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Topic: Welsh poetry

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  Welsh literature - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Welsh was born sometime between 400 and 700 AD and the earliest surviving literature in Welsh is poetry dating from this period.
Welsh prose in the Middle Ages was not confined to the story tradition, it included a large body of both religious and practical works, in addition to a large amount translated from other languages.
A huge step forward for both the Welsh language and its literature was the publication, in 1588, of a full-scale translation of the Bible by William Morgan.
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Welsh_literature   (1877 words)

 Anglo-Welsh poetry - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Anglo-Welsh poetry is a subset of Anglo-Welsh literature.
The poetry written in English by those familiar with the Welsh language tends to be distinctive in its style and rhythms.
The beginnings of true Anglo-Welsh poetry are found in the work of poets such as Gerard Manley Hopkins and Wilfred Owen ; their Welsh ancestry, not perhaps apparent in any other aspect of their lives, is clearly audible in the rhythms of their verse.
en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Anglo-Welsh_poetry   (192 words)

 Welsh literature. The Columbia Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. 2001-05
Much of the poetry in these manuscripts is credited to four late 6th-century bards— Aneurin, Taliesin, Myrddin (the Merlin of Arthurian romance), and Llywarch Hen—and most of the anonymous poetry is marked by style and subject as belonging to their various schools.
Welsh humanist prose of the 16th and 17th cent., although not much published in the original tongue, was polished and musical.
In addition, the Welsh poetic revival, which produced both nationalist and cosmopolitan works, was tied to the founding in 1872 of the new Univ. of Wales.
www.bartleby.com /65/we/Welshlit.html   (918 words)

 §3. Early Welsh Poetry. XII. The Arthurian Legend. Vol. 1. From the Beginnings to the Cycles of Romance. The ...
Amid much that is undeniably late and spurious, these collections of Welsh poetry contain a good deal that is, in substance, of obviously archaic origin.
It is Urien with whom “all the bards of the world find favour,” and to whom “they ever sing after his desire.” 18 Neither is Arthur known to Aneirin, who sang in his Gododin the elegy of the Kymric chieftains who met their doom at Cattraeth.
The mystery surrounding his grave at once suggests the existence of a belief in his return, and William of Malmesbury, as we have seen, knew, early in the twelfth century, of “ancient songs” which kept this belief alive.
www.bartleby.com /211/1203.html   (1556 words)

 Welsh poetry   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
This stress-based poetry shared the common European embellishments of rhyme and alliteration, but soon developed into syllabic poetry with a unique complexity of form which, due to the strictures of the legally-sanctioned bardic order, was strictly regularised and standardised among the professional poets.
In a language as filigree as Welsh rules are not mere vanity, extravagance of spirit or denial of nature for the sake of arid artifice.
Welsh, by far the healthiest and most vigorous of the surviving Celtic languages, was shown by the 1991 census to be spoken by some 20% of the population of Wales as a whole (c.500,000).
elt.britcoun.org.pl /poetry.htm   (2057 words)

 Anglo Welsh poetry   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
The poetry written in English by those familiar with the Welshlanguage tends to be distinctive in its style and rhythms.
Until at least the 19th century, Welsh poets writing in the Englishlanguage tended to imitate the conventions of English verse.
The beginnings of true Anglo-Welsh poetry are found in the work of poets such as Gerard Manley Hopkins and Wilfred Owen ; their Welsh ancestry, not perhaps apparent in any other aspect of their lives, is clearlyaudible in the rhythms of their verse.
www.therfcc.org /anglo-welsh-poetry-130465.html   (144 words)

 GO BRITANNIA! Wales: Welsh Literature - 20th Century, Pt III
He turned towards "Welsh Wales" with its partisanship and growing sense of national consciousness as a refuge against the growing materialism and alien technology that was stifling ancient traditions everywhere.
His poetry "Poems from the Mountain-House" and "The Welsh-Speaking Sea", as well as a long poem for radio, "Blaenau Observed" were written before his move in 1961 to work in the Netherlands, where he continued to serve as an important editor and critic.
Tilsli wrote in free metres, but a feature of modern Welsh poetry is the revival of the strict-metre tradition that was fostered, not only by the need to conform to rigid Eisteddod standards, but by the upwelling of nationalist feeling during the 1960's that permeated so many areas of Welsh life.
www.britannia.com /wales/lit/lit18.html   (3670 words)

