The Itinerary of Archibishop Baldwin through Wales
Giraldus Cambrensis

Part 3 out of 3

avenged the death of my lord," alluding to Owen, son of Madoc, a
distinguished warrior, who had been maliciously and treacherously
slain by Owen Cyfeilioc, his cousin-german; and while he was thus
venting his anger and revenge, and violently brandishing his lance,
it suddenly snapped asunder, and fell disjointed in several pieces
to the ground, the handle only remaining in his hand. Alarmed and
astonished at this omen, which he considered as a certain signal for
his taking the cross, he voluntarily offered his services.

In this third district of Wales, called Powys, there are most
excellent studs put apart for breeding, and deriving their origin
from some fine Spanish horses, which Robert de Belesme, {188} earl
of Shrewsbury, brought into this country: on which account the
horses sent from hence are remarkable for their majestic proportion
and astonishing fleetness.

Here king Henry II. entered Powys, in our days, upon an expensive,
though fruitless, expedition. {189} Having dismembered the hostages
whom he had previously received, he was compelled, by a sudden and
violent fall of rain, to retreat with his army. On the preceding
day, the chiefs of the English army had burned some of the Welsh
churches, with the villages and churchyards; upon which the sons of
Owen the Great, with their light-armed troops, stirred up the
resentment of their father and the other princes of the country,
declaring that they would never in future spare any churches of the
English. When nearly the whole army was on the point of assenting
to this determination, Owen, a man of distinguished wisdom and
moderation - the tumult being in some degree subsided - thus spake:
"My opinion, indeed, by no means agrees with yours, for we ought to
rejoice at this conduct of our adversary; for, unless supported by
divine assistance, we are far inferior to the English; and they, by
their behaviour, have made God their enemy, who is able most
powerfully to avenge both himself and us. We therefore most
devoutly promise God that we will henceforth pay greater reverence
than ever to churches and holy places." After which, the English
army, on the following night, experienced (as has before been
related) the divine vengeance.

From Oswaldestree, we directed our course towards Shrewsbury
(Salopesburia), which is nearly surrounded by the river Severn,
where we remained a few days to rest and refresh ourselves; and
where many people were induced to take the cross, through the
elegant sermons of the archbishop and archdeacon. We also
excommunicated Owen de Cevelioc, because he alone, amongst the Welsh
princes, did not come to meet the archbishop with his people. Owen
was a man of more fluent speech than his contemporary princes, and
was conspicuous for the good management of his territory. Having
generally favoured the royal cause, and opposed the measures of his
own chieftains, he had contracted a great familiarity with king
Henry II. Being with the king at table at Shrewsbury, Henry, as a
mark of peculiar honour and regard, sent him one of his own loaves;
he immediately brake it into small pieces, like alms-bread, and
having, like an almoner, placed them at a distance from him, he took
them up one by one and ate them. The king requiring an explanation
of this proceeding, Owen, with a smile, replied, "I thus follow the
example of my lord;" keenly alluding to the avaricious disposition
of the king, who was accustomed to retain for a long time in his own
hands the vacant ecclesiastical benefices.

It is to be remarked that three princes, {190} distinguished for
their justice, wisdom, and princely moderation, ruled, in our time,
over the three provinces of Wales: Owen, son of Gruffydd, in
Venedotia, or North Wales; Meredyth, his grandson, son of Gruffydd,
who died early in life, in South Wales; and Owen de Cevelioc, in
Powys. But two other princes were highly celebrated for their
generosity; Cadwalader, son of Gruffydd, in North Wales, and
Gruffydd of Maelor, son of Madoc, in Powys; and Rhys, son of
Gruffydd, in South Wales, deserved commendation for his enterprising
and independent spirit. In North Wales, David, son of Owen, and on
the borders of Morgannoc, in South Wales, Howel, son of Iorwerth of
Caerleon, maintained their good faith and credit, by observing a
strict neutrality between the Welsh and English.


Of the journey by Wenloch, Brumfeld, the castle of Ludlow, and
Leominster, to Hereford

From Shrewsbury, we continued our journey towards Wenloch, by a
narrow and rugged way, called Evil-street, where, in our time, a
Jew, travelling with the archdeacon of the place, whose name was Sin
(Peccatum), and the dean, whose name was Devil, towards Shrewsbury,
hearing the archdeacon say, that his archdeaconry began at a place
called Evil-street, and extended as far as Mal-pas, towards Chester,
pleasantly told them, "It would be a miracle, if his fate brought
him safe out of a country, whose archdeacon was Sin, whose dean the
devil; the entrance to the archdeaconry Evil-street, and its exit
Bad-pass." {191}

From Wenloch, we passed by the little cell of Brumfeld, {192} the
noble castle of Ludlow, through Leominster to Hereford leaving on
our right hand the districts of Melenyth and Elvel; thus (describing
as it were a circle) we came to the same point from which we had
commenced this laborious journey through Wales.

During this long and laudable legation, about three thousand men
were signed with the cross; well skilled in the use of arrows and
lances, and versed in military matters; impatient to attack the
enemies of the faith; profitably and happily engaged for the service
of Christ, if the expedition of the Holy Cross had been forwarded
with an alacrity equal to the diligence and devotion with which the
forces were collected. But by the secret, though never unjust,
judgment of God, the journey of the Roman emperor was delayed, and
dissensions arose amongst our kings. The premature and fatal hand
of death arrested the king of Sicily, who had been the foremost
sovereign in supplying the holy land with corn and provisions during
the period of their distress. In consequence of his death, violent
contentions arose amongst our princes respecting their several
rights to the kingdom; and the faithful beyond sea suffered severely
by want and famine, surrounded on all sides by enemies, and most
anxiously waiting for supplies. But as affliction may strengthen
the understanding, as gold is tried by fire, and virtue may be
confirmed in weakness, these things are suffered to happen; since
adversity (as Gregory testifies) opposed to good prayers is the
probation of virtue, not the judgment of reproof. For who does not
know how fortunate a circumstance it was that Paul went to Italy,
and suffered so dreadful a shipwreck? But the ship of his heart
remained unbroken amidst the waves of the sea.


A description of Baldwin, archbishop of Canterbury {193}

Let it not be thought superfluous to describe the exterior and
inward qualities of that person, the particulars of whose embassy,
and as it were holy peregrination, we have briefly and succinctly
related. He was a man of a dark complexion, of an open and
venerable countenance, of a moderate stature, a good person, and
rather inclined to be thin than corpulent. He was a modest and
grave man, of so great abstinence and continence, that ill report
scarcely ever presumed to say any thing against him; a man of few
words; slow to anger, temperate and moderate in all his passions and
affections; swift to hear, slow to speak; he was from an early age
well instructed in literature, and bearing the yoke of the Lord from
his youth, by the purity of his morals became a distinguished
luminary to the people; wherefore voluntarily resigning the honour
of the archlevite, {194} which he had canonically obtained, and
despising the pomps and vanities of the world, he assumed with holy
devotion the habit of the Cistercian order; and as he had been
formerly more than a monk in his manners, within the space of a year
he was appointed abbot, and in a few years afterwards preferred
first to a bishopric, and then to an archbishopric; and having been
found faithful in a little, had authority given him over much. But,
as Cicero says, "Nature had made nothing entirely perfect;" when he
came into power, not laying aside that sweet innate benignity which
he had always shewn when a private man, sustaining his people with
his staff rather than chastising them with rods, feeding them as it
were with the milk of a mother, and not making use of the scourges
of the father, he incurred public scandal for his remissness. So
great was his lenity that he put an end to all pastoral rigour; and
was a better monk than abbot, a better bishop than archbishop.
Hence pope Urban addressed him; "Urban, servant of the servants of
God, to the most fervent monk, to the warm abbot, to the luke-warm
bishop, to the remiss archbishop, health, etc."

This second successor to the martyr Thomas, having heard of the
insults offered to our Saviour and his holy cross, was amongst the
first who signed themselves with the cross, and manfully assumed the
office of preaching its service both at home and in the most remote
parts of the kingdom. Pursuing his journey to the Holy Land, he
embarked on board a vessel at Marseilles, and landed safely in a
port at Tyre, from whence he proceeded to Acre, where he found our
army both attacking and attacked, our forces dispirited by the
defection of the princes, and thrown into a state of desolation and
despair; fatigued by long expectation of supplies, greatly afflicted
by hunger and want, and distempered by the inclemency of the air:
finding his end approaching, he embraced his fellow subjects,
relieving their wants by liberal acts of charity and pious
exhortations, and by the tenor of his life and actions strengthened
them in the faith; whose ways, life, and deeds, may he who is alone
the "way, the truth, and the life," the way without offence, the
truth without doubt, and the life without end, direct in truth,
together with the whole body of the faithful, and for the glory of
his name and the palm of faith which he hath planted, teach their
hands to war, and their fingers to fight.


{1} It is a somewhat curious coincidence that the island of Barry
is now owned by a descendant of Gerald de Windor's elder brother -
the Earl of Plymouth.

{2} "Mirror of the Church," ii. 33.

{3} "Social England," vol. i. p. 342.

{4} Published in the first instance in the "Transactions of the
Cymmrodaian Society," and subsequently amplified and brought out in
book form.

{5} Introduction to Borrow's "Wild Wales" in the Everyman Series.

{6} Geoffrey, who ended his life as Bishop of St. Asaph, was
supposed to have found the material for his "History of the British
Kings" in a Welsh book, containing a history of the Britons, which
Waltor Colenius, Archdeacon of Oxford, picked up during a journey in

{7} Walter Map, another Archdeacon of Oxford, was born in
Glamorganshire, the son of a Norman knight by a Welsh mother. Inter
alia he was the author of a Welsh work on agriculture.

{8} Green, "Hist. Eng. People," i. 172.

{9} "England under the Angevin Kings," vol. ii. 457.

{11} Giraldus has committed an error in placing Urban III. at the
head of the apostolic see; for he died at Ferrara in the month of
October, A.D. 1187, and was succeeded by Gregory VIII., whose short
reign expired in the month of December following. Clement III. was
elected pontiff in the year 1188. Frederick I., surnamed
Barbarossa, succeeded Conrad III. in the empire of Germany, in
March, 1152, and was drowned in a river of Cilicia whilst bathing,
in 1190. Isaac Angelus succeeded Andronicus I. as emperor of
Constantinople, in 1185, and was dethroned in 1195. Philip II.,
surnamed Augustus, from his having been born in the month of August,
was crowned at Rheims, in 1179, and died at Mantes, in 1223. William
II., king of Sicily, surnamed the Good, succeeded in 1166 to his
father, William the Bad, and died in 1189. Bela III., king of
Hungary, succeeded to the throne in 1174, and died in 1196. Guy de
Lusignan was crowned king of Jerusalem in 1186, and in the following
year his city was taken by the victorious Saladin.

