Cantre’r Gwaelod, which extended some 20 miles west into what is now Cardigan Bay, was ruled as part of the Kingdom of Meirionnydd by Gwyddno Garanhir, born circa 520 AD.
The land was said to be extremely fertile, so much so that it was said that any acre there was worth four acres elsewhere. The catch was that the land depended on a dyke to protect it from the sea. The dyke had sluice gates that were opened at low tide to drain the water from the land, and closed as the tide returned.
Around 600 AD, one night a storm blew up from the south west, driving the spring tide against the sea walls. The appointed watchman, Seithennin, a heavy drinker and friend of the King, was at a party in the King’s palace near Aberystwyth. Some say he fell asleep due to too much wine or that he was too busy having fun to notice the storm and to shut the sluices.
The water gates were left open, and the sea rushed in to flood the land of the Cantref, drowning over 16 villages. The King and some of his court managed to escape by running to safety along Sarn Cynfelin, one of the roadways leading out of the Cantre. Thereafter Gwyddno Garanhir and his followers were forced to leave the lowlands and make a poorer living in the hills and valleys of Wales.
It is said that on stormy nights you can still hear the bells of Cantre’r Gwaelod’s churches ringing beneath the waves. The best time and place to do so is said to be Aberdyfi early on a Sunday morning because of its proximity to the lost land of Gwyddno.The only visible signs of Cantre’r Gwaelod today are the four Sarns (roadways) leading out into the bay and the very ancient treestumps seen at low tide on Borth beach, the remains of an ancient forest known as Coed Gwyddno.
A limited edition of 25.
|Metal||Rhiannon Welsh gold (9ct)|
|Chain||9ct Gold Trace Chain 18''|