Carreg Llywelyn, Pentrefoelas

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Carreg Llywelyn, Pentrefoelas

Carreg Llywelyn, or the Levelinus Stone, is an inscribed pillar which may have been created by monks to thank the Llywelyn Fawr, Prince of Wales, for giving them land in this area. The original stone is in the Museum of Wales, Cardiff. The one on display here is an accurate replica.

Llywelyn was grandson of Owain Gwynedd, who probably built the castle which stood on the mound near here. Llywelyn inherited his grandfather’s kingdom and was Prince of Gwynedd from 1137 to 1170. He eventually became the first ruler to unite Wales.  He gave the monks of Aberconwy Abbey land in Conwy, and around Pentrefoelas.

Experts believe the inscription was carved on the standing stone in 1230, 10 years before Llywelyn died. The inscription mixes Welsh and Latin to explain the meaning of Llywelyn’s Latinised name, Levelinus. Other theories have been put forward over the years. Some suggest the stone secretly marked the burial place of Llywelyn the Great’s bones, others that the decapitated body of Llywelyn Ein Llyw Olaf (the last indigenous Prince of Wales) was buried here after he was killed in 1282. Yet another idea is that local ruler Llywelyn ap Seisyllt, killed in battle nearby some 200 years earlier, was buried under the stone.

In 1790 the stone was moved to its present position near Hen Foelas, the land-owning Wynne family’s mansion in Pentrefoelas.

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