{12} New Radnor.

{13} Rhys ap Gruffydd was grandson to Rhys ap Tewdwr, prince of
South Wales, who, in 1090, was slain in an engagement with the
Normans. He was a prince of great talent, but great versatility of
character, and made a conspicuous figure in Welsh history. He died
in 1196, and was buried in the cathedral of St. David's; where his
effigy, as well as that of his son Rhys Gryg, still remain in a good
state of preservation.

{14} Peter de Leia, prior of the Benedictine monastery of Wenlock,
in Shropshire, was the successful rival of Giraldus for the
bishopric of Saint David's, vacant by the death of David Fitzgerald,
the uncle of our author; but he did not obtain his promotion without
considerable opposition from the canons, who submitted to the
absolute sequestration of their property before they consented to
his election, being desirous that the nephew should have succeeded
his uncle. He was consecrated in 1176, and died in 1199.

{15} In the Latin of Giraldus, the name of Eineon is represented by
AEneas, and Eineon Clyd by AEneas Claudius.

{16} Cruker Castle. The corresponding distance between Old and New
Radnor evidently places this castle at Old Radnor, which was
anciently called Pen-y-craig, Pencraig, or Pen-crug, from its
situation on a rocky eminence. Cruker is a corruption, probably,
from Crug-caerau, the mount, or height, of the fortifications.

{17} Buelth or Builth, a large market town on the north-west edge
of the county of Brecon, on the southern banks of the Wye, over
which there is a long and handsome bridge of stone. It had formerly
a strong castle, the site and earthworks of which still remain, but
the building is destroyed.

{18} Llan-Avan, a small church at the foot of barren mountains
about five or six miles north-west of Buelth. The saint from whom
it takes its name, was one of the sons of Cedig ab Cunedda; whose
ancestor, Cunedda, king of the Britons, was the head of one of the
three holy families of Britain. He is said to have lived in the
beginning of the sixth century.

{19} Melenia, Warthrenion, Elevein, Elvenia, Melenyth, and Elvein,
places mentioned in this first chapter, and varying in their
orthography, were three different districts in Radnorshire:
Melenyth is a hundred in the northern part of the county, extending
into Montgomeryshire, in which is the church of Keri: Elvein
retains in modern days the name of Elvel, and is a hundred in the
southern part of the county, separated from Brecknockshire by the
Wye; and Warthrenion, in which was the castle built by prince Rhys
at Rhaiadyr-gwy, seems to have been situated between the other two.
Warthrenion may more properly be called Gwyrthrynion, it was
anciently one of the three comots of Arwystli, a cantref of
Merioneth. In the year 1174, Melyenith was in the possession of
Cadwallon ap Madawc, cousin german to prince Rhys; Elvel was held by
Eineon Clyd and Gwyrthrynion by Eineon ap Rhys, both sons-in-law to
that illustrious prince.

{20} The church of Saint Germanus is now known by the name of Saint
Harmans, and is situated three or four miles from Rhaiadyr, in
Radnorshire, on the right-hand of the road from thence to
Llanidloes; it is a small and simple structure, placed on a little
eminence, in a dreary plain surrounded by mountains.

{21} Several churches in Wales have been dedicated to Saint Curig,
who came into Wales in the seventh century.

{22} Glascum is a small village in a mountainous and retired
situation between Builth and Kington, in Herefordshire.

{23} Bangu. - This was a hand bell kept in all the Welsh churches,
which the clerk or sexton took to the house of the deceased on the
day of the funeral: when the procession began, a psalm was sung;
the bellman then sounded his bell in a solemn manner for some time,
till another psalm was concluded; and he again sounded it at
intervals, till the funeral arrived at the church.

{24} Rhaiadyr, called also Rhaiader-gwy, is a small village and
market-town in Radnorshire. The site only of the castle, built by
prince Rhys, A.D. 1178, now remains at a short distance from the
village; it was strongly situated on a natural rock above the river
Wye, which, below the bridge, forms a cataract.

{25} Llywel, a small village about a mile from Trecastle, on the
great road leading from thence to Llandovery; it was anciently a
township, and by charter of Philip and Mary was attached to the
borough of Brecknock, by the name of Trecastle ward.

{26} Leland, in his description of this part of Wales, mentions a
lake in Low Elvel, or Elvenia, which may perhaps be the same as that
alluded to in this passage of Giraldus. "There is a llinne in Low
Elvel within a mile of Payne's castel by the church called Lanpeder.
The llinne is caullid Bougklline, and is of no great quantite, but
is plentiful of pike, and perche, and eles." - Leland, Itin. tom. v.
p. 72.

{27} Hay. - A pleasant market-town on the southern banks of the
river Wye, over which there is a bridge. It still retains some
marks of baronial antiquity in the old castle, within the present
town, the gateway of which is tolerably perfect. A high raised
tumulus adjoining the church marks the site of the more ancient
fortress. The more modern and spacious castle owes its foundation
probably to one of those Norman lords, who, about the year 1090,
conquered this part of Wales. Little notice is taken of this castle
in the Welsh chronicles; but we are informed that it was destroyed
in 1231, by Henry II., and that it was refortified by Henry III.

{28} Llanddew, a small village, about two miles from Brecknock, on
the left of the road leading from thence to Hay; its manor belongs
to the bishops of Saint David's, who had formerly a castellated
mansion there, of which some ruins still remain. The tithes of this
parish are appropriated to the archdeaconry of Brecknock, and here
was the residence of our author Giraldus, which he mentions in
several of his writings, and alludes to with heartfelt satisfaction
at the end of the third chapter of this Itinerary.

{29} Aberhodni, the ancient name of the town and castle of
Brecknock, derived from its situation at the confluence of the river
Hodni with the Usk. The castle and two religious buildings, of
which the remains are still extant, owed their foundation to Bernard
de Newmarch, a Norman knight, who, in the year 1090, obtained by
conquest the lordship of Brecknock. [The modern Welsh name is

{30} Iestyn ap Gwrgant was lord of the province of Morganwg, or
Glamorgan, and a formidable rival to Rhys ap Tewdwr, prince of South
Wales; but unable to cope with him in power, he prevailed on Robert
Fitzhamon, a Norman knight, to come to his assistance.

{31} This little river rises near the ruins of Blanllyfni castle,
between Llangorse pool and the turnpike road leading from Brecknock
to Abergavenny, and empties itself into the river Usk, near

{32} A pretty little village on the southern banks of the Usk,
about four miles from Hay, on the road leading to Brecknock.

{33} The great desolation here alluded to, is attributed by Dr.
Powel to Howel and Meredyth, sons of Edwyn ap Eineon; not to Howel,
son of Meredith. In the year 1021, they conspired against Llewelyn
ap Sitsyllt, and slew him: Meredith was slain in 1033, and Howel in

{34} William de Breusa, or Braose, was by extraction a Norman, and
had extensive possessions in England, as well as Normandy: he was
succeeded by his son Philip, who, in the reign of William Rufus,
favoured the cause of king Henry against Robert Curthose, duke of
Normandy; and being afterwards rebellious to his sovereign, was
disinherited of his lands. By his marriage with Berta, daughter of
Milo, earl of Hereford, he gained a rich inheritance in Brecknock,
Overwent, and Gower. He left issue two sons: William and Philip:
William married Maude de Saint Wallery, and succeeded to the great
estate of his father and mother, which he kept in peaceable
possession during the reigns of king Henry II. and king Richard I.
In order to avoid the persecutions of king John, he retired with his
family to Ireland; and from thence returned into Wales; on hearing
of the king's arrival in Ireland, his wife Maude fled with her sons
into Scotland, where she was taken prisoner, and in the year 1210
committed, with William, her son and heir, to Corf castle, and there
miserably starved to death, by order of king John; her husband,
William de Braose, escaped into France, disguised, and dying there,
was buried in the abbey church of Saint Victor, at Paris. The
family of Saint Walery, or Valery, derived their name from a sea-
port in France.

{35} A small church dedicated to Saint David, in the suburbs of
Brecknock, on the great road leading from thence to Trecastle. "The
paroche of Llanvays, Llan-chirch-Vais extra, ac si diceres, extra
muros. It standeth betwixt the river of Uske and Tyrtorelle brooke,
that is, about the lower ende of the town of Brekenok." - Leland,
Itin. tom. v. p. 69.

{36} David Fitzgerald was promoted to the see of Saint David's in
1147, or according to others, in 1149. He died A.D. 1176.

{37} Now Howden, in the East Riding of Yorkshire.

{38} Osred was king of the Northumbrians, and son of Alfred. He
commenced to reign in A.D. 791, but was deprived of his crown the
following year.

{39} St. Kenelm was the only son and heir of Kenulfus, king of the
Mercians, who left him under the care of his two sisters, Quendreda
and Bragenilda. The former, blinded by ambition, resolved to
destroy the innocent child, who stood between her and the throne;
and for that purpose prevailed on Ascebert, who attended constantly
on the king, to murder him privately, giving him hopes, in case he
complied with her wishes, of making him her partner in the kingdom.
Under the pretence of diverting his young master, this wicked
servant led him into a retired vale at Clent, in Staffordshire, and
having murdered him, dug a pit, and cast his body into it, which was
discovered by a miracle, and carried in solemn procession to the
abbey of Winchelcomb. In the parish of Clent is a small chapel
dedicated to this saint.

{40} Winchelcumbe, or Winchcomb, in the lower part of the hundred
of Kiftsgate, in Gloucestershire, a few miles to the north of

{41} St. Kynauc, who flourished about the year 492, was the reputed
son of Brychan, lord of Brecknock, by Benadulved, daughter of
Benadyl, a prince of Powis, whom he seduced during the time of his
detention as an hostage at the court of her father. He is said to
have been murdered upon the mountain called the Van, and buried in
the church of Merthyr Cynawg, or Cynawg the Martyr, near Brecknock,
which is dedicated to his memory.

