The Thirteen Legendary Treasures of Britain


Blackleaf
#1
The ‘Thirteen Treasures of Britain’ are a group of magical items found in late medieval Welsh tradition. These precious relics are mentioned in 15th and 16th century manuscripts, such as the Welsh Arthurian tale of ‘Culhwch and Olwen’. The Thirteen Treasures are said to have been located in the north of the British Isles, i.e. northern England and Scotland. One of the Welsh manuscripts is in fact entitled ‘Tri Thlws ar Ddeg Ynys Prydain’, which has been translated into English as ‘The Names of the Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain, which were in the North’.

The Thirteen Legendary Treasures of Britain

Ancient Origins
13 April 2015


The ancient Greek writer Hesiod once wrote that there were five ages of mankind – the Golden Age, the Silver Age, the Bronze Age, the Heroic Age, and the Iron Age. Similarly, in Hinduism, there are four different epochs – the Satya Yuga, Treta Yuga, Dwapar Yuga and Kali Yuga. In both Greek mythology and Hinduism, the ages preceding our present age are described as much more pleasant, with humanity experiencing deterioration over the ages. Likewise, in early British legends, it is said that the British Isles were, in a bygone age, the home of gods and heroes. Although these figures no longer dwell on the British Isles, legends sprung up about the magical objects these beings left behind.

The ‘Thirteen Treasures of Britain’ are a group of magical items found in late medieval Welsh tradition. These precious relics are mentioned in 15th and 16th century manuscripts, such as the Welsh Arthurian tale of ‘Culhwch and Olwen’. The Thirteen Treasures are said to have been located in the north of the British Isles, i.e. northern England and Scotland. One of the Welsh manuscripts is in fact entitled ‘Tri Thlws ar Ddeg Ynys Prydain’, which has been translated into English as ‘The Names of the Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain, which were in the North’.

The thirteen legendary treasures of Britain are as follows:

1. Dyrnwyn, gleddyf Rhydderch Hael (White-Hilt, the Sword of Rhydderch the Generous)


This peculiar sword belonged to Rhydderch Hael, a 7th century ruler of Alt Clut, a Brittonic kingdom in what is now Strathclyde, Scotland. When the sword was drawn by a worthy man, it would burst into flames from its hilt to its tip. Although Rhydderch was willing to lend his sword to anyone who asked for it, the recipients would reject it after learning of the sword’s strange quality.

The first legendary treasure is a sword that burst into flames. ( Wikimedia Commons )


2. Mwys Gwyddno Garanir (The Hamper of Gwyddno Long-Shank)

Gwyddno Long-Shank was the ruler of Canolbarth, a legendary sunken land off the coast of Wales (now Cardigan Bay), who possessed a magical hamper, a wicker basket that could multiply food. Known as the ‘basket of plenty’, food for one man would be placed into the hamper and then closed. When the basket was opened again, there would be enough food for a hundred men.

The Basket of Plenty would multiply its contents, providing food for one hundred men. ‘Apfelernte’ by Karl Vikas ( Wikimedia Commons )


3. Korn Bran Galed o'r Gogledd (The Horn of Bran the Niggard from the North)

According to Welsh legend, this horn once belonged to Hercules, who acquired the object from the head of the centaur Nessus after he was slain by the hero. The horn was able to grant whatever drink a user wished to find within it.

The Horn of Bran was said to provide its owner with whichever drink they wished. Bearded Pictish warrior from the Bullion Stone, Angus, now in the National Museum of Scotland. ( Wikimedia Commons )


4. Kar Morgan Mwynfawr (The Chariot of Morgan the Wealthy)

Morgan, the king of Glamorgan, was the grandson and probable successor of King Meurig, who ruled over the early Welsh kingdoms of Gwent and Glywysing sometime between 400 and 600 AD. Morgan was said to have possessed a chariot that could travel quickly to any destination desired by its user.

The Chariot of Morgan could travel to any destination. ( wallpaperup.com )


5. Kebystr Klydno Eiddin (The Halter of Clydno Eiddyn)

The fifth treasure was a halter fixed to a staple at the foot of the bed of Clydno Eiddin, a ruler in the Hen Ogledd, the Brythonic-speaking area in what is now northern England and southern Scotland during the Early Middle Ages. "Eiddyn" is the Brythonic name for Edinburgh, implying a connection to that territory. According to legend, whatever horse Clydno wished for, it would appear in the halter.

