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



Sites/Groups in this region:

12 posts
93 sites
Anglesey County
1 post
140 sites
Carmarthenshire County
7 posts
160 sites
Ceredigion County
2 posts
134 sites
Conwy County
10 posts
150 sites
Flintshire, Denbighshire and Wrexham Region
8 posts
322 sites
Gwynedd County
1 post
49 sites
Monmouthshire County
11 posts
226 sites
Pembrokeshire County
497 sites
Powys County
4 posts
481 sites
South Wales Region


Add news Add news

Cadw to remain in Government

The Welsh Government’s historic environment service Cadw will remain part of Welsh Government for the foreseeable future, Culture Minister Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas confirmed today... continues...
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
21st November 2017ce

Wales heritage bodies reject formal merger

Welsh heritage bodies have rejected a formal merger of any of their functions.

But government-controlled Cadw will become independent in recommendations to Economy Secretary Ken Skates.

An independent review of National Museum Wales (NMW) will also be held and will be published by the summer... continues...
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
5th February 2017ce

A Bill To Make History – Legislation To Protect Wales’ Past To Become Law

Summary of the Bill’s provisions

To give more effective protection to listed buildings and scheduled monuments

Extension of the definition of a scheduled monument
The Welsh Ministers will be able to recognise and protect any nationally important sites that provide evidence of past human activity... continues...
moss Posted by moss
10th February 2016ce

Heritage bill to protect monuments in Wales

A new law to protect historical monuments and buildings in Wales aims to make it more difficult for those who damage them to escape prosecution.
It comes after 119 cases of damage to sites between 2006 and 2012 resulted in only one successful prosecution... continues...
moss Posted by moss
6th May 2015ce

Anglesey: Mysterious artefact discovered at Neolithic tomb

Find at Perthi Duon excavation site near Brynsiencyn could prove existence of a British Copper Age says archeology expert...
Howburn Digger Posted by Howburn Digger
27th April 2014ce

Brecon beacons rock art found - volunteers wanted

Very similar to the beeb story posted yesterday which I suspect was based on this... continues...
juamei Posted by juamei
7th March 2014ce
Edited 7th March 2014ce

Bronze Age rock art uncovered in Brecon Beacons

Rare, prehistoric rock art which could be more than 4,000 years old has been discovered in the Brecon Beacons.

The Bronze Age discovery was made late last year by national park geologist Alan Bowring.

Experts claim the stone probably served as a way marker for farming communities... continues...
moss Posted by moss
6th March 2014ce
Edited 6th March 2014ce

Six-week consultation on a new proposal for the Heritage Bill

The Welsh Government would like your comments on a new proposal to give more effective protection to scheduled ancient monuments.

Between 2006 and 2012, Cadw received reports of 119 cases of unlawful damage to scheduled ancient monuments in Wales... continues...
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
3rd March 2014ce

In Pictures: Welsh Rock Art Organisation discoveries
The Eternal Posted by The Eternal
23rd June 2012ce

Wales Coast Path officially opens

Sorry to be a bit tardy with this, but this is momentous news, making Wales the first country in the world to open a path around its whole coastline.

Linked with Offa's Dyke Path, it makes a 1050-odd mile circuit around the whole country. Wow. continues...
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
4th June 2012ce
Edited 4th June 2012ce

Tax bill paid with 2,000-year-old Iron Age fire guard

"A 2,000-year-old Iron Age fire guard has been accepted into Wales' national museum in lieu of inheritance tax.

The Capel Garmon Firedog, once one of a pair on the hearth of a chieftain's roundhouse, is regarded as one of the finest surviving prehistoric iron artefacts in Europe."

