Cardiff Records: Volume 5. Originally published by Cardiff Records Committee, Cardiff, 1905.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
G - M
GABALFA, Y; or Caubalfa, (the ferry.) A hamlet and a mansion in the parish of Llandaff, on the left bank of the river Taff, near Llandaff ford and bridge. In 1612 "Cabalva, 5 acres" was found to be concealed land and was demised to Oliver Robotham.
GALLOWS FIELDS, The. Two meadows on the north-eastern boundary of the Borough, at the west side of the junction between Crwys Road, Castle Road and Albany Road (1803.) Their site is now intersected by Richmond Road, which, at its junction with the above roads, apparently runs along the boundary between the two Gallows Fields. These were oblong, their eastern ends abutting on the junction between Crwys Road and Castle Road (plan of 1820.) The name reminds us that this was anciently the place of public executions. The fields were originally in four plots, known as 1. Gallows Pit, 2. Pwll-halog ("Defiled Pool") or Plwca-halog ("Defiled Pleck"), 3. Cut-throats, and 4. Cae-pudr ("Putrid Close.") These measured one acre each, and were a portion of the Little Heath, near the site of Woodville.
GALLOWS YARD (1821.) That part of the former Gaol in which public executions took place. It was a court off Saint Mary Street, about opposite the London and Provincial Bank. In older records the place is called the Gall House (1715.)
GARTH, The. (The round, untilled hill-top.) A round, bare mountain at the entrance to the Taff Vale, on the river's right bank, eight miles north-west from Cardiff and chiefly in the parish of Pentyrch.
GLAMORGAN. Welsh Gwlad Morgan, or Gwladforgan (the land of Morgan.) Anciently a Cambro-British princedom extending from Neath eastward to Usk; now one of the Welsh counties, lying between the shires of Carmarthen, Brecknock and Monmouth. The name is traditionally ascribed to Morgan, a prince of this territory, who was a kinsman of King Arthur.
GLOUCESTER, The Honour of. The superior Norman lordship palatine which included the old native principalities of Gwent and Morganwg. Though for a long period it was held by one lord, the Honour was afterwards divided among two and more marcher lords; of whom the Lord of Glamorgan held Cardiff Castle and the manors which were subject to it.
GLYN-TAF (the vale of the Taff.) The narrow mouth of the river's valley, in the parish of Eglwysilan. The forest or uncultivated portion of this valley was in 1307 appurtenant to the lordship of Llantrisant.
GOLATE. A lane leading from Saint Mary Street westward down the left bank of the old bed of the river Taff to Westgate Street. It was sometimes called the Golly Gate (1786), and the Goleet. The name is a variant of Gully-yat, i.e., gully passage, in allusion to a stream which ran down here into the Taff. There is a certain historical interest in the popular but erroneous derivation which attributed the name to the fact that this lane afforded an opportunity to procrastinating mariners to "go late" aboard their vessels as these swung down the river from the Quay. It is called Golate in a document of 1738, the Gall Gate 1748, Gollyate and Gollgate in 1750, Gullate 1779, and "The Goo-late" from 1840 to 1850.
GRACE'S HOUSE. This was property of the Corporation. The lease was lost as long ago as 1738, and from about 1750 no rent was paid for the premises; but it figures in the Rentals down to 1817, by which time the very identity of the house was forgotten.
GRANGE DE MORE, Moor Grange, or simply Grange. An ancient monastic tithe-barn in the parish of Llandaff, on the Moors west of Cardiff, which belonged to the abbot and monks of Margam Abbey. The old barn, which was lately a farm-house, is still standing and gives its name to Cardiff's south-western suburb, Grangetown, built in the seventies of the 19th century. The Grange Farm, as it is called, shews some slight remains of mediaeval architecture, and many fragments of Gothic windowtracery lie about. This house stands, with a small marketgarden, at the north-west corner of Stockland Street, close to the east side of Clive Street, Grangetown. In the memory of persons yet living, it was the only house between Cardiff and Penarth.
