A Welsh Witch: A Romance of Rough Places by Allen Raine


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Allen Raine was the pseudonym of the Welsh novelist Anne Adalisa Beynon Puddicombe. Born in Carmarthenshire, 1836, her novels had sold over two million copies by 1912 and three of her works were made into silent films.

A Welsh Witch is set in Treswnd, a fictionalised fishing village and early industrial community on the Welsh coast. The main character Catrin is the Welsh Witch with a love for the countryside, experiencing God all around and in nature, outside of the church. Because of her perceived pagan beliefs, she is ostracised by the village priest and his congregation. Catrin wanders the ‘deep stream’ and underground waterways, chthonic realms and smugglers caves.

The book is believed to be the first published fictionalised account of a coal mining disaster.

‘They say she's a real witch...Don't speak to her or let her eyes fall upon thee.'

London: Hutchinson & co, c1904. Fifth edition. Hardcover. 431pp. Publishers green cloth with gilt titles, floral-gilt decoration to spine, school prize label to inside front-board, previous owner inscription to title page, front-hinge webbing exposed, rear is slightly loose but all pages attached, boards worn and pages marked, a good copy.