First Annual General Meeting of the Cambrian Archaeological Association
The PRESIDENT having announced that in the event of the weather being favourable, an excursion would be made on the following day to Bedd Taliesin, the Roman road at Pensarn-ddu, the druidical circle, and other British remains in that neighbourhood, the business of the evening was concluded.
WEDNESDAY, SEPT 8.
The weather this morning was most favourable. A public breakfast took place at the public rooms. After which a party consisting of Sir Stephen Richard Glynne, the Deans of Hereford and Bangor, Messrs. Wakeman, Parry, Wynne, Phillips, Hughes, Dearden, Rees and others, started off in three carriages, on an excursion to Bedd Taliesin, and other remains of antiquity in that district. On their arrival at the carn wherein the grave of Taliesin is situated, some of the party took the dimension of the carn, which was found to be about one hundred and thirty-five feet in circumference. The cistvaen or grave, in the centre, consists of several massive slabs of stones, forming a grave about eight feet long, by two feet six inches wide; one of the slabs, which once covered the grave, is five feet nine inches. Mr Rees of Llandovery, read some very curious and interesting notices of the history of Taliesin, extracted from an unpublished volume of selections, from the collections of ancient Welsh manuscripts collected by the late Iolo Morganwg, and which are in the course of publication for the Welsh Manuscripts Society. These notices are highly corroborative of the tradition of Taliesin having ended his days in this neighbourhood, and of his having been interred under the carn which bears from him the name of Gwely Taliesin. From the grave the party proceeded on foot two or three miles up the mountains in the direction of Plynlummon, and discovered two druidic circles, one of which consisted of about seventy-six upright stones, forming a circle of two hundred and twenty-eight feet in circumference, situate on the mountain above Nant-y-nôd. A smaller circle is situated higher up the mountain, and is about ninety feet in circumference. From up the mountain, the party ascended to the summit of Moel-y-gaer, and inspected the remains of a British fortress, about one hundred and fifty feet in circumference, formed of loose stones merely piled together, with several hollows in the centre about eight feet diameter. From this point the party returned homeward.
In the evening a dinner took place at the Belle Vue Hotel, which was numerously attended. Sir Stephen Glynne presided, and Sir Samuel Meyrick occupied the vice-chair. In consequence of the party not having returned from their excursion till late in the day, the general meeting in the evening was delayed above an hour.
About eight o'clock the President took the chair, at which time the room presented a very animated appearance, being filled with a distinguished and fashionable auditory.
On taking the chair the President apologized for the delay that had taken place in commencing, which he stated was accounted for by the late return of the party from the excursion. He then called on the Dean of Hereford to state the nature of the excursion.
The Very Rev. the DEAN OF HEREFORD then rose and was loudly cheered. He said he came forward, more from a sense of duty, than from any hope he entertained of giving satisfaction to the numerous and distinguished assembly. He was, unfortunately, not sufficiently versed in the Welsh language, to give any of the legendary or historical reminiscences connected with the object of their visit that day, but he hoped before he died, to have a better knowledge of the Welsh language. He should always remember with pleasure his visit to that interesting spot, and indeed he claimed to be a Welshman. They found the remains in a very disturbed state, as it was a long time, somewhere between fifty and sixty years, since the grave had been first observed. The Very Rev. Dean then gave a description of the grave. After considerable search, and with some difficulty, they found a druidical circle, one of the objects of their search. They also found two other interesting carns, with the cistvaen exposed; but the most interesting portion of their discoveries was the findind of a British fort, composed of the rough stones of the locality, and which appeared to him to contain five chambers, which were on one side, and seemed to indicate that they were adapted for the particular defence of the fortress in that quarter. This was one of the most valuable remains of the King he had ever seen, and it interested him so much, that he should be glad to come over at some future time and, with the assistance of others, investigate it more closely. One portion of it was raised in a circle above the others with stones, and there was a place for a person to be stationed, to give warning of the approach of an enemy.