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The Barddas of Iolo Morganwg, Vol. I., ed. by J. Williams Ab Ithel, [1862], at


The pillwydd will be in two halves each post, so that they may be opened and closed in order to receive and bind together the peithwydd, or ebillion. There are two posts, one at each end of the frame, and in each frame it is usual for the most part to have twenty-four of the peithwydd, 1 though there may be any number required. Therefore eighteen or twenty are often seen, and not seldom thirty. And in the Peithynen as many fastenings as may be desired, but more than three fastenings are unwieldy. Some make a Peithynen with one long fastening, having perhaps forty, fifty, or sixty, or more peithwydd, but where that is the case, more than one fastening is not manageable. The peithwydd ought each to be four sided, with the edges or angles slightly taken off to the full depth of the letters, so that the letters of one side may not appear on the edge of the other side, and so with every side. The width of the sides of the peithwydd will be as large as the length of a

p. 152 p. 153

barley corn or wheat corn; if larger, the Peithynen would be unwieldy and heavy, and would require much room in carrying.

Some put the peithwydd in the blue colour in which wool is dyed, letting them stand there until every one of them is of a blue colour; and having allowed them to dry, they cut the letters, which will be white, and clearer on the blue wood, than if it had not been coloured, the letters being of the same colour as the wood. Others use black, or green, or red colour, it matters not much what colour it may be, so that the letters sufficiently differ from the colour of the wood. The best of all wood for lasting is oak; the easiest to be worked is hazel, or willow, or alder. Birch is a good tree, so are the plumb-tree and the hawthorn; the old Poets formerly were fond of mountain ash; there need be no better for lasting and working than apple trees, where they may be had smooth. Boiling the pillwydd and peithwydd in sour lees, will keep them from worms, and heating them hot, and smearing them with beeswax, half roasting them until the wax penetrates into them from the heat, will keep them from decay and rot, whatever tree it may be.


151:1 p. 150 Peithwydd, (paith-gwydd,) open or elucidative wood.

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