More here..... continues...
1speed Posted by 1speed
21st December 2011ce

Hot Weather Shows Wales' History

From an item published on the BBC News web site on 8th August 2006:
Hot weather has produced parched landscapes which have allowed experts to detect the outlines of some of Wales' earliest buildings...
See the aerial photos, including an image of the newly discovered circular enclosure and barrow near Aberystwyth.
Kammer Posted by Kammer
10th August 2006ce
Edited 2nd June 2007ce


Add folklore Add folklore
Michaelmas Day was formerly regarded with suspicion in Wales. It was credited with uncanny power. There was an old superstition that on this night the Cistfaens, or warriors' graves, in all parts of the Principality were illuminated by spectral lights, and it was very unlucky to walk near those places on Michaelmas Eve or Night; for on those two occasions the ghosts of ancient warmen were engaged in deadly fray around their lonely resting-places. (C. D. and Family Collection.)
From Marie Trevelyan's Folk-lore and folk-stories of Wales (1909).
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
14th December 2013ce


Add a link Add a link


Self-explanatory link... there's even an introduction from Iolo himself.
7th August 2022ce

The Citizen Cairn's... 'Prehistoric Treasures of Wales'

A selection of The Citizen cairn's favourite lowland sites from the past 10 years (with reasonably presentable digital images, that is).

Hardly any cairns, too.
7th July 2021ce
Edited 7th July 2021ce

The Citizen Cairn's 'Prehistoric Cairns of Wales #2'

Some more wanderings of The Citizen Cairn when looking at piles of old stones in Wales. Yeah, I know. Come up and see me, some time?
12th June 2021ce
Edited 7th July 2021ce

The Citizen Cairn's 'Prehistoric Cairns of Wales #1'

A selection of (mostly) Bronze Age upland cairns to be found under 2,000ft in that wondrous country know as 'Wales'. They said it couldn't be done. Hey, but The Citizen Cairn laughs in the face of adversity.
5th June 2021ce
Edited 7th July 2021ce

The Citizen Cairn's 'High Cairns of Wales #2'

'Rocky - the Sequel'.

Mr T (if Sly had have been 'numerically challenged'):

"I forecast PAIN".
16th May 2021ce
Edited 7th July 2021ce

The Citizen Cairn's 'High Cairns of Wales #1'

15 mins in the company of some of Wales' Prehistoric funerary cairns located above 2,000ft.. oh, and The Citizen Cairn.
8th May 2021ce
Edited 13th June 2021ce

Historic Place Names

The List of Historic Place Names of Wales is a groundbreaking and innovative resource that contains hundreds of thousands of place names collected from historical maps and other sources. It provides a fascinating insight into the land-use, archaeology and history of Wales.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
8th May 2017ce
Edited 8th May 2017ce

People's Collection: Wales

Some excellent aerial images of Bronze Age cairns... amongst other stuff. For those without personal air transport.
6th December 2016ce

John Piper - The Mountains of Wales

This autumn Plas Glyn-y-Weddw is delighted to present an outstanding group of views in Snowdonia by John Piper from the collections of Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales.

On to the 13th December 2015
moss Posted by moss
7th November 2015ce

Historic Wales

Like Coflein? Impressed by Archwilio? Well now you can enjoy the data from both of them together. In one place. On a high quality mapping layer.

That's the end of sleep and bedtime for me then.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
8th February 2015ce

The lost lands of our ancestors

Exploring the submerged landscapes of Prehistoric Wales.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
30th September 2013ce

Royal Commission ebooks

Our entire back catalogue is available through our bookshop.All out of print titles are now available as eBooks via Google Play with inventories published before 1965 being free of charge.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
9th May 2013ce
Edited 9th May 2013ce

View Finder Panoramas

Not strictly megalithic, but anyone who has stood on one of Wales' high places and wondered "what's that big pointy hill over there?" should find it of interest.
thesweetcheat Posted by thesweetcheat
11th December 2011ce

Database for Rock Art in Wales

moss Posted by moss
6th September 2010ce


New website of the Welsh Historic Environment Records, with a lovely searchable map. Mmm.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
22nd July 2010ce