The magical horse halter of Clydno Eiddyn would grant Clydno with any horse he wished for ( Wikimedia Commons )


6. Kyllell Llawfrodedd Farchog (The Knife of Llawfrodedd the Horseman)

Llawfrodedd Farchog was a hero of Welsh tradition and a legendary figure in Arthur’s court in the tales of Culhwch and Olwen and Breuddwyd Rhonabwy. He is mentioned in Trioedd Tnys Prydein as the owner of a knife that would serve a company of 24 men at a dinner table, named as one of the Thirteen Treasures. The knife was great for a feast, but was also said to be a deadly weapon on the battlefield.

The Knife of Llawfrodedd the Horseman was a special relic for feasts ( Wikimedia Commons )


7. Pair Dyrnwch Gawr (The Cauldron of Dyrnwch the Giant)

This cauldron, which belonged to the Welsh god Dyrnwch, would quickly boil meat placed in it by a brave man. The meat placed in it by a coward, however, will never boil. Thus, the cauldron would reveal who was brave and who was cowardly.

The Cauldron of Dyrnwch the Giant would instantly cook the meat of a brave man ( Wikimedia Commons )


8. Hogalen Tudwal Tutklyd (The Whetstone of Tudwal Tudglyd)

Tudwal is thought to have been a ruler of Alt Clut, later known as Strathclyde, a Brittonic kingdom in the Hen Ogledd or "Old North" of Britain. He probably ruled sometime in the mid-6th century. If a brave man sharpened his sword on his whetstone, a man whose blood was drawn from this sword would die. The whetstone would have no effect on the sword of a cowardly man.

The whetstone of Tudwal Tudglyd would imbue any sword sharpened on it with deathly qualities. ( Wikimedia Commons )


9. Pais Badarn Beisrydd (The Coat of Padarn of the Scarlet Robe)


Historical sources suggest Padarn Beisrudd ap Tegid was a Romano-British official of high rank who had been placed in command of Votadini troops stationed in Clackmannanshire in the 380s or earlier by the Emperor Magnus Maximus. Alternatively, he may have been a frontier chieftain in the same region who was granted Roman military rank. His red coat, one of the Thirteen Treasures, was said to perfectly fit a well-born man, regardless of his size. It would not, however, fit a common person.

The red coat of Padarn would fit any well-born man perfectly ( Wikimedia Commons )


10. and 11. Gren a desgyl Rhygenydd Ysgolhaig (The Crock and the Dish of Rhygenydd the Cleric)

Whatever food a user wishes for, it would be found in the crock and dish.

The clay pot and dish of Rhygenydd the Cleric could produce any food the heart desired ( Wikimedia Commons )


12. Gwyddbwyll Gwenddoleu ap Ceidio (The Chess board of Gwenddolau son of Ceidio)

Gwenddoleu ap Ceidio or Gwenddolau was a 6th century Brythonic king who ruled in Arfderydd (now Arthuret, Cumbria). This is in what is now south-west Scotland and north-west England in the area around Hadrian's Wall and Carlisle during the sub-Roman period in Britain. His chessboard of gold and silver was said to play any opponent on its own.

The gold and silver chess board of Gwenddolau could play by itself ( chesscentral.com )


13. Llen Arthyr yng Nghernyw (The Mantle of Arthur in Cornwall)

King Arthur's llen or mantle is said to make anyone underneath it invisible, though able to see out. This item is known from two sources, the prose tales Culhwch and Olwen (c. 1100) and The Dream of Rhonabwy (early 13th century).

The cloak of the legendary King Arthur is said to have the ability to make its wearer invisible ( Wikimedia Commons )

In some lists, the crock and dish of Rhygenydd are regarded as a set, thus counting as one item. Additionally, one of the items on the original list would be replaced with either the Mantle of Tegau Eurfron ‘Gold-Breast’, or the Stone and Ring of Eluned the Fortunate, thus bringing the number of treasures back to thirteen.

In the Welsh legends, the Thirteen Treasures were eventually acquired by Myrrdin (introduced into Arthurian legends as Merlin). The bearers of each treasure agreed to hand over their magical items to Myrrdin if he succeeded in obtaining the Horn of Bran, which they thought impossible. Myrrdin, however, got the horn from Bran, and with the other treasures, went into the Glass House / Tower, where they are said to remain until the return of King Arthur.


All images are representational only.


Read more: The Thirteen Legendary Treasures of Britain | Ancient Origins
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Last edited by Blackleaf; Aug 9th, 2015 at 10:33 AM..
 
DaSleeper
#2
 
Curious Cdn
#3
All of these items belong to the Welsh.

The Welsh have lost so much ...
 
