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BRECONSHIRE SPRING ASSIZES.
BRECONSHIRE SPRING ASSIZES. (Abridged from the Sicansea Herald.) These assizes commenced at Brecon on Friday evening. The learned judge (Erie) arrived in town from Carmarthen at three o'clock in the afternoon, accompanied by Lady Erie. The high sheriff lor the county (Colonel Pearce of Frwdgrech) proceeded in a splendid carriage, drawn by four horses, with outriders, to meet his lordship. The high sheriff was accompanied by an unusually large procession of gentlemen in their carriages, and a strong phalanx on horses. The learned judge proceeded at once to the Townhall, where the usual formularies attendant upon opening the commission were gone through. His lordship attended divine service on the same evening, when the Rev. Hugh Bold, who officiated as chaplain on the occasion to the high sheriff, preached the assize sermon. In the evening the sheriffs ordinary took place at the Castle Hotel, when about eighty of the principal inhabitants of Brecon and its vicinity exhibited their respect for Colonel Pearce, by attending. The dinner was got up in a style of great splendour. SATURDAY. This morning the learned judge proceeded in the high sheriff s carriage to the Townhall, when the business was pro- ceeded with. The following magistrates and gentlemen were sworn on the GRAND JURY: Joseph Bailey, Esq., M.P., foreman. Howel Gwyn, Esq.. M.P. J. P. De Winton, Esq. W. R. Stretton, Esq. -John Lloyd, Esq. W. Maybery, Esq. W. H. West, Esq. Rhys D. Powell, Esq. Morgan Morgan, Esq. J. W. Morgan, Esq. E. D. Thomas, Esq. J. P. Sneed, Esq. J. J. Williamson, Esq. C. Miers, Esq. P. M. Pell, Esq. J. J. Dc Winton, Esq.: I H. P. Price, Esq. I). W. Lloyd, Esq. D. G..J. S. Woodhouse, Esq. John Evans, Esq. I Howell Williams, Esq. Rees Williams, Esq. The clerk of arraigns having read the usual proclamation against vice, profaneness, and immorality, the learned judge t, proceeded to address the grand jury, observing that the matters which they would have to inquire into were considerable in point of number, and some of the cases were of great import- ance. Amongst others there was a charge of murder which would be submitted to their consideration. The effect of the evidence, as disclosed in the depositions, was such that he (the learned judge) thought they could feel but little difficulty in nnding a bill. He drew their attention to the case for the pur- pose of stating that at one time it appeared the prisoner had expressed a wish to make a declaration. The governor of the ^aol, to whom this offer was made, refused to receive this de- daration, excepting in the presence of one of the magistrates. Subsequently prisoner declined making the declaration. With regard to the gaoler who refused receiving this evidence against a person charged with so serious a crime, every one must respect the feelings influencing him. At the same time, such statements, in his lordship's opinion, ought to be received. His lordship briefly referred to the other cases in the calendar, and the grand jury retired. Mrs. Gicynne Holford v. Pritchard. His lordship took this nisi prius case while the grand jury were considering the bills before them. Mr. Chilton, Q.C., and Mr. Grove, appeared forthe plaintiff; the counsel for the defendant were Mr. Sergeant Jones and Mr. Davidson. This was an action brought to recover the sum of £ 50, which the defendant had agreed to pay plaintiff for the exclusive right of fishing in the Buckland Fishery, which formed the subject of a memorable lawsuit some vears since, between the late Col. Holford and Mr. Bailey, M.P. ;From Mr. Chilton's statement and the evidence adduced, it ap- peared that M rq. Holford had established her right to this fishery. The defendant, who was a professional fisherman at Brecon, en- tered into an agreement with Mr. Brown, the plaintiff's agent, to pay L;50 a year for the exclusive right of fishing from Llansaint- frydd to Manoskin, a distance of three miles. This agreement was read, but the actien was not brought upon it. The learned judge, in summing up, told the jury that, although the actioif was not brought on the agreement, yet the agreement formed very good evidence of what the intention of the parties was. The defendant had unquestionably agreed to pay £ 50 for the right of fishing in the fishery, and when a party made an agreement (whpther the consideration was too much or too little) it was a dangerous principle to allow him to dispute it. At the same time, under the present form of action, the jury were at liberty to make a reduction, if they thought fit t-o do so. After a few minutes' deliberation, the jury found a verdict, in favour of plaintiff for £40. TRIALS OF PRISONERS. John. Davies, aged 23, and John