{42} In Welsh, Illtyd, which has been latinised into Iltutus, as in
the instance of St. Iltutus, the celebrated disciple of Germanus,
and the master of the learned Gildas, who founded a college for the
instruction of youth at Llantwit, on the coast of Glamorganshire;
but I do not conceive this to be the same person. The name of Ty-
Illtyd, or St. Illtyd's house, is still known as Llanamllech, but it
is applied to one of those monuments of Druidical antiquity called a
cistvaen, erected upon an eminence named Maenest, at a short
distance from the village. A rude, upright stone stood formerly on
one side of it, and was called by the country people Maen Illtyd, or
Illtyd's stone, but was removed about a century ago. A well, the
stream of which divides this parish from the neighbouring one of
Llansaintfraid, is called Ffynnon Illtyd, or Illtyd's well. This
was evidently the site of the hermitage mentioned by Giraldus.

{43} Lhanhamelach, or Llanamllech, is a small village, three miles
from Brecknock, on the road to Abergavenny.

{44} The name of Newmarche appears in the chartulary of Battel
abbey, as a witness to one of the charters granted by William the
Conqueror to the monks of Battel in Sussex, upon his foundation of
their house. He obtained the territory of Brecknock by conquest,
from Bleddyn ap Maenarch, the Welsh regulus thereof, about the year
1092, soon after his countryman, Robert Fitzhamon, had reduced the
county of Glamorgan. He built the present town of Brecknock, where
he also founded a priory of Benedictine monks. According to Leland,
he was buried in the cloister of the cathedral church at Gloucester,
though the mutilated remains of an effigy and monument are still
ascribed to him in the priory church at Brecknock.

{45} Brecheinoc, now Brecknockshire, had three cantreds or
hundreds, and eight comots. - 1. Cantref Selef with the comots of
Selef and Trahayern. - 2. Cantref Canol, or the middle hundred, with
the comots Talgarth, Ystradwy, and Brwynlys, or Eglyws Yail. - 3.
Cantref Mawr, or the great hundred, with the comots of Tir Raulff
Llywel, and Cerrig Howel. - Powel's description of Wales, p. 20.

{46} Milo was son to Walter, constable of England in the reign of
Henry I., and Emme his wife, one of the daughters of Dru de Baladun,
sister to Hameline de Baladun, a person of great note, who came into
England with William the Conqueror, and, being the first lord of
Overwent in the county of Monmouth, built the castle of Abergavenny.
He was wounded by an arrow while hunting, on Christmas eve, in 1144,
and was buried in the chapter-house of Lanthoni, near Gloucester.

{47} Walter de Clifford. The first of this ancient family was
called Ponce; he had issue three sons, Walter, Drogo or Dru, and
Richard. The Conqueror's survey takes notice of the two former, but
from Richard the genealogical line is preserved, who, being called
Richard de Pwns, obtained, as a gift from king Henry I., the cantref
Bychan, or little hundred, and the castle of Llandovery, in Wales;
he left three sons, Simon, Walter, and Richard. The Walter de
Clifford here mentioned was father to the celebrated Fair Rosamond,
the favourite of king Henry II.; and was succeeded by his eldest
son, Walter, who married Margaret, daughter to Llewelyn, prince of
Wales, and widow of John de Braose.

{48} Brendlais, or Brynllys, is a small village on the road between
Brecknock and Hay, where a stately round tower marks the site of the
ancient castle of the Cliffords, in which the tyrant Mahel lost his

{49} St. Almedha, though not included in the ordinary lists, is
said to have been a daughter of Brychan, and sister to St. Canoc,
and to have borne the name of Elevetha, Aled, or Elyned, latinised
into Almedha. The Welsh genealogists say, that she suffered
martyrdom on a hill near Brecknock, where a chapel was erected to
her memory; and William of Worcester says she was buried at Usk.
Mr. Hugh Thomas (who wrote an essay towards the history of
Brecknockshire in the year 1698) speaks of the chapel as standing,
though unroofed and useless, in his time; the people thereabouts
call it St. Tayled. It was situated on an eminence, about a mile to
the eastward of Brecknock, and about half a mile from a farm-house,
formerly the mansion and residence of the Aubreys, lords of the
manor of Slwch, which lordship was bestowed upon Sir Reginald Awbrey
by Bernard Newmarche, in the reign of William Rufus. Some small
vestiges of this building may still be traced, and an aged yew tree,
with a well at its foot, marks the site near which the chapel
formerly stood.

{50} This same habit is still (in Sir Richard Colt Hoare's time)
used by the Welsh ploughboys; they have a sort of chaunt, consisting
of half or even quarter notes, which is sung to the oxen at plough:
the countrymen vulgarly supposing that the beasts are consoled to
work more regularly and patiently by such a lullaby.

{51} The umber, or grayling, is still a plentiful and favourite
fish in the rivers on the Welsh border.

{52} About the year 1113, "there was a talke through South Wales,
of Gruffyth, the sonne of Rees ap Theodor, who, for feare of the
king, had beene of a child brought up in Ireland, and had come over
two yeares passed, which time he had spent privilie with his
freends, kinsfolks, and affines; as with Gerald, steward of
Penbrooke, his brother-in-law, and others. But at the last he was
accused to the king, that he intended the kingdome of South Wales as
his father had enjoied it, which was now in the king's hands; and
that all the countrie hoped of libertie through him; therefore the
king sent to take him. But Gryffyth ap Rees hering this, sent to
Gruffyth ap Conan, prince of North Wales, desiring him of his aid,
and that he might remaine safelie within his countrie; which he
granted, and received him joiouslie for his father's sake." He
afterwards proved so troublesome and successful an antagonist, that
the king endeavoured by every possible means to get him into his
power. To Gruffyth ap Conan he offered "mountaines of gold to send
the said Gruffyth or his head to him." And at a subsequent period,
he sent for Owen ap-Cadogan said to him, "Owen, I have found thee
true and faithful unto me, therefore I desire thee to take or kill
that murtherer, that doth so trouble my loving subjects." But
Gruffyth escaped all the snares which the king had laid for him, and
in the year 1137 died a natural and honourable death; he is styled
in the Welsh chronicle, "the light, honor, and staie of South
Wales;" and distinguished as the bravest, the wisest, the most
merciful, liberal, and just, of all the princes of Wales. By his
wife Gwenllian, the daughter of Gruffyth ap Conan, he left a son,
commonly called the lord Rhys, who met the archbishop at Radnor, as
is related in the first chapter of this Itinerary.

{53} This cantref, which now bears the name of Caeo, is placed,
according to the ancient divisions of Wales, in the cantref Bychan,
or little hundred, and not in the Cantref Mawr, or great hundred. A
village between Lampeter in Cardiganshire and Llandovery in
Caermarthenshire, still bears the name of Cynwil Caeo, and, from its
picturesque situation and the remains of its mines, which were
probably worked by the Romans, deserves the notice of the curious

{54} The lake of Brecheinoc bears the several names of Llyn
Savaddan, Brecinau-mere, Llangorse, and Talyllyn Pool, the two
latter of which are derived from the names of parishes on its banks.
It is a large, though by no means a beautiful, piece of water, its
banks being low and flat, and covered with rushes and other aquatic
plants to a considerable distance from the shore. Pike, perch, and
eels are the common fish of this water; tench and trout are rarely,
I believe, (if ever), taken in it. The notion of its having
swallowed up an ancient city is not yet quite exploded by the
natives; and some will even attribute the name of Loventium to it;
which is with much greater certainty fixed at Llanio-isau, between
Lampeter and Tregaron, in Cardiganshire, on the northern banks of
the river Teivi, where there are very considerable and undoubted
remains of a large Roman city. The legend of the town at the bottom
of the lake is at the same time very old.

{55} That chain of mountains which divides Brecknockshire from
Caermarthenshire, over which the turnpike road formerly passed from
Trecastle to Llandovery, and from which the river Usk derives its

{56} This mountain is now called, by way of eminence, the Van, or
the height, but more commonly, by country people, Bannau Brycheinog,
or the Brecknock heights, alluding to its two peaks. Our author,
Giraldus, seems to have taken his account of the spring, on the
summit of this mountain, from report, rather than from ocular
testimony. I (Sir R. Colt Hoare) examined the summits of each peak
very attentively, and could discern no spring whatever. The soil is
peaty and very boggy. On the declivity of the southern side of the
mountain, and at no considerable distance from the summit, is a
spring of very fine water, which my guide assured me never failed.
On the north-west side of the mountain is a round pool, in which
possibly trout may have been sometimes found, but, from the muddy
nature of its waters, I do not think it very probable; from this
pool issues a small brook, which falls precipitously down the sides
of the mountain, and pursuing its course through a narrow and well-
wooded valley, forms a pretty cascade near a rustic bridge which
traverses it. I am rather inclined think, that Giraldus confounded
in his account the spring and the pool together.

{57} The first of these are now styled the Black Mountains, of
which the Gadair Fawr is the principal, and is only secondary to the
Van in height. The Black Mountains are an extensive range of hills
rising to the east of Talgarth, in the several parishes of Talgarth,
Llaneliew, and Llanigorn, in the county of Brecknock, and connected
with the heights of Ewyas. The most elevated point is called Y
Gadair, and, excepting the Brecknock Van (the Cadair Arthur of
Giraldus), is esteemed the highest mountain in South Wales. The
mountains of Ewyas are those now called the Hatterel Hills, rising
above the monastery of Llanthoni, and joining the Black Mountains of
Talgarth at Capel y Ffin, or the chapel upon the boundary, near
which the counties of Hereford, Brecknock, and Monmouth form a point
of union. But English writers have generally confounded all
distinction, calling them indiscriminately the Black Mountains, or
the Hatterel Hills.

{58} If we consider the circumstances of this chapter, it will
appear very evidently, that the vale of Ewyas made no part of the
actual Itinerary.

{59} Landewi Nant Hodeni, or the church of St. David on the Hodni,
is now better known by the name of Llanthoni abbey. A small and
rustic chapel, dedicated to St. David, at first occupied the site of
this abbey; in the year 1103, William de Laci, a Norman knight,
having renounced the pleasures of the world, retired to this
sequestered spot, where he was joined in his austere profession by
Ernicius, chaplain to queen Maude. In the year 1108, these hermits
erected a mean church in the place of their hermitage, which was
consecrated by Urban, bishop of Llandaff, and Rameline, bishop of
Hereford, and dedicated to St. John the Baptist: having afterward
received very considerable benefactions from Hugh de Laci, and
gained the consent of Anselm, archbishop of Canterbury, these same
hermits founded a magnificent monastery for Black canons, of the
order of St. Augustine, which they immediately filled with forty
monks collected from the monasteries of the Holy Trinity in London,
Merton in Surrey, and Colchester in Essex. They afterwards removed
to Gloucester, where they built a church and spacious monastery,
which, after the name of their former residence, they called
Llanthoni; it was consecrated A.D. 1136, by Simon, bishop of
Worcester, and Robert Betun bishop of Hereford, and dedicated to the
Virgin Mary.

