, Cornish and Bretons] people maintain that he is still alive. Now that the truth is known, I have taken the trouble to add a few more details in this present chapter. The fairy-tales have been snuffed out, and the true and indubitable facts are made known, so that what really happened must be made crystal clear to all and separated from the myths which have accumulated on the subject." [9]

The discovery burial ensured that in later romances, histories based on them and in the popular imagination Glastonbury became increasingly identified with Avalon, an identification that continues strongly today. The later development of the legends of the Holy Grail and Joseph of Arimathea by Robert de Boron interconnected these legends with Glastonbury and with Avalon an identification which also seems to be made in Perlesvaus. The popularity of Arthurian Romance has meant this area of the Somerset Levels has today become popularly described as The Vale Of Avalon.[10] In more recent times writers such as Dion Fortune, John Michell, Nicholas Mann and Geoffrey Ashe have formed theories based on perceived connections between Glastonbury and Celtic legends of the otherworld and Annwn in attempt to link the location firmly with Avalon drawing on the various legends based on Glastonbury Tor as well as drawing on ideas like Earth mysteries, Ley lines and even the myth of Atlantis. Arthurian literature also continues to use Glastonbury as an important location as in The Mists of Avalon and A Glastonbury Romance. Even the fact Somerset has many apple orchards has been drawn in to support the connection. Glastonbury's connection to Avalon continues to make it a site of tourism and the area has great religious significance for Neopagans Neo-druids and as a New Age community as well as Christians. Hippy identification of Glastonbury with Avalon seen in the work of Michell and in Gandalf's Garden also helped inspire the Glastonbury Festival.[11]

Other locations for Avalon

In medieval times suggestions for the location of Avalon ranged far beyond Glastonbury. They included on the other side of the Earth at the antipodes, Sicily and other unnamed locations in the Mediterranean.[12] In more recent times, just like in the quest for Arthur's mythical capital Camelot, a large number of locations have been put forward as being the real 'Avalon'.

These theories include l'Île d'Aval or Daval, on the coast of Brittany, and Burgh by Sands, in Cumberland, which was in Roman times the fort of Aballava on Hadrian's Wall, and near Camboglanna, upwards on the Eden, now Castlesteads. According to Welsh tradition (as first recorded in the 10th century Annales Cambriae, but also found in numerous later sources), Arthur was killed in battle at a site named Camlann, which may be etymologically related to Camboglanna, though this is by no means certain. Other candidates include the Bourgogne town of Avallon, suggested by Geoffrey Ashe, as part of his theory connecting the Romano-British king, Riothamus, to King Arthur, and Bardsey Island in Gwynedd, famous for its apples and also connected with Merlin. Others have claimed the most likely location to be St Michael's Mount in Cornwall, which is near to other locations associated with the Arthurian legends. St Michael's Mount is an island which can be reached by a causeway at low tide. The matter is confused somewhat by similar legends and place names in Brittany.

Non-Arthurian notability

Avalon also plays a role in non-Arthurian French literature, such as the stories of Holger Danske, who was taken there by Morgan le Fay in a medieval romance, and in the story of Melusine. It also recurs in a number of later works without other connection to King Arthur. During the 17th century, the area surrounding one of North America's first European settlements Ferryland, was named after the legendary isle. Originally called the Province of Avalon, in modern times it is known as the Avalon Peninsula in the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Avalon is the kingdom of Prince Corwin in Roger Zelazny's Chronicles of Amber. George R. R. Martin also began a novel named Avalon, before starting his magnum opus A Song of Ice and Fire series. In the alternate history of Poul Anderson's "Delenda Est", it was the Celts who colonised North America and created there a nation called "Afallon". In Isaac Asimov's short story Kid Stuff, Avalon is a mid-Atlantic island inhabited by elves and other fairies and cloaked with psychic energy. Avalon is also the name of Magneto's asteroid base in the X-Men comic book series.

See also

Wikisource-logo.svg "Avalon". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). 1911. 


