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85 Sweynsei, Swansea, or Abertawe, situated at the confluence of the river Tawe with the Severn sea, is a town of considerable commerce, and much frequented during the summer months as a bathing- place. The old castle, now made use of as a prison, is so surrounded by houses in the middle of the town, that a stranger might visit Swansea without knowing that such a building existed. The Welsh Chronicle informs us, that it was built by Henry de Beaumont, earl of Warwick, and that in the year 1113 it was attacked by Gruffydd ap Rhys, but without success. This castle became afterwards a part of the possessions of the see of St. David’s, and was rebuilt by bishop Gower. [The old castle is no longer used as a prison, but as the office of the “Cambria Daily Leader.” It is significant that Swansea is still known to Welshmen, as in the days of Giraldus, as “Abertawe.”]

 

Gerald of Wales, The Itinerary of Archbishop Baldwin through Wales (Oxford, Mississippi, 1997)