Passages Omitted from the ‘Catalogue of Heroes’ in Culhwch ac Olwen, being the Seventh Tale of the Mabinogion

And forthwith did Culhwch invoke his boon in the name of three mighty men of the nation of the Cymry:

Shane Yscafndroed, whose mission it was to carry a coated pig’s bladder through the flanks, and yea, even the massed ranks of an opposing host (and so fleet of foot was he, and jinking and weaving withal, that no single one of that host could touch him, but were strewn as laid corn round about the path which was his god-given choice to wend.)

Adam Gwallthir, whose mighty bulk could stand steadfast against the onslaught of eight of the doughtiest men of all the hosts of Lloegr, and of Alban, and of Ireland, and of the Kingdom of the Franks, and of Rome, and even those of the far-flung regions at the south part of the world. (So great of strength was he and fearsome to behold that the spirit of those eight who came in fury against him would wane, and their endurance wither, whereat they would collapse unto naught before him.)

Leigh Hanerceiniog, who would neither bow his back nor strike an attitude of prayer before performing his duty, but would stand upright and stalwart like unto a true son of the Cymry (and even were two tall sticks placed the width of one half-pence piece apart and at a distance of an hundred and three-score paces, he would find his mark.)

From ‘Of Poetry and Song’

6 thoughts on “Passages Omitted from the ‘Catalogue of Heroes’ in Culhwch ac Olwen, being the Seventh Tale of the Mabinogion

    1. Thank you, Jacydo. You have some nice epithets, there! This was written a good few years ago, but no-one will have forgotten the great Shane Williams and Adam Jones. Today we need to pay a just tribute to that grand bastion, Alun Vraichvras.


    1. Thank you, Roma. The Georgians are an up-and-coming, rough-tough lot, but the skill and valour of the ages are ever with us and will doubtless tell!


    1. Diolch yn fawr, Vivienne! Ah, now the language of the older versions of The Mabinogion comes easily to me. What beats me, though, is how those mediaeval scribes missed these three out …


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