  1. ^ The Vita Merlini
  2. ^ Priscilla Throop, "Isidore of Seville's Etymologies",, 2005, XIV.6.8
  3. ^ Priscilla Throop, "Isidore of Seville's Etymologies",, 2005, XIV.6.8, n. 50
  4. ^ Gerald of Wales, "Liber de Principis instructione" c.1193 Two Accounts of the Exhumation of Arthur's Body
  5. ^ Modern scholarship views the Glastonbury cross as the result of a probably late 12th-century fraud. See Rahtz 1993 and Carey 1999.
  6. ^ O. J. Padel, "The Nature of Arthur" in Cambrian Medieval Celtic Studies 27 (1994), pp.1-31 at p.10
  7. ^ Glastonbury in Norris J. Lacy, Editor, The Arthurian Encyclopedia (1986 Peter Bedrick Books, New York).
  8. ^ Rahtz 1993
  9. ^ Gerald of Wales - Two Accounts of the Exhumation of Arthur's Body
  10. ^ The Guardian - Treadmill in the Vale of Avalon 1990
  11. ^ "Glastonbury: Alternative Histories", in Ronald Hutton, Witches, Druids and King Arthur
  12. ^ Avalon in Norris J. Lacy, Editor, The Arthurian Encyclopedia (1986 Peter Bedrick Books, New York).
  • Rahtz, Philip (1993), English Heritage Book of Glastonbury, London: Batsford, ISBN 978-0713468656 .
  • Carey, John (1999), "The Finding of Arthur’s Grave: A Story from Clonmacnoise?", in Carey, John; Koch, John T.; Lambert, Pierre-Yves, Ildánach Ildírech. A Festschrift for Proinsias Mac Cana, Andover: Celtic Studies Publications, pp. 1–14, ISBN 978-1891271014 .

Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Avalon is the largest city on Catalina Island.

For other places with the same name, see Avalon (disambiguation).

Get in

By Boat

Most visitors reach Avalon on the ferry from Long Beach or San Pedro.

  • Catalina Express [1] (tel: (800) 481-3470) is the most popular way to get to Catalina Island via their fleet of boats. In the summer months, Catalina Express offers about 30 trips a day to Avalon from San Pedro, Dana Point and two ports in Long Beach, downtown and at the Queen Mary. If you're on the west side or north of LA, the Marina Del Rey Flyer is your best bet.
  • Catalinaferries [2] has two boats making trips daily in the summer and also have a special winter schedule. It's a great way to get out of town without having to drive out of town.

Perhaps the best way to reach the island is by private sailboat or powerboat, about a half-day from the Los Angeles harbors. The seas in the channel are generally calm, tho there are swells; dolphins and other sea life are often sighted.

By plane

Catalina is also accessible by private plane to Airport In The Sky Catalina Airport (IATA: AVX, ICAO: KAVX).

  • Island Express Helicopter Service [3] (tel: (800) 218-2566) offers daily flights from heliports in San Pedro and Long Beach, carrying up to six passengers.

Get around

Around Avalon, the primary mode of transportation is by golf cart. The streets are very narrow and the town is crowded and small so this works out very well. Upon arrival to Avalon by sea you will see signs for golf cart rentals.

For the day visitors, there are city and island Discovery Tours [4] and Catalina Adventure Tours [5].

You may also rent bicycles (or bring your own from the mainland for an extra fee).