{60} The titles of mother and daughter are here applied to the
mother church in Wales, and the daughter near Gloucester.

{61} William of Wycumb, the fourth prior of Llanthoni, succeeded to
Robert de Braci, who was obliged to quit the monastery, on account
of the hostile molestation it received from the Welsh. To him
succeeded Clement, the sub-prior, and to Clement, Roger de Norwich.

{62} Walter de Laci came into England with William the Conqueror,
and left three sons, Roger, Hugh, and Walter. Hugh de Laci was the
lord of Ewyas, and became afterwards the founder of the convent of
Llanthoni; his elder brother, Robert, held also four caracutes of
land within the limits of the castle of Ewyas, which king William
had bestowed on Walter, his father; but joining in rebellion against
William Rufus, he was banished the kingdom, and all his lands were
given to his brother Hugh, who died without issue.

{63} This anecdote is thus related by the historian Hollinshed:
"Hereof it came on a time, whiles the king sojourned in France about
his warres, which he held against king Philip, there came unto him a
French priest, whose name was Fulco, who required the king in
anywise to put from him three abominable daughters which he had, and
to bestow them in marriage, least God punished him for them. 'Thou
liest, hypocrite (said the king), to thy verie face; for all the
world knoweth I have not one daughter.' 'I lie not (said the
priest), for thou hast three daughters: one of them is called
Pride, the second Covetousness, and the third Lecherie.' With that
the king called to him his lords and barons, and said to them, 'This
hypocrite heere hath required me to marry awaie my three daughters,
which (as he saith) I cherish, nourish, foster, and mainteine; that
is to say, Pride, Covetousness, and Lecherie: and now that I have
found out necessarie and fit husbands for them, I will do it with
effect, and seeks no more delaies. I therefore bequeath my pride to
the high-minded Templars and Hospitallers, which are as proud as
Lucifer himselfe; my covetousness I give unto the White Monks,
otherwise called of the Cisteaux order, for they covet the divell
and all; my lecherie I commit to the prelats of the church, who have
most pleasure and felicitie therein.'"

{64} This small residence of the archdeacon was at Landeu, a place
which has been described before: the author takes this opportunity
of hinting at his love of literature, religion, and mediocrity.

{65} The last chapter having been wholly digressive, we must now
recur back to Brecknock, or rather, perhaps, to our author's
residence at Landeu, where we left him, and from thence accompany
him to Abergavenny. It appears that from Landeu he took the road to
Talgarth, a small village a little to the south east of the road
leading from Brecknock to Hay; from whence, climbing up a steep
ascent, now called Rhiw Cwnstabl, or the Constable's ascent, he
crossed the black mountains of Llaneliew to the source of the
Gronwy-fawr river, which rises in that eminence, and pursues its
rapid course into the Vale of Usk. From thence a rugged and uneven
track descends suddenly into a narrow glen, formed by the torrent of
the Gronwy, between steep, impending mountains; bleak and barren for
the first four or five miles, but afterwards wooded to the very
margin of the stream. A high ledge of grassy hills on the left
hand, of which the principal is called the Bal, or Y Fal, divides
this formidable pass (the "Malus passus" of Giraldus) from the vale
of Ewyas, in which stands the noble monastery of Llanthoni,
"montibus suis inclusum," encircled by its mountains. The road at
length emerging from this deep recess of Coed Grono, or Cwm Gronwy,
the vale of the river Gronwy, crosses the river at a place called
Pont Escob, or the Bishop's bridge, probably so called from this
very circumstance of its having been now passed by the archbishop
and his suite, and is continued through the forest of Moel, till it
joins the Hereford road, about two miles from Abergavenny. This
formidable defile is at least nine miles in length.

{66} In the vale of the Gronwy, about a mile above Pont Escob,
there is a wood called Coed Dial, or the Wood of Revenge. Here
again, by the modern name of the place, we are enabled to fix the
very spot on which Richard de Clare was murdered. The Welsh
Chronicle informs us, that "in 1135, Morgan ap Owen, a man of
considerable quality and estate in Wales, remembering the wrong and
injury he had received at the hands of Richard Fitz-Gilbert, slew
him, together with his son Gilbert." The first of this great
family, Richard de Clare, was the eldest son of Gislebert, surnamed
Crispin, earl of Brion, in Normandy. This Richard Fitz-Gilbert came
into England with William the Conqueror, and received from him great
advancement in honour and possessions. On the death of the
Conqueror, favouring the cause of Robert Curthose, he rebelled
against William Rufus, but when that king appeared in arms before
his castle at Tunbridge, he submitted; after which, adhering to
Rufus against Robert, in 1091, he was taken prisoner, and shortly
after the death of king Henry I., was assassinated, on his journey
through Wales, in the manner already related.

{67} Hamelin, son of Dru de Baladun, who came into England with
William the Conqueror, was the first lord of Over-Went, and built a
castle at Abergavenny, on the same spot where, according to ancient
tradition, a giant called Agros had erected a fortress. He died in
the reign of William Rufus, and was buried in the priory which he
had founded at Abergavenny; having no issue, he gave the aforesaid
castle and lands to Brian de Insula, or Brian de Wallingford, his
nephew, by his sister Lucia. The enormous excesses mentioned by
Giraldus, as having been perpetrated in this part of Wales during
his time, seem to allude to a transaction that took place in the
castle of Abergavenny, in the year 1176, which is thus related by
two historians, Matthew Paris and Hollinshed. "A.D. 1176, The same
yeare, William de Breause having got a great number of Welshmen into
the castle of Abergavennie, under a colourable pretext of
communication, proposed this ordinance to be received of them with a
corporall oth, 'That no traveller by the waie amongst them should
beare any bow, or other unlawful weapon,' which oth, when they
refused to take, because they would not stand to that ordinance, he
condemned them all to death. This deceit he used towards them, in
revenge of the death of his uncle Henrie of Hereford, whom upon
Easter-even before they had through treason murthered, and were now
acquited was the like againe." - Hollinshed, tom. ii. p. 95.

{68} Landinegat, or the church of St. Dingad, is now better known
by the name of Dingatstow, or Dynastow, a village near Monmouth.

{69} [For the end of William de Braose, see footnote 34.]

{70} Leland divides this district into Low, Middle, and High
Venteland, extending from Chepstow to Newport on one side, and to
Abergavenny on the other; the latter of which, he says, "maketh the
cumpace of Hye Venteland." He adds, "The soyle of al Venteland is
of a darke reddische yerth ful of slaty stones, and other greater of
the same color. The countrey is also sumwhat montayneus, and welle
replenishid with woodes, also very fertyle of corne, but men there
study more to pastures, the which be well inclosed." - Leland, Itin.
tom. v. p. 6. Ancient Gwentland is now comprised within the county
of Monmouth.

{71} William de Salso Marisco, who succeeded to the bishopric of
Llandaff, A.D. 1185, and presided over that see during the time of
Baldwin's visitation, in 1188.

{72} Alexander was the fourth archdeacon of the see of Bangor.

{73} Once at Usk, then at Caerleon, and afterwards on entering the
town of Newport.

{74} Gouldcliffe, or Goldcliff, is situated a few miles S.E. of
Newport, on the banks of the Severn. In the year 1113, Robert de
Candos founded and endowed the church of Goldclive, and, by the
advice of king Henry I., gave it to the abbey of Bec, in Normandy;
its religious establishment consisted of a prior and twelve monks of
the order of St. Benedict.

{75} [Geoffrey of Monmouth.]

{76} The Cistercian abbey here alluded to was known by the several
names of Ystrat Marchel, Strata Marcella, Alba domus de Stratmargel,
Vallis Crucis, or Pola, and was situated between Guilsfield and
Welshpool, in Montgomeryshire. Authors differ in opinion about its
original founder. Leland attributes it to Owen Cyveilioc, prince of
Powys, and Dugdale to Madoc, the son of Gruffydh, giving for his
authority the original grants and endowments of this abbey.
According to Tanner, about the beginning of the reign of king Edward
III., the Welsh monks were removed from hence into English abbeys,
and English monks were placed here, and the abbey was made subject
to the visitation of the abbot and convent of Buildwas, in

{77} Cardiff, i.e., the fortress on the river Taf.

{78} Gwentluc - so called from Gwent, the name of the province, and
llug, open, to distinguish it from the upper parts of Wentland, is
an extensive tract of flat, marshy ground, reaching from Newport to
the shores of the river Severn.

{79} Nant Pencarn, or the brook of Pencarn. - After a very
attentive examination of the country round Newport, by natives of
that place, and from the information I have received on the subject,
I am inclined to think that the river here alluded to was the Ebwy,
which flows about a mile and a half south of Newport. Before the
new turnpike road and bridge were made across Tredegar Park, the old
road led to a ford lower down the river, and may still be travelled
as far as Cardiff; and was probably the ford mentioned in the text,
as three old farm-houses in its neighbourhood still retain the names
of Great Pencarn, Little Pencarn, and Middle Pencarn.

{80} Robert Fitz-Hamon, earl of Astremeville, in Normandy, came
into England with William the Conqueror; and, by the gift of William
Rufus, obtained the honour of Gloucester. He was wounded with a
spear at the siege of Falaise, in Normandy, died soon afterwards,
and was buried, A.D. 1102, in the abbey of Tewkesbury, which he had
founded. Leaving no male issue, king Henry gave his eldest
daughter, Mabel, or Maude, who, in her own right, had the whole
honour of Gloucester, to his illegitimate son Robert, who was
advanced to the earldom of Gloucester by the king, his father. He
died A.D. 1147, and left four sons: William, the personage here
mentioned by Giraldus, who succeeded him in his titles and honours;
Roger, bishop of Worcester, who died at Tours in France, A.D. 1179;
Hamon, who died at the siege of Toulouse, A.D. 1159; and Philip.

{81} The Coychurch Manuscript quoted by Mr. Williams, in his
History of Monmouthshire, asserts that Morgan, surnamed Mwyn-fawr,
or the Gentle, the son of Athrwy, not having been elected to the
chief command of the British armies, upon his father's death retired
from Caerleon, and took up his residence in Glamorganshire,
sometimes at Radyr, near Cardiff, and at other times at Margam; and
from this event the district derived its name, quasi Gwlad-Morgan,
the country of Morgan.

