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THE COURT. -..--

POLITICAL GOSSIP.I

LITERATURE AND THE ARTS. 0…

EISTEDDFOD AND WELSH MUSICAL…

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EISTEDDFOD AND WELSH MUSICAL FESTIVAL. This annual gathering of Welsh bards took place this year at Flint. The president of the day on Wed- nesday was Edward Bate, Esq., and during the day a prize of X5 5a. and a medal were awarded to Mr. J. Roberts, Holywell, Slafurwr." A prize of Xl le. and a medal was awarded to Mr. Williams, Caarwy a, for the best Welsh.apron piece. A prize of 5s. and a medal waa awarded to Mrs. Doctor Dayies, Holywell, for the beat Englyn (epigram) 1 r Golomon (on the dove). A competition in pianoforte playing (females only), the Vesper Hymn, resulted in the prize, C2 2s. and a medal, being divided between Miss Leech and Miss Daviee. This was followed by a competition in singing any Welsh comic song, for which ^the prize (.£1 and a medal) was divided between David Davies and John Rowland Jones. The prize for the best essay (in English) on the "Evils arising from Popular Ignorance," was awarded to Myfanwy." The com- petition in playing on the harp (females only) resulted in deciding that the prize (£2 and a medal) be awarded to both Mrs. Davies and Miss Evans, Mold. The Denbigh string band took.25 and a medal. The prize for the best translation into Welsh of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, £ 5 5s. and medal, awarded to Mr. Owen James, Carnarvon. The first prize for the patchwork quilt, < £ 1 Is. and medal, was awarded to Tersa." For the best composition of a trio, English and Welsh words, a prize of £ 2 and a medal was awarded to Un hoff o Gymru." The next was a choral competition in singing, And the Glory of the Lord," the prize being zElO and a medal, competed for by choirs from Mold, Birkenhead, Holywell, and New- market-tlae prize was won by Birkenhead. The rifle contest opened at ten o'clock on the range of the 5th Flintshire Rifle Volunteer Corps. Thursday night's concert was an immense success, for not only was the monster pavilion densely crowded, but hundreds, probably thousands, were unable to gain admission, though many had travelled miles, in every variety of nondescript vehicle, for the express purpose of hearing Sims Reeves, who has excited a perfect furare of enthusiasm amongst the honest Welshmen. As on the previous evening, the pavilion was lighted with candles and paraffin lamps, and it was somewhat of a novelty to see the great "prince of tenors" singing in a canvas tent, and holding in his hand a "sweltering" wax candle, the effect being considerably heightened when, responding to an encore in the popular national ballad of The Maid of Llangollen," he stood between two volunteer candle bearers." There was again a very numerous attendance at the Eisteddfod meeting on Friday morning, the proceedings of which commenced with a.n address to the president of the day, Mr. P. Ellis Eyton, of Cornist, who replied in a lengthened ad- dress, in which he urged that the original object of the Eisteddfod was the education, not merely of the people, but the educators of the people also. In times past, when reading, writing, and printing were not known, traditions were carried from generation to generation, and history was recorded in the songs of the bards and in the music of the minstrels (hear, hear). It was then that the wandering minstrels went from house to house, supported by the people, to whom they recited deeds of war, acts of courage, and tales of love (hear, hear). It was said that people then set up as bards who had no poetry in their souls, or as musicians without knowing a note of music, and theEisteddfod was therefore instituted for the purpose of conferring degrees upon such bards and minstrels as might be found worthy of them, and of preventing the adoption of that profession by any but duly qualified persons. After the Saxon conquest they heard but little of the Eisteddfod for some time, and in the reign of Eliza. beth a Royal commission was issued by which many of the principal inhabitants of the principality were 11 commanded to hold an Eisteddfod and congress of bards and minstrels at Caerwys, and to confer degrees upon those who were deemed worthy of them. The Saxon invaders, he was happy to say, had left them the institution of the Eisteddfod, and the great Saxon invaders of the present day were the fashionable ladies who graced the assembly with their presence. It was a remarkable fact, that after the lapse of 600 years since the reign of Edward I., who built Flint Castle, their country, although having physically no line of absolute separation from England, yet, maintained its nationality (hear, hear). They stiU preserved their language and their lays; the people still worshipped God in the language of their fathers, and Welsh music was still revered as much as it was in the time of Chadwallader (hear, hear). He was opposed to any attempt to destroy the nationality of the people, for next to the love of God and love of kindred came the love of country (hear, hear). He was by no means opposed to Welshmen learning the English language, but he maintained that they were in no sense worse men, but better, for retaining a knowledge of their own language. He concluded by urging that the future objeots of the Eisteddfodan should be to encourage the cultivation of Welsh literature, and Welsh music, and adapting themselves to the altered circumstances of the times to encourage also the love of industrial art amongst the people by inviting exhibi- tions such as they had had upon that occasion.—The distribution of prizes was then proceeded with. For the volunteer prizes it was announced there were nearly 80 competitors. The first prize of,210 and the Eisteddfod medal, was won by Corporal Cowap, of the 6th Cheshire V.R., who scored 23 points; the second prize of < £ 5 and a medal was carried off by Private Daniel Morris, of the 4th Carnarvonshire V.R. (Port Madox), who made 22 points; the 3rd prize of £3 and a medal was won by Sergeant John- son, of the 6th Cheshire V.R., who made 21 points; and a 4th prize of X2 was awarded to Sergeant Pres- cott, also of the 6th Cheshire V. B., who also made 21 points. Each competitor fired five shots at a 200 yards range, Hythe position, Wimbledon targets (1864), and with the long Enfield Government rifle. There was only one competitor for the prize for the best English History of the County of Flint, and his composition was declared to be unworthy of a prize. A Carnarvon policeman, named Robert Stephen, ob- tained a prize of X3 and a medal for a glee to Welsh and English words. A prize of .£20 and the bardic chair of Powys was offered for the best ode or poem on "Flint Castle and its Memorable Events," but none of the compositions were deemed worthy of the prize, and it was therefore resolved to re-open the competition. The proceedings of the Eisteddfod were brought to a close by a concert, for which there was again an excellent programme, including several of Sims Reeves' most popular songs.

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