Ceri Shaw



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"Wales and the Welsh" - by Peter Williams

user image 2009-02-20
By: Ceri Shaw
Posted in: Book Reviews

This book is a joy to possess. It is a must for the serious researcher and the collector of historical trivia alike. With over 2,700 entries, author Peter Williams covers a lot of ground in this volume. On page 284 we find an entry entitled "Oldest Survival of Old Welsh". This is cross referenced with the entry for St. Cadfan where we learn that he was:- "...a missionary from Brittany, whose commemorative stone at Tywyn, Merionethshire has the oldest surviving example of Old Welsh."

This is one of the books many strengths and makes it almost suitable for casual browsing. Its major purpose though is to serve as a quick reference book and a starting point for further in-depth research. Anyone who is involved in compiling questions for Welsh quiz nights would be well advised to provide themselves with a copy. (see example quiz at the bottom of this page)

What is the "Longest Poem in the Welsh Language" and what is the "Largest Welsh Male Voice Choir"? ""What were the first Welsh words heard on radio" and "Where was the first photo taken in Wales"?. The answers to these questions and many more can be found cross-referenced on the pages of this book. There are many things in this volume which would take a considerable amount of "googling" to uncover.

The current revision is an updated edition of "An Alphabetical Guide to Wales and The Welsh" first published in 2005. The book can be obtained by contacting the author at Celticinfo.com.

Notes About the Author

"Peter N. Williams was born in Mancot, a little village in Flintshire, North Wales, just inside the border with England. Brought up in the industrial town of Flint, he was educated at Kings School, Chester, England and at the University College, Swansea, South Wales.

Peter came to the United States in 1957. Following his military service with the US army in Germany, he taught high school in Delaware for a number of years before completing his M.A. and PhD at the university of Delaware. He then taught English at the University before becoming Chairman of the English Department at Delaware Technical and Community College. Peter is the editor of CelticInfo.com , Celtic_Worlds.com and The Eagle and Dragon ( the official publication of the National Welsh American Foundation ).

Founder of the Welsh Society of Delaware and a Director of the National Welsh American Foundation, Peter was honored for his work on behalf of Wales and Welsh Americans by being made a member of the Gorsedd of Bards at the National Eisteddfod of Wales in 1999. He is the author of The Sacred Places of Wales; From Wales To The Lehigh; The David Thomas Story; The Seven Wonders of Wales; A new Look; The History of Wales in Verse; Wales From A to Y; The Book of Wales, and the editor of 38 Hymns in Welsh and English."

See our "Wales and The Welsh" pub quiz HERE . Or download here:-  walesandthewelshquiz.pdf Interview with the author HERE .

Ceri Shaw
02/23/09 06:26:15PM @ceri-shaw:
Diolch yn fawr Beth. Its a pleasure and a privilege to feature both Peter and the new book on the site. Generally speaking we are under considerable time pressure to provide constant new content and feature the incredible range of talented individuals who are members of this site. It was always our intention to get round to Peter at some point and we hope to do more on him in the future. btw if you have any ideas for future features please let us know. Email your suggestions to me at americymry(at)gmail.com and we'll do our best to come up with the goods.
Beth Phillips Brown
02/23/09 06:08:38PM @beth-phillips-brown:
Llongyfarchiadau i Ceri a Peter a phob am siarad waith Peter Williams! Peter N. Williams is my first Welsh language teacher and I'm thrilled to see him and his work getting attention at Americymru!