Page images

are the sloping buttress at the N.W. angle of the Church, the gabled bell-turret (not the traditional straight ridge), the plain, roughly circular-headed west doorway. The west portion of the N. wall and the N.W. portion of the west gable appear to be eleventh or twelfth century masonry, the chancel fifteenth century, the remainder of the west gable and western portion of S. wall late fifteenth century or early sixteenth century. The windows are modern (1855) except the small one in N. wall, which may be eleventh or twelfth century, and was designed to take an outside wooden shutter. The Church was unroofed by storm in 1839, and remained so until 1855.

The font, with dog tooth and other ornament, is of eleventh-century date. A portion of the old rood screen, with vine pattern, remains fixed on W. wall; and attention was given to the two fine tombstones at the W. end, but originally in the floor on the S. side of altar, and said to belong to some of the Lords of Gogarth; the dragon carved on the wall-plate to the N. of the altar; and the birds and vine ornament. The elegant silver chalice has no inscription, but the hall-mark "K" in a shield shows that its date is 1607.

St. Tudno's Church was reached after an awkward scramble, with a gale of wind at our back, down a steep, grassy and slippery declivity. This proved too difficult for one of our Members, Mr. J. B. Morgan, of Llanelly, who slipped, rolled, and finally turned a complete somersault. Fortunately he did not suffer from the accident, and the coins which rolled out of his pocket in the fall were soon gathered up.

Pen Dinas, a prehistoric fortress, with an area of about 7 acres, occupying a bold spur (400 ft.) jutting out from the Orme, was visited only by two or three active Members, the high and boisterous wind deterring the rest of the party. On three sides are precipitous cliffs, and on the N. and N.W. sides are some traces of defeuces. Within the camp, which is partially outlined by a rampart of stones and earth, are a number of hut circles varying from 4 to 7 yards in diameter and constructed with concentric rings of large stones. The rocking-stone is a rectangular slab, 6 ft. long by 2 ft. broad and 2 ft. thick, rests on a rock, and has a very faint rocking motion. It shows no marks of chisel.

Llanrhos Church was the next halting place, especially interesting as sheltering within its walls since 1906 a Romano-British inscribed stone, which formerly stood at the road side in front of Tyddyn Holland Cottage. Such a shelter was necessary, inasmuch as a former tenant of the cottage was said (Arch. Camb., 1877) to have deepened the letters for the benefit of English tourists, the effect of which is perceptible in the illustration sketched by Mr. Worthington Smith, the last line originally OTIS being transformed into a date 1618. The reading has been "boggled" nearly as much as that on the Pentre Voelas stone. Lewis Morris notes "In the highway by Tyddyn Holland, between Bodafon and Rhiw Leding, in Creuddyn,

near Conwy, on a grit stone of about a yard long, I found this inscription 1731. It seems to be a pagan inscription."





This opinion of Lewis Morris is due to the mistaken reading of

[graphic][subsumed][subsumed][merged small]

the last line ISIS for OTIS. The second line he takes to be A NVS whereas it is FILIVS.

Professor Sayce, after carefully inspecting the inscription with the light of a cycle lamp, pronounced the reading to be as given by Sir John Rhys (Arch. Camb., 1877):

[blocks in formation]

Sir John Rhys mentions that a Bishop Sanctan was brother of Matoc, grandson of Muireddhach Muindearg, a King of Ulidia, died 479.

The Church, cruciform in plan, was founded by St. Eleri of Gwytherin, but re-built by the Monks of Aberconwy, and rededicated in the name of the Virgin. There are two transepts, unusual in a country church, the N. transept called the Penrhyn Chapel, and the S. transept the Gloddaeth Chapel. The oldest portion of the fabric, according to Archdeacon Thomas, is indicated by the Ogee-decorated window in the N. transept. Maelgwn Gwynedd, the founder and benefactor of the See of Llanelwy (St. Asaph), took refuge from the yellow pestilence in the Church and died there.

By the kind invitation of Colonel the Hon. H. Lloyd Mostyn, the party visited Bodysgallen, and had the opportunity of inspecting the mansion, with its store of antique weapons, pictures of by-gone worthies, and beautiful gardens. The company was received by Colonel the Hon. H. Lloyd Mostyn and Mrs. Lloyd Mostyn, the Hon. Violet Douglas-Pennant, and there were also present the Countess of Dundonald, Lady Mostyn of Mostyn, Lady Mostyn of Talacre, the Bishop of Bangor and Mrs. Watkin Williams, the Hon. Mrs. Laurence Brodrick, and a large number of the principal residents in the district.

After tea, at the request of the President, our host read a paper on the old Mansion, which he had prepared with the assistance of the Hon. Ellis Douglas-Pennant.

Bodysgallen (spelt by Pennant "Bodscallan" and by Bingley "Bodscallon ") is supposed to be Bod Caswallon, the residence of Caswallon Law-hir, the father of Maelgwn Gwynedd. A considerable British town is thought to have been situated in the low-lying district between the hills of Deganwy, Bryn Maelgwyn, and Bodysgallen. Caswallon Law-hir succeeded to the sovereignty of North Wales in 443, and died in 517. His son, Maelgwn Gwynedd, who succeeded, fortified Deganwy, built a palace at Bryn Euryn, endowed the See of Bangor with some lands in 552, and died of the yellow plague in Llanrhos Church.

In a field belonging to Bodysgallen towards the north is a small quarry, the only one where stone is found similar to that used for the mullions and window-facings of Conway Castle. It is not known when the old tower which forms the nucleus of Bodysgallen House was built, but it is evidently of considerable antiquity.

