CELTS AND CYMRY
There every herd by sad experience knows,
How winged with fate their elf-shot arrows fly;
When the sick ewe her summer-food foregoes,
Or stretched on earth, the heart-smit heifers lie.
UNDER the former of these appellations we include the inhabitants of Ireland, the Highlands of Scotland, and the Isle of Man; under the latter, the people of Wales and Brittany. It is, not, however, by any means meant to be asserted that there is in any of these places to be found a purely Celtic or Cymric population. The more powerful Gotho-German race has, every where that they have encountered them, beaten the Celts and Cymry, and intermingled with them, influencing their manners, language, and religion.
Our knowledge of the original religion of this race is very limited, chiefly confined to what the Roman writers have transmitted to us, and the remaining poems of the Welsh bards. Its character appears to have been massive, simple, and sublime, and less given to personification than those of the more eastern nations. The wild and the plastic powers of nature never seem in it to have assumed the semblance of huge giants and ingenious dwarfs.
Yet in. the popular creed of all these tribes, we meet at the present day beings exactly corresponding to the Dwarfs and Fairies of the Gotho-German nations. Of these beings there is no mention in any works--such as the Welsh Poems, and Mabinogion, the Poems of Ossian, or the different irish poems and romances--which can by any possibility lay claim to an antiquity anterior to the conquests of the Northmen. Is it not then a reasonable supposition that the Picts, Saxons, and other sons of the North, brought with them their Dwarfs and Kobolds, and communicated the knowledge of, and belief in, them to their Celtic and Cymric subjects and neighbours? Proceeding on this theory, we have placed the Celts and Cymry next to and after the Gotho-German nations, though they are perhaps their precursors in Europe.