Early Welsh literature

Photograph of two old books © iStockphoto.com/sndr

Last updated: 20 October 2009

Literature in Wales has a long and impressive history. Though many works have been lost over the ages and many authors are now long forgotten, what remains is still a hugely diverse and rich collection.

Browse the section to discover some of Wales' earliest poets, learn about poetry through the ages, find out more about the myth-filled Mabinogion and legends of Arthur and Merlin in Welsh literature.

Introduction to early Welsh literature

An introduction into the rich history of early Welsh literature.

The Early Poets

The Early Poets, Y Cynfeirdd


Information on the work of early poet Taliesin.


Information on the work of early poet Aneirin.

Poets of the Princes

Poets of the Princes, Y Gogynfeirdd

Poets of the Nobility

Poets of the Nobility, Beirdd yr Uchelwy

Glossary of terms

Glossary of terms used in the explanation of early Welsh literature.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.