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ANNUAL DINNER OF THE BARRY…

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BRITISH ARCHAEOLOGICAL ¡ASSOCIATION.

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BRITISH ARCHAEOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION. THE ANNUAL CONGRESS IN CARDIFF. The members of the British Archaeological Association went on Friday on the fifth excursion during their present session at Cardiff, and were favoured with splendid weather. A party of about 65 ladies and gentlemen assembled in West- gate-street between nine and ten o'clock in the forenoon, and. having taken their places in brakes, were driven by way of Canton, Ely. and St. Lythan's, through a pretty tract of country. Be- tween 11 and 12 they alighted and inspected the Maesyfelin Cromlech, and the larger one. the St. Nicholas Cromlech. near by, where Mr. Franklen Evans, J.P.. F.R.A.S., read a short paper on those remains. He stated that they were burial mounds from which the earth had been cleared away. The St. Nicholas Cromlech. which was inspected by the company with much interest, is said to have the largest top stone of any in Great Britain, it being 24ft. 5in. in extreme length, and 13ft. 2in. in ex- treme breadth, the height of the interior being about 5ft. Leaving St. Nicholas, the visitors proceeded to Llancarfan Church, an account of which was given by Councillor O. II. Jones. J.P.. Fonmon Castle, who said the church was dedicated to St. Cattog the wise (Cattwg Ddoeth), particulars of whose life had been published by the Welsh MSS. Society, under the title of Vita S. Cadoci." in The Lives of the Cambro-British Saints." The site of the original monastery appeared to have been, not at Llancarfan, as some supposed, but at Llanv ithen. not far distant. The building consists of a nave, chancel, western tower, with the south aisle the whole length of the building, and a south porch. The architectural features of Llancarfan Church are exceptionally attractive. The chancel arch (Transitional Norman) is probably the ear- liest part of the building, and is supposed to have been designed by Walter de Mebbs in the reign of Henry II. The carved heads are curious ones. having a crown with three jh-nr de lit. and the windows on the south side are decorated. Parts of this quaint little building date back to the fifth cen- tury. It was there that the School <;f St. Cadoc was founded, and the kinglets of South Wales sent their sons to be educated. A monastery which at one time existed near it has been destroyed, but the abbot's house has been pretcy well preserved, and there are some documents issued by an aboot of Llancarfan still extant, mostly at Oxford. Place, but no halts were made. Leaving Llancarfan. the company proceeded in the direction of Llantwit-Major, and passed over an old Roman road, the Via Julia Maritime. The next places visited were St. Athan's Church and Boverton Llantwit-Major was reached an hour or so after- wards, the route being by way of St. Athan's Church and Boverton, where they crossed the line of the Old I in Julia Jf/iritivur. The famous church and the remarkably-inscribed crosses were inspected, under the direction of Mr. John Sorrie. curator of the Cardiff Museum, and Mr. Iltyd Xichol. F.S.A., The Ham. the latter reviewing the various antiquities connected therewith. Luncheon was partaken of at the Cross Keys, and, leaving Llantwit-Major, the visitors drove past Gileston. Church, and reached Fonmon Castle about five o'clock. The castle, Mr. O. H. Jones said. was one of the earliest in the county, built, probably, about a century after the Norman Conquest. The keep is considered to be one of early English date, pre- sumably the twelfth century, towards the end of the reign of Henry II. In 1654 an ancester of Mr. Jones (Colonel Phillip Jones) came into posses- sion of the castle. Colonel Jones prominently identified himself on the Parliamentary side during the Civil Wars, and was one of the fore- most of Oliver Cromwell's officers who fought in the Battle of St. Fagan's, when Colonel Houghton was defeated. A noteworthy fact in connection with Fonmon Castle is that it has only been in the hands of two branches of the family ever since it was built, and has never been unoccupied. A hearty vote of thanks, on the motion of Mr. W. \V yon. chief engraver of the National Mint, was passed to Mr. Oliver Jones for his interesting description. A number of ancient deeds of antiquarian history were also viewed by the com- pany at Fonmon Castle. Tea was then partaken of, by the kind invitation of Mr. Jones, and, leaving Fonmon, the company drove homewards through Porthkerry Park, arriving at Barry shortly before eight o'clock. Near the ruins of Barry Castle, Mr. J. Storrie, Curator of Cardiff Museum, read a paper on the Roman villa near Llantwit-Major, which had been left over from the preceeding evening. Mr. Storrie showed photo- graphs of the excavations which he made on his own account, and described the finds of skeletons. urns containing human remains, a tesselated floor, remains, of a Roman bath, &c. He had. however, been prevented from pursuing the search by the lady who owned the ground, no reason being given. He expressed the hope that the time had come when the reason would be definitely stated, so that all grounds of objection might be cleared away and the work resumed by some one. as there was a strong feeling in South Wales that it should be prosecuted. It was desirable that they shouM know what is in the villa, and what might be learned of the Roman occupation of that part of the country, of which the only reliable record seems to be amongst the ruins. The company afterwards repaired to the railway station at Barry, there being no time left to visit the docks, &c., at that place as intended, and. having joined several carriage on the eight o'clock train (kindly placed at the disposal of the association for the occasion), the visitors returned to Cardiff by rail, ria Cogan. In the evening, at the Town-hall. Cardiff. Mr. A. C. Fryer, Ph. D., M.A., read an interesting paper on Llantwit-Major. a Fifth Century University and Mr. J. Romily Allen, F.S.A. Scot., read an in- structive paper on The Early Christian Monu- ments of Glamorganshire." Each paper was afterwards discussed by the members present.

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