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The Piper, the Lyre player and the Bagpiper

In a secluded spot near Criccieth lies a black cave. The location for the Black Cave is sometimes given as at Black Rock Sands or the cave halfway along the shingle bank between Criccieth and Black Rock. There are many interesting stories about this cave. According to folklore when the tide was out, waterfalls ran out of this cave. 1 According to one story there was a great feast and celebrations at the great Hall Bronyfoel on the outskirts of Criccieth, and at the end of the evening the musicians came together to chat with the

guests. They wanted to flee to another world; the land of the Fairies, where they could find their fortune. So that night, they ventured into the Black Cave near Criccieth, with their instruments where there were rumors that there they would find ample wealth and treasures. The three played harmonious folk tunes on their instruments the Fiddler (or Crythor/Crwth player; a folk instrument similar to the lute or violin) the Piper and the Bagpiper. Their charming melodies are still heard at the mouth of the Black Cave in Criccieth. 2 According to another version of the story, they went through the cave to a 4 mile long tunnel, coming out at Cwm Pennant, in a place known today as 'Pipers arms'. The cave there at the end of the journey is known as Owain Glyndwr's Cave in Cwm Pennant. The landform at the end of the tunnel was know as The Piper's Arms. 3 According to one version of the story the three found their fortune within the cave, and stayed in the Land of the Fairies. One evening a shepherd was tending his sheep on the Moel Hebog from Cefn Coch, when he heard the sound of a pipe playing a charming melody, the sweetest he had ever heard, and as he searched where the noise was coming from, he came to a crack in the rock and he shouted. He was replied by a faint voice who told the shepherd what had happened to them, having found their fortune they were not allowed to return to land. They played beautiful tunes and the shepherd learned the beautiful melody, and called it 'The Fair tune of the piper '. Folk tunes According to the antiquarian Edward Llwyd, the 'Farewell to Dic the Piper' tune was inspired by these stories. There are also tunes about Ned Puw 'Farewell Ned Puw' and ‘The Fair tune of the piper’, ‘Red pipers melody’ which relate to the folk story.

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