It’s the 25th January today and as a Welshman that means it’s Valentine’s Day! None of that 14th February nonsense for me!
The story of Dwynwen, who is actually not recognised as an official Saint anymore, goes way back to the 5th Century and depending on which account you believe tells the story of the daughter of Brychan Brycheiniog. King Brychan had 24 daughters so one assumes he was quite the hottie and didn’t have a lot of spare time. Dwynwen was apparently the hottest of the bunch. Think Kim Kardashian.
Dwynwen fell in love with a guy named Maelon Dafodrill but luck wasn’t on her side as Dwynwen’s father had already arranged her to marry someone else. She prayed and asked for God’s help, which prompted the arrival of an angel that night. The angel appears to have been more of a genie as the angel (let’s assume the voice of Robin Williams for this bit) gave Dwynwen a magic potion and three wishes. The potion was formulated to help Dwynwen forget Maelon, and turned him in to a block of ice. This was a bit harsh so the first of her three wishes was used to thaw the ice. Secondly she wished that God would meet the needs of all lovers, and her final request was that she should never marry. We will now assume she became a crazy cat lady.
Let’s fast forward to 2015 and go to Llandwynn, near Anglesey. The remains of Dwynwen’s church and a magical well can still be found there today. It’s said that the fish in the well can predict succesful relationships! Fish active in the well at the time of a visit means that they believe the husband is and will be faithful. If they aren’t active…. well you know.
I think it’s a great story that not many people know about, but I realise that this is a photo blog. Having never visited North Wales please accept an image of the Gower Peninsula instead, featuring the rock at Cefn Bryn. If you’ve enjoyed this little tale, check out the story behind Cefn Bryn.