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ones. Sir Richard Wynn, of Gwydir, chamberlain to Catherine, Queen of Charles Il., presented her majesty with one of this kind, which still retains a place in the regal crown. These fine pearls are but seldom met with, and the search of them does not constitute a continual source of employment. The other variety, the Cragen las, is found in abundance, yet not so plentifully as formerly, on the bar at the mouth of the river; and, as the method of procuring the pearls is curious, I shall subjoin the following particulars: When the tide is out, the fishers, men, women, and children, proceed in a body to the bar and adjacent shores, with their sacks and baskets, which they continue to fill until driven away by the return of tide. They then separate, and each family goes to its hut, which is sunk down in a vast hill of the empty shells, accumulated for several years. This hut is furnished with a large crochan, supported by three legs, into which the muscles are put; a fire is kindled beneath, and when the shells are opened, the fish is picked out and thrown into a tub. When all the shells are emptied, a boy enters the tub, and, with his naked feet, stamps upon the fish until it is reduced to a sort of pulp; when water is poured in, the animal matter floats, which is called solach, and is used as food for ducks, while the sand, particles of stone, and the pearls, settle in the bottom. After numerous washings, the sediment is carefully collected and thoroughly dried; when the larger stones have been removed, they place a small quantity at a time on a large wooden plate, and with a feather, each pearl is separated. This is not a very tedious operation, as, by holding the plate a little on one side, the pearl, from its globular form, immediately rolls down. The pearls are then taken to the agent, who pays for them so much per ounce. There is an extraordinary degree of mystery hanging over the future destination of these pearls: for many years the fishery has been a perfect monopoly, and the late proprietor, if I use not an unjustifiable term, has been said to have made £1000 a year by them. There is little doubt but that there is an immense profit, with little trouble, gained by the purchaser, who alone knows how to dispose of them. The price paid to the fishers at this present time is half-acrown an ounce, which is a somewhat advanced price, in consequence of an opposition party purchasing as many as they can procure. The former purchaser has, however, a considerable advantage, as he is the owner of the Crochanau, at Cevnvro, which is the extremity of the Morva,
where the fish are boiled. The present notice may probably meet the eye of one who may be able to throw aside this veil of mystery, and I do not despair of soon finding out how they are, or can be, disposed of, so as to secure to the industrious fisher his just proportion of the profits. The pearls, in general, are small, and have no lustre,* being of a dirty white colour, and sometimes irregular in shape; occasionally they are found of a black or dark blue colour; besides these, I have never seen any other variety, though, from the following extract from Richard of Cirencester, they have been found of other colours: “There are, besides (în Britain) several sorts of shell fish, among which are muscles, containing pearls often of the best kind, and of every colour; that is, red, purple, violet, green, but principally white, as we find in the venerable Bede's Ecclesiastical History.
Ty Deon; Hydrev 25, 1832.
P. s. When reading the interesting History of the White Mole, Cambrian Quarterly, vol. iv. p. 377, I recollected having seen several specimens of a beautiful variety of the Mouse, from a farm, near Plasnewydh, in Anglesey. They were of a light cream colour, spotted with black: they were taken from a corn stack, and by no means uncommon; indeed, from their numbers, they could not have been lusus nature, but a particular species. This was in 1825. I have not been there since; but some of your readers in that neighbourhood may be induced, I hope, from this notice, to give us a more detailed account; and, I think, they must be well known in the neighbourhood.
* We believe that the finest foreign pearls, in their unpolished state, present rather a dark appearance.-Edrs.
Author of “Britain's Historical Drama," the “ Royal Minstrel,”
Sweet it is,
• The Segh, or savage deer. The antlers of some of these beasts found in Britain “branched out,” says Whitaker, " to so enormous a width, that the tip of one was nearly eleven feet distant from that of the other.
Fondly caress, the wild harp's witching strains,
When the dark Saxon in his sternness came
* “ The bear shall be on the heath.” Saron poem.— The British bear was transported into Italy for the sports of the amphitheatre.
What though no more
Sons of the Seer,
Of Cambria's land of music, waking all * “There was a flowing streamer attached to it, interwoven with the threads of wrath, and it was regarded as possessing a miraculous power of protection from military disgrace. By these circumstances I deem myself justified in styling it a magical Aag or standard." “ The Irish Druids had the standard of the sun and the dragon." -- Notes to Gwarchan Maelderw.
# It has been supposed by many authors, among whom is Milton, that Mona and the Isle of Man were the Elysian Islands of happy spirits.-Sce also Tzetzes.
Alluding to the last Eisteddvod.