The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Carreg Leidr

Standing Stone / Menhir


So much folklore attached to one small stone. This version of events comes from Baring-Gould's source and is in 'Lives of the British Saints' v4 p 293 (1913).
About a mile from the church, in the corner of a field near the Holy Wells of SS Cybi and Seiriol, on Clorach farm, is a celebrated maen hir, a little over four feet high, called Lleidr Tyfrydog, Tyfrydog's Thief, which has the appearance of a humpbacked man.

The local tradition is that a man who sacrilegiously stole the church books, whilst carrying them away, was suddenly converted by the saint [Saint Tyrnog that is, the patron saint of the church] into this red sandstone pillar. The lump to be seen on one side of the stone represents the sack which contains his theft, lying over his shoulder.

His soul, at stated intervals, is compelled to go three times madly round the field and back to the stone, in the dead of night, being pursued by demons with red hot pitchforks.
Baring-Gould also relates this tale: In 1098, Hugh, Earl of Shrewsbury (for some reason) put some dogs into the church overnight. When they were let out the next day they'd gone mad. And it didn't do Hugh much good either - he was killed by a Norse pirate within the month. Giraldus Cambrensis ascribed it to 'the vindictive nature' of the Welsh saints. Well maybe they just don't want dog hair (and worse) all over their churches, eh? And they don't want their books nicked. Is that so unreasonable?
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
23rd June 2006ce
Edited 23rd June 2006ce

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