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14 February 2011

Monday's words: Happy Valentine's Day

zwani.com myspace graphic comments Happy Saint Valentine's Day, whether you're married, 'in a relationship' , 'looking' or single, may your day be filled with love.

Of course most people know the legend of St Valentine, or at least the one which seems to be the most popular:

Valentine is said to have spent a year in rigorous imprisonment during which he was missed  by children whom he had befriended.. They began to toss loving notes and flowers between the bars of his cell window. To an extent, this legend may explain the tradition of exchanging notes and flowers on Valentine's Day.

Some scholars believe that during his stay in prison Valentine made friends with jailer's blind daughter who at times brought to him notes and flowers from children. Whenever, possible Valentine also replied to the notes. Days before his execution, Valentine prayed for the jailer's daughter and she regained her sight. Before his death, Valentine is also said to have written a farewell note for the jailer's daughter and signed it "From Your Valentine”.

I thought today I'd tell you another legend, about the 'Welsh St Valentine' -

Her day is 25th January, rather than 14th February (as you'll know if you've followed this blog and saw my post in January 2020) but her legends are just as romantic as the Engish St Valentime.

There are several legends about St Dwynwen, this is one of the most popular:

Dwynwen was the beautiful daughter of Brychan Brycheiniog. She fell in love with a prince called Maelon Dafodrill, but unfortunately her father had already arranged that she should marry someone else. Dwynwen was so upset that she could not marry Maelon that she begged God to make her forget him. After falling asleep, Dwynwen was visited by an angel, who appeared carrying a sweet potion designed to erase all memory of Maelon and turn him into a block of ice. He then gave three wishes to Dwynwen.

The lighthouse and cross at Llanddwynwen
(Picture courtesy of Wikipaedia)

Her first wish was that Maelon be thawed; her second that God meet the hopes and dreams of true lovers; and third, that she should never marry.

Dwynwen became a nun, fulfilling her wish to never marry, and left for the island of Anglesey to build a Church. This is referred to as Llanddwynwen, literally meaning 'Church of Dwynwen'.

zwani.com myspace graphic commentsIsn't that a romantic (if rather sad) story?