the historicity of King Arthur
February 3, 2020

The historical man behind the literature’s king was probably a warlord existing in the period between AD 450 and AD 650. His name, Artorius, derives perhaps from a Roman family, because it is extremely rare in Welsh sources: we owe a Welsh brief, Annals of Wales, for the first mention with two absolute dates about…

An ancient Celtic burial site
January 20, 2020

Englyn(n)ion Y Beddau/Bedeu/Beteu/Betev (Stanzas/Verses of The Graves), also known as Beddau Milwyr Ynys Prydain (Graves of Warriors of Isle of Britain) comes primarily from Llyfr Du Cærfyrddin (Black Book of Cærmarthen),  Llyfr Coch Hergest (Red Book of Hergest), and Llyfr Gwyn Rhydderch (White Book of Rhydderch). Introduction Englyn(n)ion Y Beddau/Bedeu/Beteu/Betev (Stanzas/Verses of The Graves) is…

the celtic otherworld
January 13, 2020

Pa Gur/Gwr yv Y Porthaur?, or Arthur a Y Porthaur, or Ymddiddan Arthur a Glewlwyd Gafaelfawr Translation: (What Man is The Gatekeeper?, or Arthur and The Porter, or Dialogue of Arthur and Glewlwyd Gafaelfawr), from Llyfr Du Caerfyrddin (Black Book of Cærmarthen). Introduction According to Caitlin R Green, Jon B Coe, Simon Young, Karen Jankulak,…

a painting of chulwch and arthur by Alan Lee
January 6, 2020

Introduction to the Text Culhwch ac Olwen is a Welsh story about a hero associated with Arthur and his warriors.  The story survives in only two manuscripts: a complete version in Llyfr Coch Hergest (Red Book of Hergest) c AD 1400, and a fragmented version in Llyfr Gwyn Rhydderch (White Book of Rhydderch) c AD…

welsh triads in art
December 9, 2019

The Welsh Triads are otherwise known as the Triads of the Island of Britain (Britain is also referred to as Prydain). The word Triads is gotten from the word “Tri” which means three. In literature the Triad is a rhetorical form whereby Items/ objects are grouped together in threes, with a heading or title that shows…

November 25, 2019

It is a cryptic poem of sixty lines in Middle Welsh, found in Llyfr Taliessin (Book of Taliesin).  The text recounts an expedition with King Arthur to Annwn, the Welsh name for the “Celtic” Otherworld.  Preiddeu Annw(f)n is one of the best known of mediæval British poems.  English translations, in whole or in part, have…

November 18, 2019

Introduction to the Annales Cambriae The Annales are a complex of Cambro-Latin chronicles compiled or derived from diverse sources at Saint David’s in Dyfed, Wales.  The earliest is a Twelfth-Century AD presumed copy of a mid-Tenth Century AD original; later editions were compiled in the Thirteenth Century AD.  Despite the name, the Annales Cambriae records…

Classic Lady of Shalott artwork
September 23, 2019

Lord Alfred Tennyson’s four-part poem is based on the Arthurian Legend of Elaine of Astolat, who died for that love that surpassed all human understanding. Its recounted version was in the 13th-century Italian book Donna di Scalotta but the poem is an 18th Century work. Lord Tennyson composed the poem in 1842. The poem is…

Vortigern and Merlin
August 26, 2019

Introduction to Historia Brittonum; and its sections Historia Brittonum (History of Britons) is a purported history of the indigenous Brittonic people.  The text is reputed to have been written c AD 828/829, and survives in numerous recensions that date from after the 11th Century AD.  The Historia Brittonum is commonly attributed to Nennius, as some…

A statue of St. Gildas
August 19, 2019

(On the Ruin and Conquest of Britain, or just On the Ruin of Britain): A Sermon in Three Parts Introduction to Parts One and Two De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae is a work by the 6th-Century AD British cleric Gildas. It condemns the acts of Gildas’ contemporaries, both secular and religious, whom he blames for…

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