A Corpus of Early Medieval Inscribed Stones and Stone Sculptures in Wales

Volume 3, North Wales

Nancy Edwards

A Corpus of Early Medieval Inscribed Stones and Stone Sculptures in Wales

Nancy Edwards

Distributed for University of Wales Press

784 pages | 167 halftones | 8 1/2 x 11
Cloth $85.00 ISBN: 9780708325506 Published July 2013 For sale in North and South America, Australia, and New Zealand only
This volume, the final of three, focuses on the inscribed stones and stone sculptures of North Wales crafted between 400 and 1150 AD. It provides fresh insights and new interpretations of over 150 monuments, many of which have been discovered since V. E. Nash-Williams’s Early Christian Monuments of Wales was published in 1950. It includes an introductory discussion of the historical and archaeological context of the monuments, as well as essays on earlier research, geology, form and function, ornament and iconography, the language and lettering of the inscriptions, cultural connections, dating, and chronology. Numerous illustrations of the monuments accompany the critical analyses.


List of figures (and tables)

List of catalogue illustrations

Preface and acknowledgements


1. Historical and archaeological background to the monuments


      The Roman impact

      North Wales c. 300-800

      North Wales c. 800-1137

      The early medieval church in north Wales

2. Earlier research

3. Geological sources and selection of stone


      Selection of stone



      Geology and sources lithologies

      The relationship of stone form to lithologies


4. The early inscribed stones

      Numbers and distribution

      Context and function

      Roman-letter inscriptions: words and formulae

      Inscriptions in the ogam alphabet

      Roman-letter inscriptions: layout, carving, and epigraphy

      Christian symbols: chi-rhos and crosses

5. Forms of sculpture

      Cross-carved stones


      Cross-slabs and pillars

      Architectural and related fragments



      Later inscribed stones


6. Distribution, context and function of the sculpture

      Cross-carved stones

      Crosses, cross-slabs and other more ambitious sculpture

      Ecclesiastical landscapes

7. The ornament and iconography of the sculpture


      Plaitwork and interlace


      Spiral patterns

      Animal and plant ornament

      Figural iconography

8. Sculpture: the inscriptions

      Words, formulae and function

      Layout of inscriptions

      The palaeography of the later inscriptions

            Helen McKee

9. The sculpture: regional and local groups

      Circle-head crosses

      Sculpture carved from Anglesey Grit

      Sculpture on the Llyn and in Merioneth

      Sculpture in Powys

10. The Celtic language of the inscriptions and their chronology

      Brittonic inscriptions

      Irish inscriptions

      The incidence of Irish names

11. The development and chronology of early medieval stone-carving in north Wales

      The early inscribed stones

      The sculpture


      Organization of the catalogue

      Conventions for editing the texts of inscriptions

      Linguistic abbreviations

      List of all monuments in the catalogue


      Appendix A: Monuments of uncertain date

      Appendix B: Lost monuments for which no illustration has survived

      Appendix C: Stones wrongly identified as early medieval or possibly early medieval

Addenda to Pembrokeshire



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