GRANGETOWN. The south-western suburb of Cardiff, built on the West Moors between Cardiff and Penarth. So called from the ancient Grange which, until about the year 1870, was the only building in that vicinity. (Vide Grange de More.) This part of the town lies in the parish of Llandaff.
GREAT WESTERN APPROACH. The wide road rising to the level of the departure platform of the Great Western Railway Station, Cardiff, from the south end of Saint Mary Street. It is a private road in the possession of the Company, and was constructed in 1866, after filling in the old bed of the river Taff.
GREAT WESTERN LANE. A narrow thoroughfare leading from Wood Street southwards to Great Western Approach, parallel with the west side of Saint Mary Street. For its whole length this lane crosses the site of old Saint Mary's churchyard.
GREYFRIARS. The convent of Franciscans, or mendicant friars. It was situate on the north side of Crockherbtown, and its remains may still be seen in Lord Bute's garden, adjoining Cathays Park on the south. The convent was founded 1280. At the Suppression it was granted to the Herbert family, who rebuilt the house for their residence and called it "The Friars." It was then regarded as the mansion of a manor called "Kibbor and Cardiff otherwise Friars," and, more recently, "White Friars and Kibbor."
GRIFFITHSMOOR. A lordship under that of Whitchurch, consisting mainly of the flat land along the Severn shore, from Cardiff to the Rhymny bridge, parcel of the possessions of Gruffydd ap Rhys, confiscated to the Lord of Glamorgan circa 1266. It is apparently identical with Pengam. The name occurs in 1702, but is now obsolete.
GUILDHALL, The. Anciently called the Booth Hall. It stood in the middle of High Street, between the High Cross and the Castle Gate. After being several times rebuilt, it was finally demolished in 1861.
GWAUN-DYLLGOED (the meadow of the holed trees.) A close in Llandaff parish. "Gwayne dulcoyd" (1647.) "Gwayne Killgoed" (1612.) Fairwater Mead, on the south side of the road from Llandaff to Fairwater.
GWELYDD-COCHION (red walls.) Nine acres of land in the parishes of Leckwith and Llandaff, adjoining to Canton Common. A will of 1712 refers to it as "Gwynith Cochen." Mr. J. S. Corbett's map shews "Gwynydd Cochion" as lying between Canton Common and Rusham.
GWENT. An ancient Cambro-British kingdom in South Wales, adjoining Glamorgan on the east and separated from it by the river Rhymny. At various times and according to different computations, the dividing river has been stated to be the Taff, the Rhymny, the Usk and the Afon-llwyd; but these discrepancies may be accounted for on the supposition that the territory named Gwentllwg (which was bounded by the Taff or the Rhymny on the west and the Usk or the Afon-llwyd on the east) was not a portion of the kingdom of Gwent but of Glamorgan—in which case the Usk or the Afon-llwyd would be the western boundary of Gwent proper. Gwent was anciently considered as extending eastward to the bridge of Gloucester. In its modern signification, Gwent is the county of Monmouth and so lies between the rivers Rhymny and Wye. (Vide Monmouthshire.) Gwent was a part of the territory of the Silures, who offered such a long resistance to the force of imperial Rome; and in the early middle ages it was regarded as forming a portion of the Welsh kingdom of Morganwg—but there is very great confusion in the nomenclature of this region.
GWENTLLWG. A Hundred and lordship in south-west Monmouthshire, lying along the Severn shore from the Usk westward to the Rhymny. Anciently it was sometimes considered as extending to the Taff, and was held under the Lord of Glamorgan and Morganwg. The derivation of both halves of the name is as yet unknown. (fn. 1)
HAYES, The; "le heys." A part of the town near the east wall. To describe it in terms of the present day, it is a street running from south to north, from the north end of Bute Street to the Free Library. In 1550—1610 the Hayes (as its name implies) was open ground, largely consisting of gardens, with small detached tenements interspersed; yet it lay within the town wall. The name was applied particularly to one cottage and piece of ground (1817), approach to which was by a footpath and a stone stile (1820.) The Hays Close is named in a document of 1786. These premises were situate about where is now the Batchelor statue.
