The time of ‘Gathering’

Welcome to the time of Gathering in the y Ddraig world. It begins on the night in (our) ‘October’ when the moon is fully half-dark and half-light in the northern hemisphere sky. The quarter moon. It also contains… Read More

A (not-very-yet-too-very) brief history of “Wales” and “England”

It’s just not possible to condense a millennium of history into a single post without generalising massively and becoming irritatingly long. Sorry for both, but in the interests of brevity I’m starting at the non-existant year zero (between 1BC and… Read More

A rough timeline of Arthurian literature

Two key things become apparent when you sit down to trace the history of the development of Arthurian literature. First, medieval writers were huge on appropriation of stories. Huge! Second, Arthrui-mania wasn’t just a British thing–the Dutch, Scandinavian,… Read More

Seeding a Corpse

This week in Ireland, a 1000 year old skeleton was ripped unceremoniously from the ground when the tree in whose roots the skeleton was tangled blew over in a storm. Locals found half of a young man dangling… Read More

Old Welsh words that survived into English

Anglo-saxon (Germanic), Norman and Danish words dominate the language we know as ‘English’ but there are a number of ‘Welsh’ words that survived through to modern English. ‘Wales’ itself gets no points because it’s not a Welsh word… Read More

Celtic (and old Welsh) Spectrum

The Celtic spectrum different to ours. Theirs was based on and described by the quality of the hue, not the wavelength. Thus, the early Welsh ‘llywd’ can mean brown (like paper), blue (like mould) or grey (like rabbit)… Read More

Welsh naming structure

Typically, going back to the earliest naming conventions of Wales/Cymru names had very formal structures but weren’t simply limited to patronyms. Individuals had a given name followed by a byname. Patronyms (ie: being named for your father) were,… Read More

“My Kingdom for a Horse…”

Okay so that quote is about a thousand years out but it’s as good an intro as any into the subject of medieval horsery. Horses were central to lower and upper middle age society being important for transport, agriculture… Read More

The Green Man

The ‘Green Man’ is a symbol found in many ancient cultures dating back to 3000BC (and still used today). A visual Green Man is usually timber- or stone-carved face covered in foliage which often emanates from the figure’s… Read More

Visualisation in the Dark Ages

While our lives are saturated with them today, the vast majority of people in the dark ages would never in their lives see a visual image–a painting, a sketch, a statue, possibly not even a map. Just as… Read More