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Afanc


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[W, beavers].

A kind of water-monster in the whirlpool of Llyn yr Afanc on the River Conway in north Wales. Early reports of the monster are not specific about its shape, but it came to be thought of as a giant beaver, its name employing a word from the local dialect. It has also been described as a kind of crocodile. Many stories have been recorded about the Afanc, some as early as the 17th century. In the Welsh Triads, Afanc causes the flood that obliges Dwyfan and Dwyfach to build an ark to save themselves and the animals. In this story Afanc resides in Llyn Llion [Bala Lake?]. Peredur may have slain it, although it continued to be the subject of tales. Akin to the Scottish kelpie, the Irish and Scottish Gaelic each uisce/uisge, and the Manx glaistyn; See the Welsh CEFFYL DWFR [water horse]. See also CÌREIN CRÒIN. Folk motif: F420.1.4.

Subjects: Religion.


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