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centuries, Welsh in their language, their habits and their sentiments. We shall, therefore, in the course of this Report, when speaking of Wales, be understood to refer to Monmouthshire as well.78 Monmouthshire really was in an extraordinary position when such reasonable grounds for its Welshness were preceded by the statement that it was not in 'Wales proper.' It must be said, however, that its appraisal of the state of the Welsh language in Monmouthshire was not shared by the Memorandum of 1889: In this [east of the Usk] district no Welsh is spoken except here and there by a family recently come from Wales and indeed in living memory the use of the Welsh language in the whole county has perceptably [sic] diminished- thirty years ago the necessity for an interpreter occurred again in the course of an Assize-now it is extremely rare.79 The state of the Welsh language in Monmouthshire is an important criterion in assessing the county's status. But it is indicative rather than definitive. The intention of the Act of Union had been to assimilate Wales to England so that the question of a boundary did not arise. Nevertheless a frontier was determined even if Monmouthshire managed to get on both sides of it. It coincided neither with the limits of the Welsh language nor of the Welsh Dioceses. The marcher lordship of Ewyas Lacy, for example, was united to Herefordshire but remained Welsh speaking for some three hundred years afterwards. 8 0 The language question in Monmouthshire during the nineteenth century was not a simple matter of an east-west divide. The increasing Anglicization of the industrial towns had driven a wedge between those areas of rural Gwent that remained Welsh speaking and the western districts of the county where Welsh was strongest.81 Moreover, the threat to the Welsh language in the county did not solely consist in large scale immigration. In 1895 the Reverend T. G. James gave notice of motion to the Newport Board of Guardians that they 'deeply regret' the wholesale dismissal of all purely Welsh-speaking workmen by the London and North-Western Railway Company, 'for no other reason than their inability to converse in English.'82 The motion was declared out of order by the Board's chairman but perhaps Reverend James gained consolation from the fact that in 1897 Newport hosted the National Eisteddfod. At the beginning of the twentieth century the position of Monmouthshire seemed as problematical as ever. The county was added to Wales in the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries Act, 1919 and the Ministry of Health Act in the same year. 8 It should be observed, nevertheless, that these statutes accommodated the county always by conjunction. The hybrid 'Wales and Monmouthshire' continued to tease both camps. Monmouthshire County Council, on the other hand, since its formation in 1888, had been betraying pro-Welsh leanings. In 1920, for instance,