A family named Davis, of whom nothing else is known, lived here before the reign of Henry VIII, when Bodysgallen passed into the hands of the Mostyn family. The Sir Thomas Mostyn of that date was grandson to Richard ap Howel, Lord of Mostyn, the faithful adherent of Henry VII. Sir Thomas lived at Gloddaeth; his brother Richard, who was Sheriff of Carnarvonshire, 1572, lived at Bodysgallen. His daughter Margaret married Hugh, son of

Gruffydd Wynne of Berthddu, second son of John Wynne ap Meredydd of Gwydir, and grandson to Robert Wynne, who built Plas Mawr, Conway. Their son Robert was knighted. He probably built the old hall and drawing-room at Bodysgallen, which has the date R. W. K. 1620.

His son, Colonel Hugh Wynne, was an ardent Royalist, and suffered much in the cause. He raised a regiment of foot at his own expense, and was one of the local gentlemen who did their best, but in vain, to prevent the removal, in the reign of Charles II, of the lead, iron, and timber from Conway Castle, which caused it to become a ruin. Sir Roger Mostyn of Gloddaeth, who died in 1796, brought back Bodysgallen, by marriage with the heiress, to the Mostyn family. Pennant, who visited the house in the time of this Sir Roger, says it is a place of great antiquity, being mentioned in the Record of Carnarvon, and that there were the more ancient ruins of a "small castlet," now hid in woods on the top of a small hill near the present house. This now seems to have disappeared.

The President, thanking the host and hostess for their hospitality, said that the Association was fortunate in having, wherever they went, a true Welsh welcome.

The company, for want of time, drove back to Abergele, omitting the visit to Penrhyn Old Hall.


The General Meeting of the Association was held in the Church House, Abergele, at 9.15 p.m., the President, Professor W. Boyd Dawkins, in the chair. Canon Trevor Owen, General Secretary for North Wales, was able to be present, and was congratulated by the Members on his recovery after his recent operation at Liverpool.

The Minutes of the last Annual Meeting, held at Llandrindod Wells in August, 1910 (which had been published in Arch. Camb., January, 1911), were taken as read.

The Report of the Committee, including the Treasurer's and the Editorial Report, was then submitted to the Meeting.


In taking a review of the past year, the sixty-fourth of her existence and the first of her renewed life after passing her great climacteric, the Committee are glad to report that the Association continues to be vigorous and flourishing, notwithstanding the considerable loss she has sustained, as might well be expected, through the death of no fewer than seventeen of her Members. Of these, we regret to have to record the names of

The Right Hon. the Earl of Cawdor, Lord Lieutenant of Pembrokeshire, a Statesman of proved ability, and the Right Hon. Lord Dynevor, two of our patrons; Hugh Robert Hughes of

Kinmel, H.M. Lieutenant of Flintshire, a student deeply versed in Welsh genealogy, the senior Vice-President; Sir Edmund Verney, Bart., of Rhianva, Anglesey; Lady Williams-Wynn, of Llangedwyn, Denbighshire; Rev. H. C. Davies, Vicar of St. Hilary's, Glamorgan; Rev. John Evan Davies, M.A., Rector of Llangelynin, Merioneth, founder of the Clergy Home of Rest, Llwyngwril; Mr. T. S. Gleadowe, M.A., of Chester; Mrs. Johnes of Dolau Cothi, Carmarthenshire; Rev. John Burlton Jones-Bateman, M.A., of Pentremawr; Mr. Philip Pearson Pennant, of Nantlys, Flintshire; Rev. W. Matthew Thomas, M.A., Vicar of Billingboro', Lincolnshire; Dr. Davies, of Aberdare; Mr. F. W. Hybart, of Cardiff; Mr. C. J. Ryland, of Bristol; Dr. W. Williams, of Penarth; Mr. E. P. Martin, of Abergavenny.

We have also to regret the resignation, through ill health, of the Rev. Charles Chidlow, M.A., General Secretary for South Wales, who has done such active and valuable service for the Association

during his twenty years' tenure of office. The vacant office we

shall have to fill.

On the other hand we have the pleasure of recording in all loyalty the Coronation of our Patron-in-Chief, the King, the Investiture of the Prince of Wales, and the laying of the foundation stone of the National Welsh Library at Aberystwyth by the King.

Honours have been conferred on the following Members, whom we desire to congratulate

Privy-Councillorship-Sir John Rhys, LL.D., D. Litt. Professor of Celtic and Principal of Jesus College, Oxford.

Baronies-Sir. W. T. Lewis, Bart., now Lord Merthyr; Sir C. B. McLaren, Bart., K.C., M.P.; Lord Aberconway, G.C.V.O.; and John Pritchard Jones.

Knighthood—Professor Edward Anwyl, M.A.

Mr. Heury Owen, D.C.L., F.S.A., has been appointed a Member of the Royal Commission on Public Records.

The official copy of the Archeologia Cambrensis, which had been detained by the creditors of the late Mr. C. J. Clark, has now been restored.

The hope expressed at our last meeting that a local association might be formed at Llandrindod for exploring the antiquities of Radnorshire, though not fully brought into operation, has not been altogether fruitless. Excavations have been going on at Castell Collen, of which Mr. Wellings Thomas will give an account, and will exhibit some of the finds.

Here we find two young and vigorous societies in active workthe Abergele and the Nant Conwy Antiquarian. We shall visit in the course of the week the first fruits of the former society in the excavations at Pen y Corddyn, and some of the landmarks of the latter, as outlined in their report, 1902-1910, just issued. The echo of last year's controversy, concerning the final burial-place of Prince Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, "Llywelyn ein llyw olaf," will be

« PreviousContinue »