{82} St. Piranus, otherwise called St. Kiaran, or Piran, was an
Irish saint, said to have been born in the county of Ossory, or of
Cork, about the middle of the fourth century; and after that by his
labours the Gospel had made good progress, he forsook all worldly
things, and spent the remainder of his life in religious solitude.
The place of his retirement was on the sea-coast of Cornwall, and
not far from Padstow, where, as Camden informs us, there was a
chapel on the sands erected to his memory. Leland has informed us,
that the chapel of St. Perine, at Caerdiff, stood in Shoemaker

{83} So called from a parish of that name in Glamorganshire,
situated between Monk Nash and St. Donat's, upon the Bristol

{84} Barri Island is situated on the coast of Glamorganshire; and,
according to Cressy, took its name from St. Baruc, the hermit, who
resided, and was buried there. The Barrys in Ireland, as well as
the family of Giraldus, who were lords of it, are said to have
derived their names from this island. Leland, in speaking of this
island, says, "The passage into Barrey isle at ful se is a flite
shot over, as much as the Tamise is above the bridge. At low water,
there is a broken causey to go over, or els over the shalow
streamelet of Barrey-brook on the sands. The isle is about a mile
in cumpace, and hath very good corne, grasse, and sum wood; the
ferme of it worth a 10 pounds a yere. There ys no dwelling in the
isle, but there is in the middle of it a fair little chapel of St.
Barrok, where much pilgrimage was usid." [The "fair little chapel"
has disappeared, and "Barry Island" is now, since the construction
of the great dock, connected with the mainland, it is covered with
houses, and its estimated capital value is now 250,000 pounds].

{85} William de Salso Marisco.

{86} The see of Llandaff is said to have been founded by the
British king Lucius as early as the year 180.

{87} From Llandaff, our crusaders proceeded towards the Cistercian
monastery of Margam, passing on their journey near the little cell
of Benedictines at Ewenith, or Ewenny. This religious house was
founded by Maurice de Londres towards the middle of the twelfth
century. It is situated in a marshy plain near the banks of the
little river Ewenny.

{88} The Cistercian monastery of Margam, justly celebrated for the
extensive charities which its members exercised, was founded A.D.
1147, by Robert earl of Gloucester, who died in the same year. Of
this once-famed sanctuary nothing now remains but the shell of its
chapter-house, which, by neglect, has lost its most ornamental
parts. When Mr. Wyndham made the tour of Wales in the year 1777,
this elegant building was entire, and was accurately drawn and
engraved by his orders.

{89} In continuing their journey from Neath to Swansea, our
travellers directed their course by the sea-coast to the river Avon,
which they forded, and, continuing their road along the sands, were
probably ferried over the river Neath, at a place now known by the
name of Breton Ferry, leaving the monastery of Neath at some
distance to the right: from thence traversing another tract of
sands, and crossing the river Tawe, they arrived at the castle of
Swansea, where they passed the night.

{90} The monastery of Neath was situated on the banks of a river
bearing the same name, about a mile to the westward of the town and
castle. It was founded in 1112, by Richard de Grainville, or
Greenefeld, and Constance, his wife, for the safety of the souls of
Robert, earl of Gloucester, Maude, his wife, and William, his son.
Richard de Grainville was one of the twelve Norman knights who
accompanied Robert Fitz-Hamon, and assisted him in the conquest of
Glamorganshire. In the time of Leland this abbey was in a high
state of preservation, for he says, "Neth abbay of white monkes, a
mile above Neth town, standing in the ripe of Neth, semid to me the
fairest abbay of al Wales." - Leland, Itin. tom. v. p. 14. The
remains of the abbey and of the adjoining priory-house are
considerable; but this ancient retirement of the grey and white
monks is now occupied by the inhabitants of the neighbouring copper-

{91} Gower, the western district of Glamorganshire, appears to have
been first conquered by Henry de Newburg, earl of Warwick, soon
after Robert, duke of Gloucester, had made the conquest of the other
part of Glamorganshire.

{92} Sweynsei, Swansea, or Abertawe, situated at the confluence of
the river Tawe with the Severn sea, is a town of considerable
commerce, and much frequented during the summer months as a bathing-
place. The old castle, now made use of as a prison, is so
surrounded by houses in the middle of the town, that a stranger
might visit Swansea without knowing that such a building existed.
The Welsh Chronicle informs us, that it was built by Henry de
Beaumont, earl of Warwick, and that in the year 1113 it was attacked
by Gruffydd ap Rhys, but without success. This castle became
afterwards a part of the possessions of the see of St. David's, and
was rebuilt by bishop Gower. [The old castle is no longer used as a
prison, but as the office of the "Cambria Daily Leader." It is
significant that Swansea is still known to Welshmen, as in the days
of Giraldus, as "Abertawe."]

{93} Lochor, or Llwchwr, was the Leucarum mentioned in the
Itineraries, and the fifth Roman station on the Via Julia. This
small village is situated on a tide-river bearing the same name,
which divides the counties of Glamorgan and Caermarthen, and over
which there is a ferry. "Lochor river partith Kidwelli from West
Gowerlande." - Leland, Itin. tom. v. p. 23. [The ferry is no more.
The river is crossed by a fine railway bridge.]

{94} Wendraeth, or Gwen-draeth, from gwen, white, and traeth, the
sandy beach of the sea. There are two rivers of this name,
Gwendraeth fawr, and Gwendraeth fychan, the great and the little
Gwendraeth, of which Leland thus speaks: "Vendraeth Vawr and
Vendraith Vehan risith both in Eskenning commote: the lesse an
eight milys of from Kydwelli, the other about a ten, and hath but a
little nesche of sand betwixt the places wher thei go into the se,
about a mile beneth the towne of Kidwely."

{95} Cydweli was probably so called from cyd, a junction, and wyl,
a flow, or gushing out, being situated near the junction of the
rivers Gwendraeth fawr and fychan; but Leland gives its name a very
singular derivation, and worthy of our credulous and superstitious
author Giraldus. "Kidwely, otherwise Cathweli, i.e. Catti lectus,
quia Cattus olim solebat ibi lectum in quercu facere: - There is a
little towne now but newly made betwene Vendraith Vawr and Vendraith
Vehan. Vendraith Vawr is half a mile of." - Leland, Itin. tom. v.
p. 22.

{96} The scene of the battle fought between Gwenllian and Maurice
de Londres is to this day called Maes Gwenllian, the plain or field
of Gwenllian; and there is a tower in the castle of Cydweli still
called Tyr Gwenllian. [Maes Gwenllian is now a small farm, one of
whose fields is said to have been the scene of the battle.]

{97} The castle of Talachar is now better known by the name of

{98} Much has been said and written by ancient authors respecting
the derivation of the name of this city, which is generally allowed
to be the Muridunum, or Maridunum, mentioned in the Roman
itineraries. Some derive it from Caer and Merddyn, that is, the
city of the prophet Merddyn; and others from Mur and Murddyn, which
in the British language signify a wall. There can, however, be
little doubt that it is derived simply from the Roman name
Muridunum. The county gaol occupies the site of the old castle, a
few fragments of which are seen intermixed with the houses of the

{99} Dinevor, the great castle, from dinas, a castle, and vawr,
great, was in ancient times a royal residence of the princes of
South Wales. In the year 876, Roderic the Great, having divided the
principalities of North and South Wales, and Powys land, amongst his
three sons, built for each of them a palace. The sovereignty of
South Wales, with the castle of Dinevor, fell to the lot of Cadell.
[The ruins of Dinevor Castle still crown the summit of the hill
which overshadows the town of Llandilo, 12 miles from Carmarthen.]

{100} There is a spring very near the north side of Dinevor park
wall, which bears the name of Nant-y-rhibo, or the bewitched brook,
which may, perhaps, be the one here alluded to by Giraldus.

{101} Pencadair is a small village situated to the north of

{102} Alba Domus was called in Welsh Ty Gwyn ar Daf, or the White
House on the river Taf. In the history of the primitive British
church, Ty Gwyn, or white house, is used in a sense equivalent to a
charter-house. The White House College, or Bangor y Ty Gwyn, is
pretended to have been founded about 480, by Paul Hen, or Paulius, a
saint of the congregation of Illtyd. From this origin, the
celebrated Cistercian monastery is said to have derived its
establishment. Powel, in his chronicle, says, "For the first abbey
or frier house that we read of in Wales, sith the destruction of the
noble house of Bangor, which savoured not of Romish dregges, was the
Tuy Gwyn, built the yeare 1146, and after they swarmed like bees
through all the countrie." (Powel, p. 254.) - Authors differ with
respect to the founder of this abbey; some have attributed it to
Rhys ap Tewdwr, prince of South Wales; and others to Bernard, bishop
of Saint David's, who died about the year 1148. The latter account
is corroborated by the following passage in Wharton's Anglia Sacra:
"Anno 1143 ducti sunt monachi ordinis Cisterciensis qui modo sunt
apud Albam Landam, in West Walliam, per Bernardum episcopum."
Leland, in his Collectanea, says, "Whitland, abbat. Cistert.,
Rhesus filius Theodori princeps Suth Walliae primus fundator;" and
in his Itinerary, mentions it as a convent of Bernardynes, "which
yet stondeth."

{103} Saint Clears is a long, straggling village, at the junction
of the river Cathgenny with the Taf. Immediately on the banks of
the former, and not far from its junction with the latter, stood the
castle, of which not one stone is left; but the artificial tumulus
on which the citadel was placed, and other broken ground, mark its
ancient site.

{104} Lanwadein, now called Lawhaden, is a small village about four
miles from Narberth, on the banks of the river Cleddeu.

{105} Daugleddeu, so called from Dau, two, and Cled, or Cleddau, a
sword. The rivers Cledheu have their source in the Prescelly
mountain, unite their streams below Haverfordwest, and run into
Milford Haven, which in Welsh is called Aberdaugleddau, or the
confluence of the two rivers Cledheu.

{106} Haverford, now called Haverfordwest, is a considerable town
on the river Cledheu, with an ancient castle, three churches, and
some monastic remains. The old castle (now used as the county
gaol), from its size and commanding situation, adds greatly to the
picturesque appearance of this town. [The old castle is no longer
used as a gaol.]

{107} The province of Rhos, in which the town of Haverfordwest is
situated, was peopled by a colony of Flemings during the reign of
king Henry I.