 CREW Welsh Writers Online: Tony Conran
He began writing poetry as a student; the death of Dylan Thomas turned his attention to Anglo-Welsh writing and, in the same period, the discovery of Welsh poetry, especially the poets of the medieval period, in Gwyn Williams’s translations was ‘a revelation’.
While the discovery of Welsh poetry influenced his own early poetry published in Formal Poems (1960), it was as the translator of The Penguin Book of Welsh Verse (1967, extended and reissued as Welsh Verse, 1986), that he first became well known.
In the brilliant world of Welsh medieval poetry he found a culture in which the poet was not an alienated, marginal figure, but at the community’s centre, giving voice to its values.
www.swan.ac.uk /english/crew/welshwriters/tconran.htm   (574 words)

 Folklore of Wales   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
The stories in the Mabinogion are believed to have been first recorded in Welsh during the 11th century, some eight centuries before their translation, although the earliest remaining evidence is the White Book of Rhyderch written in the mid 14th century.
Welsh poetry, in fact, dates back to the late 6th century, making it amongst the oldest in Europe.
Celtic poets, such as Taliesin and Aneirin, set the patterns and standards that Welsh poetry adopted and maintained for the next 1400 years, and is still evident today in the regular eisteddfods held throughout the country.
www.red4.co.uk /folklore.htm   (249 words)

 From "The Uncertain Critic" by Jasmine Donahaye, Planet 144:
The Forum section of the 1996 edition of the Yearbook of Welsh Writing in English offers an interesting vignette of the state of criticism of Welsh poetry in English: Patrick Crotty, exercising his rather sharp analysis, takes John Pikoulis to task for his damaging "praise-criticism" article on the poet Alun Lewis in the 1995 issue.
For those who encounter Welsh poetry in English from outside, as I have done, there is a marked disparity between the way in which the poetry is presented and quality.
Whether the poetry carries what Glenda Beagan calls the "guilt-ridden melancholia" of work in the '70s and '80s, or the witty entertainment of the poetry of the '90s, the result is poetry that seriously lacks emotional depths.
www.planetmagazine.org.uk /html/archive/uncertain.htm   (895 words)

 Gwenllian's Poetry Primer   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
The eloquence and power of Welsh poetry are clear even to those unfamiliar with the language.
This primer is intended as an introduction to the rules and structures of Welsh poetry.
Welsh poetry is generally considered to have reached its heyday in the 14th century with the works of Dafydd ap Gwilym and other poets.
home.comcast.net /~bryant.katherine/primer.html   (463 words)

 Celtic Poetry
However, unlike Irish poetry it is not cyclic and there is no need for the last line to end with the first syllable word or the complete line.
Welsh poetry has three main classes, and from these classes are derived 24 traditional forms.
Welsh poets lost their incentive to teach their craft and in the end with the death the last professional poet, Grufydd Phylip of Ardudwy in 1666, the art was kept alive only by enthusiastic amateurs.
www.thepoetsgarret.com /gaelic2.html   (1494 words)

 Review by Glyn Pursglove   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
Many Welsh poets – for all kinds of readily explicable historical reasons – have written unironic poems of political, religious and/or lingusitic commitment, some of which, stripped of their original music and linguistic texture can seem, in translation, strangely banal in sentiment.
To have omitted all such poems would have given a quite false picture of the attitudes and themes of the Welsh poetry of the century; yet they present their translators (and the reader from ‘outside’) with particular difficulties.
As with any worthwhile poetry well translated, the reader is faced with a densely realised particularity the experience of which mingles strangeness and familiarity.
www.stridemagazine.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk /2003/july/welsh.htm   (605 words)

 icWales - Welsh poetry outsells English 3-1   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
But one of the main poetry publishers said the sales per volume in Welsh were often more than three times those for English-language poetry - despite the difference in target audience.
More than half the Welsh poetry sold by Gwasg Gomer is by living writers, many of whom are commissioned to write anthologies of verse.
Contemporary Welsh poets such as Gerallt Lloyd Owen, Myrddin ap Dafydd and Ifor ap Glyn are celebrities in Welsh-language circles and their poetry is devoured because it is seen as reflecting modern values and circumstances.
icwales.icnetwork.co.uk /0100news/0200wales/content_objectid=13437872_method=full_siteid=50082_headline=-Welsh-poetry-outsells-English-3-1-name_page.html   (817 words)

