Abercenlig

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13, 59.3612, 43.1086
Abercenlig
Town
FlagCoat of arms
FlagCoat of arms
CountryTircambry-national-flag.png Tircambry
 • ProvinceState flag morionys.png Morionys
Ethnic Groups
(2014)
Tircambran (94%), Other (6%)
NationalitiesTircambran (97%), Other (3%)
Area
 • Total
 • Urban
 • Rural
Population
 • Estimate (2015)40,000
 • Census (2012)39,063

Abercenlig is a Tircambran port town and resort in Cantref Cenligan in the province of Morionys. It is situated on the east bank of the mouth of the Cenlig River, from which it takes its name. The population is estimated to be 40,000 (2015). Abercenlig is the administrative centre of the Commote (district) of West Cenligan (Cwmwd Orllewin Cenligan).

History

There is evidence that a fishing settlement may have existed at the mouth of the Cenlig River for at least 1,500 years, but the first mention of it by name is in the 12th century, when it was used as a landing place by Norðmanni raiders. The Norðmanni were expelled in c.1216 by a combined force of Knight Venturers ("Wesmans") and the Earl of Cenligan, after which it became a Wesman base (which they called Kenlickmouth).

The Norðmanni threat had been largely defeated by the mid 1220s but Wesman troops remained in bases such as Abercenlig, and Cambric leaders feared a gradual takeover, as was already beginning to happen in Devnun. From 1230 onwards, Cambric rulers campaigned together to oust their erstwhile allies. In the Battle of Abercenlig in June 1234, the Wesmans were roundly defeated. Many fled to Wesmandy, but those would didn't escape in time were slaughtered in the infamous Massacre of Abercenlig.

The village was quickly re-settled by the Cambry, and by the mid-15th century it was beginning to expand and had become established as a minor port. The Treaty of Abercenlig was signed in the town in 1450, ending Wesmandy's Fifty Years War. In 1574, Tomos ap Caradog's famous voyage of discovery to the southern seas embarked from Abercenlig.

Abercenlig's status as a fashionable resort began in the late 18th century with the arrival of the wayward Prince Calwen, second son of King Llewelyn II, who had been banished from the court in Caerarthen because of his "debauched excesses". Calwen set up home in what became known as Faenor y Tywysog ("The Prince's Manor") - now Gwesty Faenor ("The Manor Hotel") - and attracted many wealthy socialites who were looking for some free adventure away from the staid atmosphere of King Llewelyn's court.

Abercenlig's fortunes declined somewhat after Calwen's death in 1844, not helped by the town's unsavoury reputation, but by the 1850s the town's business folk were learning to exploit its fun-loving reputation, and the arrival of the railway in 1867 gave it a new lease of life as a family resort, with a deliberately "sanitized" fun image.

The town continued to expand in the late 19th and early 20th century and the urban area eventually engulfed the nearby agricultural villages of Llanlofel and Cwmwaet. A teacher-training college was opened in 1909, and is now part of the University of Pontargenlig.

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Abercenlig Clock Tower outside the entrance to the Royal Hotel. The flags are flown by the hotel, representing the nationalities of its current guests