Chapter 4 After the Flood,
by Bill Cooper
‘Yf God will, at an other apter tyme and in more apt place, marveilous agreement of the historyes of Antiquity and great unlooked for light and credit will be restored to the Originalls of Brutus…’ (John Dee 1577. Cotton MS. Vitellius. c. vii. f 206v)
On Wednesday 7th November 1917, Flinders Petrie, a renowned archaeologist of the day, addressed the assembled members of the British Academy. He was to present a paper to them entitled Neglected British History, (1) in which he drew attention to the fact that a considerable body of historical documentary source-material was being overlooked if not willfully ignored by modern historians. He drew fleeting attention to the work of Geoffrey of Monmouth and then homed in on one particular record that shed much light upon Geoffrey’s too-disparaged history.
The ancient book to which he drew attention was known to him as the Tysilio Chronicle, which is listed today as Jesus College MS LXI and is lodged in the Bodleian Library, Oxford. It is written in medieval Welsh, and is, as its colophon reveals, (2) a translation that was commissioned by the same Walter of Oxford who commissioned Geoffrey of Monmouth to translate a certain very ancient British book into Latin. It is, in fact, a translation from early British into medieval Welsh of the same source-material used by Geoffrey, and is an answer to all those learned critics who have stated with such emphasis over the years that Geoffrey of Monmouth was lying when he claimed to have translated such a book. Continue reading The Chronicles of the early Britons – Bill Cooper