Blackleaf
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

All of these items belong to the Welsh.

Maybe you should go back and read the article carefully.

Quote:

The Welsh have lost so much ...

Like what?
 
EagleSmack
+1
#5  Top Rated Post
Forgot the fourteenth...




The Dentist
 
Curious Cdn
#6
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

Maybe you should go back and read the article carefully.



Like what?

Like the island of Britain.

Okay, so I've read the article a second time and indeed, all of those legendary objects are from the culture of the Brythonic and/or Romano Celts, latterly pushed into the Southwest corner of Britain and since referred to as "Welsh" ... foreigners in that foreign tongue of Teutons who crossed the Channel coming from the dung heaps of Frisia.
Last edited by Curious Cdn; Aug 9th, 2015 at 02:27 PM..
 
JLM
#7
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

The ‘Thirteen Treasures of Britain’ are a group of magical items found in late medieval Welsh tradition. These precious relics are mentioned in 15th and 16th century manuscripts, such as the Welsh Arthurian tale of ‘Culhwch and Olwen’. The Thirteen Treasures are said to have been located in the north of the British Isles, i.e. northern England and Scotland. One of the Welsh manuscripts is in fact entitled ‘Tri Thlws ar Ddeg Ynys Prydain’, which has been translated into English as ‘The Names of the Thirteen Treasures of the Island of Britain, which were in the North’.

The Thirteen Legendary Treasures of Britain



Read more: The Thirteen Legendary Treasures of Britain | Ancient Origins
Follow us: @ancientorigins on Twitter | ancientoriginsweb on Facebook

I'm thoroughly amazed you aren't one of them.
 
Blackleaf
#8
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

Like the island of Britain.

So the Welsh occupied the whole of the island of Britain, did they, before the Anglo-Saxons (whom the "Welsh" invited over to fight the troublesome Picts) arrived?

Quote:

Okay, so I've read the article a second time and indeed, all of those legendary objects are from the culture of the Brythonic and/or Romano Celts, latterly pushed into the Southwest corner of Britain and since referred to as "Welsh" ... foreigners in that foreign tongue of Teutons who crossed the Channel coming from the dung heaps of Frisia.

You mean like the foreigners that are the non-Red Indian Canadians - like, I'm assuming, you - and the Arab Muslim Egyptians? Just like those foreign usurpers, you mean?

As for those weird little Welsh, sheep-shagging, rugby-loving troglodytes, they came over to Britain from the Iberian peninsular, modern Spain and Portugal. That's why the Welsh are so swarthy.


Swarthy Spaniard: Wales and Bristol Rugby star Gavin Henson


Swarthy Spaniard: Tom Jones

Last edited by Blackleaf; Aug 10th, 2015 at 08:29 AM..
 
Curious Cdn
#9
LP
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf View Post

So the Welsh occupied the whole of the island of Britain, did they, before the Anglo-Saxons (whom the "Welsh" invited over to fight the troublesome Picts) arrived?

You mean like the foreigners that are the non-Red Indian Canadians - like, I'm assuming, you - and the Arab Muslim Egyptians? Just like those foreign usurpers, you mean?

As for those weird little Welsh, sheep-shagging, rugby-loving troglodytes, they came over to Britain from the Iberian peninsular, modern Spain and Portugal. That's why the Welsh are so swarthy.


Swarthy Spaniard: Wales and Bristol Rugby star Gavin Henson


Swarthy Spaniard: Tom Jones

Are you really that clueless about the history of your own country?

The "Welsh", Cornish, those from Devon, Cheshire the " West Country" are the remnants of the Romano Britons, probably the Picts as well. Yes, they invited the Teutonic Anglo-Saxons in to fight off another group of invading barbarians, the Scots from the Irish island. After the fall of the Romnan Empire, they fought unsuccessfully to regain their island while being beseiged pretty continuously for 600 years. The Welsh and those others are the aboriginal peoples of the Island of Britain and they are a pretty exact model for the fate of the aboriginal peoples of the Americas. It was practically a template for the conquest if the "Indians" ... another foreign term for native , like "Welsh". The winners get to make up the name and Walsk is Saxon for foreigner ...their name foir the aboriginal inhabitants.

P.S. " Swarthy Welsh" . Do a little homework and you will find that the marker genome of the aboriginal Welsh does connect them to the Iberian Peninsula ... 12,000 years ago. How did they get there? They walked to Britain, as the glaciers receded, along a shore that is now way below the sea. There was no Channel 12,000 years ago and Britain was a Peninsula. There are lots of theories right now about coming and goings as the glaciers receded but all of the genome studies put the Welsh and the related Basque as the oldest groups along the West Coast of Europe. The Saxons appear to have come from another source area to the East of thec Alps and to the West of the Urals. Massive alpine ice fields kept the groups apart for many thousands of years.

