Santes Dwynwen Hapus!


For the Welsh among you this will be relevant and romantic and for the uninitiated it is a bit like saying 'Happy Valentine's Day'. It's not relating to Saint Valentine but Saint Dwynwen, of course.

St Dwynwen is the Welsh patron saint of lovers, which makes her the Welsh equivalent of St Valentine.

Dwynwen lived during the 5th century and was one of the prettiest of Brychan Brycheiniog's 24 daughters. Dwynwen fell in love with a prince called Maelon Dafodrill, but unfortunately her father had already arranged that she should marry someone else.

Dwynwen was so upset that she could not marry Maelon that she begged God to make her forget him. After falling asleep, Dwynwen was visited by an angel, who appeared carrying a sweet potion designed to erase all memory of Maelon and turn him into a block of ice.

God then gave three wishes to Dwynwen. Her first wish was that Maelon be thawed; her second that God meet the hopes and dreams of true lovers; and third, that she should never marry. All three were fulfilled, and as a mark of her thanks, Dwynwen devoted herself to God's service for the rest of her life.

She founded a convent on Llanddwyn, off the west coast of Anglesey, where a well named after her became a place of pilgrimage after her death in 465AD. Visitors to the well believed that the sacred fish or eels that lived in the well could foretell whether or not their relationship would be happy and whether love and happiness would be theirs. Remains of Dwynwen's church can still be seen today.

The popularity and celebration of St Dwynwen's Day has increased considerably in recent years. In 2003 The Welsh Language Board had bi-lingual English-Welsh cards printed which were distributed by Tesco stores throughout Wales.

So why wait until St Valentine's Day to make your romantic feelings known, when you can wish your loved one 'dwi'n dy garu di ' (I love you) three weeks earlier?

Steve told me all about this years ago but I have taken the version above from as it tells the story so well. Interestingly the page this info was on is sponsored by Clogau Welsh Gold!

Steve surprised me by making this card for me and gifting me this perfect single pink rose. I know, soppy old sickening romantics again! Hee hee, I don't get one life so why not make every day magical?

Santes Dwynwen 2010 SD 2010

I have a lovely idea for a gift for Valentine's Day (or belated Santes Dwynwen) coming up at midnight tonight (tuesday into wednesday). It's from Murano Gold. A beautiful handmade Murano pendant with a Murano glass bead necklace. I hope you can join me for that.

In the meantime why not tell me your most romantic St.Valentine's or Santes Dwynwen stories? You know I adore hearing slushy romantic tales!

Lots of love to you,

Catherine x


  1. Julie January 26, 2010 at 7:34 pm -  Reply

    Hi Catherine
    No romantic stories I’m afraid but so pleased you keep Wales on the map. Haven’t managed to get to West Wales yet-so much happening at the moment!Birthdays etc. Hoping this year will be better as you know. Will keep you informed-watch this space!!
    Take Care
    Julie xx

  2. Kitty January 27, 2010 at 10:00 am -  Reply

    Hi Catherine
    I love the story of St Dwynwen, I’ve just started learning Welsh on my iPod!
    I met my boyfriend thru a charity that supports people with anxiety and other issues – we corresponded as friends via e-mail and on the phone for about 7 months before we decided we would meet up. He lives in Scotland and I live in Lancashire.
    Despite still living apart we’ve been together 5 years doing the long distance thing. Our first Valentine’s Day together was about 12 months after we’d first met and we stayed in a hotel nearby. We were cuddled up and he reached into the drawer next to him and presented me with a beautiful wooden box, when I opened it there was a stunning diamond ring in there! We’re not officially engaged, even after all this time but I DO wear it on my ring finger, in the hope he gets the hint πŸ˜‰
    I’d never been given a present like it really! It was four years ago now and even tho we’re still not properly together I’m hoping this year will be our year finally – we’ve been thru so much together with illness and other things too, and all we want is to be together properly and for good!
    Lots of love from Kathryn (was Kitty)

  3. Catherine Huntley January 27, 2010 at 10:50 am -  Reply

    Hi Julie,
    Great to hear from you again. You will love West Wales when you do finally get there. I’m really looking forward to getting back there myself! Thinking of taking a trip ‘en masse’ at some point this year with friends and family and renting out a large house not far from Steve’s parents.
    I sincerely hope this year turns out to be masses better than last. Enjoy the birthdays..hopefully that means a few cheeky slices of cake!
    Chat soon. Love Catherine x

