Carmarthen Through Time
Series: Through Time
- Keith E. Morgan
15th February 2016
The roots of Carmarthen, claimed to be the oldest town in Wales, go back to the time of the Roman occupation founded around AD 75 when it was called Moridunum, the civitas capital of the Celtic Demetae (Britons) tribe. It can also claim to have one of the oldest theatres in country with one of only three surviving Roman amphitheatres in Wales. There are strong Arthurian legends connecting Merlin the Wizard to Carmarthen, but it was the Normans who recognised the town’s strategic location and built the first castle here in around 1094. Destroyed by the Welsh, defences were constructed in 1223 making Carmarthen the first walled town in Wales, but not sufficiently strong enough to prevent Owain Glyndwr sacking both town and castle in 1405. The final defences, the Bulwarks, were built to defend the town by the Royalist during the Civil War of the 1640s.
Carmarthen Through Time offers the reader a real insight into the ways in which the town subsequently grew to prominence during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries as a business centre for agriculture and associated trades, including that of woollen manufacture. Follow well-known historian Keith Morgan as he guides us through the eighteenth century, which saw Carmarthen enter the industrialised age and became an important port exporting coal, iron and tinplate throughout the world, right up to date when following regeneration, Carmarthen has become a large business and shopping centre for the county.