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Boucher Haees.


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To the Editor of the Monmouthshire Merlin. He who knows not how to value the Welshman's love of country, deserves the pity of all mjen of sense and intelligence. National feelings aie natural to us all and amor pan its is ad- mitted to claim an empire more particularly ir. the hearts of the wise and good. The existence of periodi.icaJ demonstrations of this feeling argues well for the internal stiti of a country, and shews that the energies of the people are directed in right channels; it tends to so the political dL>cora, and binds all together by that community of innocent and laudable interests so es- sential to the well-being of a people." IfViiie.s Guide to the Town and Neighbourhood of Abergavenny. < SIR,-I must th¡l'I time address myself to the public, for • Mrs. Caudle is so entirely ignorant, and so utterly incapable of receiving information, that words would be wasted upon her hollow soul- a soul utterly and for ever dead to a noble senti- ment of Patriptic feeling, and a dmpleton ia her own esteem, lhe Cymreigyddion is an institution not so modern as has been supposed, and more nearly allied to the sympath,es of Vt elshmen than is generally believed. An eloquent speaker at hLn'K J;he Caermarthen Cymreigyddion, or Cam- bnan Society ot Dyfed, said—1"These meetings recall to our memory tne splendid davs of our race, when our bards and minstrels assembled in the halls of the palaces of our native ^1isCedne,;i,C0^tended tl* P"ze of poetry and of song. To briin o ™ h,?our ot' renewing the celebration of the Cam- rw.«iS piS £ ames> whieh have since j!Povv}'?' Gwynedd, and Gwent." From the earliest ages ot the world, '"milar^r11^ of mediocre importance" institutions of a rtX.«i?rituter in their principle, have been in operation, rnli«man he*it of the nation (which, after all, is the rower) the strains of the lyre, the songs of lationf hi0ns!,and t,le tales of the brave and good. Barbarous tit SIT their festivals in honour of what they esteem to be hern 1 "oblest being of human mould—their warrior Sha11 not we> who lay claim to civilization, speak S > %0f that which we love so highly-tne poetry ot ;d™ ? we not endeavour to resuscitate those sublime tohis wiH U3 s-trains wl'ich once strung the sinews of our chief- tains wit,i an iron fervour' Shall we not endeavour to exalt »n influence which, in the secret recesses of our souls, we all STf g6 t0be the liquid gem that instils a value into_tne -.up of our existence > With sorrow we know that the harp ia» been hung too Ion" in the hall of our people, neglected and ng0, eu~that its melody ceased for long, long years to be i7- Ut thanks to the giant-spii'it of Cambria, the Cym- reigyddion shall be the means of exerting a magic influence ,iPon the spirit of sono" "ndand a^in sl,aU eaCAh Je cheered with the "Vunlhig strains" of antiquity. A prophet 3f old said that "Arthur should re-appear —and he shall Prove a true prophet-Arthur shall re-appear, 111 a new garb- le mantle, of .the peaceful chivalry of intellect. The Welsh- man still retains tEirit of the chivalrous Arthur the ever- memorable words of Rio the Breton, are true—" King Arthur dead /lll(j ere th'is feeling is eradicated, each glorious mountain must be removed from before his eyes, tipped as it is with a thousand -i -npl'itioiis,—the foaming torrent must be turned from it" rockv course, rushing with the voice it did centuries ago,-the harp m«st 110 lon^:l' bureat,?et f° thrilling meToc v -each strain, each peculiar thought, language e NV I itself nuist be to'ro^en While we attend to the prosperity of the muse of Cambria, we will not forget its literature but exert every energy to arouse the desire lor research-an object which we have attained in no inconsiderable degree: works of great vaiu, havi been written published, wid we may add, ) Young Cambria is thriving well on the labours of the Cym- reigyddion. We will also look to the commercial prosperity of onr country, and see to it that while the hearts and minds of our people are cultivated, that their hearths shall be brightened by t !ie smile of industry and plenty. The Cymreigyddion differs from the bardic institutions, inas- much as it is more comprehensive in principle, and of greater utility ill effect; the former paid its exclusive attention to the minstrelsy of the land, the latter not only affords encourage- ment to the bard, but also gives a stimulus to trade, and thus endears their national institution to the people of Wales more closely, increasing the amount of interest they feel in iLs pros- perity. Societies of a literary and bardic nature are (I believe) in operation in the following places (though not so wide in their circle of operations, yet actuated by the same motive) -.