Talk:Merthyr Tydfil

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Lord of The Rings?[edit]

What is the source for the claim that Isengard of LOTR was inspired by Merthyr? I was born and lived 30 years in MT and haven't heard this claim before. --Robert Fraser 07:11, 29 August 2005 (UTC)

I just came to the talk page to ask the same question. And found someone had beaten me to it. I'd really curious now. Telsa 09:31, 7 September 2005 (UTC)

Sorry if my indenting is not appropriate... after reading the comment on the MT page (I was born there, but left Cefn Coed with my parents in 1969) and then here, I thought to go to the LOTR pages to see what might be there - since they would "know" if anyone does. All I found was a reference to Birmingham. I suspect it might be wise to strike this particular comment from the entry. Or, at least change it to something else, implying that's Merthyr's heavy industrialisation was part of what Tolkien's romanticism of the agrarian past was a rebellion against.

I would say though, that however it is said, it should link to a similar (factual!) assertion on one of the LOTR files. human 02:41, September 9, 2005 (UTC)

Whilst trying to integrate "Other" into the main text, have been bold and removed this. This article was the top hit for a Google search on Merthyr and Tolkien: wonder how long that will remain the case? Telsa 12:05, 18 December 2005 (UTC)

White sock capital[edit]

I object to the removal of Merthyr's reputation as "The White Sock Capital of the UK". The reference isn't "dubious" as Blisco claims – it comes from the council website. --Adam (Talk) 19:47, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

Just because something's on a council website doesn't make it true or notable, especially if the source is a press release. When I removed that sentence the only Google result for Merthyr Tydfil "white sock capital" was that one web page. Furthermore, the only reference on that page is a passing mention with no explanation as to the meaning:
‘All Roads Lead to Merthyr’ Features 17 new and established authors, including the acclaimed Leslie Norris, 1998 Welsh Book of the Year winner Mike Jenkins, Western Mail columnist Mario Basini and Merthyr’s favourite Anthony Bunko, together with a host of others. In contrast to the negative press Merthyr sometimes gets, with jibes about being the “White Sock Capital of the UK”, this book, “All Roads Lead to Merthyr”, illustrates that Merthyr has a vibrant literary culture.
– hardly enough to satisfy WP:V or WP:NN, let alone important enough to put in the lead section of the article. Having said that I have just found a more revealing news item (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/2701837.stm) which does explain the background and give statistics, so if you think it's notable enough to go in the article then feel free to include it. I think you'll need a better source than a press release on a council website to justify claims that Merthyr is generally known by that epithet, though. --Blisco 22:17, 20 September 2006 (UTC)


All of The Lord of the rings was inspired by Denmark/Norway/Religious aspects it has been proven not by Merthyr Tydfil,as if the great Tolkien would even have visited here.

Christianity and King Arthur[edit]

I cleaned up the flow of the Coming of Christianity section. It seemed to jump around a great deal and was confusing. I split the naming legend and the King arthur reference to a Local Legends section, as these paragraphs did not seem to about the coming of Christianity in any way.

I found the statement about the introduction of Christianity particularly confusing. It seemed to be leading to imply that the Romans introduced Christianity, but the following statement about the Irish and French monks seemed to controvert this. I could not find reference material that clarified who did introduce Christianity locally; so, I tried to clarify the langauge while presenting what appeared to be the meaning of the original paragraph.

I am not sure if the King Arthur legend should be referenced here at all. I cannot find anything tying the legend to this town or region specifically, just the region. I did not want to make the decision to remove this material; so, instead I added some details and clarifications and added a link to the Ambrosius Aurelianus page. I considered adding refernces to the following: http://britannia.com/history/biographies/ambros.html and http://www.historyfiles.co.uk/FeaturesBritain/BritishAmbrosiusAurelianus.htm, but since this was already borderline off-topic, it didn't seem appropriate.

Enzym3 01:47, 7 October 2006 (UTC)

Early Modern Merthyr Tydfil[edit]

This section is underdeveloped and lacks some of the most basic facts of Merthyr Tydfil. When was a permenant settlement founded here? How big was it, when did fair start being held regularly? Fairs generally denote a settlement has become regarded as a town this is important in the town's history, and the comment that they brough wealth to some and poverty to others needs justifying.

Anlbe (talk) 11:38, 14 March 2008 (UTC)

The decline of coal and iron[edit]

"The steel and coal industries began to decline after World War One, and by the 1930’s, they had all closed." what had all closed by the 1930s? This sentence implies it is the steel and coal industries.

