Saint Dwynwen's Day

Saint Dwynwen's Day Quick Facts

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2023 Date25 January 2023
2024 Date25 January 2024
Saint Dwynwen's Day

Saint Dwynwen's Day History

St. Dwynwen's Day seeks to celebrate the Welsh patron saint of lovers. Saint Dwynwen is believed to have lived during the 5th century. She was the daughter of the King Brychan Brycheiniog of Wales. The belief is that she wished to fall out of love with a Prince named Maelon Dafodrill. As she slept one night, an angel visited her. It brought her a potion to help erase her memory of the prince. Unfortunately, it also ended up turning him into a block of ice. Dwynwen was then given 3 wishes by God. Her 1st wish was for Maelon to be unfrozen. Her 2nd wish was that the hopes and dreams of true lovers would be fulfilled. Her 3rd wish was that she would never marry. God granted all her wishes. As a thank you, she chose to devote herself to God for the remainder of her life. Dwynwen soon established a convent off the coast of Anglesey. After she passed in 465 AD, a holy well became a place of pilgrimage for many people. It was said that sacred fish within the well could foretell whether there would be fortune or misfortune in a relationship.

St. Dwynwen's Day was founded in the 1960s by Bangor University student, Vera Williams. Williams sought to revive the observance as Welsh’s version of Valentine's Day. It is observed annually on 25 January.

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Saint Dwynwen's Day Facts

  • St. Dwynwen is the Welsh patron saint of lovers as well as the patron saint of sick animals.
  • St. Dwynwen's church and nunnery were built in the 5th century. Their ruins can still be seen on Llanddwyn Island in Anglesey, Wales. It's said St. Dwynwen is also buried there.
  • Several wells and springs can be found on Llanddwyn Island. These include:
    1) Merddyn Cil (Merlin's Well)
    2) Ffynnon Dafaden (it is believed that its waters are able to cure warts)
    3) Dwynwen's Well (it is said that the fish inside the well can predict the success of a relationship)

Saint Dwynwen's Day Top Events and Things to Do

  • Visit St. Dwynwen's Church on Llanddwyn Island at Anglesey. The ruins of the patron saint's church can still be seen today.
  • Celebrate the day with your romantic partner. Exchange gifts, go for dinner, or enjoy a walk on the beach.
  • Learn more about the story of Saint Dwynwen.

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