  • Brown's Bikes [6] - 107 Pebbly Beach Road. Tel: +1 310 510-0986, fax: +1 310 510-0747, e-mail: Rentals and bike repair. Hourly rates are from $5 to $15 per hour, depending on the type of bike. Daily rates are from $12 to $40.
  • Catalina Auto & Bike Rental - 301 Crescent Avenue. Tel: +1 310 510-0111. Bicycle and golf cart rental.
  • Wrigley Memorial and Botanical Garden [7] (tel: +1 310 510-2595) - 1.5 miles (2.4 km) up Avalon Canyon Road from Avalon. Daily from 8PM to 5PM, year round. A memorial to William Wriggley, Jr., founder of the WM Wriggley Jr. Company, renowned for its chewing gum. Mr. Wriggley was also a long-time benefactor of Catalina and was key in assuring that it was protected for future generations. The Botanical Garden features plants that are native to California islands, especially species only found on Catalina Island. Adults: $5, Children under 12: Free.
  • The Casino [8]/Art Museum (tel: +1 800 626-5440) - Casino Point, northwest end of Avalon Harbor. The Casino is an Art-Deco movie palace and ballroom built in 1929 that was once the place to be for the Los Angeles elite. The tour will take you into the movie theater and up the ramps to the ballroom while the tour guide gives information about the history and unique construction of the casino. Adults: $14.50, Children: $7.25, Seniors: $13
  • Descanso Beach Club - On the north side of the casino. (Tel: +1 310 510-7410). A beach front bar and restaurant. Showers, chair and umbrealla rentals and restrooms are available.
  • Catalina Island Museum [9] - Ground floor of the casino building. Tel: +1 310 510-2414, fax: +1 310 510-2780, e-mail: April – December: Open every day of the week, 10:00PM – 5:00PM Closed Christmas Day. January – March: Closed Thursdays, Open Friday – Wednesday, 10:00PM – 4:00PM Permanent exhibits display the history of Catalina from the early Gabrielinos through Catalina's heydey as a playground for the rich and famous. Special exhibits change regularly. Adults: $5, Seniors: $4, Children (ages 6-15): $2, Children under 5: free
  • Catalina Island Golf Course - 1 Country Club Road, tel: +1 310 510-0530. A 2,100 yard, nine-hole golf course with two sets of tees to provide 18-hole play. Call for current prices.
  • Hiking - Catalina Island has miles of backroads and trails but a permit is required. A permit can be obtained the day of your hike at the following locations:
    • Conservancy House in Avalon, at 125 Claressa Ave.
    • Airport-in-the-Sky
    • Two Harbors Visitor Information Center
  • Fishing - The ocean waters around Catalina are teaming with fish. Rent a boat or join an organized fishing trip on a commercial boat.

Snorkeling and Scuba Diving

Multiple locations. With warm temperatures and clear waters with visibility from 40-100 feet (12 to 30 m), Catalina is a prime location for snorkeling and scuba diving. Several vendors rent equipment or provide guided trips.

  • Lover’s Cove Undersea Gardens - Just a few minutes from the boat landing in Avalon, this cove features giant kelp forests and hundreds of fish. Tel: +1 800 766-7535.
  • Descanso Beach - Just north of the Casino. Rental equipment available. Tel: +1 310 510-1226.
  • Casino Point Marine Park - At the edge of Casino Point. Artificial reefs, a kelp forest and shipwrecks provide opportunities to explore.
  • Scuba Luv [10] - 126 Catalina Avenue. Toll free: (800) 262-3483, phone: +1 310 510-2350, fax: +1 310 510-0821, email: A complete scuba outfitter providing rentals, instruction and guided trips from their 65-foot (19 m) dive boat King Neptune.
  • Catalina Divers Supply [11] - Green Pier and Casino Point. Toll free +1 800 353-0330, phone: +1 310 510-0330, fax: +1 310 510-1629, e-mail: A complete scuba outfitter providing rentals, instruction and guided trips from their 42-foot (12 m) dive boat Cat Dive.


One way to explore the island is to kayak around it, finding coves inaccessible from land and peering up at massive cliffs. Several vendors on the island rent kayaks or provide guided tours.

  • Descanso Beach Ocean Sports [12] - +1 310 510-1226. Kayak rentals and tours with experienced guides. Specialty tours such as a sunset tour and an astronomy tour.
  • Joe's Rent-A-Boat [13] - Green Pier. Tel: + 310 510-0455. Joe's rents kayaks by the hour as well as paddle boards and motor boats.
  • Wet Spot Rental [14] - Avalon Boat Pier. Tel: +1 310 510-2229, e-mail: Kayak and paddle boat rentals. Wet Spot also has another location in Little Harbor.



  • Avalon Benefit 50 Mile Run [15]. An annual benefit run from Avalon to Two Harbors and back. Proceeds benfit local charities.


