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Friday, 28 January 2011

Bardsey Island & Its Remarkable History





Peintiad dyfrlliw o Oleudy Enlli gan Douglas Hague.
Watercolour painting of Bardsey Lighthouse by Douglas Hague. Image/Llun: DI2005_0679
Golwg newydd ar Ynys Enlli
Ar ben gorllewinol Pen Llŷn y mae Ynys Enlli. Er ei bod hi’n fach, mae iddi hanes rhyfeddol, a hyd heddiw mae rhyw naws ddirgel iddi. Bu’n gyrchfan i bererinion am gyfnod maith Honnid bod tair pererindod i Enlli yn gyfwerth ag un i Rufain, ond hyd y dydd heddiw mae’n ynys sy’n anodd ei chyrraedd. Er mwyn i bawb allu gweld sut mae “ynys yr ugain mil o saint” wedi newid o oes i oes, mae’r Comisiwn Brenhinol wedi bod yn gweithio gyda’r artist 3D Iwan Peverett i ddatblygu cyfres o animeiddiadau cyfrifiadurol yn bennaf ar gyfer gwefan newydd Casgliad y Werin, sef *www.casgliadywerincymru.com*. Bydd y fideos byr hynny’n cynnig cipolwg ar y ffordd y mae cartrefi a bywydau trigolion yr ynys wedi datblygu o’r Oes Haearn hyd at ddiwedd y 19eg ganrif.

Yr olion archaeolegol cynharaf ar Enlli yw sylfeini crwn, petryal ac is-betryal sawl grŵp o gytiau ar lethrau gwyllt Mynydd Enlli. Er nad oes fawr o dystiolaeth i roi dyddiad i’r olion hynny, mae safleoedd tebyg ar y tir mawr wedi’u dyddio’n bendant i’r Oes Haearn (700 C.C. - 43 O.C.). Y rheiny sydd wedi bod yn sail i adlunio anheddiad o’r Oes Haearn ar yr ynys.

Man cychwyn hanes Cristnogaeth ar Enlli oedd y gymuned o fynachod a sefydlwyd gan Sant Cadfan yn y chweched ganrif, a chyn pen dim o dro daeth yr ynys yn hoff fan claddu ymhlith pobl dduwiol. Mae’n debyg bod safle’r fynachlog gynnar honno’n debyg i un yr abaty diweddarach. Nid yn unig y mae’n gymharol gysgodol a bod golygfeydd braf ohono ar draws yr ynys a’r môr, ond hefyd mae ef yn ymyl un o ffynhonnau mwyaf dibynadwy’r ynys.

Er bod mwy o dystiolaeth o’r abaty o’r cyfnod tua diwedd yr Oesoedd Canol, mae’r ffaith fod cyn lleied o dystiolaeth faterol yno’n golygu ei bod hi’n anodd creu darlun pendant o gynllun yr adeiladau. Adeg diddymu’r mynachlogydd, cofnodwyd bod yr abaty’n cynnwys priordy, tŷ eglwys, tŵr pigfain, ystafelloedd, ysguboriau, stablau, perllannau, 8 gardd, 4 dôl, eglwys, tŷ’r abad, a chapel bwaog hir ac iddo allor ar ei phen ei hun yn un pen iddo, ysbyty, storfeydd, geudy, mynwent a llyfrgell, a’r cyfan ohonynt wedi’u codi o gerrig. Cyfunwyd y wybodaeth am yr adeiladau hynny ag ymchwil i abatai Awstinaidd eraill, gan gynnwys Priordy Penmon, i gael rhyw syniad o’r arddull a’r manylion pensaernïol ar gyfer creu’r adluniad.

Erbyn i Thomas Pennant ymweld â’r ynys ym 1770, tyddynnod oedd yno, ac mae’n disgrifio “a fertile plain... well cultivated... productive of everything the mainland offers”. Daw’r dystiolaeth am yr ynys yn y cyfnod hwnnw o ddisgrifiadau ysgrifenedig yn bennaf, gan gynnwys un Pennant, a map cyfoes sy’n dangos patrwm y ffermydd a therfynau’r caeau. Bu cofnod Chris Arnold o derfynau caeau’r ynys, gan gynnwys y gwahanol ddefnyddiau a’r technegau adeiladu a ddefnyddid ar draws yr ynys, hefyd yn amhrisiadwy. Un adeiladwaith amlwg o’r cyfnod hwnnw sy’n dal yno yw’r odyn galch ar hyd y ffordd o Dŷ Pellaf.

