The Gore Goch Changeling Legend


The tale rendered into English is as follows:--There was once a happy

family living in a place called Gors Goch. One night, as usual, they

went to bed, but they could not sleep a single wink, because of the noise

outside the house. At last the master of the house got up, and

trembling, enquired 'What was there, and what was wanted.' A clear sweet

voice answered him thus, 'We want a warm place where we can tidy the

ildren.' The door was opened when there entered half full the house of

the Tylwyth Teg, and they began forthwith washing their children. And

when they had finished, they commenced singing, and the singing was

entrancing. The dancing and the singing were both excellent. On going

away they left behind them money not a little for the use of the house.

And afterwards they came pretty often to the house, and received a hearty

welcome in consequence of the large presents which they left behind them

on the hob. But at last a sad affair took place which was no less than

an exchange of children. The Gors Goch baby was a dumpy child, a sweet,

pretty, affectionate little dear, but the child which was left in its

stead was a sickly, thin, shapeless, ugly being, which did nothing but

cry and eat, and although it ate ravenously like a mastiff, it did not

grow. At last the wife of Gors Goch died of a broken heart, and so also

did all her children, but the father lived a long life and became a rich

man, because his new heir's family brought him abundance of gold and


As I have already given more than one variant of the same legend, I will

supply another version of the Gors Goch legend which appears in Cymru

Fu, pp. 177-8, from the pen of the Revd. Owen Wyn Jones, Glasynys, and

which in consequence of the additional facts contained in it may be of

some value. I will make use of Professor Rhys's translation. (See Y

Cymmrodor, vol. v., pp. 79-80.)