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

Llyn Fawr


The A4061 climbing out of The Rhondda Valley passes above a dark and mysterious lake, cradled beneath the - more often than not - glowering escarpment of Craig-y-Llyn rising to not far short of 2000ft.

Fisherman are now usually seen lining its shoreline, but this lake once held a far greater significance to locals than merely a good spot to spend an afternoon away from the wife and kids.....for it was in its murky depths that the famous Llyn Fawr hoard was discovered between 1911 and 1913 during the construction of a reservoir.

These objects, clearly votive offerings - unless you accept that they were put in here for 'safe keeping' (Doh!), or, er....sort of 'lost' - date from the late Bronze and early Iron Ages, a Hallstatt sword in particular being tentatively dated to c650 BCE, which would make it the earliest iron object discovered to date in South Wales. Probably all of Wales, as it happens.

One wonders how many of the tradesmen and weekend punters who park to have their sandwiches overlooking Llyn Fawr have any idea of what once took place below them? I'd recommend a walk along the escarpment edge of Craig-y-Llyn to gaze down into the waters and contemplate if this is where Malory etc got the idea for Excalibur and the 'lady in the lake'.

There's even another little lake - Llyn Fach (of course) around the corner........
6th July 2009ce

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