  • Annual Avalon Harbor Underwater Cleanup [16]. An annual event where scuba divers dive in Avalon Harbor to remove trash and other items from the floor of the harbor. This is the only day of the year that scuba divers are allowed to dive in the harbor.


  • Catalina Marathon [17] - A 26.2 mile run from Two Harbors to Avalon.
  • Catalina Conservancy Ball [18] - Avalon Casino. A black tie event that includes dinner, big band dancing and silent and live auctions to benefit the Catalina Island Conservancy.
  • Rubber Ducky Derby - A rubber duck race to benefit the children's theater company. Tel: +1 310 510-1987.


  • Silent Film Benefit - A silent film screening featuring live musical accompaniment on the historic Page organ in the Avalon Casino's Theatre.


  • Church Mouse Marlin Invitational - A non-profit marlin fishing tournament to benefit Cataline youth. Tel: +1 310 820-4434.


  • Pottery & Tile Extravaganza - A month long exhibition of locally made Catalina tile including walking tours of examples of installed tile. Tel: +1 310 510-2414.
  • Catalina Island Festival of Art [19] - Art from all over the country is displayed in the Casino Art Gallery. Tel: +1 310 510-0808.


  • Catalina Island Jazz Trax Festival [20] - A 3-weekend, nine-night jazz festival held in the Casino Ballroom.
  • The Avalon Ball [21] - Recreating the Big Band scene of the 1920s and 30s in the Avalon Ballroom.


  • Catalina Island Triathlon [22] - A half-mile swim in Avalon Bay, a 16K cycle course around Mt. Ada and a 5K run past the golf course. Tel: +1 714 978-1528.


  • New Year's Eve Celebration, December 31 - Ring in the New Year in the Casino Ballroom. Reservations are accepted beginning in July. Tel: +1 310 510-1520.


There are a variety of places to eat on the pier, serving things like hot dogs and fish and chips. There is also a small Vons supermarket at 123 Metropole Avenue which may be helpful if you need a candy bar, soft drink or such.

  • Ristorante Villa Portofino, 101 Crescent Avenue, (310) 510-2009 [23]
  • Catalina Visitors Country Club , (310) 510-7404 [24]
  • Steve's Steakhouse, 417 Cresent Avenue, 310-510-0333 [25]
  • Armstrong's Fish Market & Seafood Restaurant, 306 Crescent Avenue, (310)510-0113 [26]
  • Best Western Catalina Canyon Resort And Spa, 888 Country Club Drive, (310) 510-0325, Fax: (310) 510-0900, [27].
  • The Avalon Hotel, 124 Whittley Avenue, (310) 510-7070, Fax:(310) 510-7210 [28]

Get out

If you are coming from the mainland you probably want to see a bit more of Catalina Island, such as Two Harbors or the interior of the island (home of the buffalo). Unfortunately, since golf carts are not allowed outside of Avalon, you are pretty much trapped, as roads leading away from the town hold "no golf cart" signs. So, if you are interested in visiting other parts of the island, another mode of transportation (such as bicycles or perhaps a small motorscooter) must be found. Note that Santa Catalina Island is hilly so you might find yourself pushing your bike up the roads in the island's interior.

This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!

Source material

Up to date as of January 22, 2010

From Wikisource

by Al Jolson, Vincent Rose and Buddy DeSylva[1]
Al Jolson's 1920 recording (help | file info or download)
Original sheet music cover


Ev'ry morning mem'ries stray
Across the sea where flying fishes play
And as the night is falling
I find that I'm recalling
That blissful all enthralling day


I found my love in Avalon
Beside the bay
I left my love in Avalon
And sail'd away
I dream of her and Avalon
From dusk 'til dawn
And so I think I'll travel on
To Avalon


Just before I sail'd away
She said the word I long'd to hear her say
I tenderly caress'd her
Close to my heart I press'd her
Upon that golden yesterday


  1. The first publications only credit Jolson and Rose as the authors. DeSylva's name was added later.
PD-icon.svg This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923. It may be copyrighted outside the U.S. (see Help:Public domain). Flag of the United States.svg

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Database error article)

From LoveToKnow 1911

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Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Wikipedia has an article on:



Proper noun




  1. (in Arturian legend) An island, represented as an earthly paradise in the western seas, to which King Arthur and other heroes were carried at death.


