Template talk:Welsh kingdoms

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Welsh kingdoms?[edit]

What exactly are the Welsh kingdoms? Kingdoms inhabited by the Welsh? -- Well, no, the Welsh are a modern nation who live in Wales. Are they subdivisions of Wales? -- Well, also no, these kingdoms pre-date Wales by centuries (Wales was a concept of the future!)

It strikes me as odd and retroactively changing history to claim these territories as "Welsh". They were Brythonic. The claim is analogous to claiming the Kingdom of Kent as an "English kingdom" - it wasn't, of course; it was a petty kingdom inhabited largely by Jutes, Frisians and Saxons. Infact its like calling both England and Wales "Federal Islamic Republican 51st state of Euro-America's kingdoms" in the year 3000 - when infact they were not. --Jza84 |  Talk  23:31, 5 September 2009 (UTC)

If you actually knew something about Welsh history perhaps you might be better qualified to judge. As it is you are clearly pushing your own POV interpretation and should at least have the decency to consult with others before making such a radical edit to a key Wales template. Your arguments, such as they are, are highly disingenuous. Just what do you have aginast the Welsh, Jza84? (Not so long ago you were deleting references to Welsh nationality as "unverifiable"!). When exactly, in your expert opinion, did the history of Wales start? Have you actually read anything on the history of Wales? Clearly not, or you would have seen that the term 'Welsh kingdoms' or 'kingdoms of Wales' is so common that quoting examples is almost superfluous, but you could try R. R. Davies's The Age of Conquest: Wales 1063-1415, the standard modern work on that period, where numerous examples will be found of this and similar terms, e.g. "[...] the Welsh kingdoms did indeed display remarkable powers of resilience and recovery as the twelfth century progressed" (p. 81), etc etc - I've no intention of listing the obvious from every possible source. The term is widely used by contemporary doyen of Welsh historians, John Davies and is also used by Sir John Edward Lloyd in his classic History of Wales. This is the term used, and rightly so. Both your original edit and the most recent one are quite simply incorrect, apart from anything else, as this template includes kingdoms from pre-Roman to medieval Wales. I'm reverting to the original wording and bringing this up at the Welsh wikipedians' talk page. If we must have a change the only one I could support is 'Kingdoms of Wales', which would be in line with the category name. Enaidmawr (talk) 00:10, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
Hello Jza84, I've reverted your edit back to the stable version. I hope that you'll bring an issue like this to the talk page and seek consensus before changing the template again. It may have been intended as an innocent description, as you state, but it is a change that ought to be discussed here first. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 00:35, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
That's fine that you've reverted..... but guys, get up to speed here.... you don't need permission to make an edit! You or I don't need to ask on the talk page first before changing content. I think my change was good spirited and raises a valid concern and also was in good faith. Comments about anti-Welsh sentiment and such nonsense are an incredibly disgusting way to conduct oneself in an editorial though. Welsh history is in a terrible state on Wikipedia.... I'll say it again Welsh history on Wikipedia is in a terrible state.... how many GAs and FAs? I'm only trying to help out here. --Jza84 |  Talk  00:56, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for your response, Jza84. I'll take you at your word on what you say, and if you didn't suspect that your change would be a controversial one, as it certainly was, the discovery must have come as a rude shock. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 01:13, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
I didn't think it would be at all, and for the reasons at the top of the page. For me, "Welsh kingdoms" is anachronistic, as these (petty) kingdoms pre-date Wales by centuries. It's comparable to saying the Kingdom of Strathclyde is a "Scottish kingdom", when it was inhabited by Britons and Gaels (not Scots) and spanned what is now England..... however, if "Welsh kingdom" appears in sources, then fine! infact, I think Welsh kingdom might even be a suitable article if it does satisfy WP:V, then all these places can use the term with some context. --Jza84 |  Talk  01:32, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
I'm surprised you didn't realise that it would be controversial. There are two issues here, one is the use of Welsh rather than Brythonic and the other is the use of Kingdoms. In respect of the first, while Brythonic is the language group, most modern history books use Welsh to cover the whole period, picking up on the common mediaeval term, a note on the pre-Roman period might be appropriate. In respect of Kingdom, I've argued elsewhere (Cornwall) that this is probably not the right phrase, neither is petty kingdom. Enaidmawr is better placed to have a view on the proper translation. --Snowded TALK 04:53, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
How so Snowded? --Jza84 |  Talk  10:14, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
Not sure what aspect of my comment "How so" relates to --Snowded TALK 13:13, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
I guessed you meant that, as Enaidmawr is a Welsh speaker, he would be best placed to provide a translation, yes? Ghmyrtle (talk) 14:05, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Hello Jza84, Enaidmawr's revert of your change (the first one) carried an edit summary of "You have got to be joking, not to mention downright ignorant and insulting!" ... this seems like an unambiguous announcement that the change is considered controversial, but that's only my take.
The word "Welsh" has an amorphously inexact history of usage, as some of the eymology sections and articles show. It has additional characteristics and nuances to those who are Welsh and Welsh-speaking (myself not among them). The words "Brythonic" and variations of "Cymry" carry their own baggage and nuances. A forum for discussion seems appropriate, but this page and the template's content can't possibly be the right one.
Perhaps this whole thing is a case of misunderstood intentions and reactions, and even if that is not the case, let's pretend that it is. Best Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 17:13, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

