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Mynydd Machen


Wikipedia. You're never quite sure if it's genuine or misinformation. But anyway, that never stops me normally, and it says:
Saint Peter was visiting Wales in order to watch over the Faithful. Taking offence at the sudden appearance of the Devil, he picked up a large number of boulders and placed them in his apron so as to carry them more easily. He then gave chase to the Devil, both chaser and chased (having the stature of giants) leaping from mountain-top to mountain-top. As the Devil alighted on Mynydd Machen he paused to catch his breath, whereupon Saint Peter began hurling the rocks at him, leaving a considerable amount of debris around his adversary in the process. The area of rocks is known to this day as "The Devil's Apron Strings".
The name of the cairn on top of the mountain, Twyn y Certhi could imply 'Cerddi'? and thus mean the mound of singing/poetry. But perhaps someone knows better.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
17th February 2009ce
Edited 17th February 2009ce

Comments (5)

Hey Rhiannon, what a fantastic story. I haven't heard that one since I was a boy in the '50's.
It was told to me by Betty Smith's dad (top of George Street)

Do you have any idea what period the cairn is from, and would it be linked to the others along the ridgeway track near Bedwas tips ?

As a 'by the way' do you know of 'Craig y Neuadd' and the mound in the field at Buck Farm.
I worked in the quarry there many years ago, and visited the site with its moated three sides. I also had the great pleasure of unofficially going down into the lead mine tunnels under this site with some workmates.

Posted by Troedyrhiw
30th October 2011ce
The cairns are mostly Bronze Age, but some are field clearance cairnd. The names are fairly recent. The best article in the ridge is 'An archaeological survey of the Machen ridge Monmouthshire' in Volume 28 of 'Re Bulletin of the Board of Celtic Studies '.Daimler K.L 1978-1980. Posted by JohnOwen6850
3rd January 2019ce
The theme of carrying the stones in an apron also occurs in the myth surrounding the Devils Heap of Stones near Abersychan (near Pontypool) except in this case it was the Devil carrying them in his apron

'St Cadoc’s Church contains a lot of history. Legend had it that St Cattwg set to build the church, but what he put up in the day, the Devil would pull down in the night ‘till at last, Cattwg made a great bell (cloch in welsh) which he rang, causing the devil to drop the stones out of his apron falling further up the mountain at Garn Clochdy (which translates as the heap stones of the belfry)'.
Posted by costaexpress
4th January 2019ce
There's also Devil's Lap Of Stones cairns above Tintern, and another in North Wales in the complex of monuments around the southwest of Tal y Fan. thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
4th January 2019ce
Devil was busy with his apron up here too
thelonious Posted by thelonious
4th January 2019ce
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