Amgueddfa Blog: Cyffredinol

Hello humans! Uri Guide Dog here. I haven't written my dog blog for some time but that does not mean I haven't been visiting my favourite museums. In fact I have been to several special exhibitions at National Museum Cardiff.

One of them was full of live snakes in glass cages as well as skeletons and pieces of art from the museum's collection. Mum got a chance to take part in a special audio described handling session with the live snakes – yikes – but I took the opportunity to take one of the lovely members of staff for a little walk around the block and a bit of fresh air. Apparently the snakes wrapped themselves around mum’s arms and I don't think that was very sensible, but I’m glad I wasn’t there to see it!

We also attended the David Nash exhibition which was very interesting, particularly seeing the humans using some very doggy techniques when investigating the large chunks of wood scattered all around the large rooms. The group had special permission from the artist to touch some of the sculptures but they also stooped and sniffed as the wood all had different smells. I was a bit confused why there appeared to be full-size trees in the middle of the museum! Mum kept me well away in case I mistook them for indoor dog facilities.

We have visited St Fagans a couple of times too, including a tour of the farm and the animals. We saw some sheep being sheared which didn't look very comfortable to be honest, and I was a bit wary when mum tried to pet a cow.

I am looking forward to the next Audio Description tour on 12 December when we get to officially meet Dippy the dinosaur!

For more information on Audio Description tours at National Museum Cardiff, call (029) 2057 3240.

Yn 2019 mae Tabl Cyfnodol yr Elfennau Cemegol yn 150 mlwydd oed (gweler UNESCO https://www.iypt2019.org/). Mae hyn yn gyfle i feddwl am wahanol agweddau’r tabl cyfnodol, gan gynnwys effeithiau cymdeithasol ac economaidd elfennau cemegol.

Sylffwr yw’r bumed elfen fwyaf cyffredin (yn ôl màs) ar y Ddaear, ac mae’n un o’r sylweddau cemegol gaiff ei ddefnyddio fwyaf. Ond mae sylffwr yn gyffredin tu hwnt i’r ddaear: mae gan Io – un o leuadau Galileaidd y blaned Iau – dros 400 o losgfynyddoedd byw sy’n lledaenu lafa llawn sylffwr, gymaint ohono nes bod arwyneb y lleuad yn felyn.

Alcemi

Câi halwynau sylffad haearn, copr ac alwminiwm eu galw’n “fitriol”, oedd yn ymddangos mewn rhestrau o fwynau a wnaed gan y Swmeriaid 4,000 o flynyddoedd yn ôl. Câi asid sylffwrig ei alw’n “olew fitriol”, term a fathwyd gan yr alcemydd Arabaidd Jabir ibn Hayyan yn yr 8fed ganrif. “Brwmstan” oedd yr hen enw am sylffwr yn llosgi, ac arweiniodd hyn at y gred fod Uffern yn arogli fel sylffwr.

Mwynoleg

Anaml iawn y gwelir sylffwr pur – mae fel arfer i’w ganfod fel mwynau sylffid a sylffad. Mae sylffwr elfennol i’w weld ger ffynhonnau poeth, daeardyllau hydrothermol ac mewn ardaloedd folcanig lle gellir ei fwyngloddio, ond prif ffynhonnell sylffwr ar gyfer diwydiant yw’r mwyn haearn sylffid, pyrit. Ymysg mwynau sylffwr pwysig eraill mae sinabar (mercwri sylffid), galena (plwm sylffid), sffalerit (sinc sylffid), stibnit (antimoni sylffid), gypswm (calsiwm sylffad), alwnit (potasiwm alwminiwm sylffad), a barit (bariwm sylffad). O ganlyniad, mae’r cofnod Mindat (cronfa ddata wych ar gyfer mwynau) ar gyfer sylffwr yn un go hir: https://www.mindat.org/min-3826.html.

Cemeg

Mae sylffwr yn un o gyfansoddion sylfaenol asid sylffwrig, gaiff ei alw’n ‘Frenin y Cemegau’ oherwydd ei fod mor ddefnyddiol fel deunydd crai neu gyfrwng prosesu. Asid sylffwrig yw’r cemegyn gaiff ei ddefnyddio amlaf yn y byd, ac mae’n ddefnyddiol yn bron bob diwydiant; gan gynnwys puro olew crai ac fel electrolyt mewn batris asid plwm. Caiff dros 230 miliwn tunnell o asid sylffwrig ei gynhyrchu bob blwyddyn dros y byd.