 Learn more about Medieval poetry in the online encyclopedia.   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
Medieval poetry is often religious, such as the poem Christ by Cynewulf, written in Old English.
They were meant to support the rising religions of the time, and express their beliefs.
Much of it was set to tune, and was spread by traveling minstrels, or bards, across Europe.
www.onlineencyclopedia.org /m/me/medieval_poetry.html   (219 words)

 Early Welsh Manuscripts, Part I
The Welsh versions of the tale are only part of a larger tradition of Welsh bardic poetry that dates back as early as the 6th and 7th centuries AD (though not written down until the 13th-14th centuries).
According to the National Library of Wales, this is one of the earliest surviving manuscripts written in Welsh, containing the earliest surviving examples of the work of the Welsh court poets known as the Gogynfeirdd.
Besides religious poems, odes, and elegies, this manuscript of early poetry is particularly notable for its tales of British heroes from the Dark Ages, and for stories relating to the legend of Myrddin.
www.suite101.com /article.cfm/11146/108819   (717 words)

 BBC NEWS | Wales | Film brings out poetry of Welsh
Welsh - it was here before the Romans arrived and is still with us now, elbowing a path of its own through the era of digital communications.
The actress Siân Phillips gives a poetry reading as does Rhys Ifans, best known for his performance in the hit film, Notting Hill, as the Welsh lodger, Spike.
He said he hoped it would put Welsh poetry on the international cultural map.
news.bbc.co.uk /1/hi/wales/2831411.stm   (698 words)

 New British Poetry: 6 Wales
As readers of poetry, we are very fortunate to have two outstanding recent anthologies, which between them illustrate the extent of this renaissance in Welsh writing.
The extraordinary complexities of Welsh versification—which simultaneously marshal and liberate the talented poet—are capable of producing beautiful and moving verbal artistry, and the team of expert translators behind this anthology have succeeded brilliantly in capturing this spirit of the original, without sacrificing the dignity of their subjects by creating a poor English substitute.
The definition of ‘Welsh’ for the sake of selection is also a loose one, including those of Welsh racial ancestry, and those who have adopted the country as home—a just course, in my view, as it is a clear acknowledgement of the hybridity of modern Wales, and indeed, all British society.
www.suite101.com /article.cfm/New_British_Poetry/102420   (1412 words)

 John Ballam- Reviews   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
The most evident factors contributing to this response are the structured, long-established hierarchical system of valuations within which Welsh poetry is judged by its practitioners, and the knowledge that compositions in what was for centuries virtually a proscribed language bears an implicit link to the poetry of protest.
Subtitled “Welsh World Poetry,” this volume brings together the work of thirty-six poets, many of them young and not well-known, as representative of what is being written “from” Wales, in the widest possible sense.
Throughout the infidelities, and the mistakes his lovers detail, even in the midst of weakness and pain, there remains a thread of promise that none of this is inevitable—that there is cause to value the possession of love in spite of its fragility and incompleteness.
www.coldmountain.appstate.edu /johnballam.html   (2889 words)

 Cold Mountain Review - John Ballam   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
The Bloodaxe Book of Modern Welsh Poetry is an anthology of “20th-century Welsh-language poetry in translation,” and in order to understand the import of that statement, including its political significance, it is necessary to know something about the 1000+ year heritage through which many of these poems draw their strength.
At the heart of its self-awareness as a literary medium is the medieval institution of the eisteddfod—literally, “a sitting,” which, in practice, means a ceremonial gathering of bards for the express purpose of sharing and judging poetic achievement.
For the Bloodaxe Book, the criteria for inclusion was excellence in Welsh; the anthology is a history, both of the struggle and the triumph involved in constructing (or re-constructing) a modern Welsh self-knowledge, enjoining a celebration of the obvious diversity and the inherent continuities within this re-emerging language.
www.coldmountain.appstate.edu /Poems-From-Spring_2004/2004_johnballam.html   (2887 words)

