Trawsvynydd (Traws-Fynydd) - From 'A Topographical Dictionary of Wales' (1849)
TRAWSVYNYDD (TRAWS-FYNYDD), a parish, in the poor-law union of Festiniog, hundred of Ardudwy, county of Merioneth, North Wales, 12 miles (N. by W.) from D�lgelley; containing 1545 inhabitants. This parish is surrounded by the parishes of Maentwrog, Llandecwyn, Llanvachreth, and Llanycil; and is of large extent, being estimated to contain 25,000 acres, and to extend ten miles in length by eight in breadth. It is exceedingly mountainous throughout; and is intersected by the turnpike-road from D�lgelley to Tan-y-Bwlch (at which latter is the post-office), the road passing through the village, which is situated on an eminence in an exposed and hilly district. Considerably more than one-half of the parish consists of barren and uncultivated hills, affording only scanty pasturage for sheep and young cattle. The country is strikingly varied, presenting in some parts the dreary wildness of rugged mountain scenery, in others the softer features of rural beauty, combined with objects of romantic grandeur. The lake called Rathlyn is a fine sheet of water, noted for a peculiar species of perch, having the lower extremity of the back-bone strangely distorted: the interesting waterfalls of Pistyll Caen and Pistyll Mawddach, in the parish, are described in the article on D�lgelley. Fairs, which are in general well attended, are held here on April 23rd and September 29th, for horses, cattle, and pedlery; and at Penystryd, in the parish, others take place on August 17th and September 21st.
The living is a discharged rectory, rated in the king's books at �8. 12. 1.; patron, the Bishop of Bangor: the tithes have been commuted for a rentcharge of �280, and there is a glebe of half an acre, valued at 10s. per annum; with a glebe-house. The church, dedicated to St. Madryn, is an ancient structure in the early style of English architecture, in rather a dilapidated state. There are places of worship for Independents, and Calvinistic and Wesleyan Methodists. A day school is held, and the parish has about ten Sunday schools. David Lloyd, in 1686, bequeathed to the poor the sum of �20, the produce of which has been in abeyance since 1819; Robert Roberts, in 1756, gave �12 to be distributed in bread; and Mrs. Jones, near Corwen, and her daughter-in-law, bequeathed �180, with which a house and field in the village of Trawsvynydd were purchased, now yielding a rent of �8. 10. This sum, agreeably with the directions of the donors, is appropriated to the annual distribution of �4, in sums of five shillings each, to sixteen poor women, and the remaining �4. 10. a year to the apprenticing of a boy once in two years.
There are some remains of an ancient fortress called Castell Prysor, the name of which implies its hasty erection; it is of small extent, and occupied a situation in a pass between the hills on the left of the road from Trawsvynydd to Bala. The origin of this fortress, which is built of stone without any cement, is not precisely known; but from the discovery of several urns and coins near the site, it is supposed to have been built or at least occupied by the Romans; and part of a Roman road, now termed "the Sarn Helen," which is still visible at no great distance, in some degree corroborates the opinion. On a farm in the parish, called Ll�ch Idris, is Bedd Porus, or "the grave of Porius," over which is a flat stone with the inscription "Porius. hic in tumulo jacit. homo pianus fuit.," with a more modern addition of the figures "1245," and the letter E. Near this is an upright stone, Ll�ch Idris, from which the farm is named, and concerning which there is a legend stating it to have derived its appellation from Idris a giant; it appears to be simply one of those monumental stones so frequently found in this country. Not far from the Sarn Helen are several tumuli, in one of which were found five urns, and several fragments of bricks that had been placed round them to protect them from injury: there is also a tumulus on Gw-y-Bryn;vynydd farm. Humphrey Lloyd, Bishop of Bangor, was born at B�dyvudda, in the parish, about 1600. Sion and Rhŷs Cain, both eminent bards, were also natives of the parish.