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| V I LOCAL GOSSIP. K — ♦ A book Wing the title The Yale of Gla- morgan," published anonymously m the yeai 1839, caused' so great a stiT m the V ale ot I Glamorgan- that people came, to qnarrels over the authorship. lurst oil*?, then, another, credited with tne nroauction, and those :who possessed literary ability or ingenuity, or both, preferred to be regarded as illiterate who possessed literary ability or ingenuity, or both, preferred to be regarded as illiterate i rather than lettered, so fierce was the mvec- f tive or so hearty was the laughter over tne i book in seme quarters. It a niccest volume which could1 be conveniently carried •t in an overcoat socket, or, as one aie man ¥ said, "in one's hat." The contents of the #• book formed a kind cf medley in which falk- jT lore. ghost stories, and tales of the weird and £ wonderful were mingled in somewhat artless *T- cc:ifusion., Locai'itit.s were clearly indicated, Iand, in many instances, the names were boldly | ( eet fea-t'hi without consideration of anybody s I •" top-?, corns or bunions J The author did not aspire to literary effect. I but first toM his stories as lie had heard I them along the countryside from Barry to 1 Bridgend, and sometimes a little over both. I bo-refers. The edition was small and privately fc circulated, but the general public heard of |l it, and felt eager "to beg. borrow or steal §• copies. In this ^ray everybody soon became fe aware cf the contents, and many inhabitants of villages andl farms in the VaJe "shook in p their shoes"' or kept "farthing dips' burning E" a EL night in their bedrooms for fear a name- R « less Sirap^ or unknown Something: might come ■fc, in the night watches to terrify those who fc. -wished to sleep in peace, and without malice Eft. to friend1 or neighbour. Ilf It is interesting to note some of the. quaint HP. contents of the book. U-n< er the heading I it Bv*' "Tair Xcs Ysbrydnoe," or The Three Spirit Bp, Nights," the. following information is given: On these nights it was said the branches' of K, the yew trees rustled whether there was wind <- or not. The bells in the belfry would creak Hp. without tinman- touch. On these nights men s would take girls' garters and tie them in a m;y true lovers' knot, and then utter words over ■?' them. Then they laid the knots under their I skirts next their hearts. One man did so. I went tc bed, and at last in a vision a girl I stood' beside him. He said. I never saw her ■ like before.' Some who were wiser than I ■ said. when they knew how she was dressed, I I shall onÜ'y find her in a land that is beyond ■ the sea." In another pasre the author refers HjUy to Thomas William, the preacher." who H. long before his marriage went from home ■ and sæut 'up in the bills.' one Nos Ysbrydnos. ■ He undressed and "went into bed. and a mo- ■ ment later the door opened and the room was ■ fflled with light. The apparition of the lady. ■. whom he afterwards married, walked in with Hj&f/ Tier daughter in her hand (that is hand in Hp. hand'). 'Here, Thomas.' she said, 'I am go~ H ing. but I leave Mary for vcu.' Then in a ■' moment all was dark. When he got home the old woman. who for a long time. had been bedridden, had died at the very time of the ■ apparition." The Rev. Thomas Williams bore described was a well-known hym;iok>g:st, ■ whese itinerary took him to various parts of Wales, but his home oulnit was in Bethesda-y- H Fro. Thesie incidents and several more of a similar kind are described in this vokimne. The Spectre Haunts" were numerous, and everybody in the Vale knew them well by ■ name and' reputation. These inchided "the Janes near Xash Manor, where a phantom lady) is to be seen walking about with her arms akimbo. She had a taU, taper-like figure, a scarlet bo-dice, and a tat--e blue petticoat. r She walked at or about midnight. Here too the "headless rady of Xash was to be seen walking" in the neighbourhood of Lisworney ■ Crcssways. and down the reads leading to H Lla-ndow. Llantwit, and Cow bridge. "The narrow* line leading from Mousiad (new called Mcorshead'* to Lisworney Cross ways is said to H £ be haunted by a Gwyllii" or spectre dog. ■ ,j; Jenkin of Wilton, the farmer, and old An- ■i- tbony. who lived with him, saw this dog. The HK animal had two large bright. moonlike eyes. HfP The head and upper part seemed of human form. The body and limbs were those of a large, bright-spotted dog. It makes an unL earthly howl and glares furiously, making people senseless." Old Anthony, named1 in: this book, had the subsequent reputation of fighting the devil on Jjetchmoor or Latch-moor Crossways. This place