Slike strani

The only saint of the family of Brychan, who belongs to this generation, is Nefydd, a son of Nefydd Ail ab Rhun Dremrudd.

About this period lived Tegfan, the son of Carcludwys of the line of Cadrod Calchfynydd, and though the number of generations between him and his ancestor exceeds the usual allowance for the interval of time, it does not exceed the bounds of probability. He was the brother of Gallgu Rhieddog, and is said to have been the founder of Llandegfan, Anglesey.

According to Achau y Saint; Teon, and Tegonwy ab Teon, were members of the college of Illtyd ; but the statement cannot be admitted without incurring a great anachronism, if it be true that Iorwerth Hirflawdd, a son of Tegonwy, married one of the daughters of Brychan. The mistake seems to have arisen from confounding Teon, who stands at the head of a long pedigree of Welsh chieftains,* with Teon, who, according to Geoffrey of Monmouth, was bishop of Gloucester about A. D. 542, when he was translated to the archbishoprick of London; but, unfortunately for Geoffrey, London was in the possession of the Saxons before the year 542.

Bedwini, another bishop mentioned in the Welsh accounts, is said to have been the primate of Cornwall in the time of Arthur, and to have resided at a place called Celliwîg.

Stinan, or Justinian, according to his Life by John of Teignmouth, was born of noble pareritage in Lesser Brittany; and having spent his youth in the study of learning, he received the order of priesthood, and was, by a divine oracle, commanded to leave his country. After wandering for a while, he came to the coast of Wales, and landed in a certain island called “ Lemeney,” where he led a religious life in company with Honorius, the son of king Thefriaucus. Cressy says:

* It would appear, from the dates of his descendants, that he flourished about A. D. 400.

“ The authour of his life relates at large the envy

and malice with which the Enemy of mankind impugned the devout and mortified life of this Holy man, seeking to interrupt it by severall and frequent illusions, and by suggesting scandalous lyes concerning him. But in conclusion, when he saw himself every way vanquished by the Holy man, and that neither by violent assaults nor malicious suggestions he could withdraw him from the service of God: he attempted other arts and guilefull machinations: For he infused the poyson of his malice into the hearts of three of the Holy mans servants : Insomuch as they having been reproved by him for their idlenes and mispending the time, they were inflamed with fury against him, insomuch as rushing upon him, they threw him to the ground, and most cruelly cutt off his head. But in the place where the sacred head fell to the ground, a fountain of pure water presently flowd, by drinking of which in following times many were miraculously restored to health. But miracles greater than these immediately succeeded his death. For the body of the Blessed Martyr presently rose, and taking the head between the two arms, went down to the sea shore, and walking thence on the sea, pass'd over to the port call’d by his name: and being arrived in the place where a Church is now built to his Memory, it fell down, and was there buried by Saint David with spirituall Hymns and Canticles.”—Cressy next proceeds to explain that the island Lemeney—“hath in English obtain'd a new name being calld Ramsey;” and that “ It lyes opposite and in sight of Menevia the Episcopall seat of St. David.” The church, mentioned in this most outrageous legend, is evidently the chapel of Stinan in the parish of St. David's, Pembrokeshire; as the church of Llanstinan, in the same county, is too far distant to answer the description.

Ffinian, an Irish saint, is said to have visited St. David at Menevia about A. D. 530, and to have remained in Britain thirty years, in which time he built three churches, but their names are unknown. There was another Irish saint, and contemporary, called Ffinan, whose Welsh name, according to Usher, was Winnin. It is uncertain to which of them, Llanffinan, subject to Llanfihangel Ysgeifiog, Anglesey, is dedicated.