Yn y 1870au gwnaeth Trydydd Barwn Niwbwrch gyfres o ‘welliannau’ mawr i adeiladau’r ynys. Yn lle’r bythynnod â’u croglofftydd, codwyd amryw o ffermdai a thai allan a gawsai eu cynllunio’n bwrpasol, ac ym 1821 fe ddechreuwyd defnyddio’r goleudy. Mae tŵr y goleudy’n 99 troedfedd o uchder, a dyma dŵr sgwâr talaf unrhyw oleudy ym Mhrydain. Er mai bandiau o baent coch a gwyn sydd arno erbyn heddiw, gwyn yn unig oedd ef yn wreiddiol. Ychwanegiad pwysig arall i drigolion yr ynys oedd y capel newydd a’r tŷ capel drws nesaf iddo.

Cysylltau:

Awyrlun o adfeilion abaty’r Santes Fair.
Aerial view of the ruins of St Mary’s Abbey. Image/Llun: DI2005_0240
New views of Bardsey Island
Bardsey Island lies just off the western tip of the Llyn Peninsula. While small, it has a remarkable history and even today retains an air of mystery. Long a focal point for pilgrimage, it was claimed that three pilgrimages to Bardsey were equal to one to Rome, but to this day it remains a destination that is difficult to access. Developed primarily for the new People’s Collection Wales website *www.peoplescollectionwales.com*, the Royal Commission has been working with 3D artist Iwan Peverett to develop a series of computer-generated reconstruction animations which allow everyone to see how the “island of twenty-thousand saints” has changed over time. These short videos provide a glimpse of how the homes and lives of those living on the island have developed from the Iron Age to the late 19th century.

The earliest archaeological remains on Bardsey are the circular, rectangular and sub-rectangular foundations of several hut groups, visible on the uncultivated slopes of Mynydd Enlli. There is little dating evidence for these remains, but similar sites on the mainland are conclusively dated to the Iron Age (700 B.C. – 43 A.D.), and these have provided the basis for a reconstruction of an Iron Age settlement on the island.

The history of Christianity on Bardsey started with the monastic community founded by St Cadfan in the sixth century, and the island soon became a favoured burial place for the devout. It is likely that this early monastery was located in a similar position to the later abbey as not only is it relatively sheltered, with good views of the island and sea, it is also located near to one of the most dependable springs on the island.

While more evidence exists for the abbey during the later medieval period, it is difficult to be sure of the design and layout of the buildings as so little physical evidence remains. It was recorded at the time of dissolution that the abbey comprised a priory, church house, steeple, rooms, barns, stables, orchards, 8 gardens, 4 pastures, a church, abbots house, and a long arched chapel with insulated altar at one end, an infirmary, stores, necessarium, cemetery and library, all stone built. Knowledge of these buildings was combined with research on other Augustinian abbeys, including Penmon Priory, to provide architectural style and details for the reconstruction.

By the time Thomas Pennant visited the island in 1770, the island was given over to croft style farming, and he describes “a fertile plain... well cultivated... productive of everything the mainland offers”. Evidence for the island in this period comes mainly from written accounts, including Pennant’s, and a contemporary map illustrating the layout of farms and field boundaries. Chris Arnold’s recording of the field boundaries on the island, including the different materials and construction techniques used across the island, also proved invaluable. One prominent structure of this date which survives is the limekiln which stands alongside the road from Ty Pellaf.

In the 1870's a series of major 'improvements' were made to the buildings on the island by the Third Baron Newborough. Earlier crog-loft cottages were replaced with a number of specially designed farm houses and outbuildings. The lighthouse with its 99ft tower, the tallest square tower of any lighthouse in the British Isles, became operational in 1821. Although today it is painted in red and white bands, it was originally just white. Another important addition for the inhabitants of the island was the new chapel, with its chapel house, Ty Capel, next door.

Links:

Cyhoeddiadau/Publication:


BBC2 Wales - Hidden Histories - Series 3

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