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Mwynhewch y gorau o Gymru - Enjoy the very best of Wales!

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06 Mar

Dacw mam yn dwad - Here's Mummy - Welsh Folk Nursery Rhyme

Posted by Becca Hemmings

Here is an old Welsh nursery rhyme for Mothering Sunday! Do you remember it? The lyrics are quite strange but children enjoy singing it. Here is a link to it being sung. Why not share with your mam?

Dacw mam yn dwad
Ar ben y Gamfa Wen,
Rhywbeth yn ei ffedog,
A phiser ar ei phen.
Y fuwch yn y beudy
Yn brefu am y llo,
A’r llo’r ochor arall
Yn chwarae Jim Cro
Jim Cro Crystyn
Wan, tŵ, ffôr,
A’r mochyn bach yn eistedd
Mor ddel ar y stôl.
Here's Mummy coming
Over the white stile,
Something in her apron
With a pitcher on her head.
The cow is in the cow shed
Lowing for her calf,
And the calf is on the other side
Playing Jim Crow.
Jim Crow Crust
One, two and four,
And the little pig is sitting
Pretty on the stool.
 

Jim cro was a card game popular with the Welsh miners during their lunch breaks. It has also been linked to awful 'Jim Crow' Laws in America, a brutal segregation of black and white people. You can read the BBC Wales news story here

There is another version of the song with yn gweiddi 'Jim Cro' (shouting 'Jim Crow') or 'Ar Ben y garreg wen' (over the white stone) which one do you remember? As these songs were passed from generation to generation by word of mouth there are often many variations. There are often differences between North and South Welsh songs too.

These old folk songs are often very mysterious - which makes them so fascinating!

View our gifts for mam here.

01 Mar

Mae Dydd Gwyl Dewi wedi dod!

Posted by Becca Hemmings

I remember singing this song at school, did you?

We would all sing the first verse, the boys would sing the second and then the girls would sing the last verse.

Happy St David's Day to you all!


Plant ydym ni
Yn canu nawr i chi
Mae Dydd Gwyl Dewi wedi dod.
Mor hapus ydym ni!

Bechgyn ydym ni
Yn canu nawr i chi
Mae Dydd Gwyl Dewi wedi dod
Mor hapus ydym ni!

Merched ydym ni
Yn canu nawr i chi
Mae Dydd Gwyl Dewi wedi dod
Mor hapus ydym ni!

We are Children
Singing to you now
St David's Day has come
We are so happy!

We are boys
Singing to you now
St David's Day has come
We are so happy!

We are girls
Singing to you now
St David's Day has come
We are so happy!

26 Feb

St David's Day - Dydd Dewi Sant

Posted by Becca Hemmings

St. David's Day (Welsh - Dydd Dewi Sant) is celebrated every 1st March in honour of our patron Saint.

It is essential to wear a leek or daffodil, our National icons, on St. David's day. When she was little, my mam tried eating her daffodil. Needless to say she was sick and wouldn't recommend it.

Eisteddfods

Schools and societies often dress up as Welsh Ladies / Rugby players and hold eisteddfods on this day. This festival of literature, music and performance is celebrated by Welsh people worldwide. I remember winning the poetry competition with this simple verse (I was only ten so be kind!)

Today, today is St. David's Day
We sing songs of joy!
Dragons, leeks and daffodils
Are the thought of every girl and boy
Oh the World is full of cheer
Because St.David's Day is here!

We also used to sing the sweet little rhyme below. Does anyone else remember this? We have a card available here.

 

Plant ydym ni
Yn canu nawr i chi
Mae Dydd Gwyl Dewi wedi dod.
Mor hapus ydym ni!
Translates to (the translation is also on the back of the card)
Children are we
Singing for you now
St David's Day has come
So happy are we!

 

St. David

Little is actually known about our saint, though he likes to travel! He was raised in Cardiganshire (his father, Sant was the son of Ceredig, King of Ceredigion) and then went on pilgrimage through south Wales and the west of England, where it is said that he founded religious centres such as Glastonbury and Croyland. He even went on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem, where he was made archbishop.

Eventually he settled in south-west Wales in a town then called Glyn Rhosyn. This is today's St. Davids - Britain's smallest city due to the small population but impressive St. David's Cathedral.

The most famous story about Saint David tells how he was preaching at the Synod of Llanddewibrefiand. The crowd was so big many people couldn't see or hear him. He then caused the ground to rise up, so that he was standing on a hill, so more people could watch and listen to his lesson. Diolch Dewi!

St David's Day Worldwide!

Now St. David's Day is celebrated by Welsh people all over the world. Even Disneyland Paris has a Welsh Festival with Welsh choirs and rock groups alike.

So don't forget your leek or daff this St. David's day! We have some nice felt daffodils that you can wear every year on sale now - take a look here

 

11 Feb

Y Lili Wen Fach - The Snowdrop - Welsh Rhyme / Song

Posted by Becca Hemmings

I saw my first snowdrops this weekend! Spring is almost here!

Here is a sweet little song about a snowdrop that my mam used to sing when at school.

O Lili wen fach, o ble daethost di?
A'r gwynt mor arw ac mor oer ei gri?
Sut y mentraist di allan drwy'r eira I gyd?
Nid oes blodyn bach arall i'w weld yn y byd!

Here is the English translation:

Oh little snowdrop, from where have you come from?
With the wind so wild and how cold it's cry?
How did you venture out through all of the snow?
There isn't another flower to be seen in the world!

You can hear it sung on ysgol Treganna's website here.

17 Jan

St Dwynwen's Day - The Welsh Valentine's Day

Posted by Becca Hemmings in Welsh Traditions

Dydd Santes Dwynwen Hapus: What is St Dwynwen's Day?

Dydd Santes Dwynwen is the Welsh equivalent to Valentine's Day and is celebrated on 25th January every year.

The legend of Dwynwen is a very sad, shocking one. She was a beautiful Celtic princess, the prettiest of all the King of Wales's 24 daughters (Brychan Brycheiniog of Brechon also had 11 sons!) who lived during the 5th century.

Dwynwen was in deeply in love with the handsome Maelon Dafodrill, but her father had already betrothed her to another, so he refused to give them his consent. On finding out, Maelon callously abandoned her. With a broken heart, and grieved to have upset her father, Dwynwen ran to the woods and begged God to make her forget her love for Maelon.

Exhausted and aungished, Dwynwen eventually fell asleep. Whilst dreaming, an angel visited her and left a sweet smelling potion. This would erase all memories of Maelon, and his callous heart would also be cooled, but so much so that he turned to ice. Dwynwen was horrified to find her love frozen solid. She prayed again to God, who answered her prayers by granting her three wishes.

Her first wish was to have Maelon thawed and for him to forget her; her second, to have God look kindly on the hopes and dreams of true lovers whilst mending the broken hearts of the spurned; and her third was for her to never marry, but to devote the remainder of her life to God, as thanks for saving Maelon.

Dwynwen later became a nun and settled on Ynys Llanddwyn - a small island off the west coast of Anglesey in north Wales. She found a church there, remains of which can still be seen today. After her death she was declared the Welsh Patron Saint of Lovers and ever since, Welsh lovers have looked to St Dwynwen for her help in courting their true love, or for forgetting a false one.

Her most well known saying is “Nothing wins hearts like cheerfulness

Surprise your cariad with a Welsh card or say 'dwi'n dy garu di' (I love you) on 25th January, and don't let your heart turn to ice!

We have a wonderful Welsh Valentine collection, have a browse here.