{108} St. Caradoc was born of a good family in Brecknockshire, and
after a liberal education at home, attached himself to the court of
Rhys Prince of South Wales, whom he served a long time with
diligence and fidelity. He was much esteemed and beloved by him,
till having unfortunately lost two favourite greyhounds, which had
been committed to his care, that prince, in a fury, threatened his
life; upon which Caradoc determined to change masters, and made a
vow on the spot to consecrate the remainder of his days to God, by a
single and religious life. He went to Llandaff, received from its
bishop the clerical tonsure and habit, and retired to the deserted
church of St. Kined, and afterwards to a still more solitary abode
in the Isle of Ary, from whence he was taken prisoner by some
Norwegian pirates, but soon released. His last place of residence
was at St. Ismael, in the province of Rhos, where he died in 1124,
and was buried with great honour in the cathedral of St. David's.
We must not confound this retreat of Caradoc with the village of St.
Ismael on the borders of Milford Haven. His hermitage was situated
in the parish of Haroldstone, near the town of Haverfordwest, whose
church has St. Ismael for its patron, and probably near a place
called Poorfield, the common on which Haverfordwest races are held,
as there is a well there called Caradoc's Well, round which, till
within these few years, there was a sort of vanity fair, where cakes
were sold, and country games celebrated. [Caradoc was canonised by
Pope Innocent III. at the instance of Giraldus.]

{109} This curious superstition is still preserved, in a debased
form, among the descendants of the Flemish population of this
district, where the young women practise a sort of divination with
the bladebone of a shoulder of mutton to discover who will be their
sweetheart. It is still more curious that William de Rubruquis, in
the thirteenth century, found the same superstition existing among
the Tartars.

{110} Arnulph, younger son of Roger de Montgomery, did his homage
for Dyved, and is said, by our author, to have erected a slender
fortress with stakes and turf at Pembroke, in the reign of king
Henry I., which, however, appears to have been so strong as to have
resisted the hostile attack of Cadwgan ap Bleddyn in 1092, and of
several lords of North Wales, in 1094.

{111} Walter Fitz-Other, at the time of the general survey of
England by William the Conqueror, was castellan of Windsor, warden
of the forests in Berkshire, and possessed several lordships in the
counties of Middlesex, Hampshire, and Buckinghamshire, which dominus
Otherus is said to have held in the time of Edward the Confessor.
William, the eldest son of Walter, took the surname of Windsor from
his father's office, and was ancestor to the lords Windsor, who have
since been created earls of Plymouth: and from Gerald, brother of
William, the Geralds, Fitz-geralds, and many other families are
lineally descended. The Gerald here mentioned by Giraldus is
sometimes surnamed De Windsor, and also Fitz-Walter, i.e. the son of
Walter; having slain Owen, son of Cadwgan ap Bleddyn, chief lord of
Cardiganshire, he was made president of the county of Pembroke.

{112} Wilfred is mentioned by Browne Willis in his list of bishops
of St. David's, as the forty-seventh, under the title of Wilfride,
or Griffin: he died about the year 1116.

{113} Maenor Pyrr, now known by the name of Manorbeer, is a small
village on the sea coast, between Tenby and Pembroke, with the
remaining shell of a large castle. Our author has given a
farfetched etymology to this castle and the adjoining island, in
calling them the mansion and island of Pyrrhus: a much more natural
and congenial conjecture may be made in supposing Maenor Pyrr to be
derived from Maenor, a Manor, and Pyrr the plural of Por, a lord;
i.e. the Manor of the lords, and, consequently, Inys Pyrr, the
Island of the lords. As no mention whatever is made of the castle
in the Welsh Chronicle, I am inclined to think it was only a
castellated mansion, and therefore considered of no military
importance in those days of continued warfare throughout Wales. It
is one of the most interesting spots in our author's Itinerary, for
it was the property of the Barri family, and the birth-place of
Giraldus; in the parish church, the sepulchral effigy of a near
relation, perhaps a brother, is still extant, in good preservation.
Our author has evidently made a digression in order to describe this

{114} The house of Stephen Wiriet was, I presume, Orielton. There
is a monument in the church of St. Nicholas, at Pembroke, to the
memory of John, son and heir of Sir Hugh Owen, of Bodeon in
Anglesea, knight, and Elizabeth, daughter and heir of George Wiriet,
of Orielton, A.D. 1612.

{115} The family name of Not, or Nott, still exists in
Pembrokeshire. [The descendants of Sir Hugh continued to live at
Orielton, and the title is still in existence.]

{116} There are two churches in Pembrokeshire called Stackpoole,
one of which, called Stackpoole Elidor, derived its name probably
from the Elidore de Stakepole mentioned in this chapter by Giraldus.
It contains several ancient monuments, and amongst them the effigies
of a cross-legged knight, which has been for many years attributed
to the aforesaid Elidore.

{117} Ramsey Island, near St. David's, was always famous for its
breed of falcons.

{118} Camros, a small village, containing nothing worthy of remark,
excepting a large tumulus. It appears, by this route of the
Crusaders, that the ancient road to Menevia, or St. David's, led
through Camros, whereas the present turnpike road lies a mile and a
half to the left of it. It then descends to Niwegal Sands, and
passes near the picturesque little harbour of Solvach, situated in a
deep and narrow cove, surrounded by high rocks.

{119} The remains of vast submerged forests are commonly found on
many parts of the coast of Wales, especially in the north. Giraldus
has elsewhere spoken of this event in the Vaticinal History, book i.
chap. 35.

{120} Giraldus, ever glad to pun upon words, here opposes the word
NOMEN to OMEN. "Plus nominis habens quem ominis." He may have
perhaps borrowed this expression from Plautus. Plautus Delphini,
tom. ii. p. 27. - Actus iv., Scena iv.

{121} Armorica is derived from the Celtic words Ar and Mor, which
signify on or near the sea, and so called to distinguish it from the
more inland parts of Britany. The maritime cities of Gaul were
called "Armoricae civitates - Universis civitatibus quae oceanum
attingunt, quaeque Gallorum consuetudine Armoricae appellantur." -
Caesar. Comment, lib. vii.

{122} The bishops of Hereford, Worcester, Llandaff, Bangor, St.
Asaph, Llanbadarn, and Margam, or Glamorgan.

{123} The value of the carucate is rather uncertain, or, probably,
it varied in different districts according to the character of the
land; but it is considered to have been usually equivalent to a
hide, that is, to about 240 statute acres.

{124} This little brook does not, in modern times, deserve the
title here given to it by Giraldus, for it produces trout of a most
delicious flavour.

{125} See the Vaticinal History, book i. c. 37.

{126} Lechlavar, so called from the words in Welsh, Llec, a stone,
and Llavar, speech.

{127} Cemmeis, Cemmaes, Kemes, and Kemeys. Thus is the name of
this district variously spelt. Cemmaes in Welsh signifies a circle
or amphitheatre for games.

{128} [Cardigan.]

{129} There is place in Cemmaes now called Tre-liffan, i.e. Toad's
town; and over a chimney-piece in the house there is a figure of a
toad sculptured in marble, said to have been brought from Italy, and
intended probably to confirm and commemorate this tradition of

{130} Preseleu, Preselaw, Prescelly, Presselw.

{131} St. Bernacus is said, by Cressy, to have been a man of
admirable sanctity, who, through devotion, made a journey to Rome;
and from thence returning into Britany, filled all places with the
fame of his piety and miracles. He is commemorated on the 7th of
April. Several churches in Wales were dedicated to him; one of
which, called Llanfyrnach, or the church of St. Bernach, is situated
on the eastern side of the Prescelley mountain.

{132} The "castrum apud Lanhever" was at Nevern, a small village
between Newport and Cardigan, situated on the banks of a little
river bearing the same name which discharges itself into the sea at
Newport. On a hill immediately above the western side of the parish
church, is the site of a large castle, undoubtedly the one alluded
to by Giraldus.

{133} On the Cemmaes, or Pembrokeshire side of the river Teivi, and
near the end of the bridge, there is a place still called Park y
Cappel, or the Chapel Field, which is undoubtedly commemorative of
the circumstance recorded by our author.

{134} Now known by the name of Kenarth, which may be derived from
Cefn y garth - the back of the wear, a ridge of land behind the

{135} The name of St. Ludoc is not found in the lives of the
saints. Leland mentions a St. Clitauc, who had a church dedicated
to him in South Wales, and who was killed by some of his companions
whilst hunting. "Clitaucus Southe-Walliae regulus inter venandum a
suis sodalibus occisus est. Ecciesia S. Clitauci in Southe Wallia."
- Leland, Itin., tom. viii. p. 95.

{136} The Teivy is still very justly distinguished for the quantity
and quality of its salmon, but the beaver no longer disturbs its
streams. That this animal did exist in the days of Howel Dha
(though even then a rarity), the mention made of it in his laws, and
the high price set upon its skin, most clearly evince; but if the
castor of Giraldus, and the avanc of Humphrey Llwyd and of the Welsh
dictionaries, be really the same animal, it certainly was not
peculiar to the Teivi, but was equally known in North Wales, as the
names of places testify. A small lake in Montgomeryshire is called
Llyn yr Afangc; a pool in the river Conwy, not far from Bettws,
bears the same name, and the vale called Nant Ffrancon, upon the
river Ogwen, in Caernarvonshire, is supposed by the natives to be a
corruption from Nant yr Afan cwm, or the Vale of the Beavers. Mr.
Owen, in his dictionary, says, "That it has been seen in this vale
within the memory of man." Giraldus has previously spoken of the
beaver in his Topography of Ireland, Distinc. i. c. 21.

{137} Our author having made a long digression, in order to
introduce the history of the beaver, now continues his Itinerary.
From Cardigan, the archbishop proceeded towards Pont-Stephen,
leaving a hill, called Cruc Mawr, on the left hand, which still
retains its ancient name, and agrees exactly with the position given
to it by Giraldus. On its summit is a tumulus, and some appearance
of an intrenchment.

{138} In 1135.

{139} Lampeter, or Llanbedr, a small town near the river Teivi,
still retains the name of Pont-Stephen.

{140} Leland thus speaks of Ystrad Fflur or Strata Florida:
"Strateflere is set round about with montanes not far distant,
except on the west parte, where Diffrin Tyve is. Many hilles
therabout hath bene well woddid, as evidently by old rotes apperith,
but now in them is almost no woode - the causes be these. First,
the wood cut down was never copisid, and this hath beene a cause of
destruction of wood thorough Wales. Secondly, after cutting down of
woodys, the gottys hath so bytten the young spring that it never
grew but lyke shrubbes. Thirddely, men for the monys destroied the
great woddis that thei should not harborow theves." This monastery
is situated in the wildest part of Cardiganshire, surrounded on
three sides by a lofty range of those mountains, called by our
author Ellennith; a spot admirably suited to the severe and recluse
order of the Cistercians.