Anlbe (talk) 12:20, 14 March 2008 (UTC)


Schools[edit]

Should the list of "Primary schools/nurseries" be alphabetized? And is Ysgol-y-Graig still open? It was in Cefn when I went there, but I guess Cefn is part of Merthyr now... Huw Powell (talk) 17:23, 16 February 2008 (UTC)

School league table[edit]

I removed the 'league table' of school results because Estyn doesn't inspect schools annually, so the exam results cited won't necessarily be directly comparable. People may be aware that since 2001, the Assembly Government hasn't published individual school performance information.[1] Information on individual schools is still available in prospectuses and governors’ annual reports, but adding them all together to produce a local league table may violate WP:SYNTH. I've been doing the same edit in numerous articles, however in this case I left the list of schools intact, since previous contributors seem to be intent on building a list of all local education providers. Pondle (talk) 23:43, 26 March 2009 (UTC)

Merthyr Tudful/Merthyr Tydfil[edit]

Hopefully someone can explain to me in simple terms that if Merthyr Tudful is Welsh, what langauge is Merthyr Tydfil or is it another Anglo invention that doesn't really mean anything? —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.53.204.196 (talk) 16:24, 9 June 2009 (UTC)

I think if you check back it was an attempt by the then Welsh civic leaders to come up with an authentic Welsh spelling, rather than the bastardised English version that had existed prior to that. Unfortunately, they got it wrong. A bit like your spelling of language really! Skinsmoke (talk) 21:55, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

Very helpful, thanks. Apologies for the spelling. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 86.53.204.196 (talk) 15:22, 22 July 2009 (UTC)

Ranks[edit]

The article has a lot of "Ranks 21st", "Ranks 13th worst", etc., without much explanation of what MT is being ranked among. My guess is that the positive rankings are among the 22 county-like entities of Wales, and the "worst" ones are among the county-like entities of Britain. But it is not clear. A statement would help. Maproom (talk) 14:18, 9 July 2009 (UTC)

That whole section, although now cited, needs a complete rewrite. A list of rankings is not the preferred format. This needs rewriting into a coherent paragraph and expanding to give it some meaning. Skinsmoke (talk) 16:35, 5 August 2009 (UTC)

Merthyr Tydfil FC[edit]

MTFC are now ground-sharing with Taff's Well FC (approx 15 miles from Merthyr), having been evicted from Penydarren Park in 2010 —Preceding unsigned comment added by 132.185.240.122 (talk) 18:47, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Viagra Discovery[edit]

Are you sure about this statement: "While testing a new angina treatment, researchers in Merthyr Tydfil discovered (purely by accident) that the new drug had erection-stimulating side effects. This discovery would go on to form the basis for Viagra.[9] " ? Pfizer would say their people invented it in Sandwich, Kent. The Wikipedia article on Viagra makes no mention of Merthyr. --Mat Teja (talk) 10:17, 28 February 2012 (UTC)

This really needs a better source, but I have heard this fact before. The drug was not developed in Merthyr and no one claims that, but Merthyr has one of the worst illness levels in Britain, and a statistically high level of heart disease. Therefore it could well be that the developers had their best chance of finding their required sample group in the population of Merthyr. The story then goes that when the trial was over a vast number of men stated that they had lost or thrown out their excess tablets. When this was investigated further it was discovered that Viagra had a secondary function under which it is marketed today. FruitMonkey (talk) 10:50, 28 February 2012 (UTC)
[2] A good firm source? Martinevans123 (talk) 12:27, 28 February 2012 (UTC)
That stands out. I'll pop it now. FruitMonkey (talk) 12:51, 28 February 2012 (UTC)
Great - it reads better now, and it is clearer that Merthyr people were not responsible for discovering or developing the active compound. Thanks Mat Teja (talk) 11:17, 1 March 2012 (UTC)

Town or County Borough[edit]

Shouldn't this article actually be two? Over the years, as facts have been added, some confusion seems to have arisen. Does the article refer to the town or the county borough? There are also references to the parliamentary constituencies, which already exist as different pages. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Caradog Llywelyn (talkcontribs) 12:49, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

I think it would make more sense to cut and paste most of the table on the right into a new Merthyr Tydfil County Borough article, with links and some info taken from this page into the new MTCB one...and a new table on this page focusing on the town.--Caradog Llywelyn (talk) 12:58, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

I tend to agree with you here - in fact there's already Caerphilly County Borough as an exemplar. It is confusing at the moment. The article is almost entirely about the town of Merthyr Tydfil, while the Infobox is about Merthyr Tyfdil County Borough. With areas like Cardiff, the county and the city are much the same thing, but in the case of Merthyr Tydfil the county borough includes more than the principal town. I would suggest a new article is created about the Merthyr Tydfil County Borough. Sionk (talk) 13:30, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
Much improved, nice work! Sionk (talk) 17:37, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Motto[edit]

