Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Guide Books

A guide is to help direct you in a course or show you the way to be followed.  It implies an ability to help keep you on that course, and provide you intimate knowledge along the way.  You can certainly appreciate what a budding family tree climber (genealogist) with a surname JONES was trying to figure out.  The following is a picture of such a guide for me in my Welsh tree climbing.

Living in many imaginary castles during childhood, you can see why this guide caught my attention.  "Wales" and a picture of a "castle"...wow I thought...got to get this book! [Soon learned this was a picture of Harlech Castle]

Written in 1969 by Wynford Waughan-Thomas and Alun Llewellyn, it provided me names, places, and pictures of what I was to discover was the home of my heart's blood.  Over the years, I have used this reference to read about places in Wales that had unusual names and at times very unique history. A fancy word "Gazetteer" is used to describe the content, but fancy words were always a challenge to me.

The introduction was the first written history of Wales that was to come across my mind.  It begins:

                                                           "Their Lord they will praise,
                                                             Their speech they will keep,
                                                             Their land they shall lose,
                                                             Except Wild Wales."

"Wild Wales"...my kind of place...thought I.  It must have been my genes talking at the time, since it would take me many years to figure out that this was indeed my place.  A guide book indeed it is.

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