In Pictures: “Citadels of Mystery”

Citadels of Mystery is the rather intriguing title of a book by husband and wife team L. Sprague and Catherine C. de Camp. Published back in 1972, it featured their twelve most famous legends, myths and romantic sites of the world.   So who were the De Camps? Lyon Sprague de Camp (1907-2000) was an…

Sarn Helen – the mysterious way through Wales (part 1)

The Ordnance Survey maps of West Wales show a dashed line running from south to north, sometimes on the course of modern roads, sometimes over hills and moorland, sometimes raised on a causeway, sometimes disappearing from view. It is labelled as ‘Sarn Helen’, often with ‘ROMAN ROAD’ in bold lettering beside. But was this route,…

Sarn Helen – the mysterious way through Wales (part 2)

This article continues from Part 1 and explores some other Helen and Elen associations that could help to shed light on the meaning and origins of the ancient trackways known as ‘Sarn Helen’ – that is, if they don’t confuse matters even further! Sarn Helen above the Vale of Neath (Image © Alan Richards) The…

Perspectives: King Arthur

King Arthur is known to us today as a legendary British leader who led the defence of Britain against the Saxon invaders in the 5th and 6th centuries AD. It was apparently a time of chivalric knights in shining armour, and elegant women in medieval castles. But much of Arthurian legend comes from Geoffrey of…