"SILIAN (SULIEN), a parish in the upper division of the hundred of MOYTHEN, county of CARDIGAN, SOUTH WALES, 2 miles (N. by W.) from Lampeter, containing 327 inhabitants. This parish, which is situated in the south-eastern portion of the county, derives its name from the saint to whom its church is dedicated, who flourished during the earlier part of the sixth century. It comprises but a moderate extent of arable and pasture land, which is partly enclosed : the surface is varied, and the soil is in some parts tolerably fertile. The village is in some degree enlivened by its situation on the great turnpike roads leading from Aberystwith, in this county, and from Rhaiadr, in the county of Radnor, to Lampeter. The living is consolidated with the vicarage of Llanwnnen in the archdeaconry of Cardigan, and diocese of St. David's. The church, dedicated to St. Sulien, and very romantically situated, is an ancient edifice, not distinguished by any architectural details of importance: it consists of a nave and chancel, and the font, which is circular, and of antique design, is ornamented with four human faces. In the churchyard there is a rudely sculptured monument of stone, now scarcely a foot above the surface of the ground, ornamented on one side with Runic knots, and on the other with zig-zag lines. A Sunday school, which is gratuitously superintended by some of the parishioners, is supported by subscription. The average annual expenditure for the support of the poor is £89.12."
[From Samuel Lewis's A Topographical Dictionary of Wales 1833]


Church History

Some church and chapel data from The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 1, South Wales. Ed. by I.G Jones, & D. Williams. UWP, Cardiff, 1976. The names are those of the informants

  • Silian A Chapel annexed to Llanwnnen David Williams, Vicar
  • see Nonconformist chapels below

      Parish entry for Llanwnen with Silian from The Welsh Church Year Book, 1929 (Cd by Archive CD Books).

      • St Lucia & St Sulien (Silian)
      • Incumbent and Curates; J H Davies
      • Rural Deanery of Lampeter
      • Acreage 2,545 & 2,179 ; Population 445

          St Sulien - photograph on Dyfed FHS


            Church Records

            See Notes on Church/Chapel Records page

            Parish Register;
            Baptisms 1776-91, 1813-1964. Marriages 1813-1970 [Banns 1830-4, 1838-48]. Burials 1776-91, 1813-1984 NLW with copies of some dates at Cer.RO
            CM 1792-1812 in churchwarden's account book 1792-1852 recorded in 1933 seemingly lost. Some entries CB 1776-91 in PR Llanwenog covering 1722-1812.
            Bishops Transcripts;
            1683-6, 1689, 1702, 1705, 1802, 1811, 1813-16, 1820, 1823-37, 1840-72, 1874-80, 1882, 1885-8 NLW

            See Bap/Mar/Bur data on FreeReg

            I.G.I; Baptisms 1811-75

            Nonconformist Chapels;

            Bethel Baptist chapel, Tanygraig

            • Bethel Welsh Baptist Chapel, Tanygraig SN57775083 Started 1654, first chapel built 1735, present chapel built 1831, renovated 1952. Members; 80 in 1840 Records; see Records of Aberduar, Llanybydder 1751-1857 NLW Still open 1998 (The Chapels Recording Project in Wales & Rawlins - see Notes on Church/Chapel Records page )
            • Bethel Baptist Erected about the year 1833 Timothy Davies, Deacon (1851 Religious census)
            • Photograph on Dyfed FHS
            • On contacts list on Ceredigion Library site (2007)

                  Description & Travel

                  The Religious census of 1851 : A Calendar of the returns relating to Wales, Vol 1, South Wales., by Jones, I.G. & Williams, D. UWP, Cardiff, 1976. These statistics for this parish or chapelry are extracted from this book which in turn got them from the 1851 census itself;

                  • Area 2182 acres; Population 154 males, 181 females, total 335

                      With the kind permission of the publisher, these selected extracts below are taken from " The History of Cardiganshire" by S R Meyrick, 1810, specifically the reprint of the 1907 imprint published by Stephen Collard in July 2000.

                      • "Formerly only a chapel of ease, is now a parish, and adjoins those of Lampeter and Bettws Bleddrws."
                      • "Two shares of the tithes belong to the canons of St David's, the remainder to the vicar."
                      • "The three last incumbents [of the parish church] were the Rev. Mr David Williams ; the Rev. Mr Evans ; and the Rev. Mr Evan Williams."
                              You can see pictures of Silian which are provided by:



                              The transcription of the section for Silian from The National Gazetteer (1868) provided by Colin Hinson.


                              Land & Property

                              Documents held at the NLW :

                              • Cardiganshire Rentals ;
                                1-7. Lordship of Tal-sarn and Silian, c.1891-1914 (Trefilan and Silian).

                              Held at Ceredigion Archives;

                              • Tithe map and apportionment for Silian parish [ 1845].


                              Map of the parish of Silian, Cardiganshire  - on the People's Collection Wales site

                              Parish map (Kain/Oliver)

                              You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SN568517 (Lat/Lon: 52.144652, -4.093652), Silian which are provided by:


                              Names, Geographical

                              Places, villages, farms etc within Silian as shown on the online parish map from the CD of Historic Parishes of England and Wales: an Electronic Map of Boundaries before 1850 with a Gazetteer and Metadata [computer file]. (Kain, R.J.P., Oliver, R.R.). (Extracted by Gareth Hicks)

                              • Silian (70); Afon Denys; Cwm-mawr; Drem-ddu; Dyffryn; Gelli-gwenyn; Glan-Denys; Gorwydd; Nant Creuddyn; Pant-coy; Perth-hela; Pont Creuddyn; Silian (village);


                                  Members of Silian Y.F.C. winning the 1947/8 Ceredigion Y.F.C. Rally  - on the People's Collection Wales site