—Liver- pool, Manchester, Bangor, Dolgelly, Bethesda, Ruthin, Ysceiviog, Llanrwst, Llanerchymedd, Swansea, Cardiff, Cow- bridge, Caermarthen, London, Abergavenny, and one or two others, which for the moment, I forget. Some others, from local 1 causes, have ceased to exist as Lumrei^vd-lion Societies, and have became true ivoi ile Lodges, which, 1 think, are more eir- cumscribed in their means of effecting good, though they offer a fair prospect for the future. The design 0!' these institutions, says Jones, in his prize essay On the Cliarucier of the Welsh as a Nation," is "The preservation of ancient British litera- ture, poetical, historical, antiquarian, sacred, :1I1d moral; the encouragement of the rising genius of the 11a' i* es of Wales in the departments of poetry, history, and general literature also the cultivation of penillion singing (a method of singing with the harp peculiar to the Principality), and in an especial man- ner the encouraging performers on the harp." To these objects the promoters of the Abergavenny Cymreigyddion have added the improvement of Welsh mansfacture in flannel and hats. That these associations, formed fur the sake of carrying out the same object, should be productive of a wide-spread influence upon the habits and character of the Welsh, it would be un- necessary for me to remark and it were as useless for me to hint that the foul breath of Mrs. Caudle," (I have had "a benefit" many time with it, I assure you,) though it were fouler than the thickest Stygian vapour that e'er arose, could possibly hinder their progress. Silly woman But to return. The Abergavenny Cymreigyddion was formed in the year 1832,. by a body of patriotic tradesmen in the town and its vi- cinity. By tradesmen alone the Society is carried on the com- mittee is entirely composed of men in the middle ranks of life and it is entirely an institution for the people. The Society i- encouraged by the wealth of the upper classes in Gwent and Morganwg, though not to an extent commensurate with its im- portance, as well as by our English neighbours—much to their honour. In reviewing its influence, I shall take, 1st, its lite- rature 2ndly, its music; 3rdly, its manufactures and, lastly, I will touch upon Cattwg's slander of Lewys Glyn Cothi and Davyddap Gwylim, and "Mrs. Caudle's" ribaldry about the rogues, vagabonds," &c. &c. Mind, my kind reader, I do not pretend to the great learning of Mrs. Caudle" in these mat- ters, but give you the facts of the case in all honesty and sim- plicity of heart, as they strike me. I shall be glad if you will correct me if I err, as my only objects are the elucidation of truth, and stripping Mrs. Caudle" of her frilled smalls." To the Cymreigyddiou generally the Welsh are indebted for nearly all their literature of a miscelianeouscharacterof modern production, ami the English for much of their knowledge of Welsh history, antiquities, and poetrv. These treasures, taken from the museum of the past, have, by the Eisteddfodan, b-en distributed to the French and Germans; and the enthusiasm fú:" Celtic research now felt by the last-named people (as I have before remarked) has been assisted by the valuable labours of Dr. Meyer and Professor Schultz, whose extraordinary talents have been drawn out by the Abergavenny Cymreigyddion. In this view we regard these institutions of peculiar value, as, while they foster the native geniusofthe Phncipaiity,by open- ing to it the stores of literary wealth, indigenous to the Welsh race, confer a benefit upon the world, by adding to the general stock of learning—a principle of action generous and laudable, and far above the conceptions of such snivellers as Cattwg Cattsvrdd" and Mrs. Caudle." Of course if the Aberg-avenny Irstitution is attacked, the entire nation is involved in the question; or, rather, every Cymreigyddion Society ill Cambria is inevitably included in the charge brought against one Insti- tution, inasmuch as they are constituted for the same purpose. If one is of 110 utility, the labours of all must be viewed in the same light. Those who attack the Abergavenny Institution I know are not aware of the meaning of their own words, and thus, in pity for their ignorance, they have remained unnoticed bv those who are more intimately allied to the workings of tne Society—a method of treatment which they deserved.. How- ever, i would request them to consider what facts ard principles are involved in the discussion before they utter another word. Welsh literature had its "dark age" in the past century— during which period little was done either to preserve and in- vestigate the ancient literature of Wales, or to create a desire in the bosoms of the people for original efforts. But amongst the many signs and wonders" the 19th century has produced, a revolution in the habits of our people is observable,—the star of our country's destiny blazes in the blue and smiling sky of hope,—and in a few years to come we may, in looking upon the past, and contemplating the present, adapt the beautiful words of Mrs. Hemans, and exclaim, At the dead hour of night, Marked ye how each majestic height Burned in its awful beams;- Red shone the Pternal snows, And all the land, as bright it rose, Was full of glorious dreams. And exultingly add— Oh eagles of the battle, rise I The hopes of Cambria wakes It ii your banner in the skies Through each dark cloud which breaks And mantles, with triumphant dyes. Your thousand bills and lakes!" Yes! with the powerful aid of the Eisteddfodan, we have noble hopes for the future. The bread cast upon the waters shall be seen after many daysthe seeds now sopn shall spring up and blossom in a thousand green and sunny spots. That the at- tention of the nation is not yet engaged in the acquirement of scientific knowledge is an evident fact; but the quibbling, snarling, piggish Cattwg" ought to know that the drinking at one stream of knowledge begets a thirst for a draught at another. Because the cottager knows but little of the course of the heavenly bodies, is it a teuton that he should know nothing of the history, the antiquities) or the minstrelsy of his country ? Because Cattwg" cantiot get pig"s»fry for his din- ner, (as being more in unison with his nature) is t[ a reason whv he should reject, a hearty feast of Welsh mutton? Is this your mode of reasoning? 