The Gypsy Curse
In the old fashioned days, a widower called Sieffre abided on Bedlinog Mountain, with his daughter, Rhian. Her hair splashed on her shoulders like a golden waterfall and everyone said that she was nice enough to eat.
Sieffre and Rhian were without a worry in the world until the day a gypsy knocked on their cottage door Good Sir, said the gypsy, are you wanting to buy some pretty lace from my basket.
No, kind thanks, answered Sieffre, my daughter makes the finest lace in Morgannwg.
Blight and blast cursed the crone with looks black as the plague. no longer will the stars smile upon your bwthyn. Your precious daughter will die before the week is out.
With that the gypsy left and Sieffre began piping his eyes, but before the first tear had time to dry, a fairy appeared and asked: why do you weep so?
Sieffre explained why he felt sick at heart and the fairy said: Fret not. We cannot undo what is done. But my fair family are old hands when it comes to dealing with gypsies. Rhian will rest awhile before being returned without a single hair of her head harmed.
Before the sun had set seven times, Rhian lay without breath in her bedchamber. The fairies came and carted her away on a bier of briars.
Each fay was frocked as a flower-barberries and buttercups, crocus, celandines and cowslips, primroses and pansies-to match the hue of her hair.
A week passed , and on a dank morning when both Sieffre and the sun overslept, the sound of a small-hour song filled the cottage pantry. Helter-skeltering down the stairs, Sieffre saw Rhian preparing breakfast and the sight of her hair was as welcome as marigolds in May.
Key Contact: Rhymney Valley Tales
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