Online Encyclopedia

HARLECH (perhaps for Hardd lech, fair...

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Originally appearing in Volume V12, Page 954 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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HARLECH (perhaps for Hardd lech, fair slate, or Harleigh, an Anglicized variant), a town of Merionethshire, Wales, 38 m. from Aberystwyth, and 29 from Carnarvon on the Cambrian railway. Pop. 900. Ruins of a fortress crown the rock of Harlech, about half a mile from the sea. Discovery of Roman coins makes it probable that it was once occupied by the Romans. In the 3rd century Bronwen (white bosom), daughter of Bran Fendigaid (the blessed), is said to have stayed here, perhaps by force; and there was here a tower, called Twr Bronwen, and replaced about A.D. 550 by the building of Maelgwyn Gwynedd, prince of North Wales. In the early loth century, Harlech castle was, apparently, repaired by Colwyn, lord of Ardudwy, founder of one of the fifteen North Wales tribes, and thence called Caer Colwyn. The present structure dates, like many others in the principality, from Edward I., perhaps even from the plans of the architect of Carnarvon and Conway castles, but with the retention of old portions. It is thought to have been square, each side measuring some 210 ft., with towers and turrets. Glendower held it for four years. Here, in 146o, Margaret, wife of Henry VI., defeated at Northampton, took refuge. Dafydd ap Ieuan ap Einion held it for the Lancastrians, until famine, rather than Edward IV., made him surrender. From this time is said to date the air " March of the men of Harlech " (Rhyfelgerdd gwyr Harlech). The castle was alternately Roundhead and Cavalier in the civil war. Edward I. made Harlech a free borough, and it was formerly the county town. It is in the parish of Llandanwg (pop. in 1901, 931). Though interesting from an antiquarian point of view, the district around, especially Dyffryn Ardudwy (the valley), is dreary and desolate, viii. (with portrait). In memory of Professor Harkness his sister established two Harkness scholarships. One scholarship (of the value of about 5 a year, tenable for three years) for women, tenable at either Girton or Newnham College, Cambridge, is awarded triennially to the best candidate in an examination in geology and palaeontology, provided that proficiency be shown ; the other, for men, is vested in the hands of the university of Cambridge, and is awarded annually, any member of the university being eligible who has graduated as a B.A., " provided that not more than three }ears have elapsed since the 19th day of December next following his final examination for the degree of bachelor of arts."
End of Article: HARLECH (perhaps for Hardd lech, fair slate, or Harleigh, an Anglicized variant)

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