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The Eisteddfod

Updated on January 17, 2010

The Eisteddfod-The Most Important Festival

The most important festival and celebration in Welsh history and culture ever is the National Eisteddfod.

In almost all cases the festival is held in August and moves from North to South Wales, being held in different venues.

The Eisteddfod festival is so big that Welsh people from all over the globe return to their native land for the celebrations.

The numbers have been reported as high as 150 000 people who come down and camp for an entire week and this seems to happen every year.  The festival doesn't seem to lose any steam.

The Eisteddfod-The History

The Eisteddfod festival is thought to date back as far ago as 1176. It was then that Lord Rhys ap Grffudd hosted a tournament that consisted of musicians and poets at his castle in Cardiganshire.

After that Eisteddfod became a huge festival. There were a few years for different reasons the festival declined for a few years but came back hard and strong and has been great ever since 1880 and has only missed a couple years since then.

The Eisteddfod festival works very well together with the Gorsedd of Bards. The members of this are known as druids and they are writers, poets, artists and musicians. The Druids had a lot to do with the language and culture of the Welsh.

Different colored robes are worn to distinguish ranks. At the festival it is up to the Archdruid to pronounce the winner and crown the Bard.

The ceremonies of the druids are held in large circles made out of stones. If there isnt a ready made circle in the area then one is built using local stones.

However even technology has got into the festival with plastic stones being used since 2005.  This makes it easier for more people to be able to watch the Eisteddfod.

The Eisteddfod-The Competition

While the crowds number in the hundreds of thousands the competitor number is quite huge as well with an average of 6000 competitors in Eisteddfod.

The competitions are held in the main pavaillion but that by no means doesnt mean there are not a lot of other great things to see.

There are many other pavilions that house such things as literature, science and technology.

Then there are the theatres and halls that house music dance and theatre.

Of course a festival just wouldn't be without food and with hundreds of food stalls there is never a shortage of food and alcohol.

Welsh is the only language spoken but all languages are welcome and translation is made quite easy.

Eisteddfod-When, Where And All That Good Stuff

In early August the Eisteddfod festival is held.

It is held at different venues each year that are decided upon 2 to 3 years in advance.

Of course the festival is best for the Welsh culture because it is so well known for them.

If you investigate you will find there are a few more Eisteddfods held. Some are for the youth and international music arts.

You can see the ever building list of events by visiting

World Wide Events


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    • Dale Mazurek profile image

      Dale Mazurek 8 years ago from Canada

      This kind of stuff is so much fun doing the research on. You learn so much that you never knew and probaly would have never known.

      Thanks for all the comments

    • Paradise7 profile image

      Paradise7 8 years ago from Upstate New York

      Fascinating, the Druid ceromony. And so old! Unimaginably long history behind it. Fascinating. Thanks for a wonderful hub. Including the actual video was a mark of brilliance, thank you! I'd so love to go, and witness it in person.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 8 years ago from England

      Hi, Dale. I would love to go, and i hope somewhere in my ancestry that maybe I have some welsh blood! gives me an excuse to fit in!! another great hub. cheers Nell

    • Dale Mazurek profile image

      Dale Mazurek 8 years ago from Canada

      I am learning a lot about a lot of great places and events that I had no clue even existed. Hubs like this are fun to write. Not sure if they will make me any money but never the less they are fun

    • Ken R. Abell profile image

      Ken R. Abell 8 years ago from ON THE ROAD

      Thanks your for this Hub. I enjoyed it & learned a lot that I did not know.