Manian Fawr, St Dogmaels

Has been described as a Possible Timber Castle (Motte)

There are earthwork remains

NameManian Fawr, St Dogmaels
Alternative Names
Historic CountryCardiganshire
Modern AuthorityCeredigion
1974 AuthorityDyfed

An irregular enclosure, roughly 30m east-west by 20m, of uncertain gate, defined on the east & west by rock-cut ditches cutting across the sharp ridge upon which it is set; the enclosure would appear to have been much affected by quarrying. (Coflein)

An earthwork mound which has long been held to be a mediaeval motte or castle mound and is shown as such on OS maps. Manaian Fawr has undoubtely been one of the principle holdings of the district in the past and the presence of a small earthwork castle here could signify that it was at one time a focus of manorial power. Field names adjacent to the site include the term 'Castell' which indicates the tradition to be well established. There is no reliable archaeological evidence to confirm the nature of the mound however. A public footpath runs immediately to the north of the mound. (Dyfed Archaeological Trust HER)

This is marked on the Ordnance map as a tumulus, which it certainly is not. It is rather questionable whether it is an artificial work at all if so, it is a fortification, being strongly placed at the end of a narrow ridge, some 50 ft. high, with precipitous sides. Both on the E. (the exposed side) and the W. are what appear to be cuttings in the rock the enclosure so isolated is level and very small. (King, 1956)

Gatehouse Comments

David King records this as a 'possible' site which, generally in his terminology meant quite doubtful. It may well be a mound symbolising the knightly status of the manorial tenant although how much of the form is due to quarrying is open to question.

- Philip Davis

Not scheduled

Not Listed

The National Monument Record (Coflein) number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSN150479
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Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights ReservedView full Sized Image
Copyright Dave Barlow of Abaroths World All Rights ReservedView full Sized Image

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  • Morgan, Gerald, 2008, Castles in Wales: A Handbook (Talybont: Y Lolfa Cyf.) p. 257 (listed as possible)
  • Pettifer, Adrian, 2000, Welsh Castles, A Guide by Counties (Boydell Press) p. 41
  • Davis, Paul, 2000, A Company of Forts. A Guide to the Medieval Castles of West Wales (Gomer Press) p. 37
  • Salter, Mike, 1996, The Castles of South West Wales (Malvern) p. 87 (slight, located in Pembrokeshire)
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 49


  • Hogg, A.H.A. and King, D.J.C., 1963, 'Early castles in Wales and the Marches: a preliminary list' Archaeologia Cambrensis Vol. 112 p. 77-124 (possible)
  • King, D.J.C., 1956, 'The Castles of Cardiganshire' Ceredigion Vol. 3 p. 67-8 no. 33 (possible) online copy