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St David’s Day

March 1, 2007

For those who don’t know, today is dedicated to the Patron Saint of Wales. Interestingly and surprisingly the President of the US is aware of this and has provided a special message in which I discovered that: ”Many signers of the Declaration of Independence had Welsh ancestry, as did Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and nine other US Presidents”. For those of you in New York today, dusk will see the Empire State Building illuminated by the colours of the Welsh Flag. We might event get the odd dragon! This information came from icWales which also reports the failure of the British government to grant a public holiday.

The US Ambassador Mr Tuttle may have gone a bit OTT when he said: “To me the lyrical call of freedom from your ancient land to the United States, where freedom rings, remains undiminished by distance and unbroken by time, because I believe that those who have shared a dream of freedom, also share the future.” but the sentiment is appreciated. It may not follow that we can rely on American military support, or covert destabilization of the British Government to support a bid for Welsh freedom, thus reversing the conquest of 1282. Like the Irish, and unlike the Scots (who volunteered to join) we were conquered and this have a grievance.

Of course we partly got our own back with the Tudors (in welsh Tewdur). Henry VII had a weak claim (Well let’s be honest, non-existent) to the English throne. His mother, the Lady Margaret Beaufort had married the son of the Owen Tudor (more properly Owain ap Meredith ap Tewdur a minor Welsh noble) and Catherine, who was the Widow of Henry V. His claim to the throne was that thus that his Grandmother had been married to a former King, although he had no direct claim. However by conquest, and then by marriage to Elizabeth of York (thus uniting the houses of York and Lancaster) he established one of the most powerful families in the history of the British Monarchy.

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