{141} [Melenydd or Maelienydd.]

{142} Leaving Stratflur, the archbishop and his train returned to
Llanddewi Brefi, and from thence proceeded to Llanbadarn Vawr.

{143} Llanbadarn Fawr, the church of St. Paternus the Great, is
situated in a valley, at a short distance from the sea-port town of
Aberystwyth in Cardiganshire.

{144} The name of this bishop is said to have been Idnerth, and the
same personage whose death is commemorated in an inscription at
Llanddewi Brefi.

{145} This river is now called Dovey.

{146} From Llanbadarn our travellers directed their course towards
the sea-coast, and ferrying over the river Dovey, which separates
North from South Wales, proceeded to Towyn, in Merionethshire, where
they passed the night. [Venedotia is the Latin name for Gwynedd.]

{147} The province of Merionyth was at this period occupied by
David, the son of Owen Gwynedd, who had seized it forcibly from its
rightful inheritor. This Gruffydd - who must not be confused with
his great-grandfather, the famous Gruffydd ap Conan, prince of
Gwynedd - was son to Conan ap Owen Gwynedd; he died A.D. 1200, and
was buried in a monk's cowl, in the abbey of Conway.

{148} The epithet "bifurcus," ascribed by Giraldus to the river
Maw, alludes to its two branches, which unite their streams a little
way below Llaneltid bridge, and form an aestuary, which flows down
to the sea at Barmouth or Aber Maw. The ford at this place,
discovered by Malgo, no longer exists.

{149} Llanfair is a small village, about a mile and a half from
Harlech, with a very simple church, placed in a retired spot, backed
by precipitous mountains. Here the archbishop and Giraldus slept,
on their journey from Towyn to Nevyn.

{150} Ardudwy was a comot of the cantref Dunodic, in
Merionethshire, and according to Leland, "Streccith from half Trait
Mawr to Abermaw on the shore XII myles." The bridge here alluded
to, was probably over the river Artro, which forms a small aestuary
near the village of Llanbedr.

{151} The Traeth Mawr, or the large sands, are occasioned by a
variety of springs and rivers which flow from the Snowdon mountains,
and, uniting their streams, form an aestuary below Pont Aberglaslyn.

{152} The Traeth Bychan, or the small sands, are chiefly formed by
the river which runs down the beautiful vale of Festiniog to
Maentwrog and Tan y bwlch, near which place it becomes navigable.
Over each of these sands the road leads from Merionyth into

{153} Lleyn, the Canganorum promontorium of Ptolemy, was an
extensive hundred containing three comots, and comprehending that
long neck of land between Caernarvon and Cardigan bays. Leland
says, "Al Lene is as it were a pointe into the se."

{154} In mentioning the rivers which the missionaries had lately
crossed, our author has been guilty of a great topographical error
in placing the river Dissennith between the Maw and Traeth Mawr, as
also in placing the Arthro between the Traeth Mawr and Traeth
Bychan, as a glance at a map will shew.

{155} To two personages of this name the gift of prophecy was
anciently attributed: one was called Ambrosius, the other
Sylvestris; the latter here mentioned (and whose works Giraldus,
after a long research, found at Nefyn) was, according to the story,
the son of Morvryn, and generally called Merddin Wyllt, or Merddin
the Wild. He is pretended to have flourished about the middle of
the sixth century, and ranked with Merddin Emrys and Taliesin, under
the appellation of the three principal bards of the Isle of Britain.

{156} This island once afforded, according to the old accounts, an
asylum to twenty thousand saints, and after death, graves to as many
of their bodies; whence it has been called Insula Sanctorum, the
Isle of Saints. This island derived its British name of Enlli from
the fierce current which rages between it and the main land. The
Saxons named it Bardsey, probably from the Bards, who retired
hither, preferring solitude to the company of invading foreigners.

{157} This ancient city has been recorded by a variety of names.
During the time of the Romans it was called Segontium, the site of
which is now called Caer Seiont, the fortress on the river Seiont,
where the Setantiorum portus, and the Seteia AEstuarium of Ptolemy
have also been placed. It is called, by Nennius, Caer Custent, or
the city of Constantius; and Matthew of Westminster says, that about
the year 1283 the body of Constantius, father of the emperor
Constantine, was found there, and honourably desposited in the
church by order of Edward I.

{158} I have searched in vain for a valley which would answer the
description here given by Geraldus, and the scene of so much
pleasantry to the travellers; for neither do the old or new road,
from Caernarvon to Bangor, in any way correspond. But I have since
been informed, that there is a valley called Nant y Garth (near the
residence of Ashton Smith, Esq. at Vaenol), which terminates at
about half a mile's distance from the Menai, and therefore not
observable from the road; it is a serpentine ravine of more than a
mile, in a direction towards the mountains, and probably that which
the crusaders crossed on their journey to Bangor.

{159} Bangor. - This cathedral church must not be confounded with
the celebrated college of the same name, in Flintshire, founded by
Dunod Vawr, son of Pabo, a chieftain who lived about the beginning
of the sixth century, and from him called Bangor Dunod. The Bangor,
i.e. the college, in Caernarvonshire, is properly called Bangor
Deiniol, Bangor Vawr yn Arllechwedd, and Bangor Vawr uwch Conwy. It
owes its origin to Deiniol, son of Dunod ap Pabo, a saint who lived
in the early part of the sixth century, and in the year 525 founded
this college at Bangor, in Caernarvonshire, over which he presided
as abbot. Guy Rufus, called by our author Guianus, was at this time
bishop of this see, and died in 1190.

{160} Guianus, or Guy Rufus, dean of Waltham, in Essex, and
consecrated to this see, at Ambresbury, Wilts, in May 1177.

{161} Mona, or Anglesey.

{162} The spot selected by Baldwin for addressing the multitude,
has in some degree been elucidated by the anonymous author of the
Supplement to Rowland's Mona Antiqua. He says, that "From tradition
and memorials still retained, we have reasons to suppose that they
met in an open place in the parish of Landisilio, called Cerrig y
Borth. The inhabitants, by the grateful remembrance, to perpetuate
the honour of that day, called the place where the archbishop stood,
Carreg yr Archjagon, i.e. the Archbishop's Rock; and where prince
Roderic stood, Maen Roderic, or the Stone of Roderic." This account
is in part corroborated by the following communication from Mr.
Richard Llwyd of Beaumaris, who made personal inquiries on the spot.
"Cerrig y Borth, being a rough, undulating district, could not, for
that reason, have been chosen for addressing a multitude; but
adjoining it there are two eminences which command a convenient
surface for that purpose; one called Maen Rodi (the Stone or Rock of
Roderic), the property of Owen Williams, Esq.; and the other Carreg
Iago, belonging to Lord Uxbridge. This last, as now pronounced,
means the Rock of St. James; but I have no difficulty in admitting,
that Carreg yr Arch Iagon may (by the compression of common,
undiscriminating language, and the obliteration of the event from
ignorant minds by the lapse of so many centuries) be contracted into
Carreg Iago. Cadair yr archesgob is now also contracted into Cadair
(chair, a seat naturally formed in the rock, with a rude arch over
it, on the road side, which is a rough terrace over the breast of a
rocky and commanding cliff, and the nearest way from the above
eminences to the insulated church of Landisilio. This word Cadair,
though in general language a chair, yet when applied to exalted
situations, means an observatory, as Cadair Idris, etc.; but there
can, in my opinion, be no doubt that this seat in the rock is that
described by the words Cadair yr Archesgob." [Still more probable,
and certainly more flattering to Giraldus, is that it was called
"Cadair yr Arch Ddiacon" (the Archdeacon's chair).]

{163} This hundred contained the comots of Mynyw, or St. David's,
and Pencaer.

{164} I am indebted to Mr. Richard Llwyd for the following curious
extract from a Manuscript of the late intelligent Mr. Rowlands,
respecting this miraculous stone, called Maen Morddwyd, or the stone
of the thigh, which once existed in Llanidan parish. "Hic etiam
lapis lumbi, vulgo Maen Morddwyd, in hujus caemiterii vallo locum
sibi e longo a retro tempore obtinuit, exindeque his nuperis annis,
quo nescio papicola vel qua inscia manu nulla ut olim retinente
virtute, quae tunc penitus elanguit aut vetustate evaporavit, nullo
sane loci dispendio, nec illi qui eripuit emolumento, ereptus et
deportatus fuit."

{165} Hugh, earl of Chester. The first earl of Chester after the
Norman conquest, was Gherbod, a Fleming, who, having obtained leave
from king William to go into Flanders for the purpose of arranging
some family concerns, was taken and detained a prisoner by his
enemies; upon which the conqueror bestowed the earldom of Chester on
Hugh de Abrincis or of Avranches, "to hold as freely by the sword,
as the king himself did England by the crown."

{166} This church is at Llandyfrydog, a small village in Twrkelin
hundred, not far distant from Llanelian, and about three miles from
the Bay of Dulas. St. Tyvrydog, to whom it was dedicated, was one
of the sons of Arwystyl Glof, a saint who lived in the latter part
of the sixth century.

{167} Ynys Lenach, now known by the name of Priestholme Island,
bore also the title of Ynys Seiriol, from a saint who resided upon
it in the sixth century. It is also mentioned by Dugdale and
Pennant under the appellation of Insula Glannauch.

{168} Alberic de Veer, or Vere, came into England with William the
Conqueror, and as a reward for his military services, received very
extensive possessions and lands, particularly in the county of
Essex. Alberic, his eldest son, was great chamberlain of England in
the reign of king Henry I., and was killed A.D. 1140, in a popular
tumult at London. Henry de Essex married one of his daughters named
Adeliza. He enjoyed, by inheritance, the office of standard-bearer,
and behaved himself so unworthily in the military expedition which
king Henry undertook against Owen Gwynedd, prince of North Wales, in
the year 1157, by throwing down his ensign, and betaking himself to
flight, that he was challenged for this misdemeanor by Robert de
Mountford, and by him vanquished in single combat; whereby,
according to the laws of his country, his life was justly forfeited.
But the king interposing his royal mercy, spared it, but confiscated
his estates, ordering him to be shorn a monk, and placed in the
abbey of Reading. There appears to be some biographical error in
the words of Giraldus - "Filia scilicet Henrici de Essexia," for by
the genealogical accounts of the Vere and Essex families, we find
that Henry de Essex married the daughter of the second Alberic de
Vere; whereas our author seems to imply, that the mother of Alberic
the second was daughter to Henry de Essex.