Meini Meirionnydd

A Welsh web site that has grown out of the publication of the very popular book 'Meini Meirionnydd'. The site is currently under development but will eventually have information in Welsh about the Pre-history monuments of Wales.
caealun Posted by caealun
6th September 2008ce
Edited 11th November 2008ce

Latest posts for Wales

Showing 1-10 of 24,557 posts. Most recent first | Next 10

Twmpath Diwlith and Bodvoc Stone (Round Barrow(s)) — Folklore

One of the seven wonders of Glamorgan is the tumulus near the Bodvoc Stone on Margam Mountain. It is called the "Twmpath Diwlith" - the dewless mound. Tradition tells us that no dew ever falls on this mound.
In the 'Glamorgan Gazette', 5th September 1924.

also (warning, does get a bit bitchy):
Folklore of the District. (By Martin Phillips.)

Camden, in his "Britannia" (1610) remarks: 'In the very top of an hill called Mynyd Margan, there is erected of exceeding hard grit, a monument or gravestone, four foot long, and one foot broad with an inscription, which whosoever shall happen to read, the ignorant common people dwelling there about, give it out upon a credulous error, that he shall be sure to die within a little while after. Let the reader therefore look to himself, if any dare read it, for, let him assure himself that he shall for certain die after it.'

Writing in 1722, Daniel Defoe ('Tour through England and Wales') makes the following comment: 'In this neighbourhood, near Mynydd Margam, we saw the famous monument mentioned by Mr Camden, on a hill, with the inscription which the people are so terrified at, that nobody will care to read it; for they have a tradition from father to son, that whoever ventures to read it, will die within a month. We did not scruple the adventure at all, but when we came to try, the letters were so defaced by time, that we were effectually secured from the danger, the inscription not being anything near so legible as it seems it was in Camden's time.'

The inscription is still perfectly legible, and presumably the mountain climb did not appeal to Defoe who frequently expressed his abhorrence of Welsh antiquities and Welsh mountains, and apparently, he had no desire to risk the deciphering of the 'terrifying' inscription. Incidentally he has been described by a recent writer as 'one of the world's greatest liars, with a peculiar art for making fictitious narrative sound like the truth'. Defoe's description of other Welsh antiquities confirms the statement.

The Bodvoc stone was believed to cover buried treasure, and about sixty years ago a wide hole about five feet deep was dug around it at night. The stone was overthrown, and for a long period was covered with water. It was subsequently set up in an upright position, and the erection of an iron railing protected it from further harm. Guarding the alleged treasure was the inevitable ghost, which was said to be that of the departed Bodvoc.

Near the stone is the huge mound known as 'Y Twmpath Diwllith' (the Dewless Mound), which was erroneously considered to be always immune from dew. The word 'Diwllith' became translated to 'Dewless', but apparently it is a corruption of "Duw-lith" (God's Lesson). The mound is situated on the boundary line between Llangynvyd and Margam parishes, and in former times, during the yearly perambulation of the boundary, the customary lesson was read by the priest when the mound was reached.
In the 'Neath Guardian', 28th April 1933.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
29th May 2023ce

Pen Craig y Pistyll (Ceulanamaesmawr) (Round Cairn) — Miscellaneous

This large Bronze Age funerary monument forms yet another piece of the (very) extensive Pumlumon jigsaw, set upon a 1,493 feet high hilltop overlooking Llyn Craig-y-pistyll, some 4.5 miles west(ish) of Pen Pumlumon-Fawr.

Now The Citizen Cairn had thought he'd seen all Pumlumon has to offer over the years... so it just goes to show that: 1) experience doesn't necessarily stop one from acting like a muppet... thinking you know it all, right?; 2) the plethora of Pumlumon's prehistoric riches would appear to know no bounds; 3) just because nothing is shown upon the map... doesn't necessarily mean there is nothing more to find.