Proposed renaming[edit]

I've posted a notice on the WikiProject Wales talk page to invite comment on the proposed renaming of the template. ~Geaugagrrl talk 03:36, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

  • Oppose re expert usage. Historians use the phrase. For example, in the The Welsh Academy Encyclopaedia of Wales (John Davies, Nigel Jenkins, Menna Baines and Peredur Lynch et al., eds (2008). Cardiff: University of Wales Press. pp. 228. ISBN 978 0 7083 1953 6.) entry for Dyfed, Kingdom begins: "One of the kingdom of early Wales ... " and elsewhere. Daicaregos (talk) 13:20, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Propose renaming template to Ancient Kingdoms of Wales. Brythonic denotes language, not place. Kingdom is not the best word, but seems useful for the intended purpose which is to document ruling authority by name/date(period) of the location. ~Geaugagrrl talk 16:21, 6 September 2009 (UTC) Updated ~Geaugagrrl talk 02:19, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
  • Alternate Proposal rename to Kingdoms and tribes of early Wales, denoting groups for Iron Age, Sub Roman, Medieval, etc. Since the nav box is Wales-specific, include all three time periods. Work could continue on the Iron Age tribes of Britain, possibly expanding further using this list. And Ireland? I have been communicating offline with two knowledgeable folks (one is Gerald Morgan) about this subject. More to share after Sept 16 when I'm back in town. ~Geaugagrrl talk 05:37, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Let's hold off consideration of this relabel/rename until we see the reaction to the change at some of the other "petty kingdom" articles and templates. The stated reason for using petty kingdom, or some similar such, is that there are many candidate kingdoms, such as the Kingdom of Kent (mentioned near the top of this page), and that petty kingdom is the best accurate description, and should be used. So far, this terminology is only being applied to Wales-related articles, this template and Glywysing so far, and we ought not constrain feedback to just one interest group. Certainly the reaction from the other interest groups would be relevant to this discussion, as the change is to be made on a broad scale.

(*sigh*) I created this template more for my own evolutionary education than for any other reason, intending then (and still intending) to modify it over the course of time to be increasingly useful and informative. At my request, Enaidmawr was kind enough to point out some of the inaccuracies in the initial version, but was willing to live with them for the time being. I haven't gotten back to address all of them yet, but I haven't forgotten, either. I think my original choice of "kingdom" was ill-considered, but is the current environment a good one for tweaks and modifications? Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 16:26, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for your work on the WP Wales project Notuncurious. Good plan to wait for comment and further development. A bit of chill & kind might be in order just now too. ~Geaugagrrl talk 16:39, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

I don't speak Welsh, but a quick look at cy:WP suggests that the term which needs translating into English is Teyrnasoedd Cymru. The translations which I've seen suggest that "Welsh kingdoms" is fine. Alternatively, there are precedents for using the Welsh words themselves, for instance at Hen Ogledd and cantref. Ghmyrtle (talk) 18:45, 6 September 2009 (UTC)

This template includes kingdoms of varying size, duration and importance from the Iron Age/Roman period through to the High Middle Ages. The only possible term is that which is in general use in just about any book or article on the history of Wales: 'Welsh kingdoms' or 'Kingdoms of Wales' (Teyrnasoedd Cymru covers both). Enaidmawr (talk) 23:41, 6 September 2009 (UTC)
How about "Kingdoms of medieval Wales"? Then cut out the Roman-era and pre-Roman kingdoms and tribes for the British tribes template. This way we can include all the kingdoms in what is now Wales during the period after Roman withdrawal and the final incorporation into the Kingdom of England. Otherwise, we may have to divvy the template into more or less arbitrary timeframes, as has been done, for example, with the Roman province templates (Template:Roman provinces 120 AD, Template:Late Roman Provinces).--Cúchullain t/c 15:32, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
That works for me, Cuchullain. The earlier stuff has already been removed (rather prematurely perhaps) to a new template. All the remaining realms can be classed as medieval if we accept that includes 'early medieval', and few would argue with that. Enaidmawr (talk) 23:29, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
I've implemented the change and combined the lists. It seemed the easiest solution to me, but this may bear further discussion later.--Cúchullain t/c 20:18, 14 September 2009 (UTC)

Pre-Roman Brythonic Kingdoms are not "Welsh"[edit]

These are Brythonic kingdoms, the concept of Welsh hadn't been invented yet and at this point Brythonic kingdoms also covered much of what is today England and the Scottish Lowlands. IMO this doesn't belong in the same template as post-Roman kingdoms, where the concept of "Welsh" actually begin to exist (roughly, but not solidly around the 6th century). There should be two separate templates for all the pre-Roman Brythonic kingdoms which are mentioned in Ptolmey's Geographia and then this one just for post-Roman Welsh kingdoms. - Yorkshirian (talk) 07:12, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

