The Chambered Mound at Plas Newydd [Bryn-yr-Hen Bobl] (S.E.View, Griffith's text)

This is one of the most interesting relics to be found in the whole of Wales. Until the beginning of the last century, it was considered to be only a large mound ( or carnedd), the inner receptacle being then unknown. In Rowlands' Mona Antiqua 1723 p.94, it is described as being the largest carnedd in the Isle of Anglesey; yet scarce discerned and distinguished from a mound of earth, the stones being overgrown with earth and moss, and great trees growing thick upon it. Bingley informs us in his Tours in 1800, that it was first opened in the time of Sir Nicholas Bailey [Bayly], about 1730. The most peculiar feature of the relic (apart from the mound) is the stone occupying the lower half of the entrance.It contains two semi-circular apertures, and no doubt when the stone was entire they were completely circular. For what purpose these holes were made it has not been decided. Similar ones are to be found in India and some other countries. Pennant advances the absurd theory that the chambers were used as prisons for sacrificial victims, and he supposed the holes to be stocks in which their feet were confined. Col. Meadows-Taylor remarks that they may have been intended for the spirit to pass through in progress to a new body which it was to occupy in its destined transmigration. Col. Leslie presumed that through these openings the spirit was expected to convey the arms, ornaments, and valuables deposited for its use, but still found in such tombs. (See Col. Forbes Leslie's Early Races of Scotland p.290). The chamber itself has two capstones, and is supposed to have been formerly divided into two, each having its own capstone with a slab separating them, which has long since vanished. The capstone nearest the entrance is six feet nine inches by five feet six inches, the furthest one is three feet two inches by eight feet two inches. The entrance is about two feet three inches high, and five feet wide, and opens towards the east. The mound overlying it is some 140 yards in circumference. (See Arch. Camb. 1870, 1880)

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