Scott, 18, pleaded Guilty to -the charge of having, in January, feloniously stolen one loaf, by heaking a window in the shop of James Stanton, of Crickhowell. The prisoners, who said that they were driven to the commission of the crime in consequence of being in a state of starvation, were sentenced to three months' imprisonment with hard labour. John Hughes, 21, miner, and William Aubrey, 32, shoemaker, pleaded Guilty to the charge of stealing one cock fowl, the pro- perty of Thomas Harris, of the parish of Llangynider. Sentenced to fourteen days'hard labour. Thomas Seton, aged 38, pleaded Guilty to the charge of hav- ing, on March 17-th, stolen one shovel, the property of John Watkins, of the parssh of Vaynor.. Sentenced to three weeks' labour. Ralph Jacksan, 30., hatter, was indicted for having, in Ja- nuary, stolen one fustian coat, the property of Henry Mose- ley, of Brecon. Some amusement was created in court by the prisoner's hesitation in not knowing whether he should plead '• Guilty'' or Not Guilty. He said he picked the coat up from the ground, but did not take it from the nail. It was, however, proved that the coat was hanging on a nail by the shop door, and that the prisoner had deliberately carried it away. Verdict- Guilty. Sentenced to three months' hard labour. ARSON AT YSTRADGUNLAIS. The grand jury ignored the bill against David Davies ard TVm. 'Davies, who were charged with having feloniously and mali- ciously set tire to a stack of hay, the property of tike Rev. Thomas, Williams, Tyr-y-cwm, Ystrad. Prisoners, who were out on bail were therefore, not called upon to surrender. BURGLARY AT LLANEI.LY. yrilliam Cross, 24, boatman, and Joseph Johns, 23, miner, in .Kovember last, burglariouely entered the house of Richard Price, bf Lianc!lys Brecanshire, and carried away three leaves of bread, one piece ot bacon, several cheeses, and other goods. Mr. T. Allen conducted tiie prosecution. The prisoners, who appeared to be old adepts in courts of justice. < ross-examined each witness with great nonchalance, and addressed -the jury on the inconclusive character of the evidence as to identity. liernamao, an officer stationed at Coleferd. proved a former eon- • Tiction against Cross, under the name of John Williams, at the Monmouthshire -Quarter.Sessions. His lordship sentenced both prisoners to ten years' transportation Doe Diem Maybery v. Pugh. This was P.-n action of ejectment, in which Mr. Chilton, Q.C. -giid Mr. Grove, appeared for the plaintiff; 3Ir. Sergeant Jones for K-the'defendant, The action was brought by Mr. Walter Maybery ,against the defendant, to recover possession of a farm occupied by the defendant, who had received notice to qr.it, but refused !o deJi- w vef up possession. The jury, after hearing the learned judge sum r;) the evidence, found a verdict in favour of the lessor of the lJlaintjff. y John Smith pleaded Guilty to the charge .of having stolen one eaker the property of Edward Moss, of Brecon. Ilis lord stop thought that as the prisoner had been in gaol since January 30, he h id b?en suiffciently punished. He, therefore, sentenced the pri- soner to one day's imprisonment. 'Thomas Voss, 24, tiler, pleaded Guilty to having, in the parish of Cantref, feloniously stolen one dried salmon, the property of John Lewis. A certificate of a former conviction was proved against the r- prisotier. who was an old offender. Sentenced to twelve months' imprisonment with hard labour. Jtw. llitchings, 19, labourer, pleaded Guilty to the charge of having, in the parish of LlaneUy, Brecon?,hire, stolen one fustian jacket, the property of Joseph Williams. Sentenced to one month's imprisonment with hard labour. (lVrn. Perrott, 22, pleaded Guilty to the charge of having stolen .one shirt. Sentenced to two uionths' imprisoriment with ifeard labour. IGNORED BII<I..—The grand jury ignored the bill against Thomas IViltiams, charged with having, at the parish of Vaynor, feloniously stolen £ 1 8 s. Gd. from the person of .Morgan Morgan. Prisoner, who was out on bail, was not called upon to surrender. BURGILARY AT LLANIGON". John JValker, 48, labourer, and John Doughty, 20, bwfcefaer, were indicted for having feloniously broken and entered into the dwelling-house of Thomas Watkins, at Lknigori, and with having stolen wearing apparel, &c. Mr. C.trne and Mr. T. Allen prosecuted. The jury returned a verdict of Guilty against both prisoners. Sentenced to fifteen calendar months' imprisonment with hard j ibour. Thin coneluded Saturday's business, and the court was adjourned MONDAY. This morning the learned judge entered the hall at nine o'clock precisely. The hall was surrounded by hundreds of persons, anxious to gain admittance, long before the hour arpointed for commencing business, and there was the greatest