Up to date as of February 01, 2010

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!


Developer(s) Climax Studios
Publisher(s) Publisher Missing
Engine Blimey 2
Release date Release Date Missing
Genre Action
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer
Age rating(s) Ratings Missing
Platform(s) PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough

Avalon is a video game currently in development by Climax Studios for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. The team are using their Blimey 2 game development engine.

This article uses material from the "Avalon" article on the Gaming wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

"Avalon" is a popular song. It was written by Al Jolson, Buddy DeSylva and Vincent Rose in 1920.[1] It was first recorded by Jolson and used in the musicals Sinbad and Bombo.[2][3][4][5] Jolson's version became #2 on the American singles chart. It is possible that Rose wrote the song alone, and that Jolson's name was used in the credits because he was a popular artist and helped make the song popular.[1] At first only Rose and Jolson were marked as the writers, and DeSylva's name was added later.[1]

Many jazz artists have recorded the song, for example Cab Calloway (1934), Coleman Hawkins (1935) and Eddie Durham (1936). Benny Goodman played the song in his concert in Carnegie Hall in 1938.[1] The song was also played in the films The Jolson Story (1946) and The Benny Goodman Story (1956).[6]

The melody at the beginning of the song was taken from Giacomo Puccini's opera Tosca, and Rose changed it only a little. Because of this, a court later decided that Jolson and Rose had to pay Puccini's publishers $25,000 and all later profits from the song.[1]


  • Red Nichols and His Five Pennies (27 February 1928)
  • George Monkhouse and his Cambridge University Quinquaginta Ramblers (12 March 1930)
  • Spike Hughes and his Dance Orchestra (23 May 1930)
  • Joel Shaw and his Orchestra (August 1932)
  • Billy Cotton and his Band (21 July 1933)
  • Casa Loma Orchestra (16 August 1934)
  • Cab Calloway and his Orchestra (4 September 1934)
  • Scott Wood and his Six Swingers (18 December 1934; 1 September 1936)
  • Joe Venuti and his Orchestra (26 December 1934)
  • KXYZ Novelty Band (29 January 1935)
  • Coleman Hawkins (2 March 1935)
  • Quintette of the Hot Club of France (July 1935)
  • Jimmie Lunceford and his Orchestra (30 September 1935)
  • Harry Roy and his Orchestra (8 November 1935)
  • Val Rosing and his Swing Stars (18 November 1935)
  • Ballyhooligans (7 July 1936)
  • Benny Goodman Quartet (29 June 1937; 28 September 1937; 16 January 1938)
  • Joe Daniels and his Hotshots (28 September 1937)
  • Alix Combelle et son Orchestre (4 October 1937)
  • Harry James and his Orchestra (13 July 1939; 8 November 1939)
  • Willie Lewis and his Negro Band (27 June 1941)[7]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Tyle, Chris. "Avalon (1920)". Retrieved 2009-08-19. 
  2. Ruhlmann, William (2004). Breaking Records: 100 Years of Hits. Routledge. p. 42. ISBN 0415943051. 
  3. Furia, Philip; Lasser, Michael L. (2006). America's Songs: The Stories Behind the Songs of Broadway, Hollywood, and Tin Pan Alley. CRC Press. p. 24. ISBN 0415972469. 
  4. Kenrick, John (2003). "Al Jolson: A Biography". Retrieved 2009-11-26. 
  5. Bloom, Ken (2004). Broadway: Its History, People, and Places: An Encyclopedia. Taylor & Francis. p. 96. ISBN 0415937043. 
  6. Jasen, David A. (2002). A Century of American Popular Music: 2000 Best-Loved and Remembered Songs (1899-1999). Taylor & Francis. p. 14. ISBN 0415937000. 
  7. Crawford, Richard; Magee, Jeffrey (1992). Jazz Standards on Record, 1900–1942: A Core Repertory. Center for Black Music Rsrch. pp. 6–7. ISBN 0929911032. 

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