It is really interesting stuff. The Genome projects are opening up nall bsdotrts of interesting relationships and the population of Britain is a relatively unchanged study group.
Last edited by Curious Cdn; Aug 10th, 2015 at 05:30 PM..
 
Nuggler
#10
Blackie forgot" The beauty of Bob Loblaw"
 
Blackleaf
#11
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

LP
The "Welsh", Cornish, those from Devon, Cheshire the " West Country" are the remnants of the Romano Britons, probably the Picts as well.

The Welsh came from the Iberian peninsular, hence their swarthy complexion. It really is as simple as that.

Quote:

Yes, they invited the Teutonic Anglo-Saxons in to fight off another group of invading barbarians, the Scots from the Irish island.

No, they didn't. They invited the Anglo-Saxons over to fight the Picts, a different group altogether from the invading Scots/Gaels ("Scot" comes from the Latin for "pirate" or "raider", because that's how the Romans viewed those Irish who raided what is now the west coast of Scotland). The Picts were the native inhabitants of what is now Scotland. Dal Riata, the kingdom in western Scotland and the islands established by the invading Scots, and Pictland eventually merged to form Scotland.

Quote:

After the fall of the Romnan Empire, they fought unsuccessfully to regain their island while being beseiged pretty continuously for 600 years.

It wasn't "their" island. They shared the island with other groups, like the Picts.

Quote:

The Welsh and those others are the aboriginal peoples of the Island of Britain and they are a pretty exact model for the fate of the aboriginal peoples of the Americas.

The Welsh are as much the "native" inhabitants of Britain as the Red Indians are of North America - i.e. they are NOT the native inhabitants. The Welsh come from the Iberian peninsular - hence their swarthy complexion - and the Red Indians come from Asia - hence their swarthy complexion.

Quote:

P.S. " Swarthy Welsh" . Do a little homework and you will find that the marker genome of the aboriginal Welsh does connect them to the Iberian Peninsula ... 12,000 years ago. How did they get there? They walked to Britain, as the glaciers receded, along a shore that is now way below the sea. There was no Channel 12,000 years ago and Britain was a Peninsula. There are lots of theories right now about coming and goings as the glaciers receded but all of the genome studies put the Welsh and the related Basque as the oldest groups along the West Coast of Europe. The Saxons appear to have come from another source area to the East of thec Alps and to the West of the Urals. Massive alpine ice fields kept the groups apart for many thousands of years.

So there you go then. I'm afraid the Welsh are just as much incomers to the islands of Britain as the English. Recent research shows that 96% of the inhabitants of Llangefni have lineages which derive from Iberia. All this explains why the Welsh look a bit Spanish and Portuguese.
Last edited by Blackleaf; Aug 11th, 2015 at 05:33 AM..
 
Curious Cdn
#12
The Welsh came from the Iberian Penninsula 12,000 years ago and were the first group to re-populate the island post-glaciation.

The "Red Indians" (what an utterly idiotic expression) came from Siberia 12,000 years ago and were the first population to populate places like Canada, post-glaciation.

The best guess now ( there isn't much evidence either way) is that the Picts were not a separate people but another Brythonic Tribal network and that their genes reside with the Welsh. The North and South Welsh apparently come from somewhat different origins and maybe, that is the dividing line. No one will ever know unless they can recover some DNA from a Pictish skeleton and make some comparisons.
 
Blackleaf
#13
Quote: Originally Posted by Curious Cdn View Post

The Welsh came from the Iberian Penninsula 12,000 years ago and were the first group to re-populate the island post-glaciation.

The "Red Indians" (what an utterly idiotic expression) came from Siberia 12,000 years ago and were the first population to populate places like Canada, post-glaciation.

So the Welsh and the Red Indians are as much "foreigners" to Britain and Canada as the English and Canadians are, only they've been there a bit longer.

Quote:

The best guess now ( there isn't much evidence either way) is that the Picts were not a separate people but another Brythonic Tribal network and that their genes reside with the Welsh.

That depends on which theories you believes. Some experts don't take that view. There is some evidence that the Pictish language may have been related to Brythonic languages like Welsh, Cornish and Breton but that does NOT mean, though, that the Picts were themselves Brythonic, any more than the English speakers of Jamaica are Anglo-Saxon.
 

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