1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Llangollen

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LLANGOLLEN, a picturesque market-town and summer resort of Denbighshire, N. Wales, in the Dee (Dyfrdwy) valley, on a branch of the Great Western Railway, 9 m. S.W. of Wrexham, 2021/2 m. from London by rail. Pop. of urban district (1901) 3303. The Dee is here crossed by a 14th-century bridge of four arches, “one of the seven wonders of Wales,” built by John Trevor, afterwards bishop of St Asaph (Llanelwy). The Anglican church of St Collen, Norman and Early English, has a monument in the churchyard to the “Ladies of Llangollen,” Lady Eleanor Butler and Hon. Sarah Ponsonby, of Plas Newydd, (1778 to 1829 and 1831 respectively). The house is now a museum. Castell Dinas Brân (the castle of the town of Brân; the mountain stream below is also called Brân), the ruins of a fortress on a high conical hill about 1 m. from the town, is supposedly British, of unknown date. “An old ruynous thinge,” as the Elizabethan poet Churchyard calls it even in the 16th century, it was inhabited, apparently, about 1390, by Myfanwy Fechan of the Tudor Trevor family and beloved by the bard Howel ab Einion Llygliw, whose ode to her is still extant. Valle Crucis Abbey (Llan Egwest) is a Cistercian ruin at the foot of Bronfawr hill, some 2 m. N.W. of Llangollen, founded about 1200 by Madoc ab Gruffydd Maelor, lord of Dinas Brân and grandson of Owen Gwynedd, prince of Wales. Llan Egwest, dissolved in 1535, was given by James I. to Lord Edward Wootton. In the meadow adjoining, still called Llwyn y Groes (“grove of the cross”), is “Eliseg’s Pillar.” Eliseg was father of Brochmael, prince of Powys, and his grandson, Concen or Congen, appears to have erected the pillar, which is now broken, with an illegible inscription; the modern inscription dates only from 1779. At Llangollen are linen and woollen manufactures, and near are collieries, lime and iron works. Brewing, malting and slate-quarrying are also carried on. Within the parish, an aqueduct carries the Ellesmere canal across the Dee.