  4. Catherine Huntley January 27, 2010 at 11:02 am -  Reply

    Dear Kathryn,
    Lovely to hear from you. You are the only person I know who is learning Welsh who isn’t Welsh! Unless, of course, you are but didn’t say. Hee hee. What are you using that goes on the ipod? Is it Linguaphone? Mine is and it’s a VERY old second hand one I got off an auction site. I’d be very interested to hear if there is something more up to date.
    The story of you and your boyfriend has a few parallels with me and Steve! We met through like minded friends who loved going to Glastonbury and other music festivals. He lived in Wales and I in Surrey so we kept in touch through emails and phone calls. Steve would drive 4 hours to come and see me every weekend until he finally moved here to be with me! I can relate to the long distance thing. They say absence makes the heart grow fonder, it’s true. I bet every time you meet up again you still get those butterflies!
    I do hope this year things will enable you to be closer and perhaps you’ll have news about the status of that diamond ring before long! Maybe you could move to Sctoland, such a beautiful place. Used to live there for a while myself, loved it.
    I hope you have a magical Valentines Day. Do feel free to write and let me kow if anything exciting happens!
    Much love,
    Catherine x

  5. Carole Lynch January 27, 2010 at 8:24 pm -  Reply

    Hiya Catherine,
    Watching you just now on air with Lennie, there is no way you can be eleven stone – you look soooo skinny in your red dress. I am a large lady and have lost 4 stone so far with healthy eating, with another 4 to go, if you are eleven stone you have really inspired me, but I think you need new scales.
    lots of love
    ps You look amazing!!!

  6. Kitty January 28, 2010 at 10:45 am -  Reply

    Hiya again Catherine!
    I’m not Welsh, I’m actually part Irish! I adore anything celtic, it’s magical πŸ™‚ And I’m also learning Irish gaelic too. I have an iPod touch – and all I did was search the applications you can add, you can actually type in something like ‘learn wlesh language’ or similar and it will bring up a series of free or paid apps you can install. They are quite basic, but do give a good grounding, and help with pronunciation etc. I suspect they might well be too basic for you given you probably hear and pick up the language quite often with having a Welsh partner!
    It’s lovely to hear you have a similar story to mine! It made me feel all melty reading it – and you’re obviously so very happy, it really does show! I do get mahoosive butterflies every time I see David. I mean, we speak online and on the phone for about 3 hours every day, but it’t not the same as being in person. I think if either of us is to move, it will be me. I have less to lose than he does so to speak – and I really feel that I’m coming to a stage in my life where I need to make some real changes, having been in and out of therapy for so many years. I will of course let you know if anything changes re the diamond ring πŸ™‚
    Wishing you all the best Catherine. You’re an absolute star.
    Love from

  7. Catherine Huntley January 28, 2010 at 10:53 am -  Reply

    Hi Carole,
    Well, thank you very kindly for your lovely comments. Must admit that I was wearing my slim n lift with the red dress but I did feel pretty good having already shed some pounds. Looking forward to my monday weigh in!
    The scales are, sadly, accurate. That is unless my mum’s are also wrong as I’m always the same on mine and hers.
    Well done on your 4 stone loss! That’s amazing! Do keep it will be so worth it as I’m sure you’ve seen already. Easier to find clothes, more confidence, better’s all win win. I still allow myself a treat like maybe a glass of wine or two on a saturday night. What I want to rid myself of is the habit of take aways & crisps! No good for me but I will give myself the freedom to have them occasionally so they’re not forbidden.
    Keep up the good work, Carole, great hearing from you.
    All the very best,
    Love Catherine x

  8. Catherine Huntley January 28, 2010 at 1:20 pm -  Reply

    Hello again Kathryn,
    Thanks for letting me know about how you get your tutorial materials. I am going to get an iphone soon so I’m sure I can get something good to practice with now. Great tip!
    So pleased for you that you are making this your year. Keep me updated, won’t you? I love a good love story!
    Much love to you and you are also a star, my sweet lass!
    Love Catherine, hopeless romantic x

  9. Sue Bayley February 1, 2010 at 10:11 pm -  Reply

    Hi Catherine
    I’m Welsh but live in England. We got married in Hobart, Tasmania on Valentines Day. We thought we’d have trouble finding a slot on such a romantic day but we were the only ones on the registrar’s list!! What does that tell us about Aussies????????
    Bonus for my husband…….he never forgets our anniversary!
    Love Sue x

  10. Catherine Huntley February 3, 2010 at 12:11 pm -  Reply

    Hi Sue,
    Wow, lovely story about your Aussie wedding. Did you have shrimps on the barbie for the wedding meal? Hee hee!
    Made me chuckle about your hubby not forgetting the anniversary. No excuses eh?
    Diolch yn fawr for writing in.
    Love Catherine x

  11. Helen Wallington March 7, 2011 at 10:18 pm -  Reply

    Hi Catherine
    I absolutely loved the red crossover dress with the side tie that you had on presenting the Spanx panties during Red Carpet weekend. You looked so slim and stunningly fabulous in it. Is it sold on QVC? If it isn’t it should be. You’re inspiring me to lose at least 8 pounds for the summer.
    Love Helen

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