HAYES STILE, The. This figures as a gate at the north end of the Hayes, between it and Working Street, in Speed's map of 1610. The name was afterwards borne by a house and garden which stood here (1829.)
HEATH, The; or Cardiff Heath. A wide tract of once uncultivated land lying immediately north of Cardiff. It is divided into two portions, called in English the Great Heath, and the Little Heath, the latter lying nearest the town. The entire Heath extends from the boundary of Saint John's parish northward to the foot of Cefn-on. Common rights in the Heath were granted in ancient times to the burgesses of Cardiff, but were gradually extinguished until, early in the 19th century, the whole remainder of the common land was divided among private owners by the Enclosure Awards of 1802 and 1809. A large share fell to the Corporation, but was eventually sold. The Heath Farm lands, close to the old Race Course, were sold in 1849, to raise funds for building a new Town Hall. The remainder was disposed of circa 1863, to obtain the purchase-money for the new Cemetery. On the north of Ton-yr-ywen, the Heath may be seen in its original state, clad in gorse, fern and moss.
HEATH, THE GREAT, but in Welsh Mynydd Bychan ("the Little Heath.") A wide tract of once uncultivated land lying to the north of Cardiff. The English name distinguishes it from the Little Heath, in Welsh Waun Ddyfal ("the waste mead,") which lies between the Great Heath and the town. The Great Heath was divided under the Enclosure Award of 1809, the Corporation of Cardiff receiving a large share in fee, which they sold to various persons between 1809 and 1849. The name Mynydd Bychan is particularly that of a small farm three miles north north-west of Cardiff, on the east side of the road to Cefn-on.
HEATH, THE LITTLE. In Welsh Waun Ddyfal ("the waste mead.") A tract of land, mostly pasture, lying immediately north of Cardiff. The English name distinguishes it from the Great Heath, in Welsh Mynydd Bychan ("the Little Heath,") which extends further to the north. Sold to various persons, 1803–1835.
HENDRE (the old homestead.) A house in the city of Llandaff, on the south side of the street leading to Radyr. This interesting Welsh word denotes the permanent country-house, as opposed to the Hafoty (Havotty) or summer house; which last was a mere shieling among the hills, inhabited only during the warm months while the cattle were being pastured. The name Hendre is also borne by a pasture containing 4½ acres, held by a free tenant in the lordship of Roath (1542.) Prior to the Dissolution, it belonged to Margam Abbey.
HEOL-Y-CEFN-COED, Cefn-coed Lane, runs from the new Merthyr Road (now Albany Road) northwards across the Nant-mawr at Pont-Lleici and along the top of the ridge called Cefn-coed. It is now called Pen-y-lan Road till it reaches the summit.
HERMITAGE, The. A house and small chapel built on Cardiff Bridge (1492.) The hermit had charge of the bridge, and was supported, as was the bridge chapel, by the pious alms of the people and by various grants from the lord. A burgage called the Hermitage, at Cardiff Bridge, is mentioned in a document of 1542.
HIGH CORNER HOUSE. A seventeenth-century tenement with two overhanging stories, situate at the north-west corner of Duke Street, where a short lane led up to the Castle entrance. It was the office of Lord Bute's Solicitor, Mr. Edward Priest Richards, and was demolished 1877. Roberts' draper's shop occupies the adjacent site.
HIGH STREET. The main thoroughfare in the northern part of the old town of Cardiff, forming a northward continuation of Saint Mary Street, to the Castle gate. It is first mentioned, under its Latin form alta strata, in the municipal charter of circa 1331.
HOLMEAD, Holemead, Great and Little. Two meadows in the lordship of Roath (1492.) Mr. Corbett marks Great Holmead as lying in Roath Moor, on the south-east of the G.W.R., adjoining Brundon Lands on the north ; with a smaller Holmead adjoining it on the south-east corner.
