Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Church and State

Ancient history of the Welsh has been recorded by a couple of sources. The major source has been termed "The Annales Cambriae", compiled around 11oo AD from a number of older sources. Its entries are brief and to the point, describing events that have significance to the writers. Of course, the writers would be from the Church since they were the only ones who could write! I thought it would be of interest to see how much the Church and State interplayed among these early Welsh historians. These events have been analyzed by topics catigorized as "Church", "State", and "Nature". So here is my analysis.

There are 148 "events" recorded in the records. These are dated between 447 AD to 954 AD, a total of 507 years. The first event states: "Days as dark as night". This was classified as "Nature". The second event states: "Easter altered on the Lord's Day by Pope Leo, Bishop of Rome". This would be classified as "Church". In 516 AD there is a listing which states: "The Battle of Badon, in which Arthur carried the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ for three days and three nights on his shield and the Britons were the victors." This was classified as both "Church" and "State". Each event was analyzed by content, and placed into the category(ies) that seemed to fit the best. Some events would fit into more than one category. Using this method, the following information was found:

1) The first 69 years (447-516) 100 percent were "Church" events [except for the very first date].

2) For the first 150 years (447-601), 67 percent were "Church" events, and 42 percent were "State" events. Only 8 percent were classified as "Nature".

3) The next 98 years (606-704) changed dramatically with only 21 percent "Church" and 72 percent "State". "Natural" events were listed at 24 percent.

4)The years 714 - 798 involved 20 percent "Church", 80 percent "State", and 10 percent "Nature".

5) "Church" and "State" events [the recording of these] remained fairly stable during the years 807 - 900 showing 18 percent "Church", 78 percent "State", and 13 percent "Nature".

6) The final years of record, 902 - 954, showed 19 percent "Church", but 92 percent "State", and no "Nature"!

Overall, for the 148 events recorded in "The Annales Cambriae, 23 [16%] were "Church" related; 96 [65%] were "State", and 15 [10%] were "Nature". Church to State, it seems to be the pattern.

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