Senanus, an Irish saint and bishop, who was intimately acquainted with St. David, died A. D. 544. Llansannan, Denbighshire, and Bedwellty, Monmouthshire, are under his tutelage; and his festival is March 1.*

In ascertaining and verifying the commemorations or saints' days, eat assistance may be derived from the list of fairs now held in the Principality ; it being an opinion generally received among antiquaries that parochial wakes were the means of assembling people, who afterwards converted the occasion into an opportunity of buying and selling. Many of the village fairs in Wales are held on the saint's day Old Style, or rather eleven days later than the proper time according to the Gregorian Calendar ; for the Welsh peasantry have seldom taken into account, that since the year 1800 the discrepancy between the Old and New Styles has increased to twelve days. Thus it may be learned from a list of saints printed in the Cambrian Register,+ and also from the Alphabetical Calendar of Sir Harris Nicolas, that the festival of St. Gwenog should be held on the third of January ; eleven days being added to that date will point out to Jan. 14, the day upon which, according to the Welsh almanacks, a fair is held at Llanwenog in the county of Cardigan. By inverting the computation, a satisfactory method is obtained of deciding between contradictory statements ; for instance the list in the Cambrian Register states that the festival of St. Tyssul was kept on the third of February, while according to Sir H. Ni

*“Eodem tempore quo David Menevensis præsul, cui conjunctissimus vixit, lucis hanc usuram reddidisse traditur.”-Usher, p. 874.

+ Vol. III. p. 219.
I Inserted in his Chronology of History.

colas's authorities it was held Jan. 31. A fair, however, is held at Llandyssul, Cardiganshire, Feb. 11; and eleven days, reckoned backwards from that time, will bring the calculation to Jan. 31, proving the last of the two statements to be the correct one. Sir H. Nicolas assigns the festival of St. Caron to March the fourth or fifth, as if his authorities were doubtful as to the precise time; but eleven days, counted backwards from a fair at Tregaron on the sixteenth of March, will show that the commemoration of the saint ought to be kept March 5. The other day, March 4, was fixed apparently by some person, who followed the inverted mode of computation, but reckoned twelve days from the fair. In some villages it has been the custom to hold the fair on the vigil, or eve, before the festival; which is easily ascertained, as in that case the difference of reckoning is only ten days. The saints of Llangynidr, Brecknockshire, are Cynidr and St. Mary ; one of its fairs is kept on the fourth of April, or ten days after the twenty fifth of March, the feast of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin. In like manner St. Mary is the patron saint of Nefyn, Carnarvonshire, and three of its fairs are held, according to Carlisle's Topographical Dictionary, on the fourth of April, the twenty fifth of August, and the eighteenth of September, being ten days respectively after the feasts of her Annunciation, Assumption, and Nativity.*

In the large families, included in the period of this generation, there must be great disparity of age, and the lives of many of the persons named may be found to extend through the period assigned for the next generation.

*. The festivals in this Essay are given principally according to Sir H. Nicolas, but they have not been compared with the fairs in. every instance.


The Welsh Saints from the Accession of Cystennyn Goronog A. D. 542

to the Death of Maelgwn Gwynedd A. D. 566.

Tuis period includes the reigns of Cystennyn, Cynan Wledig, Gwrthefyr or Vortimer the Second, and Maelgwn; who are popularly styled kings of Britain, though it would appear from the writings ascribed to Gildas, that three, at least, of them were contemporary princes, reigning at the same time in separate provinces,* which is more consistent with the view of affairs presented by the bards and genealogists.

The second bishop of Llanbadarn was Cynog, who was raised, upon the death of St. David, to the archbishoprick of Menevia. He appears, however, to have presided but a short time at both places, as no particulars of his life have been recorded, and his parentage, churches, and festival, are alike unknown. The short duration of his presidency at Menevia is shown by the fact that he was in turn succeeded by Teilo, who had been the associate and fellow-student of his predecessor.

Teilo,t the second bishop of Llandaff, was the son of Enlleu ab Hydwn Dwn ab Ceredig ab Cunedda, by Tegfedd, daughter of Tegid Foel of Penllyn. His Latin name was Teliaus, and, by a sort of monkish trifling with the sound of

* Namely; Constantinus, the tyrant, as he is called, of the Damnonii, or people of Devon and Cornwall; Vortiporius, the tyrant of the Dimetæ, or inhabitants of the western part of South Wales; and Maglocunus, the tyrant of North Wales.

t"Nai, fab Cefnder i Ddewi.”-Myv. Archaiology, Vol. II. p. 63.

« PrejšnjaNaprej »