A former farmhand from the Conwy valley returns from England to stop a wedding, and to see if he a snare he once set has sprung. A bridegroom in Nant Gwrtheyrn devotes his life to finding the bride who has disappeared without trace. A kindly old man from Esgair Adda tells his nephew two ghost stories from his youth, and a young man staying at a country house for Hallowe’en sets his hopes on marrying his host’s young daughter.
Owen Wynne Jones, also known as Glasynys (1828-1870) was a school-teacher, and clergyman, an editor and poet, and an influential figure in the eisteddfod movement. But he was a also a folklorist and short-story writer, whose contributions to the Welsh anthology, Cymru Fu (1864), influenced T. Gwynn Jones among others, and now, in this new translation by Rob Mimpriss, a body of his work is available to English readers.
Combining horror, romance, humour and adventure with his own moving descriptions of the hospitality and generosity of ordinary people, these stories provide an account of a way of life now vanished, and a glimpse into the extraordinary richness of the Welsh oral tradition.
‘Glasynys had a message for his age, for the common people of Wales who saw him championing their heritage. A sectarian, divided, unpoetic age crushes the spirit, and defaces the life of man. Glasynys describes his dream of the common people of Wales, learned in song and dance, and living through poetry alongside fairies, monsters, spirits and dragons... We enter his world, and delight in his dream.’