Monday, 26 July 2010 17:48

Cefn Bryn, Gower

Written by forestelf
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Broad Pool, Cefn Bryn

Cefn Bryn is the Gower Peninsula's second highest point, rising 188 metres above sea level. As well as being Gower's dominant land mass, it also holds one of the densest collections of cairns and othe pagan stone relic formations in the whole of South Wales.

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Over four metres long, two metres broad and two and a half metres high and raised on a series of angular stone supports, the capstone is an incredible twenty-five ton boulder of quartz conglomerate that was deposited here by a glacial ice sheet that crossed the entire South Wales countryside during the last great Ice Age. At this time the stone weighed a good ten tons heavier that it does today as some time before 1693 the rock was split cleanly in two. The stone was once the centre of druid worship and it is said that St. David took his mighty sword to the monument to prove it as an altar of false gods. The large segment of split rock still lays at the foot of Arthur's Stone.

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The Stone takes its name from the legend that King Arthur found a pebble in his boot and tossed it across the Burry Estuary. Having assumed magical powers along its flight - the stone grew in stature whilst other rocks indigenous to the region elevated the boulder upon their shoulders to display to the world the wonder of King Arthur's Stone.

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The Great Carn, Cefn Bryn's Most Impressive Ritual Cairn

The largest of the numerous Bronze Age cairns located on Cefn Bryn is known as the Great Carn (SS 490 904), which is located less than 300 metres south east from Arthur's Stone. The site consists of a saucer-shaped mound of stones raised over a central grave pit. Its scale and prominant position (affording thoses who visit the cairn some amazing panaramic views over much of the Gower Peninsula) mark out this monument as holding a special significance to the people who built it.

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The Iron Age Earth Fort, Cil Ifor Top, With the Great Carn in the Foreground

Excavations on the Great Carn, which took between 1981 and 1984, revealed a fascinating history. From the small amount of bone discovered on the site, it has been suggested that this cairn was used for magical rites and ceremonies as well as being a communal burial ground.

Read 2982 times Last modified on Friday, 20 September 2013 22:43

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