Fflur Picture

Afterwork: Bordered, sharpened, resized.


(FLEER) from the Welsh word for "flower". Nearly all traces of Fflur's legend have been lost. Her name establishes her as one of the Flower Maidens of British Mythology - Blanaid, Guinevere, Blodeuwedd as well. She was beloved of Caswallawn, but was carried off by Julius Cesear, according to the meager evidence of the "Triads". Caswallawn's quest in search of her, even to the gates of Rome, suggests that Fflur may indeed be one of the many faces oF Sovereignty.

The History:

Cassivellaunus was a historical British chieftain who led the defence against Julius Caesar's second expedition to Britain in 54 BC. He also appears in British legend as Cassibelanus, one of Geoffrey of Monmouth's kings of Britain, and in the Mabinogion and Welsh Triads as Caswallawn, son of Beli Mawr.

Cassivellaunus is the first British individual known to history. He appears in Julius Caesar's De Bello Gallico, having been given command of the combined British forces opposing Caesar's second invasion of Britain. Caesar does not mention Cassivellaunus's tribe, but his territory, north of the river Thames, corresponds with that later inhabited by the Catuvellauni.

Caesar tells us that Cassivellaunus had previously been at constant war with the British tribes, and had overthrown the king of the Trinovantes, the most powerful tribe in Britain at the time. The king's son, Mandubracius, fled to Caesar in Gaul.

Despite Cassivellaunus's harrying tactics, designed to prevent Caesar's army from foraging and plundering for food, Caesar advanced to the Thames. The only fordable point was defended and fortified with sharp stakes, but the Romans managed to cross it. Cassivellaunus dismissed most of his army and resorted to guerilla tactics, relying on his knowledge of the territory and the speed of his chariots.

Five British tribes, the Cenimagni, the Segontiaci, the Ancalites, the Bibroci and the Cassi, surrendered to Caesar and revealed the location of Cassivellaunus's stronghold, which Caesar proceeded to put under siege. Cassivellaunus managed to get a message to the four kings of Kent, Cingetorix, Carvilius, Taximagulus and Segovax, to gather their forces and attack the Roman camp on the coast, but the Romans defended themselves successfully, capturing a chieftain called Lugotorix. On hearing of the defeat and the devastation of his territories, Cassivellaunus surrendered. Hostages were given and a tribute agreed. Mandubracius was restored to the kingship of the Trinovantes, and Cassivellaunus undertook not to wage war against him. All this achieved, Caesar returned to Gaul.

The Legend:

Cassivellaunus appears in the Welsh Triads, Mabinogion, and Welsh versions of Geoffrey's Historia, as Caswallawn, son of Beli Mawr. In the Mabinogion he appears as a usurper, who seizes the throne of Britain while the rightful king, Bran the Blessed, is at war in Ireland. Using a magic cloak which renders him invisible, he kills the seven stewards Bran has left in charge, while the eighth, Bran's son Caradawg, dies of bewilderment at the sight of a disembodied sword killing his men.

The Welsh Triads make reference to this story, as well as to Geoffrey's story of Caesar's invasions. Caswallawn's decision to allow the Romans to land in Britain in exchange for a horse called Meinlas ("slender grey") is one of the Three Unfortunate Counsels of the Island of Britain. The Triads also include a tradition that Caswallawn left Britain with 21,000 men in pursuit of Caesar and never returned, and include references to his lover, Fflur, daughter of Mygnach the Dwarf. Caswallawn is named as one of the Three Golden Shoemakers of the Island of Britain, disguising himself as a shoemaker when he went to Rome to seek Fflur. A later collection of triads compiled by the 18th century Welsh antiquarian Iolo Morganwg gives an expanded version of this tradition, including that Caswallawn had abducted Fflur from Caesar in Gaul, killing 6,000 Romans, and Caesar invaded Britain in response.


BTW: Can anyone give me the name of this tiny flower?
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