But of course, tangible prehistoric reminders such Pen Craig y Pistyll's cairn are but an excuse - albeit an immensely rewarding one for their own sake - to get out and about upon unfamiliar (or, indeed, familiar) hills and take in that wild vibe. Here, as it happens, the initial impression upon arrival at the start of the walk is not exactly salubrious: the stark, ruined miner's barracks of the former Bwlchglas Lead Mine most certainly NOT a sight for sore eyes. Persevere, however, since a short, steep climb sees the traveller soon arrive at a well-made byway heading for Bwlch yr Adwy. These tracks are not my thing, however, so an ascent of the hillside to the immediate south beckons... and thus Pen Craig y Pistyll.

It would be rude not to make the continuation across the bwlch to view another round barrow at SN71978691 before sweeping westward back to the start. Just saying. Now being an English Gentleman - and having no wish to consciously offend - that is exactly what I did
27th May 2023ce

Bwlch yr Adwy (Ceulanamaesmawr) (Round Barrow(s)) — Miscellaneous

Crowning the (unnamed?) hill immediately overlooking Bwlch yr Adwy to the north, this deceptively substantial, grassy monument complements beautifully the cairn crowning Pen Craig-y-Pistyll to the south-west.... and boasts equally excellent views looking east towards the main Pumlumon ridge and west for Cardigan Bay.

Stating the obvious, I guess... but incorporate both within a high-level horseshoe walk starting from Bwlch-glas and you not only avoid the idiot trail bikers playing 'broom brooms' down below, but will enjoy some pretty exquisite views into the bargain.
27th May 2023ce

Caer-Dyni (Burial Chamber) — Images (click to view fullsize)

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25th May 2023ce

Barclodiad-y-Gawres (Chambered Cairn) — Images

<b>Barclodiad-y-Gawres</b>Posted by Rhiannon Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
24th May 2023ce

Bwlch Graig-Fawr, Teifi Pools (Cist) — Miscellaneous

Unmarked upon existing OS mapping, this is a rather fine cist set in the locale of the Teifi Pools... source of the river... tucked between the extended 'Green Desert' of Cwmdeuddwr and Pumlumon.

Coflein notes:

"Located just off the crest of a ridge on W-facing sloping ground at 405m above OD, near the head of a stream valley. The cairn is a turf-covered stony mound measuring 6m in diameter and 0.5m high. The body of the cairn contains some small boulders. At its centre lies a rifled cist. It consists of four upright and leaning slabs and measures internally 1.18m (N-S) by 0.72m. The capstone, perhaps broken up or removed, is no longer visible." [D.K.Leighton 29 March 2005]
13th May 2023ce
Edited 27th May 2023ce

Bwlch east of Moel y Llyn, Ceulanamaesmawr (Cairn(s)) — Miscellaneous

Travellers approaching the great cemetery upon Moel y Llyn from the east will, naturally, encounter this 'bonus' pair of cairns as a rather splendid hors d'oeuvres.

Coflein reckons:

"One of two closely-spaced cairns located one above the other on the rising south-east side of a col below the eastern slopes of Moel y Llyn, close to a track and a forestry boundary. The lower (westernmost) of the two measures 11m (NE-SW) by 9m and 0.5m high on the uphill side, 2m above the track which passes by on the north-west...." [David Leighton, RCAHMW, 12 June 2012]
13th May 2023ce

Moelau (Round Cairn) — Miscellaneous

The most satisfying discovery of an out-and-back walk from NantyMaen to Bryn Cosyn - not least due to its excellent positioning overlooking the Groes Fawr - this monument also features the remnants of a cist. Hey, Coflein postulates more than one, but there you are:

"Denuded kerb cairn with the remains of one and possibly two cists". [J.Wiles 31.01.02]
13th May 2023ce

Bryn Cosyn (Cairn(s)) — Miscellaneous

According to Coflein, the base of this 'marker cairn' is indeed of prehistoric ancestry:

"A more recent cairn, 2 metres by 2 metres, 1 metre high, built on top of earlier Bronze Age cairn" [J. J. Hall, Trysor, 8th February 2013]
13th May 2023ce
Showing 1-10 of 24,557 posts. Most recent first | Next 10