The green green grass of home

In L3 (northern) the word we’re given for grass (I think) is gwellt.

My dictionary, on the other hand, translates gwellt as straw and says grass is glaswellt.

Now, I know, because my grandmother lived in a village with glas in the name, that it means blue, but also the green of vegetation. So glaswellt is “green straw” which makes a kind of sense in an agricultural society.

So my question is, is gwellt for grass rather than glaswellt a northern v southern thing? Or a colloquial rather than formal thing? Or is my dictionary just ?wrong?

It’s not so much a north-south thing as regional variation throughout Wales. For instance, I’d use ‘gwair’. Here’s what Geiriadur Yr Academi says:

grassn. [-]

  1. gwelltglas m, gwellt glas, F: Occ: gwellt m, N.W: Occ: gwelltglaitsh m, Joc: blew (pl) cae, S.W: porfa f, mainly Lit: glaswellt m; however the word in commonest use N: & S: appears to be gwair m (strictly = long grass); in such areas hay is distinguished (where necessary)as gwair sych

which - I must admit - probably makes it even more complicated!

As always, the advice is to use the one you know or that comes to mind first - it won’t be wrong.


Maybe I’ll ask my mum what she uses then. That should at least mean I’m right for Inys Mon, where I’m most likely to find myself!

Thanks, Siaron


Also, Iestyn (our S Wales SSIW teacher) explains elsewhere on the forum that furthermore, the colour “glas” touches on the freshness of shoots of growth, if that helps. :slight_smile: