Dryslwyn Town Defences

Has been described as a Certain Urban Defence

There are earthwork remains

NameDryslwyn Town Defences
Alternative Names
Historic CountryCarmarthenshire
Modern AuthorityCarmarthenshire
1974 AuthorityDyfed

The shattered ruins of a castle and the earthworks of a walled borough crown the upper slopes of a dramatically isolated and abrupt hill rising from the Tywi floodplain. Roman material recovered from the hill hints at the existence of an earlier settlement. The castle was established in the earlier thirteenth century and the borough received its charter in 1281. By the mid fourteenth century there were thirty-four burgages within the walls and fourteenth in 'Briggestrete' without. A burgage was a houseplot with certain rights and duties attached. The borough had been abandoned by the seventeenth century.

The borough was enclosed by strong ramparts and a stone wall, now buried in the earthworks that girdle the summit. There were two gates. Inside, building platforms and street lines can be discerned. (Coflein)

Gatehouse Comments

The small borough was in existence throughout the C14 but was probably destroyed, by Owain Glyndwr, in 1403 and failed to recover.

- Philip Davis

This site is a scheduled monument protected by law

Not Listed

The National Monument Record (Coflein) number(s)
County Historic Environment Record
OS Map Grid ReferenceSN553203
HyperLink HyperLink HyperLink
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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  • Salter, Mike, 2013, Medieval Walled Towns (Malvern: Folly Publications) p. 171
  • Creighton, O.H. and Higham, R.A., 2005, Medieval Town Walls (Stroud: Tempus) p. 28, 64, 81, 82, 128, 217, 271
  • Pettifer, Adrian, 2000, Welsh Castles, A Guide by Counties (Boydell Press) p. 49
  • Bond, C.J., 1987, 'Anglo-Saxon and Medieval Defences' in Schofield, J. and Leech, R. (eds) Urban Archaeology in Britain (CBA Research Report) p. 92-116
  • Soulsby, Ian, 1983, The Towns of Medieval Wales (Phillimore; Chichester) p. 133-4
  • King, D.J.C., 1983, Castellarium Anglicanum (London: Kraus) Vol. 1 p. 61
  • James, T. and Simpson, D., 1980, Ancient west Wales from the air (Carmathenshire Antiq. Soc.)
  • Barley M.W., 1975, 'Town Defences in England and Wales after 1066' in Barley (ed) Medieval Towns in England and Wales (CBA research reports) p. 57-71
  • Turner, H.L., 1971, Town Defences in England and Wales (London) p. 216
  • Lewis, Samual, 1849, A Topographical Dictionary of Wales online copy


  • Creighton, Oliver, 2006, ''Castles of Communities': Medieval Town Defences in England; Wales and Gascony' Ch√Ęteau Gaillard Vol. 22 p. 75-86

Guide Books

  • Rees, Sian E. and Caple, Chris, 2007 (rev edn), Dinefwr Castle, Dryslwyn Castle (Cardiff: CADW)
  • Rees, Sian E. and Caple, Chris, 1999, Dinefwr Castle, Dryslwyn Castle (Cardiff: CADW) p. 37-8

Primary Sources

  • National Archive, E 372/134 rot., 1; SC 6/1158/10 (available via online copy)
  • Rhys, M. (ed), 1936, Minister's Accounts for West Wales 1277-1306 (Cymmrodorion Record Series) p. 41, 71, 89, 195
  • - < >Also see the Gatehouse murage pages for full details of murage [grants > http://www.gatehouse-gazetteer.info/murage/murindex.html], [petitions > http://www.gatehouse-gazetteer.info/murage/mupindex.html ] and [other such > http://www.gatehouse-gazetteer.info/murage/muaindex.html]. < >