competition for seatll. The majority, of course, were obliged to be content with remaining outside. i THE CWMGWDY MURDER. James Griffiths, alias Thomas Williams, aged IS, was. placed at the bar, arraigned upon an indictment charging him with hav- ing, at Cwmgwdy, in the parish of St. David's, by means of an axe, inflicted six mortal bruises and twenty-six fractures on the skull of one Thomas Edwards, whereof he died. The form of the charge was varied in five counts in the indictment, and the crime laid as having been committed by an axe and a pitchfork. Prisoner pleaded Not Guilty, and appeared bur. little concerned, although he wept slightly during one part of Sergeant Jones's address. Prisoner was undefended. Mr. Sergeant Jones and Mr. Davidson appeared for the prose- cution; attorney., Mr. D. Thomas. The following were the jury sworn :—Messrs. Eustace Watkins, Thomas Probert, Win. Phillips, Rufus Price, David Powell, John Huish, Rees Parry, John Morris, Thomas Williams, Thomas Wil- liams, James Powell, and Llewellyn Thomas. Mr. Sergeant Jones, in addressing the jury on the part of the prosecution, commenced by remarking that the mere statement of the serious charge against the prisoner at the bar, as read by the officer of the court, was sufficient to impress them with the solemn duty they had to perform. It would therefore, he was convinced, be superfluous on his part to use any exhortations that they would give their closest attention while he briefly stated the principal facts which he proposed substantiating by the evidence of the various witnesses. As an occurrence of the character of that under consideration was of very rare occurrence in that district, this matter miiit have given rise to consideration, conversation, and discussion. He therefore hoped they would exert themselves to exclude from their minds all rumours which might have reached them previous to being called into the jury box, and arrive at a conclusion from the evidence of the witnesses and from the evi- dence only. It would appear that the prisoner at the bar, who had gone by the names both of James Griffiths and Thomas Wil- liams, some time prior to the last harvest had been engaged under the latter name, as a farm servant, by Mr. J. Powell, of Cwm- gwdy. The other servant, Thomas Edwards, had been in Mr. Powell's service for about two years. The prisoner and Edwards continued in the service until the 17th of November, the day ou which the occurrence giving rise to the present inquiry took place. They had lived together on amicable terms, and on that day both were to have left the service—it being Brecon hiring fair, when it was not unusual for servants to change. The prisoner and the deceased usually slept together up-stairs. The other inmates of the house were Mr. and Mrs. Powell, a son, a daughter, and Eli- zabeth Phillips, who had lived as a servant in the family for five years. The first person whom he proposed calling before them was the son, who got up about five o'clock on that morning, and on getting up found that prisoner and deceased had gone out be- fore him. He subsequently saw deceased sitting on the chaff- cutter in the stable, and the prisoner standing near him. Soon afterwards the son left for the purpose of taking a horse to a black-, smith's shop. The witness who could speak to the next series of facts, was Elizabeth Phillips. She got up about a quarter to six, and having lighted the fire, observed that some persons had gone out, the door having been opened. On going out she saw the pri- soner near a dungheap, by the garden gate. He said, in answer to her question, that he had not got up at five o'clock. She re- plied, "No, you got up earlier than that." He however said he had not. Prisoner accompanied her part of the way towards the brook, to which she was going to obtain water; and after some conversation, her attention was attracted by groaning, proceeding apparently from the dungheap. Being in the month of November it was quite dark at that hour. She returned to the house, and hearing footsteps in the bed-room occupied by prisoner and de- ceased, she called out. Prisoner answered, and came down. She remarked that she heard some groanmg outside. He smiled, and said what can it be. They both went out in the direction of the dungheap, but he stopped short of the spot whence the groans proceeded. The witness then returned to the houie for a lantern, and the prisoner pretended to follow, but from that time he had disappeared, and was not found until taken into custody from Ipswich gaol several weeks afterwards. Soon after this Janet Powell, the daughter, came down stairs, and, the son had likewise returned from the blacksmith's shop. Ac* companied by Elizabeth Phillips some of them proceeded towards the heap whence the