Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Visit to St Dogmael's Abbey and the Sacranus Stone

I hope you can read this.  It's in the little visitor centre at St Dogmael's, which we visited a week ago.  It was obviously a seat of monastic learning from early times.  Two of the early christian monuments marked boundaries, and are now in Cardiff, at the National Museum of Wales.  These date from the 9th - 11th C.

As you can see, some of these stones had new incarnations as gateposts . . . or the infill in a wall.

The remains of St Dogmael's Abbey, which must have been splendid before the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

Ivy-leafed Toadflax growing across a bit of old wall.

This stone was at the back of the church and is doubtless Romano-British in ancestry.  It had quite a strong . . . energy.  It is chanelling something (hah!  Damp, judging by the wall behind it!)  I will presume that it is  Dolerite stone from the Preseli Mountains, as are the other early Christian monuments on this site, but it has something the others don't.  Either the exact position it is in, or some quartz inside the stone, seem to give it the ability to chanel energy - and it was a somewhat negative energy too.  Strange.

Another portion of a wheel cross monument in the church.

Just to lighten the atmosphere, here are some beautiful roses growing over a garden wall just outside the Abbey grounds.

Here, for Suffolk Smallholder, is the Old Mill and the Miller's House, which have this amazing deep pink rose growing up them.  I wish I knew which one it was.

Gorgeous isn't it?


  1. Fascinating set of photos Jennie, and I can read the literature. Read somewhere the other day that the reuse of prehistoric/dark age stones as gateposts, was problematic as new farm machinery was much larger than the width of the entrance, so many stones are thrown aside. Went to Margam church many, many years ago, which also had Christian stones.....

  2. Yes, Margam has a good collection. I have two wonderful books (thank you K!) on the corpus of Welsh stones, Vols, I and II of "A Corpus of Early Medieval Inscribed Stones and Stone Sculpture in Wales" (Vol. II is by Nancy Edwards, who is very knowledgable, and Vol. I by Mark Redknap (ditto) and John Lewis. I will look these stones up in there today and try and add a bit more info. I was typing this early in the morning!

  3. I was looking at your stones and thinking about Ogham, which I first saw on a stone in Scotland, then scrolled a bit further down the post and lo and behold, there was Ogham! Perhaps the stone with the strange energy should not have been moved. The monastery is beautiful.

  4. Is the watermill still working close by the abbey? we had a brilliant day out in the village many years ago. Lovely area.

  5. Another interesting place I'd like to visit! Interesting about the negative energy surrounding the Sacranus stone. Love the photo of the stone church.
    Blessings, Dianne

  6. Dianne - it's worth visiting, especially with blue skies and sunshine, as it is today and was last week. You would be enthralled, I am sure.

    Smallholder - yes, I think I put up a couple of photos of the roses growing on his house and the water mill wall recently - if not, then I will. I bought some Organic stoneground wholemeal bread flour from him. He said he's been there 30 years now.

    CT - ah yes, Ogham. We get it on quite a few stones in these parts because Irish princelings came and colonized it (especially around Brecon and Llangorse Lake, which had Irish? crannogs on/in it. My Dissertation was on the equine iconography of the Pictish stones up in Scotland . . . I am rather smitten with stones and their energies.

  7. I have been there many times over the years and always found it a place of great peace.

  8. Love that mill and what beautiful stones. I'd love to have gateposts like that.

  9. I am very envious of this visit. I am so interested in Stones.
    King Henry has a lot to be held accountable for.
    The roses are beautiful !
    Thanks for the lovely tour today.

    cheers, parsnip

  10. It is very peaceful there Pat. A lovely atmosphere (apart from by that bloomin' stone for me!)

    Em - the number of times these old Christian stones across the country, got re-used as gateposts and stepping-stones, or built into church walls and the like. They got seen just as something useful rather than something religious. The Dartmoor stone crosses are fascinating too.

    Parsnip - glad you enjoyed the post. Hah - Stones are my "starter for 10" and fascinate me from the Neolithic onwards.

  11. What an interesting post -I really enjoyed reading this. Looks a wonderful place to visit.

    The stones are fascinating.

    Just to thank you again for the mincemeat cake recipe - I made it a few days ago and it was delicious. Still have mincemeat to use up so I will be making it again!