{169} "And Jacob took him rods of green poplar, and of the hazel,
and of the chesnut tree, and peeled white strakes in them, and made
the white appear which was in the rods. And he set the rods, which
he had peeled, before the flocks in the gutters in the watering
troughs, when the flocks came to drink, that they should conceive
when they came to drink. And the flocks conceived before the rods,
and brought forth cattle speckled and spotted." - Gen. xxx.

{170} Owen Gwynedd, the son of Gruffydd ap Conan, died in 1169, and
was buried at Bangor. When Baldwin, during his progress, visited
Bangor and saw his tomb, he charged the bishop (Guy Ruffus) to
remove the body out of the cathedral, when he had a fit opportunity
so to do, in regard that archbishop Becket had excommunicated him
heretofore, because he had married his first cousin, the daughter of
Grono ap Edwyn, and that notwithstanding he had continued to live
with her till she died. The bishop, in obedience to the charge,
made a passage from the vault through the south wall of the church
underground, and thus secretly shoved the body into the churchyard.
- Hengwrt. MSS. Cadwalader brother of Owen Gwynedd, died in 1172.

{171} The Merlin here mentioned was called Ambrosius, and according
to the Cambrian Biography flourished about the middle of the fifth
century. Other authors say, that this reputed prophet and magician
was the son of a Welsh nun, daughter of a king of Demetia, and born
at Caermarthen, and that he was made king of West Wales by
Vortigern, who then reigned in Britain.

{172} Owen Gwynedd "left behind him manie children gotten by
diverse women, which were not esteemed by their mothers and birth,
but by their prowes and valiantnesse." By his first wife, Gladus,
the daughter of Llywarch ap Trahaern ap Caradoc, he had Orwerth
Drwyndwn, that is, Edward with the broken nose; for which defect he
was deemed unfit to preside over the principality of North Wales and
was deprived of his rightful inheritance, which was seized by his
brother David, who occupied it for the space of twenty-four years.

{173} The travellers pursuing their journey along the sea coast,
crossed the aestuary of the river Conway under Deganwy, a fortress
of very remote antiquity.

{174} At this period the Cistercian monastery of Conway was in its
infancy, for its foundation has been attributed to Llewelyn ap
Iorwerth, in the year 1185, (only three years previous to Baldwin's
visitation,) who endowed it with very extensive possessions and
singular privileges. Like Stratflur, this abbey was the repository
of the national records, and the mausoleum of many of its princes.

{175} [David was the illegitimate son of Owen Gwynedd, and had
dispossessed his brother, Iorwerth Drwyndwn.]

{176} This ebbing spring in the province of Tegeingl, or
Flintshire, has been placed by the old annotator on Giraldus at
Kilken, which Humphrey Llwyd, in his Breviary, also mentions.

{177} See before, the Topography of Ireland, Distinc. ii. c. 7.

{178} Saint Asaph, in size, though not in revenues, may deserve the
epithet of "paupercula" attached to it by Giraldus. From its
situation near the banks of the river Elwy, it derived the name of
Llanelwy, or the church upon the Elwy.

{179} Leaving Llanelwy, or St. Asaph, the archbishop proceeded to
the little cell of Basinwerk, where he and his attendants passed the
night. It is situated at a short distance from Holywell, on a
gentle eminence above a valley, watered by the copious springs that
issue from St. Winefred's well, and on the borders of a marsh, which
extends towards the coast of Cheshire.

{180} Coleshill is a township in Holywell parish, Flintshire, which
gives name to a hundred, and was so called from its abundance of
fossil fuel. Pennant, vol. i. p. 42.

{181} The three military expeditions of king Henry into Wales, here
mentioned, were A.D. 1157, the first expedition into North Wales;
A.D. 1162, the second expedition into South Wales; A.D. 1165, the
third expedition into North Wales. In the first, the king was
obliged to retreat with considerable loss, and the king's standard-
bearer, Henry de Essex, was accused of having in a cowardly manner
abandoned the royal standard and led to a serious disaster.

{182} The lake of Penmelesmere, or Pymplwy meer, or the meer of the
five parishes adjoining the lake, is, in modern days, better known
by the name of Bala Pool. The assertion made by Giraldus, of salmon
never being found in the lake of Bala, is not founded on truth.

{183} Giraldus seems to have been mistaken respecting the burial-
place of the emperor Henry V., for he died May 23, A.D. 1125, at
Utrecht, and his body was conveyed to Spire for interment.

{184} This legend, which represents king Harold as having escaped
from the battle of Hastings, and as having lived years after as a
hermit on the borders of Wales, is mentioned by other old writers,
and has been adopted as true by some modern writers.

{185} Some difficulty occurs in fixing the situation of the Album
Monasterium, mentioned in the text, as three churches in the county
of Shropshire bore that appellation; the first at Whitchurch, the
second at Oswestry, the third at Alberbury. The narrative of our
author is so simple, and corresponds so well with the topography of
the country through which they passed, that I think no doubt ought
to be entertained about the course of their route. From Chester
they directed their way to the White Monastery, or Whitchurch, and
from thence towards Oswestry, where they slept, and were entertained
by William Fitz-Alan, after the English mode of hospitality.

{186} By the Latin context it would appear that Reiner was bishop
of Oswestree: "Ab episcopo namque loci illius Reinerio multitudo
fuerat ante signata." Reiner succeeded Adam in the bishopric of St.
Asaph in the year 1186, and died in 1220. He had a residence near
Oswestry, at which place, previous to the arrival of Baldwin, he had
signed many of the people with the cross.

{187} In the time of William the Conqueror, Alan, the son of
Flathald, or Flaald, obtained, by the gift of that king, the castle
of Oswaldestre, with the territory adjoining, which belonged to
Meredith ap Blethyn, a Briton. This Alan, having married the
daughter and heir to Warine, sheriff of Shropshire, had in her right
the barony of the same Warine. To him succeeded William, his son
and heir. He married Isabel de Say, daughter and heir to Helias de
Say, niece to Robert earl of Gloucester, lady of Clun, and left
issue by her, William, his son and successor, who, in the 19th Henry
II., or before, departed this life, leaving William Fitz-Alan his
son and heir, who is mentioned in the text.

{188} Robert de Belesme, earl of Shrewsbury, was son of Roger de
Montgomery, who led the centre division of the army in that
memorable battle which secured to William the conquest of England,
and for his services was advanced to the earldoms of Arundel and

{189} This expedition into Wales took place A.D. 1165, and has been
already spoken of.

{190} The princes mentioned by Giraldus as most distinguished in
North and South Wales, and most celebrated in his time, were, 1.
Owen, son of Gruffydd, in North Wales; 2. Meredyth, son of Gruffydd,
in South Wales; 3. Owen de Cyfeilioc, in Powys; 4. Cadwalader, son
of Gruffydd, in North Wales; 5. Gruffydd of Maelor in Powys; 6.
Rhys, son of Gruffydd, in South Wales; 7. David, son of Owen, in
North Wales; 8. Howel, son of Iorwerth, in South Wales.

1. Owen Gwynedd, son of Gruffydd ap Conan, died in 1169, having
governed his country well and worthily for the space of thirty-two
years. He was fortunate and victorious in all his affairs, and
never took any enterprise in hand but he achieved it. 2. Meredyth
ap Gruffydd ap Rhys, lord of Caerdigan and Stratywy, died in 1153,
at the early age of twenty-five; a worthy knight, fortunate in
battle, just and liberal to all men. 3. Owen Cyfeilioc was the son
of Gruffydd Meredyth ap Meredyth ap Blethyn, who was created lord of
Powys by Henry I., and died about the year 1197, leaving his
principality to his son Gwenwynwyn, from whom that part of Powys was
called Powys Gwenwynwyn, to distinguish it from Powys Vadoc, the
possession of the lords of Bromfield. The poems ascribed to him
possess great spirit, and prove that he was, as Giraldus terms him,
"linguae dicacis," in its best sense. 4. Cadwalader, son of
Gruffydd ap Conan, prince of North Wales, died in 1175. Gruffydd of
Maelor was son of Madoc ap Meredyth ap Blethyn, prince of Powys, who
died at Winchester in 1160. "This man was ever the king of
England's friend, and was one that feared God, and relieved the
poor: his body was conveyed honourably to Powys, and buried at
Myvod." His son Gruffydd succeeded him in the lordship of
Bromfield, and died about the year 1190. 6. Rhys ap Gruffydd, or
the lord Rhys, was son of Gruffydd ap Rhys ap Tewdwr, who died in
1137. The ancient writers have been very profuse in their praises
of this celebrated Prince. 7. David, son of Owen Gwynedd, who, on
the death if his father, forcibly seized the principality of North
Wales, slaying his brother Howel in battle, and setting aside the
claims of the lawful inheritor of the throne, Iorwerth Trwyndwn,
whose son, Llewelyn ap Iorwerth, in 1194, recovered his inheritance.
8. Howel, son of Iorwerth of Caerleon, appears to have been
distinguished chiefly by his ferocity.

{191} Malpas in Cheshire.

{192} It appears that a small college of prebendaries, or secular
canons, resided at Bromfield in the reign of king Henry I.; Osbert,
the prior, being recorded as a witness to a deed made before the
year 1148. In 1155, they became Benedictines, and surrendered
church and lands to the abbey of St. Peter's at Gloucester,
whereupon a prior and monks were placed there, and continued till
the dissolution. An ancient gateway and some remains of the priory
still testify the existence of this religious house, the local
situation of which, near the confluence of the rivers Oney and Teme,
has been accurately described by Leland.

{193} Baldwin was born at Exeter, in Devonshire, of a low family,
but being endowed by nature with good abilities, applied them to an
early cultivation of sacred and profane literature. His good
conduct procured him the friendship of Bartholomew bishop of Exeter,
who promoted him to the archdeaconry of that see; resigning this
preferment, he assumed the cowl, and in a few years became abbot of
the Cistercian monastery at Ford. In the year 1180, he was advanced
to the bishopric of Worcester, and in 1184, translated to the
archiepiscopal see of Canterbury. In the year 1188, he made his
progress through Wales, preaching with fervour the service of the
Cross; to which holy cause he fell a sacrifice in the year 1190,
having religiously, honourably, and charitably ended his days in the
Holy Land.

{194} Giraldus here alludes to the dignity of archdeacon, which
Baldwin had obtained in the church of Exeter.


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