ISLAND, The. A name given to the middle row in Smith Street (1849.) Also a piece of pasture-land for sheep, in the Severn marshes in the lordship of Roath (1492.) Mr. Corbett's map shews this as the land between Newport Road and Richards Terrace, with Stacey Road running across the middle of it.
"KAE-YR-GWYFILL-Y-WAYN-ADAM" (?Gwyrfil's (fn. 2) close in Adam's mead.) Land at Cefn-coed in the parish of Llanedern and manor of Roath-Keynsham (1702.)
KETCHCROFT, Casecroft. A big piece of pasture land close to the east side of Pengam house (1900.) It is named Catch Croft in a document of 1809. Mr. Corbett marks as "Kechcroft or Casecroft" a piece of land on the Rhymny river's right bank, north-east of Pengam farmhouse.
KING'S CASTLE. An ancient and very solidly-constructed house in the hamlet of Canton, on the north side of the Cowbridge Road. (1710, 1796, 1823.) The name and origin of the place are involved in obscurity. It had a garden between it and the road, and was demolished 1892 to make way for the Davies Memorial Hall. Little King's Castle was an old tenement on the north side of the Cowbridge Road, further west than the King's Castle, at the corner of King's Road, where the King's Castle Hotel now stands. This inn, lately rebuilt, was known as the King's Castle public-house in 1866.
KNOCKER'S HOLE. A tenement situated at the south-east corner of Barry Lane (1715, 1777, 1786, 1815.) It was a small tworoomed dwelling-house facing north, with a walled garden in front. In 1821 it was in tenure of Alderman Thomas Mathews. Demolished 1900.
"LANRUMNEY," recte Glanrhymny (the bank of the Rhymny.) A manor in the parishes of Rumney and Saint Mellon in Monmouthshire, and Llanedern, Glamorgan (1653.) It is also called the manor of "Wentloog alias Keynsham." Lanrumney (often sounded Landrumney) is also the name of the mansion, which is on the river's bank in the parish of Saint Mellon.
LAVERNOCK (in Welsh Llanwernog, the church by the alder-trees; or, perhaps, Llanfrynach, the church of Saint Brynach.) A village and parish on the coast of the Vale of Glamorgan, just west from Penarth.
LECKWITH. Y Llechwedd (the slope.) A village and parish three miles west of Cardiff, in the Hundred of Dinas Powys. It gives its name to the Leckwith Hills, a picturesque, wooded range extending from Caerau southwards and terminating with Penarth Head. The Manor of Leckwith has always belonged to the Lord of Cardiff. The name occurs towards the end of the 12th century as that of a chapelry.
LEWIS STREET. This name was given to the northern portion of Bute Street, when first constructed circa 1835; but is now seldom used, the term Bute Street being applied to the entire length of Cardiff's principal southern thoroughfare, from the Hayes to the Pier Head.
LINCHES, The. A piece of land on Pengam Moor (1809.) Mr. Corbett marks this on his map as a series of plots of land just above ordinary high-water mark, on the East Moors, and as being the lowest marsh on this shore.
LITTLE TROY. A garden on the west side of Working Street, on part of the site of the Free Library buildings. Its name was afterwards applied to a group of small tenements there erected (1738-1835.) So called after a maze or "Troy Town" which stood in the Trinity Garden and belonged to Saint John's church.
LLANDAFF. Welsh Llandâf (the church on the Taff.) The ecclesiastical capital of the ancient kingdoms of Glamorgan, Gwent and Ergyng. A cathedral city, a parish, a manor, a commote and a diocese. The city is about two miles northwest of Cardiff; the parish adjoins that of Saint Mary, Cardiff; the manor was anciently a marcher lordship, with a castle, held by the Bishop; the commote is divided from that of Cibwr by the river Taff on the east; the diocese comprises, practically, Glamorgan and Monmouthshire. The ecclesiastical traditions of Llandaff go back to the earliest days of the British Church ; but as a fixed see it owes its origin to Saint Teilo, its greatest bishop, who died 566. (fn. 3) The city is now joined to the town of Cardiff by a chain of dwellinghouses.
