|Discovery:||recognised, 1731 Morris, L.|
|History:||The stone was first noticed and noted in 1731 by Lewis Morris (Owen/1896, 138). Before 1877 the stone was `tampered with by a former tenant of the cottage, who undertook to deepen the letters for the benefit of English tourists' (Rhys/1877b, 135). Both Morris and Fenton's (1810) readings of the stone, however, can `be identified with surviving features on the stone, so the deepening seems not to have falsified the inscription (RCAHMW/1956, 115). |
In 1879, Westwood stated that the stone `...stands near the north raised wall of the cottage called Tyddin Holland, in the narrow lane running east and west, and within a few yards west of the new Bodafon schools, where it is liable to be run against by the wheels of passing carts' (Westwood/1879, 182).
It was moved to the church of the neighbouring parish of Eglwys-rhos in 1906 (RCAHMW/1956, 115).
|Geology:||RCAHMW/1956, 155, `grit'.|
|Dimensions:||0.94 x 0.49 x 0.34 (converted from Macalister/1945)|
|Location:||Eglwys-rhos parish church; current location|
In Eglwys-rhos parish church, in a niche in the south wall of the nave, near the west end (RCAHMW/1956, 115).
Macalister/1945, 363, `A rounded, probably water-worn boulder'.
Nash-Williams/1950, 86, `Rough pillar-stone'.
RCAHMW/1956, 115, `The stone is an elongated and rounded grit boulder, about 3 ft. high, 1ft. 8 ins. broad overall, and rather more than 1 ft. thick.'
|Condition:||complete , good|
|Decorations:||no other decoration|
|Morris, L. (1731):||SANC/T | A/NVS | SACRI | ISIS|
SANCTANVS SACRI ISIS
Anon/1912 149 minor reference
Owen/1896 138 reading only
RCAHMW/1956 115 reading only
|Rhys, J. (1876):||SANC/T | F/I[L]IVS | SAC/ER | [--]|
SANCT[ANVS] FILIVS SACER[DOTIS]
SANCT[AGNVS] FILIVS SACER[DOTIS]
Anon/1912 149 reading only
Rhys/1877b 135--136 reading only
Westwood/1876 182 reading only
|Rhys, J. (1896):||SANC/T | A/NVS | SAC/ER | [..]S|
Sanctan (PN) the Priest.
Rhys/1897 140--142 reading only
|Macalister, R.A.S. (1945):||SANC/E | [R]INVS | SAC/ER | [D.S]|
Macalister/1945 363 reading only
|Nash-Williams, V.E. (1950):||SANC/T | INVS | SAC/ER | I[N]P|
SANCTINVS SACER[DOS] IN P[ACE]
Sanctinus (PN) the Bishop (lies here) in peace.
Nash-Williams/1950 86 reading only
RCAHMW/1956 115 other reference
|Position:||inc ; broad ; n/a ; undecorated|
Occupying the majority of one broad face of the stone.
Macalister/1945, 363, `pocked'.
|Date:||400 - 533 (Nash-Williams/1950)|
400 - 550 (RCAHMW/1956)
RCAHMW/1956, 116, `The name provides no indication as to the date of the inscription; on the grounds of its brevity and the type of the lettering used, it may be assigned to the 5th or early 6th century'.
|Ling. Notes:||Rhys/1897, 141--142, `But if SACER is correct, one would expect the next line to be DVS, completing the word Sacerdus for Sacerdos, just as nepus occurs for nepos in our inscriptions. In fact...[it] is a possible reading...I also thought of the spelling Sacertus'.|
Nash-Williams/1950, 86, `For sacerdos meaning `bishop' see No. 33 [CBRNW/1]. The abbreviation of the word used here is exceptional. The brevity of the inscription is in favour of an early date.'
|Palaeography:||Rhys/1877b, 135--36: `The fourth line one can make nothing of: it looks as if it had been 1618, with the enclosed spaces frayed off by a clumsy inscriber... |
I have no doubt that what...[Lewis gave] as ANVS is the same part of the epitaph which I have guessed to be FILIVS. The CT in the first line look now like a big D reversed, the beginning of the second line is only guessed to be FILI, and in the third line I guess CE to consist of a C with an E in its bosom, which gives it the appearance of an O/E'.
