Art & Architecture
Newport Cathedral was originally a fascinating medieval parish church raised to cathedral status in 1930. The 11th-century nave contains many Norman features, including a 12th century arch with columns that may be Roman. There is a very striking modern stained glass east window.
WHO WAS WOOLOS?
According to legend, Gwynllwy (the original Welsh form of the English ‘Woolos’) was a 5th-century Lord of Gwynllwg. He was converted to Christianity by Tathan of Gwent, and founded a church here around 500AD. Another version of the story says that Woolos, having failed to woo the Christian daughter of Brychan, kidnapped her and made her his wife. Her piety, and that of her son Cadog, convinced him to convert to Christianity.
A dream instructed him to find build the church where he found a white ox with a black spot on its forehead. This he did and was later buried in the church after he died. Gwynllwy, and Cadog after him, founded churches throughout the area that is now Monmouthshire and Gwent.
The History of the Cathedral is represented in the many works of art contained within – from window craftmanship and the ornate internal carvings, to the well-preserved Norman Arch and the Mediæval pillars, as well as the Rood – the Hanging Christ – and the Nave Altar.