0, silly Cattwg!" sit you down again urion your mother's lap, and ask her to teach you A, B, C Welshmen are not deficient in the spirit that gives the soul to a scientific nation, as I will hereafter prove; and let" Cattwg" or Mrs. Caudle" offer prizes for essays on scientific subjects at the next Eisteddfod, and I will engage he shall bear from his countrymen in language and sense not to be mistaken. The reason of the failure of the efforts which have been made to introduce scientific periodicals into Wales, is partly in the man- ner of their introduction, and in some measure the want of pa- tronage amongst the nobility. But takinj the position of the Welsh people for general information, as it now stands an ong t the rural population, and compare them with the agricu tura.1 populations of England, and it would require but little atten- tion to perceive that the balance lies in favour of the former or take the average number of literary, and thoroughly well- informed men in proportion to the population of the Princi- pality, and compare it with a similar average taken from the population of England, Scotland, and Ireland, and I would again affirm that the balance is in favour of the Welsh, i. e. in point of number, and taking them from the middle ranks of life. Then why should "Cattwg" turn round and snap at his countrymen, and exalt him of another nation as a paragon of excellence ? He should rather do his utmost (if he indeed possesses a principle of patriotism animating his bosom) to ex- cite the emulation of his countrymen for the acquirement of that branch of knowledge which he esteems as the sine gllu non of a nation's glory, rather than stir up their anger by his ribaldry. This would be likely to effect more good for his purpose, which he says is the melioration of the Welsh people, than the plan he is at present adopting. I will give the names of the more important works which 'have been issued by the Abergavenny Cymreigyddion, and append the publications of the Welsh M.S.S. Society, because of the connexion that So- ciety has with the former, and the profound contempt "Mrs. Caudle" seems to feel for it. From the Llandovery press :—" The ancient National Airs of Gwent alln Morgarnog, being a collection, (1' 11lelsh music, deùi- cated to the Queen," by Miss Jane Williams, of Aberpergwm. This work gained the prize at the fifth anniversary of the Aber- gavenny Cymreigyddion. An Essay on the Influence of Welsh tradition upon the Literature of Germany, France., and Scandi- naviaby Professor Schulz. This gained a prize of eighty guineas at the Eisteddfod of 1840, and was translated into En- by Mrs. Berrington. sister of Sir B. Hal), Bart., M.P. AAi\e^r.n y or Ancient Bardic Alphabet. We a i, 0pir'i°n of the Rev. T. Price, (Carnhuanawc,) on this excellent work:—"I must say that this essay is one of the most extraordinary and important productions that have ever come under my notice, either as a prize composition, or one of any other description, inasmuch as the author, in supporting • if-it ory of the Coelbren, does not merely establish the pos- sibility of its genuineness, by shewing its consistency with the alphabets ot ancient times, but he produces most distinct and decided evidences of its having been in use amongst the Welsh Bards as late as the fourteenth century. His authorities are drawn chiefly from the writings of the bards of Tir Iarll, in Morganwg, and particularly from those of Llywelyn Tion, who had made a collection from the libraries of the Abbeys of Neath and Margam, of Plas y Van and Ragland Castle; and in these ancient remains he finds not only mention of the Coel- bren, but absolutely instructions for forming the tablets laid down in the most minute manner; also tablets of the alphabet as it was used by Gwilym Tew Llawdden, and other bards, prior to the 16th century." To the following work I would call "Cattwg's" attention:—Philological proofs of the origiuul unity '? ;<< recent origin of the human race." by J. A. Johnes, Esq. Those of the Welsh M.S.S. Society, (either already pub- lished, or in the course of publication,) are The Liber Landa- vsnsis," a mo t important and valuable work Iolo Morganwg's iHiscell'lJIeolls collection of historical and other M.S.S. I he Heraldic visitation of Wales, by Lewis Dwuu," edited by Sir S. R. Mevrick. K.H., F.S.A., &c. The lives of the British saints (fom allcient M.S.S. in tile British Museum, and elsewhere." §c. Besides numbers of M.S.S., rich stores for future research; but Cattwg" will say these have nothing to do with science! But he admits that the Cymreigyddion is as readily open to those who wish to forward their countrymen in this particular brtnch of literature, as to ought else. Sir John Guest tried it: but Cattwg" says, he did not succeed. Now this was no fault of the Cymreigyddion, and wherefore pour out the spleen of his nature upon the respectable gentlemen who form the committee of that society. How dare he speak in such contemptous terms of those whose