The mention of Cardis in the responses to my last query reminds me that I was puzzled by a line I recently encountered in John Davies’s ‘Hanes Cymru’. This concerns a penurious character in the Middle Ages who sends his son off to beg ‘in Cardiganshire, of all places’. Why ‘of all places’ – does this imply that the worthy inhabitants of Sir Ceredigion enjoy a reputation for a certain thriftiness? Naturally one doesn’t want to encourage this sort of thing, but are there any similar regional in-jokes that a learner should know about?

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I don’t know why but Cardiganshire traditionally has/had a reputation for taking thriftiness to the extreme of meanness. A bit like the old jokes about Scottish people and thriftiness.

I’m sure it has no basis in fact, so what the origins were I don’t know.


There was a disparaging view of Cardis as tight fisted.

Not of course based on much fact. But then you should never let facts get in the way of 19th century xenophobia.


Here i am in Yr Alban (Scotland) . Dundee seems to have a certain particular reputation for being ‘careful’. One of my two friends just here comes from Dundee. I tease her by callung her a Cardi from Dundee!

Cardis from birth are apparently incredibly tight with their arian :smiley:

I fall short on that one as I’m only an immigrant to this fair county :smiley:


Apparently Catalans have the same status in Spain: other regions reckon they’re mean, they reckon they’re just careful with money. My old Catalan tutor told me once about a Scottish student who was asked in his Catalan oral exam if he liked shopping. “Dude,” he said, in Catalan, “I’m Scottish!” My tutor reckoned it was fortunate that he did his exam in London rather than Barcelona, so the examiners knew the shared stereotype and laughed, instead of just thinking it was such a non-sequitur that he must have misunderstood the question :slight_smile:

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There was an old Cardi farmer couple called Gwilym and Myfanwy. Sadly after 60 years of life together, Gwilym died. Myfanwy thought hard about how to notify everyone of the sad news and eventually decided to put a small add in the Cambrian News.
Myfanwy to Cambrian recptionist: “How much to put an annoouncement that my husband have died?”
Receptionist to Myfanwy: “That would be £1 a word, madam”
Myfanwy: Jiw, Jiw, there’s expensive. All right, just put in “Gwilym Dead”"
Receptionist: Very good, madam, that’ll be £5"
Myfanwy: “Five Pounds! FIVE POUNDS! but there’s only two words!”
Receptionist: “Ah, but £5 is the minimum charge, madam”
Myfanwy: “Darro! Well, put in “Gwilym dead, cow for sale””

Incidentally, I was brought up in Aberdeen (unjustly known for being the tightest city in Scotland) and have retired to Ceredigion, so it’s inevitable that “my arms are too short to reach my pockets” :laughing:


I truly thought it was Dundee!

There were even post cards showing a deserted Union Street, Aberdeen labelled “Aberdeen on Flag Day” :laughing:
In fact, to show how unjust the reputation was, the sums collected on Aberdeen Student’s street carnivals were the biggest in aby UK university town. :smile:


Because my Grandad was once a farmer, I was once jocularly described by someone who knew the family background (& farmers) as having long pockets and short arms.

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