I agree - such an approach could help minimise confusion. Ghmyrtle (talk) 07:22, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
PS: In particular, I think it would be helpful in establishing the difference between those sub-Roman entities ("kingdoms") which can be described as being "within Wales", and pre-Roman entities ("tribes") which could better be described as "in the area which later became Wales". Ghmyrtle (talk) 11:00, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
It would be just fine with "Welsh kingdoms" IMO, its contentious to assert that the early sub-Roman kingdoms were "within Wales" until such an entity (the Principality of Wales) was founded in the 12th century. They were Welsh, culturally and lingustically, certainly but they were within separate rival kingdoms, owing alliegence to different monarchs and houses. The concept of Welsh predates the reality of Wales itself by centuries.- Yorkshirian (talk) 12:33, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
I agree as well. If a kingdom occupied swathes of territory outside present-day Wales and pre-dated the concept of 'Welshness' then calling it a "Welsh kingdom" seems ahistorical.Pondle (talk) 09:06, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
For what it's worth, the issue of pre-Roman tribes/kingdoms/whatever was one of the problems that Enaidmawr noted when the template was created. He also noted a number of other problems and needed improvements.
As already noted elsewhere on this page, the word "Welsh" has a variable history of usage, and there are also inconvenient inexactitudes in the use of other words such as "Brythonic" and "Cymraec". Is it possible to find an appropriate forum for this point? This page and the template's content cannot be the right one.
Could someone create appropriate template(s) and seek feedback and comments? The successful editor would receive the accolades of a grateful community, and we could then consign this template's shortcomings to the ashcan of history. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 15:50, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Perhaps a seperate template for the pre-Roman kingdoms/territorial units - i.e. those of the Deceangli, Demetae, Gangani, Ordovices, and Silures - is the answer? The use of the term 'Brythonic' for that period is not straightforward either. How about a template for 'Iron Age Wales' or something similar? We should go with the most commonly used terms found in reputable history books. The sub-Roman and medieval kingdoms should remain on this template; whether we choose to stick with 'Welsh kingdoms' or accept an alternative such as 'Kingdoms of Wales', the word Welsh/Wales is quite appropriate. Wales did not come into existence with the creation of the Principality of Wales. Polity does not equal country, and in any case the principality forged by the princes of Gwynedd did not include those areas under the control of the Marcher Lords, so Yorkshirian's argument holds no water. If it did it would also be wrong to speak of 'Anglo-Saxon England', not to mention other perfectly acceptable and common anomalies such as "prehistoric England"! (There are plenty of books available on the "prehistory of Wales" as well, of course.) As for early and medieval Wales, it was united by law, language, culture and custom, so of course it is right to speak of 'Wales' from the sub-Roman/early medieval period onwards. Every book on the history of Wales I have read does so, naturally enough, so what right have we as wikipedia editors to go against that usage? Enaidmawr (talk) 23:29, 7 September 2009 (UTC)
Template created, {{Welsh Iron Age peoples}}, with a talk page. If this or something like it is acceptable, then its duplication in the "kingdoms" template can be pitched. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 00:30, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
Not to rain on your parade with the new template, but this is already in place on come of the articles: {{Celtic tribes of Wales}}. Isn't it exactly the same? ~Geaugagrrl talk 03:49, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
Wow its one I created two years ago as well! weird, I can't recall making it. In any case, I think all Brythonic tribes across Britain from that period should be contained within one single separate template to avoid anachronism. Enaidmawr the term "Anglo-Saxon England", while a complete construct applies also to the period before 1066. So some of the time it refers to, England as a kingdom existed. But your argument could easy be used with the name "Britain" and publications called "the History of Britain" and so on, which is a much more solid geographical term. During the Iron Age and in regards to Brythonic tribes of that period Britain is less anachronistic than "Wales" or "England", since it falsely suggests a division along those lines when there wasn't one contemporary to that period. - Yorkshirian (talk) 04:57, 8 September 2009 (UTC)
However this gets worked out to consensus satisfaction is fine by me, Geaugagrrl, so am not feeling any rain on the parade; but yes, now that you mention it, they really do used to look remarkably undifferent ...
Yorkshirian, I think Enaidmawr's point re Anglo-Saxon is that it is a neologism, completely made up in modern times. For example, there is no such thing as "Anglo-Saxon law" (it was the laws of Saxon Wessex, Anglian Mercia, and the Danelaw, which were sufficiently similar to merit inclusion within this made-up umbrella term). There never was any such thing as "Anglo-Saxon" anything, yet there is tolerance and acceptance of people who wish to describe this particular heritage in such terms (including on wikipedia), so perhaps the principle might also be acceptable for others, for example in what the word "Welsh" means. For myself, I think that the Welsh should lead in this area, not to have absolute power; similarly for those who might refer to themselves as of AS heritage. Regards, Notuncurious (talk) 15:37, 8 September 2009 (UTC)