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but most probably she was a personification of the river. In later Welsh poetry the latter is personified under the name of Acrfen, which would seem to mean a war divinity, or simply war; and we learn from Giraldus, that in times when our ancestors and the English were at war, the Dee had still some traces of its divinity preserved, as it seems to have been treated as the arbiter of victory and defeat: if the Dee ate away its eastern bank, it betokened defeat to the Eng. lish, and vice versa. The words alluded to occur in the 11th chapter of the second book of the Itinerarium Kambriæ; they run thus:—“Item, ut asserunt accolæ, aqua ista singulis mensibus vada permutat; et utri finium, Angliæ scilicet an Kambriæ, alveo relicto magis incubuerit, gentem illam eo in anno succumbere, et alteram prævalere certissimum prognosticum habent.”
Now, according to the rules of Welsh phonology, the old Welsh duiu, the later dwyw, stand for an early Welsh stem dey or dēw, which is the same whence the Romans had their Dēva, and the English their Dee. It is not my intention to dwell on river worship among the Celts; and I would merely refer you to a valuable paper by M. Pictet in the Revue Celtique, entitled “De quelques Noms Celtiques de Rivières qui se lient au Culte des Eaux”, in which the learned Celtist, who is now no more, not only calls attention to Gallo-Roman votive tablets to such water divinities as Dea Sequana, Dea Icaune, Dea Bormonia, Deus Borvo, and the like, but finds traces in Spain, Gaul, Britain, and Ireland of rivers bearing the sanie names as the Dee in the forms of Dēva, Dīva, and Divona, and nearly related ones. (Rev. Celtique, ii,
In the same paper he notices the rivers known in Gaul as Matra and Matrona, that is, names intimately connected with the Gaulish form of the word for ' mother', and recalling the numberless Gaulish divinities entitled Matres in Gallo
Roman inscriptions. This leads me to suggest a possible explanation of the name of the principal point in the Clwydian range of hills, namely, Moel Famau. Now moel means bald, without hair or without horns, and as applied to a hill it signifies one with a round top, such, in fact, as Moel Fainau is, but for the unfortunate Jubilee Tower on it. Famau is a regular mutation of Mamau, apparently the plural of Mam, ‘a mother', thus Moel Famau would mean the 'moel of mothers', which sounds, however, somewhat more indefinite than the majority of Welsh names of the kind, and suggests that the definite article here, as in so many other instances, has been dropped; the name would then in full be Moel-yFamau, but that could only be a relic of the use of a dual number in Welsh, and should be rendered into English the Moel of the two Mothers'. But who were these mothers, whether two or more in number? I am inclined to think that they were no human mothers, but imaginary beings, possibly associated with, or personifications of springs of water rising in the Moel; but whether further acquaintance with the ground would tend to confirm this somewhat vague conjecture, I am unable to say, as I have never had an opportunity of examining it. On the other hand, it would be evidently unwise to neglect any traces in this country of cults which, it may be presumed, were once common among the Celts, both in the British Isles and on the Continent.
THE EISTEDDFOD OF THE FUTURE.
By Mrs. A. WALTER THOMAS, AND DAVID THOMAS, Esq.
FOLLOWING on the lines of Gwalchmai's lucid historical explanation, which appeared in the last number of the Cymmrodor, of the purposes of the Eisteddfod of the Past, it may not be unworthy of consideration whether the time has not arrived when one of the main features of the Eisteddfod should be developed and adapted to meet an acknowledged want of the present day.
As we have seen, the Eisteddfod originally exercised three functions : first, that of a legislative assembly, for the enacting of laws : secondly, that of a judicial body, which interpreted and enforced them : thirdly, that of a learned body, which aimed at the advancement and encouragement of learning, and notably of poetry, music, and art. By the statute of Rhuddlau in the reign of Edward I, the two first functions were absorbed by Parliament and the Courts of Justice respectively; but the last function, for fulfilling the duties of which no special legal provision was made, has never been superseded, and it may therefore fairly be argued that the powers of the Eisteddfod, quoad hoc, still remain unrepealed and only in abeyance. They are, therefore, a Constitutional right belonging to the Principality.
Some recognition has been extended from time to time by British Sovereigns to the National Eisteddfod of Wales, but the authority of an Eisteddfodic body has long ceased to exist, although the popular feeling in its favour has increased.
The national acceptableness, the purposes, the prevalence
of Eisteddfodau, indicate that so peculiar an institution should no longer exist without more marked recognition; and that it should be enabled to carry out its mission for the benefit of the Principality in accordance with the advanced requirements of this age.
While costly and complex machinery of every kind is proposed or utilised for advancing the civilisation and culture of the Welsh people, here is at hand an admirable engine, capable of being utilised for the purpose. Every county, every town, every village even has its literary meetings (generally under the name of Eisteddfodau), where music, poetry, art, and literature form subjects for healthy emulation. Once or twice a year the whole culminates in a more imposing and general meeting under the name of Yr Eisteddfod, or Yr Eisteddfod Genedlaethol, the popularity of which is attested by the numbers and character of those who attend, or who take an interest in it, either as competitors for prizes, adjudicators, visitors, or patrons. Such a gathering, and for such a purpose, as was seen last year at Wrexham, and this year at Carnarvon, indicates a vast amount of intellectual activity in which the Welsh language plays no mean part.
Our Saxon friends have been told often, and told truly, that the English language is rapidly spreading in Wales, and that not a single day-school teaches the Welsh language. It might perhaps surprise them, were they further informed that, in spite of all this, there are issued in the Welsh language in the Principality no fewer than two quarterly and sixteen monthly periodicals, and thirteen weekly newspapers; that Welsh is now spoken by a number of persons greater probably than in the days of the Heptarchy; and that its vocabulary is enriched daily by the addition of new words.
These facts and statistics sufficiently indicate a reading public in Wales; and not only is this the case in the present day, but the whole nation is panting for improvement, and
looking out for some hand that will guide this intellectual activity which finds its vent through the medium of the Welsh language. That ruling power should be found in the Eisteddfod, for, as has been well said by a German writer (Möser in his Osnabrück History), all laws should be the outcome, not of abstract theories, but of the history of a people; and that institution which has so deep a hold on the hearts of the Cymry is surely best adapted to guide their minds.
The Eisteddfod is the natural as well as the national institution of Wales. « The study of modern history”, says Shelley,* “is the study of kings, financiers, statesmen, and priests. That of the history of ancient Greece is the study of legislators, philosophers, and poets: it is the history of men, compared with the history of titles.” And to this latter description the Eisteddfod may proudly lay claim. High as the clamour may rise outside of political and religious strife—so high, alas! as almost to justify the old proverb, “Ni bydd dyun dau Gymro"-within her walls it is hushed, and men are content to forget their differences for a time, that each may sprinkle his incense on the altars of those
" Sisters of the sacred well That from beneath the feet of Jove doth spring." If the Eisteddfod possesses such powers when, by those outside the Principality, its existence till lately has only been recognised to be scoffed at, what would not be its influence when surrounded by the prestige of State authority ?
And here may be pointed out the one great disadvantage under which the Eisteddfod labours. It lacks one chief element of success-authority. Any body of men, in any part of Wales, may claim Eisteddfodic powers. They may forthwith collect funds, announce prizes, hold meetings, and
i Fragment of an essay on the literature, arts, and manners of the Atheniaus.