groaning proceeded. At first they saw nothing, but on returning to the house they told Mr. Powell of what they had heard. He, accompanied by the others, then pro- ceeded towards the spot, and they discovered Thomas Edwards iii a state of insensibility. He was covered with blood, and his skull dreadfully fractured. He was taken into the house. Medical assistance was procured, but he expired the same evening. Pre- vious to his death the deceased had used various expressions, but being in a state of insensibility at the time, those words would not be given in evidence. In addition to this evidence it would appear that in a gutter near this dungheap was found concealed an axe, which had been last used by Janet, the daughter, who left it in the rickyard, some distance from the place in which it was found. On it were marks of blood. The deceased's hat was likewise found, and on the back part, corresponding with the dreadful fractures on the skull, was a hole, evidently made by means of some blunt, instrument. Thrown into the garden, near the spot where deceased was found, and by the gate where the servant girl first saw the prisoner, was a pitchfork, on which were likewise marks of blood. Suspicion naturally fell on the prisoner, who had, as he had stated, suddenly disappeared, and was not found until January in the present year. On the (ith of that month Mr. Powell saw him in Ipswich gaol, and on his saying that he was sorry to see him in such a position, and alluding to the crime, prisoner hung down his head and said nothing, either confirming or denying. He subsequently sent for the gaoler of Ipswich, ex- pressing a wish to say all about it," but that gentleman refused hearing him unless in the presence of a magistrate. A. waistcoat and shirt were found in the prisoner's possession, which would be positively identified as those of Thomas Edwards. In addition to this it would be found that prisoner's own shoes were found outside Cwmgwdy house, as though thrown from the bed-room window. It appeared that a day or two before, Mr. Powell had, in the prisoner's presence, paid Edwards 30s. The jury would observe that the prisoner left without applying for 7s. or 6s. which were due to him, although he had asked for them before they were due. The learned counsel then called the several witnesses named in his address, who detailed at length the particulars attend- ing the murder. Prisoner, on being asked if he had any observations to make to the jury, said, I do not know what to say," and afterwards added, I leave the case in your hands, my lord." His lordship commenced summing up the evidence at twenty minutes past two in the afternoon. He observed that it was hardly necessary for him to remind them that the inquiry in which they were engaged was of the most vital importance both to the pri- soner at the bar and to the interests of society. After some ob- servations on the case generally, the learned judge said that the jury should first inquire whether the prisoner was in a position which afforded him an opportunity of committing the murdar. Could he have committed this crime if he chose P Next, they must look into, and make a careful comparison of the various cir- cumstances detailed in evidence, as pointing to the prisoner or any other individual in connexion with the crime. Next, they must take into consideration the prisoner's conduct previous to the time of the commission of the alleged crime, at the time of its commis- sion, and subsequently. They must lastly direct their attention to the motives suggested on the part of the prosecution as influenc- ing the prisoner to the commission of this crime. His lordship having carefully recapitulated the p irtions of the evidence bearing upon the above points, concluded by saywg-" Now, gentlemen, 'tat c take these circumstances into your calm-consideration, as men of firniness and conscientiousness. If the facts adduced in evidence k-ave on yo'ur minds a reasonable doubt that the prisoner is the man who committed the murder, you must give him the benefit of that doubt; :but if, on the other hand, they leave a firm and abid- ing conviction that he was the man who committed the murder, then you iTOJSt say so by your verdict." The jury then retired, and after an absence of ten minutes re- turned into ■court with a verdict of GUILTY.