Help with Howl: Rugby, Welshisms and saucepans

Belben, Philip (Energy Wholesale) Philip.Belben at
Wed Mar 16 10:44:14 EST 2005

Ven, replying to Gili:

>> Is Howell a particularly Welsh name?
> As others have said, yes, but it's ranked below
> the most cliched/commonest Welsh names like
> David/Daffyd/Dai/Taffy (is the last
> perjorative?).

Yes, Taffy is pejorative (despite which I have a respectable book of
nursery rhymes that contains the traditional "Taffy was a Welshman,
Taffy was a thief" that Fritz Leiber uses in "Our Lady of Darkness").

Daffyd is, according to a Welshman I asked years ago, a blunder (and one
committed by people who should know better, like Anne McCaffery in "To
Ride Pegasus").  The correct spelling, AFAIK, is Dafydd, pronounced
DAV-ith.  Also AFAIK, the usual Welsh form of David, and that usually
attached to their patron saint, is Dewi.  For once, W is a consonant -
pronounce DEH-wee, _never_ DUE-wee.

> Side note, the common surname Powell is derived
> from Howell via Ap Howell, son of.

More to the point, Howell's sister's married surname, Parry, is probably
from Ap Harry (or Ap Barry, I suppose).  Loads of Welsh surnames are
formed this way: Pugh (or Puw), Bowen, Bevan, Pritchard, and so on.

(FWIW Manx surnames do the same with the Mac prefix, giving forms like

>> Would a Rugby club be a group of fans, or the
>> actual players themselves?!

I've always read it as the organisation to which you belong if you are
interested, and of whom the 15 best players (if they can find that many)
form the team.  The other club members, with family and friends, then go
along and watch.

I can't remember if anyone has said this yet:  I think that "They think
so much about me that they always play without me" is probably a filk
(in the non-fantasy sense) - the club's private words to the traditional



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