LLANDAFF, THE TREASURER'S MANOR OF. This comprises lands which from ancient times have belonged to the Treasurer for the time being of the Cathedral. The mansion, known as the Treasurer's House, stood near the Cathedral and the Bishop's Castle. Its ruins still remain. In 1291 the manor contained 32 acres.
LLANDAFF FIELDS. The meadows lying between Llandaff Cathedral and the Canton streets near Pont-Canna. These fields are the lands composing the most ancient grants to the see of Llandaff. They were lately conveyed by the ecclesiastical authorities to the Corporation of Cardiff as a public park.
LLANDAFF FORD. Welsh Rhyd Llandaîf. Across the river Taff just south of Llandaff Bridge. At the end of the 18th century the river's banks at this place were steepened, to render the ford impassable and so increase the bridge-toll.
LLANDOUGH, recté Llandoch. (The church of Saint Docheu, or Oudoceus, the third Bishop of Llandaff.) A village, parish and manor in the Hundred of Dinas Powys, 2½ miles west from Cardiff, on the eastern slope of the Leckwith hills. It is often called Llandough-juxta-Penarth, to distinguish it from Llandough near Cowbridge.
LLANEDERN (fn. 4) (the church of Saint Eternus.) A village and parish in the Hundred of Cibwr, three miles north-east from Cardiff, on the main Roman road. The name-saint founded here a choir of monks, in the 7th century.
LLANFEDW (the church of the birch-grove.) A chapelry or township in the parish of Llanfihangel-y-fedw. The greater part of this parish lies in Monmouthshire; but the chapelry is divided from it by the river Rhymny, and is in Glamorgan.
LLANFORDA, (fn. 5) "Lambordan." An ancient chapel at Coed-y-gores, in the parish of Roath. It is referred to in a Minister's Account of 1392. It is now a cottage, called Ty'r-capel, "the chapel house."
LLANISHEN (Llan-Nisien.) A village and parish in the Hundred of Cibwr, on the right bank of the river Rhymny, four miles north from Cardiff. There was a large monastery of the ancient British Church here, presided over by Saint Nisien, or Isan.
LLANTRISANT (the church of three saints.) An ancient parish and borough in the Hundred of Miscyn. The church, castle and town are picturesquely situate on a steep hill. The borough is a sister to Cardiff, and unites with her in returning a Member to Parliament. The church is dedicated in the names of Saints Illtyd, Gwyno and Tyfodwg. The castle was destroyed by Owain Glyndwr in 1404, and was probably never afterwards rebuilt. (fn. 6)
LLYS-TAL-Y-BONT (the court at the head of the bridge.) A manor, mansion and hamlet a mile north of Cardiff, on the left bank of the river Taff. It is now separated from the river by the Glamorganshire canal. The place was of very great importance in the 13th century and earlier.
LONGCROSS. A tall stone cross erected by a man named Payn, (fn. 7) on the eastern boundary of Saint John's parish, Cardiff, where it touches Roath. It was anciently termed Payn's Cross in legal documents, and is so described in the Cardiff municipal charter of 1340. In later times a house called Longcross House was erected near the cross. It was demolished 1844, to make way for Artillery Barracks, but a new house stood near in 1863. This in turn was pulled down c. 1880, to make room for the Glamorgan and Monmouthshire Infirmary. Longcross Street retains the old name. At the cross-ways here suicides used to be interred. Longcross House, cottage and garden stood where is now the Children's Ward of the Infirmary. There was a piece of waste land between it and the road to Adamsdown Farm (1835); which said road is now called Glossop Road and leads in a short distance to Longcross Street. Longcross is incorrectly written "Lancross" in some documents, including the Heath Enclosure Award of 1809.
LORD'S HENGE, The. A fishery on the sea shore in the lordship of Roath, between "Pulkye" on the east and the "Weydram" on the south. Mentioned in the Account of 1542 as having been leased to Rawlyn White (fn. 8) by Edmund Turnor deceased, and theretofore belonging to the King.