—Proclamation for silence having been made, His lordship put on the blackcap, and said Thomas Williams, you stand convicted by the verdict of a jury of an aggravated wilful murder. I have carefuliy attended to the evidence, and feel bound to state that it leaves no doubt on my mind that the verdict is right. It appears to 100 that Y041 had planned your crime with calmness mid deliberation. Yuu had made prepara- tions for carrying into tffect your awful design. You had pre- pared the dreadful weapon, and thus planned the death of a man who was your friendly companion. You had likewise planned and contrived a way in which to conceal your guilt by covering the corpse, and all this appears to have -been done for the purpose of "ettin"' possession of his property. By Divine and human law the punishment of death is awarded to the crime of murder. So far as it rests with me, the law will take its course. 1 therefore 1 exhort you to imrstore your Heavenly Redeemer, and pray for that passed the sentence of death in the usual form, holding out no hope of mercy. During the whole time the sentence was being passed the prisoner covered his face with his handkerchief, resting his head on the front of the dock. The unhappy youth was im- mediately removed. BlULTH. William Pugh, 53, was indicted for having embezzled one sovereign, two half-sovereigns. and other money, the property o David Evans. Verdict—Guilty. Sentenced to four calendar months' imprisonment with hard labour. NIGHT POACLIING.-S(tititzel Thomas, collier, was charged with having, in the parish of Llangattock, on the night of Saturday, Feb. 10, with others, entered on certain enclosed lands of the Duke of Beaufort, for the purpose of destroying game, he being armed with a gun. Mr. Grove appeared for the prosecution Nl r, Allen defended the prisoner. Verdict-Guilty, with a recommendation to mercy. Prisoner was sentenced to three months' hard labour. STEALING A PISTOL.—Joseph Brown, 26, and T. Webber, 21, two soldiers, were indicted for having stolen a pistol, value 10s., the property of William Lewis, landlord of the Cross Keys public- house, Lanvaes, Brecon. Both prisoners were AcquItted. -This concluded the business of the assizes. BRECON. REDUCTIONS IN THE ARMY.—Further orders have been received by the various regiments, under which, the reduc- tions suspended last week have been proceeded with. The first batch was discharged from the 15th regiment at Brecon barracks; and during the past week the whole number of 170. have been sent out. They were allowed one pound each to defray their expenses to their respective homes.—Silurian
VICTORIA IRON WORKS.
VICTORIA IRON WORKS. VICTORIA CYMIIEIGYDDION" SOCIETY. The first annual meeting of the above society was held at the Bee Inn, on St. David's day. J. Beaumont, Esq., took the chair, and briefly addressed the meeting. He then called on Mr. D. S. Lewis to read his, and Mr. J. Davies's (Brychan) awards: 1. For the best essay on the superiority of the Welsh over the English language—prize ;El-awarded to ap Tylle; the proper name was received. 2. For the best elegy on the late Rev. T. Price (Carnhu- an&wcJ—prize £ 1—Cymro Gularus. 3. For the best essay on the Antse),ait -prize 5s.— Penderin, 4. For the best englynion on the new year—prize 5s.— 11forganiad. 5. For the best set of singers, in four parts, of the Welsh air Merch Megan'—Mr. T. Williams, Ebbw Yale, and Mr. J. Rowlands, Victoria, contended for the prize Mr. W. Morgan, Rhymney, decided in favour of Mr. J. Rowlands. 6. For the best essay on the most effective means of preserv- ing health—prize 10s.— Mr. T. Lloyd, Briery Hill. 7. For the best five stanzas in praise of Joseph Beaumont, Esq.—prize 10s.—Mr. J. Evans, Ebbw Vale. 8. For the best historical essay on the county of Carmarthen —prize £1 10s.-two competitors of equal merits, Mr. T. Nicholas, and Mr. T. Lloyd, both of Briery Hill. The prize was therefore divided between them. 9. For the best historical stanzas on the county of Carmar- then-prize 15s.—Mr. E. Jones, Ebbw Vale. 10. For the best set of singers, in four parts, of the Welsh air" Difyrwch Gwyr -prize 10s.—Mr. J. Rowlands. 11. To the best female singer of any Welsh air, accompa- nied by the harp-prize os.—Miss H. Edmunds, Ebbw Vale. 12. To the best male singer of any Welsh air, accompanied by the harp—prize 5s.—Mr. JL Moore, Victoria. There were seven competitors. Mr. LI. Williams, of Caerphilly, played at intervals on the harp, which elicited the applause of all. Two prizes of 28. 6d. each were then offered for the best extempore englynion, which were awarded to Mr. A. Jenkins, Ebbw Vale, and Mr. D. Jones, Rhymney. Mr. D. S. Lewis then rose aud delivered an excellent address on the character of Cymreigyddion societies. The Chairman delivered an interesting address, expressive of delight with the proceedings of the day, and his respect for the w inhabitants of the neighbourhood generally. The Rev. C. Lewis, of Ebbw Vale, in highly eulogistic terms, then proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. Beaumont for taking the chair, which was enthusiastically responded to. 0 Mr. Beaumont returned thanks. A vote of thanks was also given to the judges, after which the meeting separated.
