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Volume 12, No. 2
Astrological Poetry in late medieval Wales: the case of Dafydd Nanmor’s ‘To God and the planet Saturn’
This paper examines the major astrological poem which survives from late medieval Wales, Dafydd Nanmor’s ‘Cywydd to God and the planet Saturn’. A close reading of the poem suggests that actual horoscopes, rather than just a vague knowledge of astrology, were accessible in Wales at the end of the Middle Ages. As a result, Dafydd Nanmor’s poem can now be dated to September 1479. This is set in the context of the sociology of English astrology at the end of the Middle Ages; by the middle of the 15th century, astrology was percolating down from the court an universities into the cultural life of the merchant classes, and it is argued that the spread of astrological material to Wales in the same period forms part of the same process.