II. THE GOLDEN AGE. Our New Historian, applying his scientific method to the three phases of the Cymmrodorion, and carefully assessing the value of the contribution made by each, will perhaps lay emphasis upon the third period. But whosoever sets out to seek man in the richness of his human quality will turn and turn again to the first period with undiminished zest. Everything in this stage, from the Constitutions of its beginning to Pennant's British Zoology at its close, has a certain glamour of quaintness and a deep impress of humanity. The Societies of 1820 and 1873 knew the routine of society building, and each of them began by drawing up a formal constitution. But what are their poor pale constitutions compared with the document thus described ? Constitutions of the Honourable Society of Cymmrodorion in London. Begun in the month of September, 1751. Revised, unanimously Agreed upon, and Confirmed, by the Honourable the CHIEF PRESIDENT, and all the other OFFIGERS, and majority of MEMBERS, in full ASSEMBLY, at their general Monthly Meeting, at the London-Stone Tavern in Cannon Street, April 4, 1753, and also at the Half-Moon in Cheapside, May 7, 1755. This is something like a constitution The French Revolution and the American War of Independence produced nothing to be advanced as parallel. With its rules and regulations go the General Heads {Cyfjredinol Byngciau) to be occasionally considered and treated of (among others) in the Correspondence of the Society of Cymmrodorion." Thus-modestly unaware of their achievement- apart from any formal literary undertakings, by acci- dent. in the mere course of settling down to business, the Cymmrodorion produced a work that stands as a monument to human nature. It has something of the joy of life we know in Falstaff; it has a touch of the crusted courtesy of Dr. Johnson; and it has more than that insatiate ambition for knowledge which drove Faustus to sign a bond with Mephistopheles. In unearthing this old treasure, I wish to make the pleasure of it as wide as I may, and therefore quote from the English version of the Constitutions." The Introduction shews us the Usefulness and Neces- sity of an Association of Ancient Britons in London." A bishop is called in to buttress the plea. Then the Greeks and the Romans are put in their proper place as peoples whose scholarship is praiseworthy, but rendered unreliable by their ignorance of Welsh. The diligent and ingenious Camden comes into the argument-leading Plato by the hand. All is done with the general aim of cherishing the language of the Antient Britons," and the immediate purpose is revealed in this paragraph:— To this End, a considerable Number of Persons, Natives of the Principality, now residing in and about London, inspired with the Love of their common country, and consulting the Honour ..f the British Name, propose to establish a general Monthly Society distinguished by the Name of Cymmrodorion. Here-I trust with a responsive thrill-we of the Honourable Society find our first authentic mention. Here begins the long, twice-broken tale. Hence date our archives; hence, our labours-" consulting the Honour of the British Name As we should expect, we find the Constitutions saturated with the social quality of their time-a time when polite conversation was as necessary as air, and when assemblies were organised in the spirit of formalism that then prevailed. The Constitutions carry the eighteenth century bent for social organisation into the minutest details. Everything is anticipated; everything is decorously regulated. The eighteenth century Welshmen had an instinct for ceremonial. We can understand from these Constitutions why that man of Swansea, Beau Nash, was so great a success at Bath. That their gatherings might be conducted in seemly fashion, the framers of this document published a plan carefully .setting out the arrangement of the tables, with precise instructions as to where their officials were to sit. We can tell-even after this long lapse of a century and a half-where exactly the First Vice- President placed himself, and where sat the Second, the Third, and the Fourth Vice-Presidents. We see the President in his splendour at the middle table, with the Clerk vis a vis-the Master of the British Charity School in Clerkenwell admitted a member without any Expense at Entrance or otherwise." In the second paragraph, this first generation of articulate London Welshmen laid down a law which has, ever since, been the governing tradition of all London Welsh gatherings. The Officers shall take their Seats, and the Chairman shall call the Society to Order, at Half an Hour after the appointed Time of Meeting. London Welshmen will at once recognise their time- honoured practice at all concerts, lectures, public meet- ings, and chapel debating societies. The tradition spread. When the Constitutions were drawn up, George Stevenson had not yet invented the railway engine; but, as soon as trains began to run in Wales, the Half Hour of the London Welsh was straightway accorded them as margin. The Cymmrodorion had, of course, its main interest in letters and learning. Still, if its first concern was for matters of the mind, it could still shew a kind tolerance to the things of the flesh. These, too, it brought within the compass of its legislation. When the hours of sitting are expired, the Clerk shall call over the Members, and the Treasurer shall adjust the Reckoning, allowing therein One Shilling to the Drawer, and also the Messenger and Door Keeper's Allowances Not any Liquors called for before the Hour of Meeting, or drank out of the Meeting Room, nor any Eatables to be charged to the general Reckon- ing, each Member being to defray the whole of such Expence out of his own Pocket. If any Member shall have occasion to depart the Society before the Hour of breaking up, he shall signify the same to the Chair, and lay down Thirteen Pence at least for his Reckoning.