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After the index is a brief history of Wales.
The History of Wales
It is thought that modern man arrived in what is
now Wales about 29,000 years ago but continuous modern inhabitants
have been there for the last 9,000 years.
In the Iron Age Wales was dominated by Celtic Britons.
The first Roman excursion into Wales was in 48 AD and by 79 they had
conquered all the peoples there. Wales became a rich source of minerals
and metals for the Romans.
In 383 when the Romans departed an Anglo-Saxon invasion
began. The Welsh people where one of the tribes in the area which
consisted of a number of small princedoms. The most powerful of these
was known as Prince of Wales or "King of the Britons". and
some had jurisdiction into parts of western England. None was able
to unite Wales totally for more than a few years. The largest of the
Princedoms was Gwynedd in the northwest and Powys in east Wales.
Between 950AD and 1000 there were several Viking
raids on Wales.
After the Norman Conquest in 1066 the Welsh Princedoms
began to be influenced by the English King. The death of the Welsh
King Bleddyn ap Cynfyn in 1075 led to a civil war and gave the Normans
an opportunity to take land in North Wales. In the south William the
Conqueror marched into Dyfed and built castles at St David's and Cardiff.
In 1282 when Llywelyn the Last died King Edward
the First of England invaded Wales and took it over for good. Since
then the heir to the English throne has always been called Prince
There were many revolts against English rule up
until the fifteenth century when Owen
Glendower (Owain Glydwr) led an uprising. In 1402 as a response
to Glendower's rebellion, the
English parliament passed the Penal Laws which banned the Welsh from
carrying arms or from dwelling in fortified towns.
Between 1535-1542 Henry VIII, son of a Welshman,
passed the Laws in Wales Acts which tried to fully incorporate Wales
into the Kingdom of England and dismantled Welsh law.
in 1588 the Bible was translated into Welsh for
the first time.
During the Civil War in the Seventeenth Century
Wales was almost exclusively Royalist.
in 1707 Wales became part of the Kingdom of Great
in 1801 Wales became part of the United Kingdom.
During the Nineteenth Century two things began to
shape the Welsh people, non conformist religion and a rise in population
due to the expansion of the coal and iron industries particularly
in the south. In 1839 there were Chartist uprisings in Newport.
During the Twentieth Century industrialisation went
into steady decline. In 1913 the Welsh coalfields employed over 250,000
men but numbers began to drop thereafter.
Keir Hardie, the first Labour MP, was elected as
junior member for the Welsh constituency of Merthyr Tydfil and Aberdare
in 1900 and by the 1940's Wales had switched its political allegiance
from the Liberal Party to the Labour Party.
In 1955 the Home Secretary Lloyd
George named Cardiff as the Capital City of Wales.
The Nationalist Political Party Plaid Cymru was
formed in 1925 and grew to become a powerful force in the 1960's.
In 1964 the first Secretary of State for Wales was
The Aberfan disaster happened in 1966, when a tip
of coal slurry slid down and buried several houses and a school killing
144 people, most of them children.
In 1967 the "Wales and Berwick Act", which
stated that the term "England" should include Wales, was
On the 1st July 1969 Prince Charles was invested
as Prince of Wales at an investiture ceremony at Caernarfon Castle.
During this period there were a number of bombs exploded against English
In 1974 Plaid Cymru won three seats at the General
In 1980 S4C the Welsh Language television channel
began. Although it was promised in the Conservative Party Manifesto
of the year before the Government decided to cancel it but gave in
to concerted Welsh pressure.
In 1981 the proportion of Welsh Speakers in Wales
had dropped to an all time low of 18.9%.
In 1993 the Welsh Language Act gave the Welsh language
equal status with English in Wales.
In the referendum of 1997 permission was given for
the formation of the National Assembly for Wales in Cardiff which
sat for the first time in 1999.
The Cardiff Millennium Stadium also opened in 1999.
The population in Wales in 2001 was 2.9 million.
In February 2006 the new Welsh Assembly building
or Senned was officially opened in Cardiff.
From May 2007 the Queen had a new legal title as
"Her Majesty in Right of Wales" and would appoint Welsh
On 3 March 2011 another Referendum was held which
asked if people wanted the Assembly to make laws on the twenty areas
it had jurisdiction over. The result was a yes vote.