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Arthur which no historian would have ventured to publish as belonging to an age immediately preceding his own, when existing facts and the memory of persons living might have contradicted him. According to Browne Willis, the churches and chapels, which own Tyssilio for their patron saint, are:
Meifod, V. Montgomeryshire.
Llandyssitio, a chapel to Llanfair Pwll Gwyngyll (St. Mary,) Anglesey.
Llandyssilio yn Nyfed, V. Carmarthenshire,
Llancyssilio Gogol, V.-1 chapel, Capel Cynon (St. Cynon,) Cardiganshire.
Sellack, V. (in the Diocese of Hereford.)—3 chapels, King's Chapel (St. John the Baptist,) Marstow (St. Martin,) and Pencoed (St. Dennis,) Herefordshire.
To these should be added Llansilio near Longtown in the county of Hereford, as shown by the obvious signification of the name, though it is commonly said to be dedicated to St. Peter; but this is one of the numerous instances in which British saints have given way to others approved of by the Saxons and Normans. The bard Cynddelw, enumerating the churches founded by Tyssilio, says
A church* he raised with his fostering hand,
The church of Cammarch (he raised) with a hand of respect for its owner.
* Llan a wnaeth a'i lawfaeth loflen,
Llanllugyrn, llogawd offeren;
Llan Llydaw gan llydwedd wohen;
Myv. Archaiology, Vol. I. p. 245.
The bard then proceeds to celebrate the praises of Meifod, about ich he is more diffuse but equally obscure.* Llanllugyrn, literally--the church of war-horns, is probably Llanllugan in Montgomeryshire: of the church in Armoricat nothing is known: Pengwern is the ancient name of Shrewsbury, where Brochwel is said to have resided, and which town was long afterwards considered the capital of Powys: the church of Cammarch is Llangammarch in Brecknockshire, of which Tyssilio may have been the second or assistant founder, as it is acknowledged that Cammarch was already its owner : and the other churches, which are vaguely described without their names, may be some of those included in the list from Browne Willis. Tyssilio seems to have founded religious edifices beyond the limits of his diocese, taking advantage probably of his brother's conquests; and there is an unusual proportion of saints from Powys in this generation, which indicates the ascendancy of that province; its prosperity, however, was reduced upon the defeat of the Britons by Ethelfrith at the battle of Bangor Iscoed. The memory of St. Tyssilio has been celebrated on the eighth of November.
Gwrnerth, the son of Llewelyn ab Bleiddyd of Trallwng or Welsh Pool, is said to have been a saint; and a religious dialogue in verse between him and his father, Llewelyn, is inserted in the Myvyrian Archaiology, the composition of which is attributed to St. Tyssilio.
* One of the designations, which he applies to Meifod, is—“the abode of the three saints” (trefred y triseint;) and it is singular that its churchyard once contained three churches, all standing at the same time, the oldest was named after St. Gwyddfarch, the next after St. Tyssilio, and the third, which was consecrated in the year 1155, was dedicated to St. Mary.-See also Cambrian Quarterly Magazine, Vol. I. p. 321.
+ The expression—"Llydaw” in the original, here translated Armorica, may perhaps be an appellative, meaning maritime, as explained in Dr. Pughe’s Dictionary; and if so, the description is applicable to Llandyssilio Gogo in Cardiganshire.
Mygnach, the son of Mydno of Caer Seont or Carnarvon, was for some time the registrar of the college of St. Cybi at Holyhead, and afterwards became the principal of that society.* A dialogue in verse between him and Taliesin is published in the Myvyrian Archaiology.
Cedwyn, the son of Gwgon Gwron ab Peredur of the line of Coel; he has been accounted the patron saint of Llangedwyn, a chapel under Llanrhaiadr, Montgomeryshire.
Gwrfyw, the son of Pasgen ab Urien Rheged; a saint, to whom it is said there was a church dedicated in Anglesey ; there was also a chapel called after his name at Bangor Uwch Conwy in Carnarvonshire.t
Mor, another son of Pasgen ab Urien ; a saint, who was buried in the Isle of Bardsey.
Mydan ab Pasgen ab Urien, a member of the congregation of Cattwg.
Lleminod Angel ab Pasgen ab Urien, a saint.
Mechydd, a saint, was the son of Sandde Bryd Angel ab Llywarch Hên.
Buan, the son of Ysgwn ab Llywarch Hên, was the founder of Bodfuan, Carnarvonshire, and his festival has been held on the fourth of August.
Cathan or Cathen, the son of Cawrdaf ab Caradog Fraichfras, was the founder of Llangathen, Carmarthenshire. The Hundred of Catheiniog in the same county is supposed to derive its name from him. Festival, May 17.
Medrod and Iddew brothers of the preceding, have been ranked among the saints; the resemblance of the names induced the compilers of the Triads to confound them with Medrod and Iddog Corn Prydain, the leaders of the conspiracy which proved fatal to Arthur.
Elgud, a saint, the son of Cadfarch ab Caradog Fraichfras.
* Cambrian Biography.
Cynddilig, a son of Cennydd ab Gildas; his memory has been celebrated in the parish of Llanrhystud, Cardiganshire, on the first of November.
The last holy person, whose life may be assigned to this generation, is Deiniolen, or Deiniol ab Deiniol Ail, called also Deiniol Fab. He was a son of Deiniol, the first bishop of Bangor in Carnarvonshire; and a grandson of Dunawd, the founder of the monastery of Bangor Iscoed in Flintshire. It is recorded that he was a member of the society of Bangor Iscoed under the presidency of his grandfather, and after the destruction of that institution he retired to Bangor in Carnarvonshire, where he became the president of a similar society which had been established by his father, and of which his father had been the first abbot ;*--the younger Deiniol, therefore, succeeded to the monastic honours of the elder, but whether he succeeded also to his father's bishoprick is left unexplained. It is stated that he founded the church of Llanddeiniolen in the county of Carnarvon in the year
616.+ His festival has been celebrated on the twenty third of November; and Llanddeiniol Fab, a chapel under Llannidan, Anglesey, has been called after his name.
If the Welsh Church, in the period just concluded, was depressed by adverse circumstances, it is a gratification to learn that the Churches of the Scots were flourishing. St. Columba had already founded the monastery of Iona, and his disciples were now engaged in diffusing the blessings of Christianity to the dark corners of the Highlands and Western Isles. The light of the Gospel had also dawned upon the Saxons. St. Augustin had landed in Kent,and laid the foundation of a mission, one of the most successful that have appeared since the age of the Apostles; for in less than a century after its commencement, the whole nation of the Saxons and Angles became, at least nominally, Christian. The instruments, however, in effecting the principal part of this conversion were the monks of Iona,* the conflict between whom and the clergy of Rome is an irrefragable proof of the independence of the primitive Churches of Britain ; and it is not unreasonable to suppose that from this source the Anglo-Saxons derived their notions of religious liberty, for they never acknowledged an entire submission to the Pope before the Norman Conquest, and even afterwards their allegiance was badly sustained. +
* Page 258, antea.
# A. D. 565.
+ Cambrian Biography. Ş A. D. 597.