Thursday, January 27, 2011

Bees and Bonnets

A few months ago in the Western Mail, historian Dai Smith worried that what was described as the Renaissance of Welsh History in the second half of the 20C had run out of steam. One author who has certainly courted the controversy and debate which Dai Smith cites as a positive feature of that renaissance is the author of this little book.

Dr Breeze believes that the Four Branches of the Mabinogi were written by a woman and that the author can be identified as Gwenllian, the daughter of King Gruffudd ap Cynan of Gwynedd and wife of Gruffydd ap Rhys, Prince of Dyfed.

Now as one of the mere consumers of history I'm in no position to comment on the validity of Dr Breeze's theory and it certainly hasn't been accepted by his academic contemporaries. At the same time the author makes a lucid, circumstantial case and, although he cannot prove it, challenges his detractors to come up with detail that proves him wrong.

The book is published by a Leominster company called Gracewing who seem to specialize in works of Roman Catholic interest.

Dr Breeze has been described as having a bee in his bonnet about Gwenllian. Perhaps a few of our Welsh academics could be persuaded to unleash some of the bees lurking in their own headgear rather than retreating to what Dai Smith describes as "the cloister of the Learned Journal."

1 comment:

andrew breeze said...

I am Andrew Breeze and just wish to say _mawr ddiolch_ for the support!