NANTYGLO. ADVANCE OP WAGES.—On Thursday week, 11. Bailey, Esq., manager of the iron works, sent for a number of his workmen for the purpose of making known to them his intention to ad- vance their wages ten per cent. The glad news caused great rejoicing, and Mr. Bailey is greatly praised for being the first iron master who has determined on sharing with his men the benefit derived from the late improvement in the iron trade.
CARMARTHEN. LAMMAS-STREET CIKCBLATXNG LIBRARY.—On the 20th inst., a most interesting lecture was delivered by Dr. Davison, in connexion with this institution, on Mahomet and his times." The auditors were so delighted with the just and instructive remarks of the learned lecturer, that they expressed a wish, which was acceded to by Dr. Davison, that he should deliver another lecture in continuation of the same subject on the 3rd of April. LITERARY AND SCIENTIFIC INSTITUTION. On Thursday evening last, a lecture was delivered by the llev. William Mor- gan in connexion with the above institution, on the "History of Natural Philosophy." The rev. gentleman gave a brief but lucid account of the progress of natural philosophy in the middle ages, tracing its gradual development with much skill and ability. The lecture proved highly interesting. MILITARY TROPHY.—A letter has been received by Mr. John Davies, of Catherine-street, in this town, containing a medal granted to his son, Thomas Davies, of the 10th regiment of foot, in commemoration of his gallant conduct at the Sutlej. The oallant fellow to whom this honorary testimonial was granted, has, we regret to learn, died of the wounds received in the action. DISGRACEFUL SCENE;-On Thursday night, the 15th instant, one of the most disgusting scenes witnessed in this town for a Ion"- time took place, and one which fortunately is of very rare occurrence we allude to the burial without funeral rites of the body of a respectable old man, named Jones, who committed suicide and at the inquest on whose body a most learned, wise, and humane jury returned a verdict of felo de se. It having become known that the body was to be interred on the above nio-ht, a vast concourse of people, amounting to some hundreds, assembled to witness the sad sight; and when the coffin was brought out, about nine o'clock, p.m., borne on the shoulders of four men, who galloped away with it almost at the top of their speed, the scene was truly disgraceful to a civilised and. Christian nation, as the conduct of the populace, who ,occupied the time in coarse and indecent jesting, laughing, and jeer- in"- and other depraved acts, were far more befitting a heathen than a civilised nation. The body having been brought into the churchyard was almost literally thrown into the grave, and covered over with the greatest rapidity. We much dislike calling in question the verdict of the jury, but we certainly think there was sufficient evidence to infer that the unfortunate deceased laboured under temporary delusion, caused by appre- hended distress. If such scenes as these must be enacted—for- tunatelv they do but seldom occur, the above, we believe, being the'only one within the last hundred years—we think they may very easily be conducted in a more orderly manner, and at a time when they are not likely to be attended with such truly may very easily be conducted in a more orderly manner, and at a time when they are not likely to be attended with such truly demoralising accompaniments as characterised that on Thurs- day night.—Carmarthen Journal,
CARDIGAN. The Carmarthen Journal says :—" We regret to learn that Prvse Pryse, Esq., the hon. member, to whom the petition against the repeal cf the Navigation-laws was forwarded, as we informed our readers in our last, was prevented by private business f1I1,d illness from presenting the petition, as solicited I'. by the constituency of Cardigan. It appears from a letter ad- dressed by the hon. gentleman to William Phillips, Esq., the Mayor, that he had some private business to transact in the city on the Monday afternoon that the petition was to. be pre- sented, to which die hon. gentleman was obliged to attend, and in consequence could not be at the House of Commons at the necessary time to present the petition. The hon. gentleman further stated that in consequence of a severe attack of rheu- matism, or gout—he was uncertain which—caught by. being in a north cast. wind, he v,-oul(I be unable to leave his residence, to at tend his Parliamentary duties. We are however happy to inform our readers that ttie hon. gentleman has sufficiently recovered from his severe attack of rheumatism or gout to be able to attend the House of Commons and that he was present Lthe foliowmg_Tuesiay evening, and voted against Church-
