Rhiannon rides again on the White Horse Winter Solstice greetings card In the vale of the White Horse, to the north of the famous and ancient hill figure  of Uffington, I heard again a retelling of the story from the Mabinogion of Prince  Pwll and the feast on the mound of Naberth. This was the third time I’d heard  these words from the old tales from the Welsh mythic histories and I became  more convinced that there was something symbolic contained in them. Clearly  there was something otherworldly in the way the “Beautiful Lady” rode slowly,  slowly along the track and yet could not be caught up and the repetition and  emphasis on the “white horse” brought my mind to the white horse on the hills  above us. Could there be a connection between the story and the ancient image  from the Bronze Age up on the hill to the south.  Long ago Prince Pwyll (pronounced pooch) and the men of his court were  feasting in Arberth, one of his chief courts. Nearby was the mound “Gorsedd  Arberth”. It was believed that any high born man sitting there would experience  blows or wounds or would witness a miracle. The prince, having no fear of  blows or wounds but, hoping to witness a miracle, sat upon the mound.  Soon there appeared, level with the mound, a beautiful woman dressed in shining  golden silk who rode on a pale white horse. At a leisurely pace she made her  way slowly, slowly along the track. None of the courtiers recognised her and  Pwyll wished to know her name. He sent one of them to follow and learn her  name. After a time he returned and told the prince that the faster he ran the  greater the distance between him and the beautiful lady grew. Then a second  messenger was sent, this time riding the fastest horse in the court. However fast  he rode, even over the level ground, he too was unable to catch up with the lady.  Now Prince Pwyll realised that this was the miraculous happening promised to  those who sat on the gorsedd mound. The next day he returned with his court to  the mound. This time the prince’s messenger was ready to meet the lady as she  arrived on the track. When she drew level he mounted his horse and set off  rapidly but again she passed slowly, slowly by and yet could not be caught. The  prince realised that she could not be met by ordinary means. So, on the third day  he returned again to the mound determined to ride to meet her himself.   © Jon Appleton 2010 under construction Jon Appleton This site brings together a kaleidoscope of ideas derived from 60 years of enquiry: it shares insights into fields as disparate as:- Archaeology, Landscape alignments, Megaliths, Henges, Prehistoric measurement, Astronomy, Mythology, Calendars of the past and Seasonal celebration. Click here to contact Jon