Saturday, 9 October 2010

William Wallace Was Welsh

Cymru Am Byth? Wallace the Welshman
I have long told anyone who will listen of the Welshness of St Patrick.

You see, the Briton (i.e. Welshman) Patrick was captured and taken to Ireland as a slave, where he (to cut a long story short) later returned as a Priest to convert the Irish.

Well, now I can add another national hero to my long list of Welsh heroes: William Wallace!

The name Wallace means 'Welshman' and as the link below shows, the Kingdom of Strathclyde and the Cumbrians spoke a dialect of, or a language akin to Welsh.

When Strathclyde was 'absorbed' into Scotland many of the ruling class moved down to Wales and were known as the 'Men of the North' and even today many Cumbrians share genes with the Welsh.

I knew that the Irish name Walsh meant 'Welsh' but had no idea of the name Wallace meaning the same in Scotland.

So there we have it: the Welsh gave Christianity and the Catholic heritage to Ireland, and the Welsh gave freedom and nationhood to Scotland!

It's a great time to be Welsh! ;-)

Link: The Cumbric Language


  1. The name 'Clyde' is also of Welsh origin. It comes from the name 'Clwyd'.

  2. You're absolutely correct. Wm. Wallace was from southwest Scotland, near Lanark, in northern Galloway which had been an independent state (kingdom) until just about a century before Wallace's birth. In fact, pre-fifth-century (AD), in the area where modern-day Scotland lies, was inhabited by virtually all Brythonic (a.k.a.,"Britannic" & "British". In insular-Celtic (British Isles-Celtic, as opposed to continental Celtic, e.g., Gaulish, Boii, Leptonic [all P-Celtic languages] & 100's more), the P-Celtic tongues, from the same bipartite ["P-Celtic" & "Q-Celtic"] P-Celtic subdivision whence Welsh, Cornish, Cumbric, Pictish, Caledonian, etc., come. It'd be a misnomer to say that Welsh was the mother-tongue to 95% of the Brythonic tongues spoken on the island of Great Britain (Modern-day, England, Scotland, Cornwall & Wales), but the Brythonic /BRITT-tonic/, tongues are Welsh-like, quite distinct & mutually unintelligible from Goidelic, "Insular Q-Celtic", Old-Irish. [Goidelic was contained on the island of Eire, until c. 400-450 AD, when Dàlriatic Scots ("Latin 'Scoti' & Anglo-Saxon "scotas", referred only to the Gaelic-speaking Celts of Ireland, until much later)
    Kenneth S. Doig ("Doig" is of Scottish-Gaelic derivation, originally *MacGilleDog [mac, 'son' + gille, "servant", "Dog", an abbreviated form of "Cadoc", a minor Catholic saint from Wales who converted many Gaels, Strathclydians, Picts, Germanic Norse & Germanic Anglo-Jutes, Frisians, up in Scotland.

    Strathclyde (lit. "Strath of the Clyde"), originally Brythonic "Ystadh Clud" was one of the early medieval kingdoms of the Celtic people called the Britons in the Hen Ogledd, the Brythonic-speaking parts of what is now southern Scotland and northern England. The kingdom developed during the post-Roman period. It is also known as Alt Clut, the Brythonic name for Dumbarton Rock, the medieval capital of the region. It may have had its origins with the Damnonii people of Ptolemy's Geographia.
    The language of Strathclyde, and that of the Britons in surrounding areas under non-native rulership, is known as Cumbric, a dialect or language closely related to Old Welsh. Place-name and archaeological evidence points to some settlement by Norse or Norse–Gaels in the Viking Age, although to a lesser degree than in neighbouring Galloway. A small number of Anglian place-names show some limited settlement by incomers from Northumbria prior to the Norse settlement. Due to the series of language changes in the area, it is not possible to say whether any Goidelic settlement took place before Gaelic was introduced in the High Middle Ages.
    After the sack of Dumbarton Rock by a Viking army from Dublin in 870, the name Strathclyde comes into use, perhaps reflecting a move of the centre of the kingdom to Govan. In the same period, it was also referred to as Cumbria, and its inhabitants as Cumbrians. During the High Middle Ages, the area was conquered by the Kingdom of Alba, becoming part of the new Kingdom of Scotland. It remained a distinctive area into the 12th century.


No foul language please