Rhys revisited the stone in 1896, and changed his mind as to how the stone was to be read stating: `I am now inclined to agree with him [Lewis---see Owen/1896, 138] as to the first two lines...I think I now understand how one read ANVS. The A had a broad top A, and to its top is joined a V, and this makes a conjoint AN, which owing to the ample top of the A suggested to me the F of FILIVS; but I feel positive now that one cannot read FILIVS without reading the V part of the N as L, and supplying an I to make the IVS---both impossible, as I satisfied myself the other day. ...I cannot read the third line as SACRI, but rather as SACER, with the C and the E ligatured. I do not, however, feel very certain about this, but the next line ends with an unmistakeable S; and had I no regard for the probabilities of the case I should read the last line INS. But if SACER is correct, one would expect the next line to be DVS...In fact, D [reversed] VS, with the D facing the other way, is a possible reading' (Rhys/1897, 140--142).
Sayce, visiting the stone in 1912, agreed with Rhys' 1877 reading (Anon/1912, 149).
Westwood/1879, 183, `The letters on the stone vary from 3 to 5 inches high'.
Macalister/1945, 363, `In both places CE is ligatured'.
Nash-Williams/1950, 86, `Roman capitals, crudely cut, with clumsy ligatures in ll. 1 and 3.'
RCAHMW/1956, 115--116, `Both the CT in the first line and the CE in line 3 are conjoined, resembling a reversed D with small projections from the upright. The CT is slightly damaged owing to its proximity to the edge of the stone, and could equally well read CE, but Sanctinus is a known personal name. In the second line a very faint suggestion of a horizontal line after the I is visible in some lights; it may be natural, but it would account for the various readings with A at the beginning of this line. ...The fourth line is the only one which involves any serious uncertainty. A piece of stone has flaked away from the centre of the line, removing one or more letters, and damaging the last. The line has been read D[O]S, but the first letter seems to be an undamaged I, without any trace of the loop of a D. In the photograph it appears to be followed by a bar and second upright as if an H, but the upright is in fact due to flaking. The bar, although it can scarely be felt, compares with that faintly visible between the I and N of the second line, and suggests that this line too began I--N. All that survives of the last letter of the line is a complete loop, which could be the upper part of either an S, or more probably of a P; the lower part is destroyed. The reading I[N]P(ace) seems the more probable of the two.'
In 1876, John Rhys and `Mr. Peter of Bala' visited the stone. Rhys wrote, `We were sorry to find that we could not make anything very satisfactory out of the inscription, which is both incomplete, owing to a piece of the stone having been broken off and lost, and to its having been tampered with by a former tenant of the cottage, who undertook to deepen the letters for the benefit of English tourists.' (Rhys/1877b, 135).
Westwood visited the stone in 1877 and took rubbings, noting that: `The inscription is so rude and injured that I do not feel justified in giving an independent reading of it' (Westwood/1879, 183).
Anon/1912, 149, `The `T' in the last line had flaked off'.
Macalister/1945, 363, `...except for some chips, in good condition. One letter, probably R, is broken from the sinister end of the first line...In the last line the O is chipped away, and with it the adjacent parts of the D and the S; but the reading is not in doubt.'
Nash-Williams/1950, 86, `The last line has partly flaked away'.
Rhys/1897, 140--141, `According to my present reading we have the proper name in full as Sanctanus, spelling what I should have expected in Ogam (in the genitive) as Sanctagni'.
RCAHMW/1956, 116: `The name Sanctinus would give in modern Welsh Seithin or Sennin, and cannot be associated with the saint commemorated in the Denbighshire parish of Llansannan, as suggested by Rhys [Rhys/1897, 141] who based this interpretation on the reading A at the beginning of the second line.'