In celebration of the National Eisteddfod of Wales, we thought an excerpt from a Welsh classic would be appropriate. The Mabinogion is the title given to eleven medieval Welsh prose tales preserved mainly in the White Book of Rhydderch (c.1350) and the Red Book of Hergest (c.1400). They were never conceived as a collection—the title was adopted in the nineteenth century when the tales were first translated into English by Lady Charlotte Guest. Yet they all draw on oral tradition and on the storytelling conventions of the medieval cyfarwydd (‘storyteller’), providing a fascinating insight into the wealth of narrative material that was circulating in medieval Wales: not only do they reflect themes from Celtic mythology and Arthurian romance, they also present an intriguing interpretation of British history. Below is an excerpt from the tale ‘The First Branch of the Mabinogi’.
From the Oxford University Press Blog:
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