Do you hail from Wales? Welsh heritage is rich and vibrant—one of its nation’s symbols is even a dragon! The dragon appears on the Welsh flag and has been an important symbol of the country since medieval times. It is a central figure in many Welsh legends, along with daffodils and leeks. This wide variety of symbols shows the variety of life found in Wales and its culture.
Wales is a country located in the western part of Great Britain. Although it shares some of its culture with its neighbor, England, much of its culture is uniquely Welsh. The culture has Celtic roots, and the land was even once part of the Roman Empire! During the Middle Ages, Norman knights led the country, but it was conquered by England between 1277 and 1283. The country was formally united with England by Acts of Union in 1536 and 1542. As a colony of England, Wales became a part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain when it was established in 1707.
Some say the name “Wales” comes from the term “wealas,” a word used to describe the people of Britain who spoke Brittonic—a Celtic language that was used in Britain. That language later developed into Welsh, Cornish, Breton, and other languages. Others say that “Wales” is a variation of the Proto-Germanic word “walhaz,” which meant “foreigner” or “stranger.” It was used in this way by the Anglo-Saxons.
Learn about Your Welsh Heritage
Learn enhanced details about your Welsh heritage, including how to preserve your memories, look for historical records, work on your family tree, and much more. Get started here.
The Welsh culture has a treasure trove of delicious foods and recipes. From baked goods such as Welsh cakes and breads, to special cheeses and leeks, to the famous Welsh rarebit, there is something to suit all tastes!
Have you ever thought about integrating names from your ancestry when naming your children? Often, knowing popular names from your native lands helps you find your ancestors as well. This article will help you understand a bit more about Welsh names current and past, plus a bit of the meaning behind them.
Wales has its own language! While it is written with a similar alphabet as English, there are some different elements of Welsh that are fun and interesting. Learn how to pronounce Welsh words, and download a handy Welsh pronunciation guide.
Learning about the history of your ancestors is rewarding and comforting. Learning about their culture, the foods they ate, and interesting landmarks gives a flavor of what life may have been like. There is much to discover about Wales. Enjoy the journey!