Cylchgronau Cymru

Chwiliwch trwy dros 450 o deitlau a 1.2 miliwn o dudalennau

and you will snap your fiddle across your knee, call damnation upon ballad and interlude, regard the four-and-twenty metres as godless waste of time, look upon dancing and cards as inventions of the devil. Hearken to others, and you will deem religion a kill-joy, and drunkenness a sure proof of poetic genius. Was either side to have it all its own way ? The one would have flung our whole cultural tradition away the other would have left us with an undisciplined and irresponsible populace, blind to larger issues, incapable of political thought and indeed of sustained thought in general. A compromise was reached-compromises, to be sure, are not completely satisfactory. Though the older literary culture was still for some time to be primarily supported by some of the clergy of a Church which in that particular epoch seemed to be rather in a backwater of our national life (the next chapter will have much to say of these), changes were coming the Methodist-even the Methodist preacher-was imperceptibly being encouraged to follow a submerged instinct, to move on from stringing pious elegies to shaping verse of higher excellence on older patterns and on themes not so obviously religious." We were moving towards a day in which prominent Non- conformist ministers and laymen were to be conspicuous figures in our literature and even in our antiquarian studies-it was a Baptist minister who was in 1864 to reprint Rhys Jones's Gorchestion Beirdd Cymru and in 1872 to reprint the Gwyneddigion Dafydd ap Gwilym it was an Independent layman who in 1870 reprinted the Myvyrian Archaiology it was a Methodist printer who ventured in 1872 to reissue (Latin and all) the Specimens of Antient Welsh Poetry of that violent anti-Methodist Evan Evans. Not in the wildest flights of their fancy could the Morrises or Owain Myfyr have conceived that such things could be possible. And after all, these serious be-lectured London-Welshmen who had qualms about smoking may claim our interest and respect as participants in the painful (and indeed the confused) working- out of this compromise which was to ensure the survival, in however modified a form, of that older Welsh tradition which was so near to the heart of the Morrises of Anglesey in 17CI. Yet, the Cymreigyddion Society was evidently flagging. Perhaps the last hope of reviving the ancient brio came with the advent in 1843 of Talhaiarn (John Jones, 1810-69), the whimsical architect-poet (manager for Paxton) who would have