Treescapes and Landscapes: The Myth of the Wildwood and its place in the British Past

Bezant, Jemma (2016) Treescapes and Landscapes: The Myth of the Wildwood and its place in the British Past. In: Modern Pagan Thought and Practice. Moon Books/John Hunt Publishing, Winchester. (In Press)

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An 18th century Glamorgan poet, antiquary and literary forger pored through the histories of the Welsh who were the inheritors of ancient Druidic practice. Iolo Morgannwg found precious little to fit his narrative so he invented the missing elements passing it them off as scholarly discovery (Hutton, 2008:253-4). He shaped and manipulated history, tradition and the notion of place and landscape in order to create a series of Druidic festivals to fit his narrative of antiquity. Eco’s (2013: 431) consideration of ‘place’ also tells us that legendary lands depend on “ancient legends whose origins are lost in the mists of time”. Odd then, that many pagan, environmental and neo-eco groups typically adopt an ahistorical view of the human relationship with nature (Letcher 2001:156). Where the past is acknowledged, it is in reference to a “‘golden age,’ of a time when humanity lived in a Rousseau-like state of innocence, in a harmonious relationship with a benevolent nature” (ibid.). This paper is about the rich and complex past of the British landscape and its woodlands. It seeks to act as a signpost for those that engage with treescapes, the wildwood and myth and place and space.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: Landscape, legend
Subjects: C Auxiliary Sciences of History > CC Archaeology
Divisions: Institutes and Academies > Institute of Education and Humanities > Academic Discipline: Humanities and Social Sciences
Depositing User: Jemma Bezant
Date Deposited: 05 Aug 2016 14:11
Last Modified: 03 Apr 2023 13:46

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