Edward Hunt's Forest of Dean Miscellany

Fact, Fiction and Fantasy

The Breviary of Britain

(Commentarioli Britannicae Descriptionis Fragmentum)

Let us now proceed to Wales, the third part of Britain. The same is now divided from Lhoëgr, that is England, by the Rivers Severn & Dee, and on every other side is environed by Vergivian, or Irish, Ocean. And it was called Cambria, as our chronicles do report, of Camber, the third son of Brutus, like as Lhoëgr of Locrinus, and Albania of Albanactus his other sons also. This same only, with Cornwall, a most ancient country of Britons, enjoyeth as yet the old inhabitants.

The Welshmen use the British tongue and are the very true Britons by birth. And although some do write that Wales doth not stretch forth on this side the River Vaga, or Wye, this can be no fraud to us. For we have taken in hand to describe Cambria, and not Wallia, Wales, as it is now called by a new name, and unacquainted to the Welshmen.

In Northwales, the Welshmen keep their old bounds. But in Southwales the Englishmen are come over Severn, and have possessed all the land between it and Wye. So that all Herefordshire, & the Forest of Dean, and Gloucestershire, & a great part of Worcestershire, & Shropshire on this side Severn are inhabited by Englishmen at this day.

  The text above is from:
                "The Breviary of Britain"
                by Humphrey Llwyd (Lhuyd), 1572
                Edited by M. Williams 1723-4.

Edward Hunt