Come with me to Wales

Wales is an island of Great Britain and a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It is bordered by England to the east and Atlantic Ocean and Irish Sea to the west. The country is situated within the North Temperate Zone, and its climate changeable.

The development of mining and metallurgical industries n the early part of the Industrial Revolution transformed the country from agricultural into an industrial society. Today, with the country’s heavy industries gone or declined, Wales’ economy depends on the light and service industries, tourism, and the public sector.

Cultural Practices

Neolithic colonists integrated with the indigenous people, gradually changing their lifestyles from a nomadic life of hunting and gathering, to become settled farmers. They cleared the forests to cultivate the land and establish pasture. They also developed new technologies such as ceramics and textile production and many more

In literature, Wales can claim one of the oldest unbroken literary traditions in Europe. This literary tradition dates back to the sixth century and, with the inclusion of Geoffrey of Monmouth and Gerald of Wales, as two of the finest Latin authors of the Middle Ages.  Poets Taliesin and Aneirin for the earliest Welsh verse. Welsh poetry and native lore survived the Dark Ages, through the era of the Poets of the Princes and the Poets of the Gentry.

The National Museum of Wales was started by a royal charter in 1907 and is now a Welsh Government sponsored body. The National Museum is composed of seven sites across the country, including the National Museum Cardiff, Big Pit National Coal Museum, and St Fagans National History Museum.  In April 2001, the attractions attached to the National Museum were granted free entry so the number of visitors increased.

Aberystwyth, a university city is home to the National Library of Wales, which houses a number of Wales’ most important collections such as the John William’s Library and the Shirburn Castle collection.

Beautiful Sites

King Edward constructed a series of great stone castles like Beaumaris, Conwy and Caernarfon. His son, King Edward II of England, was born at Edward’s castle at Caernarfon in 1284. He became the first English Prince of Wales in 1301.

Wales has three UNESCO World Heritage Sites: The Castles and Town walls of King Edward I in Gwynedd, the Blaenavon Industrial Landscape, and the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct.

The best of the few Welsh artists of the 16th to the18th centuries left the country to work in London and Italy. Richard Wilson was the first major British landscapist. He painted several Welsh scenes on visits from London. At the later part of the 18th century, the popularity of landscape art increased and more Welsh artists stayed in their homeland. Artists from outside Wales were also allured to paint Welsh scenery due to the Celtic Revival and in the early 19th century, the Napoleonic Wars preventing the Grand Tour to continental Europe made travel through Wales more accessible.

Wonderful Insights

Wales with its advanced culture in the field of literature, architecture, and the arts still had to go through the ups and downs of the times. What is important though is how Wales stood up and bounce back from every challenge. It is something you and me can learn from.

Photo by vix_b on Flickr

No reviews yet.

Leave a Reply