Myrddin Wyllt

legendary Northern British poet

Myrddin Wyllt – also known as Myrddin mab Morfryn, Merlinus Caledonensis, Merlinus Celidonius and Merlinus Silvester – was a supposed 6th century Brythonic warrior and prophet from Rheged or Strathclyde. The traditional attribution of several early Welsh poems to him is still taken seriously by some. In the later Middle Ages his legend was conflated with those of Ambrosius and other figures to produce the Merlin of the Arthurian legends.

Such a tumult of grief is within me.
Fifty years of pain I have endured.



The translations used here are by John Matthews, and are taken from R. J. Stewart and John Matthews (eds.) Merlin Through the Ages (London: Blandford, 1995), to which the page-numbers also refer.

  • Ojan aparchellan
    Nyhaut kisscas.
    Rac godurt y galar y ssit arnaf.
    Deg mlinet a deu ugein yd portheise poen.
    • Listen, little pig!
      I lack sleep,
      Such a tumult of grief is within me.
      Fifty years of pain I have endured.
    • "Hoianau" ("Greetings"), p. 28
  • Ojan aparchellan neud blodeu drein.
    Gorlas kein minit eluit neud kin.
    • Listen, little pig,
      Are not the thorn buds green
      The mountain fair, the earth beautiful?
    • "Hoianau" ("Greetings"), p. 29

"Afallennau" ("Appletrees")

  • Awallen pen. Atyf tra run.
    Kymaeth lissvne inybon. irbot y wun.
    Amyscud. arwy isguit. Am clet ar wy clun.
    Ac yg coed. Keliton y kisceisse vy hun.
    • Sweet appletree of luxuriant growth!
      I used to find food at its foot,
      When, because of a maid,
      I slept alone in the woods of Celyddon,
      Shield on shoulder, sword on thigh.
    • Page 26
  • Nym gogaun guarvy. nym goffvy gorterch.
    Ac igueith aryw derit. oet eur. wy gorthorch.
    Kin buyf. aelav hetiv gan eiliv eleirch.
    • No diversions attend me,
      Nor fair women visit me.
      Though at Arderydd I wore a golden torque
      The swan-white woman despises me now.
    • Page 27
  • Dec mlinet adev ugein in y gein anetwon.
    It vif inymteith gan willeith agwillon.
    Guydi da diogan aditan kertorion.
    Nv nev nam guy. guall. gan wylleith aguyllon.
    • Fifty years the plaything of lawless men
      I have wandered in gloom among spirits.
      After great wealth, and gregarious minstrels,
      I have been here so long not even sprites
      Can lead me astray.
    • Page 27
  • Afallen pen. blodev essplit.
    Atiff inargel in argoydit.
    • Sweet appletree, with delicate blossom,
      Growing concealed in the wood.
    • Page 27
  • Kimry aorvit kein bid eudragon.
    Kaffaud paub y teithi. llauen vi bri.brython.
    Kenhittor kirrn eluch. kathil hetuch a hinon.
    • Victorious Cymry, glorious their leaders,
      All shall have their rights again,
      All Britons rejoice, sounding joyful horns,
      Chanting songs of happiness and peace!
    • Page 27
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