The translation of the motto has been changed a few times recently. I have reverted it to the translation given by Gwyn A. Williams, the Welsh-speaking historian from Dowlais who was an expert on the history of Merthyr. The section on the motto on Merthyr's website (Mayor - general information) is unfortunately rather misleading, not only as regards the translation but also in its claim that the motto was taken from an 'Old Welsh manuscript'. In fact, as noted by Gwyn A. Williams, it was coined by Iolo Morganwg. Troellwr (talk) 20:13, 11 February 2014 (UTC)

Whatever it says in the book, the translation is still incorrect. "NID" IN WELSH MEANS "NOT" rather than "No". "No strength" would be "Dim Cadarn" Also the very idea of having absolutely "NO strength", when the second line clearly attributes a type of strength in "brotherhood" (or "fellowship"; to delete one at the expense of the other when relating to a translation is surly beyond trivial) makes a nonsense of the first line; a nonsense that doesn't exist in the original Welsh. I admire GAW greatly but in this instance I think either his fluency in Welsh has tainted his use of English (he seems to be using English words while thinking in Welsh; no problem if you're bilingual but for monoglot English speakers it makes a nonsense of the motto) or possibly there's simply been a typo where a "t" has been dropped. Both common-sense and a basic understanding of the Welsh language would translate the first line as "Not strength" or possibly "little strength"; meaning physical strength is not the emphasis, which is quite different to saying it does not exist at all. It’s a pity that this element is being compromised for no real reason other than dogmatic adherence to a previously published mistake, especially when there are correct versions also available. Caradog Llywelyn (talk) 16:06, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

I have corrected the "no" to "nid". I can't find any dictionary that gives "no" as a translation for this word. If this is unsatisfactory we could possibly state that "No" is the GAW version, then list numerous Welsh language dictionaries to clarify the correct translation or possibly just delete the English altogether and let readers work it out for themselves. Caradog Llywelyn (talk) 16:20, 14 February 2014 (UTC)

Thanks for the comments. We obviously disagree, so let's work towards a resolution. I won't revert to my original suggestion, although that would in many ways be justified. My edit included a reference to an academic publication by an acknowledged expert in the field, which is considered by Wikipedia to be the most reliable kind of source (Help:Introduction to referencing/4). While you have every right to disagree with it, Wikipedia relies on references rather than opinions, so if you feel that 'Whatever it says in the book, the translation is still incorrect' you need to provide references for that, ideally from another academic/peer reviewed source. I hope that you won't mind me suggesting that using capitals to make a point does not strengthen the argument, and is not really consistent with the concept of editing civility.
As regards the translation of 'Nid cadarn ond brodyrdde', the current version 'Not strength but brotherhood' does not convey the original meaning. The question is not really about what 'nid' means but what 'nid ... ond ...' means ('(there is) no .... but/except for ...' ). There are two basic ways of translating the motto: '(There is) no strength but brotherhood' or '(There is) no strength except in brotherhood'. Otherwise 'Brotherhood is the only strength' or 'Only brotherhood is strong'. I'll choose one of these, but won't mind if other editors prefer another. They are all roughly equivalent to the version given by Gwyn A. Williams.Troellwr (talk) 12:59, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
The Wikipedia article should reflect what reliable authorities say, rather than the opinions of random Wikipedia editors, shouldn't it? Gwyn A. Williams is a respected, published historian so surely he trumps any other opinion. Otherwise find a source that gives a 'better' translation. Sionk (talk) 22:44, 15 February 2014 (UTC)
As I've said before, I'm happy with the Williams version. But it's not given in quotation marks to indicate that it's a strict translation, so personally I wouldn't argue with minor changes in wording that don't change the meaning. 'Not strength but brotherhood', however, is a mistranslation.Troellwr (talk) 12:41, 16 February 2014 (UTC)

User:Troellwr: I apologise if my capitalization read a little offensive. I guess I just felt a little frustrated...I know that doesn't excuse expressing it, so apologies. And you're right about 'nid...ond'. I think your version; '(There is) no strength except in brotherhood', works perfectly as a translation. It's correct and unambiguous (maybe highlighting my point about GAW writing in English but perhaps thinking in Welsh as 'No strength but brotherhood' could mean exactly the same as your version but is perhaps more likely to be understood as meaning 'no strength (whatsoever) but brotherhood (instead of strength)'. I know we need to use the most reliable sources but where sources are so few and far between I think an analysis of the language (as we're doing here), which is based on genuinely trying to identify a true consensual translation should be valid, which is very different to opinion, and unless referencing translation text books, is surely more reliable than a reference pool of one. I think the last edit: 'Only brotherhood is strong' works well. Caradog Llywelyn (talk) 21:23, 19 February 2014 (UTC)

User:Caradog Llywelyn: Thank you for the message, and no offence taken at all.Troellwr (talk) 09:36, 13 March 2014 (UTC)

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