Friday, June 09, 2017

Monster myths

I started reading this Caught By The River column by Helia Phoenix to be entertained by tales of the River Taff's afanc - "some sort of terrible beastie from the deep" that has been represented "as anything from demon crocodile to barbarous beaver". However, I ended up being more interested in the history than the myth, learning not only that Cardiff was overrun by pirates in the sixteenth century but also that the river used to run down the route of Westgate Street and was only diverted to its current course in the nineteenth century by Isambard Kingdom Brunel. These days (and particularly on the Champions League final day that she mentions), Westgate Street is renowned for the flow of beer rather than river traffic.

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