Picture at top is of myself ''off to rise a Welsh Republican Flag at Garreg Wasted'', pictures below are mostly ''Socialist Republicans'' led by Leanne Wood gathering for the 1 March 2006 Anti - English Monarchy Protest at the 'Sham Senedd'.
The Foundations of a New Welsh Republicanism? (A title I have given to below, David would be too modest to call it such as he preferrs not to write articles, instead engaging in discussion and swapping of ideas. However, I am impressed enough to make ''no bones'' about how I view what he is doing, in terms of research and otherwise engaging with others of a 'Welsh Republican Mind' in forums, as noted below).
As I may have told you, I am working on the theory that nationalism and socialism in Wales parted way from republicanism somewhere between 1850 ( = date of "Red Republican" and introduction of Marxism ) and 1885 ( = first election in which the working class got the vote and started to concentrate on their own interests ). In between these dates I have presumed that the Welsh ( and Irish etc ) who had fought in the American Civil War had brought back a renewed version of republicanism to rejuvenate the old one that persisted after the collapse of Chartism. All over Britain and Ireland there was a revival in republicanism in the 1870's, and a number of clubs were founded to promote the cause - often called "radical" clubs to conceal their purpose, the last remaining Radical Club in South Wales as far as I know is in Blaenllechau, Rhondda but probably other clubs - even non-political ones - may have started out as radical clubs. The nationalists in Cymru Fydd clearly loathed them - their political idea was proclaimed as " Athenian Democracy reconciled to Roman Imperialism " - ie they wanted Home Rule but also wanted a share in Britain's loot.
This is the place that I am suggesting might be a pleasant spot for a summer rally - if it rains the Courthouse pub is fifty yards away, and it does nice meals although I had in mind a picnic. Caerphilly could hardly object to people comemorating its most distinguished son at the monument to him in the park named after him - even if we did dress the obelisk up with some republican flags and pledged allegiance to them as a symbol of the republic ! I'll try and write a bit about David Williams later. There's a worthy biography of him called "The Anvil and the Hammer" by Whitney R D Jones 1987. Williams influenced both the American and French revolutionists with newspaper articles, pamphlets and friendships that were widely quoted at the time but he left no literary monuments to his political and religious philosophies. Religiously, he fully broke completely off from the Christian faith and attempted to found a Deist religion that was to be one of the inspirations for the French revolutionary republic's attempt to found a state religion, "The Cult of Reason" - hence his nickname, "The Priest of Nature", because he retired to the countryside to perform novel rites. He made a living mostly by running a novel school in London, based on radical principles that incalcated a democratic and rational education, and partly by writing criticism for newspapers. His friends eventually contrived to procure for him a sort of pension in his old age in a job with the Royal Literary Fund - irony ! David Williams is particularly important to republican political theory in his arguing the right of people to take up arms to defend themselves against tyranical governments. He introduced the idea of the local "well regulated militias" that would be able to oppose the central government's standing army should it ever be used to oppress people. This was a key argument cited by the American revolutionaries. Thus he would be horrified by the fact that his idea, which was incorporated into the USA's constitution as the people's right to bear arms, is used to justify private people carrying fire-arms for personal self defence. David Williams would have viewed this as an invitation to anarchy, with the predictable result that murderous weapons would be in the hands of lawless individuals spreading havoc - instead martial armaments being in the hands of morally educated people who would be acting together under a military discipline to democratically defend the rule of law and order. The monument is in Parc Dafydd Williams, and inscription:
If you want to read more of David Lawrence's material on Welsh Republicanism, visit the forum below:
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G.Gruffydd, Editor The Welsh Patriot blog.