“Ge lufigeð þiss lif, on þan þe ge mid geswynce wuniged … þu grintst, & bacst, þu wefst, & wæden teolest, & earfoðlice wast ealre þinre neoda getæl.”* (Inscription)
Unto the people of the East do your Cyng Kenric and Cwene Avelina bring greetings. It is Our Will that all good people be well-praised for their deeds and there is one in your number whose praise we would note.
Lord Hew of Albion has, from his village in the northern marches, toiled for the Crown and wrapped Us in the fruit of the weft and the warp. He has trimmed us with soft wool. He has coloured us with fine fibers.
It is written in the Homilies of Ælfric, “Ge mid geswynce wuniged …þu wefst, & wæden teolest, & earfoðlice wast ealre þinre neoda getæl.” You lived with working …you wove, and would toil, and with difficulty were all your needs counted.
It is therefore Our Will that Hew be named Weaver to the Crown and may, as he wish and without hinderance, wield distaff and wheel, spindle and spike, shuttle and loom, card and reed, throughout all the lands of the Eastern Crown.
Given at the King & Queen’s Bardic Championships in the Barony of Bergental on this day, the eighth of March, on the Feast of St. Rhian, anno societies forth-eight by the honorable Kenric and beloved Avelina, who hath made here their sign.
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“Ge lufigeð þiss lif, on þan þe ge mid geswynce wuniged … þu grintst, & bacst, þu wefst, & wæden teolest, & earfoðlice wast ealre þinre neoda getæl.”
*(You loved this life, and then you lived with working … you ground, and baked, you wove, and would toil, and with difficulty were all your needs counted.)
We find an early reference to it as the verb wefan in the 12th century, in the Homilies of Ælfric: http://alexpolistigers.wordpress.com/2013/11/28/on-weaving-and-webs/
St. Rhian is a Welsh abbot about whom little is known, save that the town of Llanrhian in Pembrokeshire in west Wales, has a church dedicated to him.