On this day each year, people all over Wales celebrate St Dwynwen’s Day, named for the Welsh patron saint of lovers.
According to legend, Princess Dwynwen (who lived at around 400 AD) was the most beautiful and spirited of the many daughters of King Brychan Brycheiniog, founder of a medieval kingdom in what is today the Brecon Beacons of South Wales. She fell in love with a man named Maelon, yet her father had already promised her in marriage to another, so she prayed to God to be released from loving Maelon. Once asleep, an angel appeared and gave her a potion, which turned her ill-fated lover into a block of ice.
Upon waking, Dwynwen prayed again for the curse to be broken and God granted her three wishes: that Maelon be thawed, that Dwynwen herself never marry, and that the fate of all true lovers will be safeguarded through all time. As a mark of gratitude, Dwynwen devoted the rest of her life to God. Her reputation spread, and finally she became known as Santes (“Saint”) Dwynwen, paitron saint of lovers.
Here at Seren, we’ve been pondering how best to show your loved one how much they mean to you in the spirit of St Dwynwen. Here are five suggestions we’re sure will bring a smile to their face…
1. A simple cuppa
Wales can be a cold and rainy place (sometimes!), so what better to warm the heart of your S/O than a hot brew?
2. A private poetry reading
Select a poem or two to read to your special someone. We recommend ‘Making Love’ from David Foster-Morgan’s Masculine Happiness, and ‘The Love Songs of Davy Blackrock’ from Boy Running by Paul Henry.
3. A romantic walk
There are so many beautiful areas in Wales, so why not explore one of them with the person you love? Anglesey (St Dwynwen’s home) is the perfect choice, and there are lots of other outstanding areas.
4. A carefully chosen book
Show you know your partner’s interests and present them with a thoughtfully selected book to enjoy. Bonus points if it’s one of ours!
5. A home-cooked meal
Restaurants are romantic. But making something edible – nay, delicious – with your own two hands? Now that is a gesture of love.
Happy St Dwynwen’s Day, everyone.