Iltnimi MEILLION MAI, &c. Prize Poems, by GWILYM MAI. Carmarthen Jones & Evans. 12mo., pp. 84. A GREAT statesman said, Give me the making of a nation's 0 ballads, I care not who makes the laws." Happy sayings by great men generally contain some little exaggeration, and so does this; but it also indicates a deep truth. It is a sublime vocation given to some men to put the thoughts and feelings of universal humanity into apt phrase, and clothe them in immortal verse. The terse and pointed line—the smooth and flowing couplet—the majestic, self-invoked, and self- interpreting sonnet—how happily they occur to the mind of the accomplished orator; how well, expressively, and un- resistingly they clench an argument, 14 point a moral," or adorn a tale." One of the best Anti-Corn Law speeches we ever heard was by a very popular minister, and from the very nursery he brought a verse of doggrel rhyme to describe the merits of the far-famed" sliding scale." Much had been said by other speakers about tile 11 theory of averages," and Z!, such learned matter, to which some six hundred of us listened, with as little effect as human nature would permit. This same orator himself had dealt somewhat largely in the same kind of talk, and was listened to with great gravity,—under- stood, probably, by a few, certainly not by us,—when he sud- denly said, You have all its merits in that famous verse— Here it goes up, up. up Here it goes down, down, down Here it goes backwards and forwards Here it goes round, round, round.' This settled the matter at once; even we, the present re- viewer, flattered ourselves, innocent as we are of such kind of knowledge, that from that moment we comprehended the sliding scale. Who amongst our countrymen—let us come- to argue matters-has not felt this kind of determinative and consummating effect produced by a happy, quotation of a line or two of poetry in a sermon or a Rpcech r CHKISTMAS EVANS was eminent for such felicitous hits. He was quite master of William Williams—had him always at command— and frequently used a single verse with prodigious effect. The late lr. HERRING, of Cardigan, was very expert in this way; so indeed were many whom we have now only to remember,—gone from us to the rest and the reward of God's redeemed. Such thoughts as these have been induced in our minds by a perusal of Meillion Mai," by Mr. WILMAM TIIOMA^ of the Journal Office, Carmarthen, We have long known hit name as that of an industrious and diligent man, obliged by assiduous daily labour to provide for the wants of the day, and still managing and contriving to pay his court to the Aweit of his country. In the number of persons who do this; the Welsh people stand unparalleled among the nations. Who present at the Abergavenny Eisteddfod can have forgotten the robust, manful, and unaffected appearance of Mr. John Rhys, of Pendarran, when he stepped to the platform to be invested with his richly-earned medal ? When the proceed- ings of the first day's meeting were over, an old friend said, John llhys, I shall see you to-morrow." "No, no, sir (was the reply); I must be at my work, in Pendarran, to-morrow morning, for so I get honest bread." We doubted at the moment whether that was not the noblest man in that room, crowded, though it was, with the rank, fashion, and wealth, as well as the genius of South Wales. We were fortunate since to be present at a Cymreigyddion meeting in an English city, where the Cymry congregated together in goodly numbers the chairman, in a good Eisteddfod fmAion, too, inquired whether any bard present had an enalipi, a cywydd, or an aivdl to recite. A person, of comparatively diminutive stature, stood up, with a leek in his hand. He was- well compacted, firmly built, and singularly fearless, though, very modest in his bearing but the peculiarity of the man was in the most remarkable expression of his face. It was so concentrated, so unmistakcably a real man's face, as though the entire soul of him was in the eye-on the cheek-rlle upper lip and the chin. We at once felt the charm, but were curious enough to watch the effect upon others. There-" was a group of ladies just in front of the platform aye, let our readers understand, that in this same English city, in th& heart of the north of England, Tally is not ashamed of his coun- try and its language, and at the meeting in question we had not a few of the fairest of Cambria's daughters, every one wearing a leek, tied to her clasp or her bonnet, with a white- ribbon. These ladies looked at the man with the most ob- vious admiration. He recited two englynion, and stepped quietly down. An English lady present, who wore a i-ose iii her shawl, came to us, and said, Have you many such people as that in your country ?" How unutterably proud we were to say, li Oli, yes, ma'am; these are- our bards." Indeed! I most earnestly congratulate you and the country on having such men." This same bard is a daily labourer, with his shovel or pickaxe, and gets some half-a-crown a (lay,-i. e., when he has work to do at all. We could fill a whole page of the PRINCIPALITY with similar instances; but must apologise to GWILYM MAI for keeping our kind reader so long- from his interesting little work. The compositions in this volume are for the most part prize poems, and are twenty-two in number. There is a happy variety of metre—from the striking kinds so peculiar to Welsh bardism, to the artistic, but not less poetical, ordi- nary form of verse. To give extracts, which we cannot pretend to translate effectively, will be but tedious to the English portion of our readers, and we shall therefore do little of this but beg to indicate an opinion of several of these compositions. Before- doing this we must be permitted to combat an opinion which is not unprevalent among the Welsh bards; and that is, that no man is competent to give judgment on their compositions unless he is a bard himself. To this extent only is that notion correct, that a man who docs not understand the peculiar rules of Welsh poetry, has no right to express an opinion as to whether a bard, in a given case, has observed those rules or not. But of the thing itself-thø 11 poesyll- the divine utterance"—" the thought that breathes"—" the word that burns"—or, to borrow our own national term, the "AWEN.witli its incomparable bardic explanationi "An eye to see nature, a heart to feel nature, and a courage that will dare to accompany nature." Of this, thousands and tena of thousands of men are as competent judges as any bard in the land. A ploughman, from Essex, went to a concert in London to hear Madame Sontag sing. After certain adjust- ments of the smock frock, and scratches of the pate, he said,. .1 She has a nest (if nightingales in her bostnn" Was this poor fellow no judge of vocal music? Query, rather, was there then present a titled and effeminate dandy, or a vain and disdainful highborn dame, that could have uttered such a masterly critique ? The celebrated Duchess of Devonshire, Fox's great friend and political supporter, who used to can- vass Westminster for him, was held to be about the hand- somest woman of her day, and many compliments would in her "station be lavished upon her. She was one day on a canvassing tour through Covent Garden, when an Irish coal heaver came to her, cap in hand, and said, "Madam, will you pleae to allow me to light my pipe at your eye ?" Was- that humble man no judge of female beauty, though he had j til Z!, never read Lavater, and had never so much as heard of the doctrine of outline," &c. &c. ? To go to another department of human discernment and opilliøn-for all these things have one fundamental principle in common—what well-read English- man has ever doubted, that .JEREMY TAYLOR was a real poet t Where are his lie ever write any P The answer is, IIi$poetry is enshrined in Im sermons, of which nectar they are full to orerflowiiuj. Indeed, the sober theologian would say, too full by far for strictly purposes. What Welshmali, who has ever heard Christrafis Evans., when lie was borne aloft by his imperial fancy," will deny that lie was a t Where is his awdl or cyimjdd ? A few liyinns he certainly perpetrated but there is not a bai-clling. L who makes any kind of myb/n, who is not prepared to criticise them. Nay, let us close this digression by naming WILLIAMS, of Parity celvn. Was he a bard or not? Not in the sense in which some of our countrymen will exclusively understand the word. But was he really, a bard f Had he no portion of the true a wen ? This is answered by millions of human hearts, stirred to their profoundest depths, and excited to their utmost capacity for emotion, by his almost seraphic song. All this we have said with the double purpose of calling our