Manawydan was on of the seven that survived Bran's attack on Ireland.
But his cousin Caswallawn had taken the Kingship and now Manawydan did not wish to go
home. At this time Pwyll had died and Rhiannon was a widow and Pryderi ruled Dyfedd. So
Pryderi offered Rhiannon's hand in marriage and a place at Dyfedd for Manawydan.
Manawydan agreed and they went to Dyfedd where Rhiannon and Manawydan
met and fell in love.
These four became such great friends that they were inseparable.
One day they went to sit on the enchanted mound, Gorsedd Arbeth. A
mystical mist surrounded them and when it withdrew the land was desolate around them. No
one was to be found anywhere.
Eventually they went to Britain to learn a trade. Manawydan became such
a good saddle pommel maker that the other saddle makers could not rival him and plotted to
kill him. Luckily they got wind of it and moved on.
They went to shield making. But the same thing happened. And again with
So they returned to Arabeth, to hunting to survive. One day Pryderi and
Manawydan followed their dogs to the forest where a boar led them to a fort that they had
never seen before. Pryderi didn't want to lose his dogs so he followed them into the fort.
There he became trapped.
Manawydan hadn't wanted to go into the fort so he returned home and
told Rhiannon what had happened. She ran back and found Pryderi and they both disappeared
along with the fort.
Manawydan and Cigfa, Pryderi's wife, returned to England. There they
grew grain and again Manawydan's grain was the best but the day that he went to harvest
his first field it had been stripped clean overnight. The same happened the second night,
so the third night he reasoned that the thieves would come back and so he watched and
The field was overrun by mice. All escaped him except one. He captured
it and threatened to hang it. Cigfa tried to stop him but he wasn't to be deterred.
He returned to the mound and began to set up gallows. When he had the
first two sticks up an old clerk appeared and begged for the mouse's life. Manawydan
As he got the cross bar set up a priest approached. He too begged for
the mouse's life but Manawydan would not be deterred. As he set up the noose a bishop
appeared and begged for the mouse's life.
Manawydan knew this man was not a true bishop so he said that in
exchange for the mouse's life he wanted the enchantment removed from Dyfedd and return
Rhiannon and Pryderi.
The bishop agreed and told Manawydan that the mouse was his wife and
that she was with child.
The bishop returned Rhiannon and Pryderi and restored Dyfedd to its
Manawydan released the mouse and the bishop tapped her with his stick
and it turned into a beautiful woman and they went off.
Everyone returned to their homes.