MAENDY (corruptly Maindy,) "stone house." A farm-house and hamlet on the North Road, about a mile north of Cardiff, in the manor of Llandaff. The name probably dates from a time when timber or wattle houses were the only others in the vicinity. The bounds of the parishes of Saint John (Cardiff) and Whitchurch run through Maendy Farm. There is a farm called Maendy Bach ("Little Maendy"), a short distance south of the other.
MARGERY'S LAND. In the lordship of Roath (1492.) Mr. Corbett marks this as lying in three detatched portions; one south-east of Broadway, on the north-west side of the South Wales Railway; another on the other side of the line and a little further north-east; and a third further south-east, just north of the Splot.
MELINGRIFFITH, recte Melin Gruffydd (Griffith's mill.) A place in the Taff Vale, at the foot of the Garth, about six miles north of the town of Cardiff. Best known by the tin-plate works which long flourished here.
MIDDLE ROW. This name was applied to isolated blocks of houses standing in the middle of a broad street, or rather, between two narrow lanes. Thus " the Middle Row to Crockherbtown" separated Smith Street and King Street. The principal Middle Row was the one in Saint Mary Street. That which separated Castle Street from Angel Street was the last one demolished, in 1877.
MILL LANE. The street leading from the south end of Saint Mary street in a north-easterly direction to the Hayes, along the canal. So called from the Little Steam Mill which stood on the north side of the lane. There was a tramway thence across the lane to the canal (1860.)
MONMOUTHSHIRE, a county of Wales; on the right bank of the Severn estuary, between Gloucestershire on the east and Glamorgan on the west, and Herefordshire and Brecknockshire north. A Welsh name for Monmouthshire is Gwent (q.v.), but it was originally applied to a wider territory, one of the Cambro-British kingdoms. The county town is Monmouth; which, though it is identified with the Roman Blestium, is an Anglo-Norman burgh. The Romano-British capital of the ancient Gwent was Caerleon, now a mere village, whose commercial importance has been transferred to Newport. The Welsh language was spoken in every parish of Monmouthshire down to the early part of the 18th century, when it began to recede westward from the Wye. During the latter half of the 19th century it finally disappeared from the parishes east of the river Usk, and, in this county, is now practically confined to the Blaenau Gwent (the West Monmouthshire hills) and the district between Newport and Cardiff. The local dialect is the Gwenhwyseg. A subdivision of this dialect is the Cerniweg (Cornish), closely akin to the extinct language of the county of Cornwall; it is spoken in the neighbourhood of Saint Mellon's. The modern notion that Monmouthshire is no longer a part of Wales is a popular error (fn. 9), founded on the irrelevant fact that this county was annexed to the Oxford Assize Circuit in the reign of Charles II.
"MON' PUPIT." This very curious and as yet unexplained placename is given, in a Minister's Account of 1537, to a tenement in the lordship of Llystalybont. In a deed of 1516 it is called "a builded tenement situate at Listallapont, commonly called Puppit." In 1811 there was a toll-gate at Popett Lane, on the high road leading from Caerphilly to Bedwas bridge.
MORFA-BACH (the little marsh.) A close in the parish of Llandaff (1756.) In 1612 "the Morva Bagh by Ely, on the other side of the water," was found to be concealed land and was demised to Oliver Robotham.
MORGANWG. The Welsh name for the county of Glamorgan, and anciently for the united Cambro-British kingdoms of Glamorgan and Gwent. The earliest known form is Morcantuc. The etymology is similar to that of Glamorgan (q.v.), and -wg is a frequent territorial suffix.
MYNACHDY (less correctly Monachty), "the monastery." An old farmhouse in the manor of Llandaff and chapelry of Whitchurch, on the site of a pre-Norman religious foundation, the history whereof is lost but of which a memory is preserved in the Latin name for Whitchurch, viz., Album Monasterium, "the white minster." Mynachdy Bach is the name of a smaller holding, a thatched house with extensive out-buildings, a little west of Mynachdy and on the other side of the T.V.R. line.