Symud i'r prif gynnwys

St. Cadoc's Church, Caerleon by Eija Kennerley A guide book to the church of St. Cadoc in Caerleon starts with the exposition that "a place of Christian worship has existed on the site of the present church for about eight hundred years." As the guide book probably was written during the 1960s, the stretch of eight hundred years therefore takes us back to the middle of the 12th century. The writer of the guide refers to the apparently Norman type of an arch at the west end of the church, as the only surviving feature of that period. The rest of the guide contains a lot of legendary material on which a proper historical study could not rely, in spite of the possibility that there may be grains of truth in it. Unfortunately, legendary material forms also the main part of J. Bradney's account of the church in his History of Monmouthshire. The building itself does not give many indications of its age. The last rebuilding in 1867 seems to have been very thorough and removed almost all traces of the earlier nave and chancel, except some 15th or early 16th century arches on the north side of the nave. The tower is probably the only part left of the earlier church. The usual assumption, following from the fact that the church bears the name of St. Cadoc, is, that a church must have existed on the site either in the saint's lifetime, the sixth century, or soon after that. The church is built partially on the Roman headquarters building, which fact strengthens the belief that there indeed is an unbroken Christian tradi- tion here. Quite often important Roman buildings became Christian basilicas-so, why not here, too? However, there is so far no archaeo- logical evidence that any Christian worship existed in Caerleon in the Roman period. Professor E. G. Bowen states that Caerleon was outside the cluster of Cadoc-dedications and that this kind of single dedication had an associa- tion "with a Roman context." This makes him conclude that Cadoc or Cadog "or one of his immediate disciples made use of both the inland (northern) and the coastal (southern) Roman roads leading to the west- ward." Canon E. T. Davies points out: although we speak of the dedi- cation of our churches to particular saints, it is almost certain that, in the case of our old foundations, there was no formal dedication. These names should be thought of as commemorating certain persons who had once a connection, oftentimes fleeting, with these sites. They are, there- fore, more in the nature of memorial churches than buildings formally dedicated to a saint." There is no archaeological evidence of a Celtic or pre-Norman church at the site in Caerleon, if one does not take the finding of a fragment of