laudable and persevering labours have brought about so much good. Is Cattwg" so far above them in his own esteem, either in point of rank or intellect, as that he cannot afford a courteous word. He has kicked Mrs. C. over- board on one question; let him do it once more, and in all honesty recall his hasty words, and disclaim all connexion with such a course of conduct. Thu object of the society is the me- iio-ation of the condition of Wales. To this end their efforts have been directed, and noble results have been the consequence. The We.ah, from the remotest agesof antiquity, have ever been attached to their history, mnpic, and poetry; it is native to the soil; and hence we discover the cause of the peculiar vein of historic literature, which runs through the proceedings of the Eisteddfodan. The Germans are a metaphysical people: the English a commercial, and consequently a more matter-of-fact and scientific people, nationally considered and the Welsh are strangely attached to the records of their ancestry. A Scotch- man will leave his native land with scarcely a feeling of regret; an Englishman will plant a colony on a foreign strand, and for- get his native cliffs in his dream of gold; the Irishman, though warmer in his attachment to his native soil than either of the last-named, is too lively and reckless in his disposition to form that deep, silent, and eternal love for his green hills which ani- mates the Cambrian soul. His is the deep, hidden, current of feeling, that is irresistible in Hj|influence. If he leaves his native land— He drags a heavy chain, which lengthens as he goes," and the burthen of his matin and vesper, is his anwyl home like the Israelite he longs to lay his weary hones neath the walls of his Jerusalem The mountains and rocky glens, the torrents and glades are all endeared to him by some tale of the past -as they were to his forefathers a tale that he receives as his birthright—a spiritual entailed property, which he is taught to value and keep from the despoiler. Here is the secret of those wild, impassioned strains, which were sung by the min- strel of old here is the secret of the bravery ot those heroes whom Greece and Rome might have been proud to own." Then" Cattwg" need not wonder that the literary spirit of the country is evinced in this particular thing. He should know that "time works wonders," and that the increase of the ma- nufacturing efforts of the Welsh people will shew them the necessity of scientific knowledge, and thus they will be gradu-' J 'ed into it. Here, again, the CvmreigydduM1 v tenni comes in aid of Cattwg's" object, with its powerful influence; it is^ ormed for the encouragement of the manufacturing spirit ot country. What course would "Cattwg" propose to make I the Welse a scientific people? I will tell you, my kind public, tie would begin with reviling aU other avenues to information, and make them know that or nothing! Cattwg" says that the Welsh are plentifully supplied with theology! I will go further, and say the abuse of theology, by certain fanatics, has been a curse to many districts but this is no reason for there being no theology at all. Still let the stream of learning flow along—now a rivulet of history uniting with it—here a topo- graphical spring emptying itself—anon a sparkling brook of legendary lore dashing into it—then other springs sending forth their liquid purity for the thirsty inquirer—all shall unite into one, until the stream becomes a mighty river. Attention will, by this means, be called to intellectual culture, and thus the people will lead themselves to taste of the various waters, with- out (a la Cattwg) there being a necessity for pumping it down their throats, which, by the way, might induce nausea. It would not be wasted, perhaps, were we to mention a few of the literary productions of the Cymreigyddion in general, to give an idea of the extent of its influence. Reet's Welsh Saints," thick 8vo. John's cause of Dissent in Wales" 8vo.; Angla- raed's Llwyd's History of Anglesea Newcomb's History of Den- bigh Castle History of Ruthin Castle"Jones's chartlcter of the Welsh, as a nation;" Walter Davis's Traethawe on Rhy- didd also his Topographical Scenery of Powys&i Gwinedd." All these are prize essays of Cymreigyddion Societies. Cam- brian liegister "Cambrian Quarterly "Cambro Briton Cambrian Biography Cymmrodorion Transactions," six volumes; (rwuneddigion Transactions," &;c., fyc.; with hun- dreds of works in manuscript. Surely these are not feeble, in- effectual efforts of a people awaking from a comparative slum- ber of centuries they are the promises of great things. There are, we are glad to find, other means in operation for effecting the object "Cattwg" is desirous of obtaining. The establish- ment of a normal school in Brecon, on the system of the Bri- tish and Foreign school society will do much for South Wales, and a desire is felt throughout the Principality, for the liberal education of the young. Cattwg's" letters are heaps of contradictions; he writes for the sake of writing, no matter what quality it may be What in the world does he want ? Let him pull back the veil of his Llensiniau Mystery, for the leader is unmistakeable in his bray- ing propensities! dsinus portrat mysteria." o Your very obedient servant, EDWARD CAUDLE. Abergavenuy, September 15th, 1815. (

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