was originally known as Leecb Mere or H Moor, from the number of leeches formerly found there. Pont-vr-Ysbryd, near Llan- mihangel, was haunted by the spectres of a lady and child, who often appeared in broad daylight. When men quarried for limestone they found behind the hed<re two skeletons an- j swering in size to tbe spectres..In a lane by Ficketstone a tall pedlar's ghost was often 6een. There were rumours that a Scotch pedlar had been murdered there. Im- xnensel'y large bones were found buried by the roadside." With reference to hoarders of money the author states that "one cf these was a hale and hearty woman1, but became mere skin and bones through being haunted and teased by a spirit for not taking a hoard1 honestly to the Ogrnore. For a long while this woman knew there was a lioard of money in the house, and she decided to keep it for her own use. For this reason the spirit would not give her rest. The bevlringers found her one evening late in a sad plight in the church lane. When she came to herself she told the men that for the sake of quiet from the so int. she consented to take the hoard to t-l»e Off more. The spirit then wafted her through the air so high, that she saw the church loft and ail the houses (in Liar.twit Major) far below her. In her flurry she threw the treasure ur> the stream instead of down, whereupon the smrit with a savage look tossed' her into a whirlwind, and she knew not bow in the world she had got back again, it had bewildered her so much. She never had peace from that soirit afterwards." This curious old book has become a "rare copy," and occasionally in out of the way nooks, it is to be seen, but seldom can be bor- rowed unfess the person to whom it is lent has an unimpeachable reputation for returning books. Fcr many years the authorship re- mained unknown, and tbe identity was not fully established until the death of the man- who was a lover of the Yale and its quaint old stories. Even at the present time feAv who possess tbe book know who was the author, and although the title p. on ears in the cata- logue of the reference department of the Ca-r- diff Free Libaries it retains its anonymity. Tb» true st»rjr of the book is interesting. Mr. Retehrood, the anther of it. was a member of a well-known- Quaker familly, and practised as a solicitor in Cow- bridge and L.ondon<. He lived first at Llan- dough, near Cow bridge, and afterwards at Orchard House, Boverton. near Llantwit Major. The Practice established' by him was Bubsequently carriedi on by the late Mr. Thos. Rees. solicitor, whose successors are the well- known firm of Messrs. Gwyn-'and Gwyn:. Mr. Redwood had1 little inclination- for the law. for he appears to have been surrounded by a literary circle, numbering: among his friends Captain John Sterling, the Thunderer" of the "Times," who lived at Llanblet-hian; Thomas Car hie and others. Carl vie visited Charlies Redwood at Llandough and Bover- ton. and found a genial comnanion in the solicitor, who built for himself a smoking arbour up in a tree at the end of the lawn at Orchard House. The author of The Yalle of Glamorgan" appears to have first thought afcout the book in 1837, '-ut it was not printed until 1839. » Obartes Redwood1 amused himself by listen- ing to blame or praise of himself. He was quaint and pecuRar in his mode of life, and1 i-n mawv ways eccentric. While living at Bover- ton he bathed in the sea twice daily in winter and summer alike, and attributed his health and strenerth to that habit. When he built for himself a rustic framework in1 one of the trees on the lawn of Orchard House he was laughed at fcr his eccentricity, but in time people envied his quiet and leafy smoking- room. He wis one of the "good Redwood family, mentioned' bv Iolo Morsanws as feeing always helpful and kind to him during ihis patriotic endeavours to rescue from obli- Tion records that have become invaluable con- tributions to the history of Wales. Charles Redwood's successors at Orchard House were !his haM-brothers. One of these was Professor ^B Redwood. a president of the Pharmaceutical gocietv of Great Britain, and a distinguished scientist. The other was Dr. Lewis Redwood, whose knowledge of medicine and surgery was quite 20 vears in advance of his time. He was medical officer for the Rhvmnev Iron "Works, art aPDointnaent since held by his son, I>r. Thomas Redwood. Any reference to Or- ehard House would be incomplete without the name of Sir Boverton Redwood, who was for snanv years connected with and succeeded Sir JR. Maiendie. He is one of the greatest buthoritiee on> explosives, petroleum, etc.




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