 Guardian Unlimited | The Guardian | Welcome to Cool Cymru
The establishment of the Welsh Assembly in 1997, the first political assembly since Owain Glyndwr disappeared in 1406, followed a referendum in which the majority in favour of devolution was only 7,000.
The nurturing of the Welsh language, when the other Celtic tongues that were once widely spoken across the British Isles survive hardly at all, is a great source of Welsh pride.
The threat to Welsh isn't quite so brutal as it was in the 19th century, when speaking Welsh was regarded as offensive by Anglocentric educators.
www.guardian.co.uk /g2/story/0,3604,1322461,00.html   (2567 words)

 BBC - Wales The Story of Welsh - The Heroic Age
The noted translator Tony Conran believes this may have been a reaction to the retreat of Rome and the consequent invasions, as the huge stresses in British society were reflected in the language.
Labelled the Heroic Age, this is the period of the earliest Welsh poetry.
Cumbric was easily understood by speakers of Welsh and Y Gododdin became a well-known and respected poem.
www.bbc.co.uk /wales/storyofwelsh/content/theheroicage.shtml   (603 words)

 Celtic Poetry
Poets were expected to develop a knowledge of a huge number of traditional stories, of poetry and legal matters as well as the skills to create his or her own poetry, and yet the basic inspiration could be gifted from otherworld sources.
Praise poetry was a common and valued practice by the poets and there were various metres used, e.g.
It is important to remember that Irish poetry is cyclic and the last line should end with the first syllable word or the complete line.
www.thepoetsgarret.com /gaelic1.html   (1358 words)

 King Arthur in Early Welsh Literature: Excerpts from Various Poems and Verses
The earliest and most important collection is in the"Black Book of Carmarthen" containing seventy-three stanzas; sixty-nine of which were copied in the second quarter of the thirteenth century and the other four (numbers 70 to 73) in the second half of the same century.
Y Gododdin Preserved in the thirteenth century, Llyfr Aneirin, Y Gododdin has a claim to be one of the earliest Welsh poems (or sequence of poems).
It is believed that the triads evolved as mnemonic devices to assist the recollection of narrative material and that they were used in the bardic schools, with pupil bards learning triad sequences by heart.
www.britannia.com /history/docs/stanzas.html   (933 words)

 [No title]   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-04)
Ford (ed and trans) The Poetry of Llywarch Hen (Berkeley, 1974).
Gwyn Williams An Introduction to Welsh Poetry (London, 1953), esp pp 1-70.
Bromwich "The Character of the Early Welsh Tradition" in N.Chadwick (ed) Studies in Early British History (Cambridge, 1959), pp 83-136.
www.chass.utoronto.ca /~klausner/2050RL.html   (392 words)

 O. J. Padel, Arthur in Medieval Welsh Literature
Padel establishes right at the start that his subject is the Arthur of Welsh literature, that is, Arthur as a literary and mythological character, thus neatly side-stepping the thorny knots of recent historical studies.
Although the tone is scholarly, Padel's style verges on conversational, and he doesn't assume that his readers are as familiar with his subject as he is. There are enough contextual clues and plot summary that you don't have to have read deeply in things medieval and Arthurian to feel comfortable and benefit from Padel's expertise.
His "Select Bibliography" is keyed to chapters, allowing easy identification of the secondary sources he cites in the text, as well as the standard scholarly editions of the literary texts themselves.
www.greenmanreview.com /book/book_padel_arthurinmedievalwelshlit.html   (536 words)

 GO BRITANNIA! Wales: Welsh Literature - Heroic Poetry
Surviving Welsh language poems, part of the heroic tradition, date all the way back to the late sixth century AD, making them part of the oldest attested vernacular in Europe.
The vivid impressions of the poems are compressed into complex patterns of alliteration and internal rhyme that later developed into the peculiarly Welsh system known as cynghanedd in which key words are linked by repetition of consonants.
The poems of Aneirin and Taliesin provided a model of Welsh literature that was followed for centuries.
www.britannia.com /wales/lit/lit1.html   (701 words)

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