Rhyfel

Powdr gwn, cymysgedd o sylffwr, siarcol a photasiwm nitrad a ddyfeisiwyd yn Tsieina yn y 9fed ganrif, yw’r ffrwydryn cynharaf y gwyddom amdano. Sylwodd peirianwyr milwrol Tsieina ar botensial amlwg powdr gwn, ac erbyn OC 904 roeddent yn taflu lympiau o bowdr gwn ar dân gyda chatapyltiau yn ystod gwarchae. Mewn rhyfel cemegol 2,400 o flynyddoedd yn ôl, defnyddiodd y Spartiaid fwg sylffwr yn erbyn milwyr y gelyn. Mae sylffwr yn un o gyfansoddion pwysig nwy mwstard, sydd wedi bod yn cael ei ddefnyddio fel arf cemegol ers y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf.

Fferylliaeth

Mae gan gyfansoddion sylffwrig bob math o ddefnydd therapiwtig, gan gynnwys trin microbau, llid, feirysau, clefyd siwgr, malaria, canser a chyflyrau eraill. Mae llawer o gyffuriau yn cynnwys sylffwr. Ymysg yr enghreifftiau cynnar mae sylffonamidau, “cyffuriau sylffa”. Mae sylffwr yn rhan o sawl gwrthfiotig, gan gynnwys penisilin, ceffalosborin a monolactam.

Bywydeg

Mae sylffwr yn un o elfennau hanfodol bywyd. Mae rhai asidau amino (cystein a methionin; asidau amino yw cyfansoddion strwythurol protein) a fitaminau (biotin a thiamin) yn gyfansoddion organosylffwr. Mae deusylffidau (bondiau sylffwr-sylffwr) yn rhoi cryfder mecanyddol ac anhydoddedd i’r protein ceratin (sydd mewn croen, gwallt a phlu). Mae gan lawer o gyfansoddion sylffwr arogl cryf: mae arogl grawnffrwyth a garlleg yn dod o’r cyfansoddion organosylffwr. Nwy hydrogen sylffid sy’n rhoi arogl cryf i wyau drwg.

Ffermio

Mae sylffwr yn un o’r prif faetholion ar gyfer tyfu cnydau. Mae sylffwr yn bwysig gydag ymlifiad maetholion, cynhyrchu cloroffyl a datblygiad hadau. Oherwydd hyn, mae asid sylffwrig yn cael ei ddefnyddio’n helaeth fel gwrtaith. Mae tua 60% o’r pyrit gaiff ei fwyngloddio yn cael ei ddefnyddio i gynhyrchu gwrtaith – gallech ddweud mai pyrit sy’n bwydo’r byd.

Yr Amgylchedd

Mae anfanteision i ddefnyddio sylffwr: mae llosgi glo ac olew yn creu sylffwr deuocsid, sy’n adweithio gyda dŵr yn yr atmosffer i greu asid sylffwrig, un o brif achosion glaw asid, sy’n troi llynnoedd a phridd yn asidig ac yn difrodi adeiladau. Mae draeniad asidig o fwyngloddiau, un o ganlyniadau ocsideiddio pyrit wrth fwyngloddio, yn broblem amgylcheddol fawr, ac yn lladd llawer o fywyd mewn afonydd ledled y byd. Yn ddiweddar, defnyddiwyd carreg galchaidd yn cynnwys llawer o pyrit fel ôl-lenwad ar gyfer stadau tai o gwmpas Dulyn. Achosodd hyn ddifrod i lawer o dai wrth i’r pyrit ocsideiddio. Cafodd yr achos ei ddatrys gan y “Pyrite Resolution Act 2013” a roddodd iawndal i berchnogion tai.

Cadwraeth Sbesimenau Amgueddfa

Oherwydd bod sylffidau haearn yn fwynau hynod adweithiol, mae’n anodd eu cadw mewn casgliadau amgueddfeydd. Am ein bod ni’n gofalu am ein casgliadau, sy’n cynnwys gwella arferion cadwraeth o hyd, rydym wastad yn chwilio am ffyrdd newydd o warchod mwynau bregus. Mae ein project diweddaraf, ar y cyd â Phrifysgol Rhydychen, yn cael ei gynnal gan ein myfyriwr ymchwil doethurol, Kathryn Royce. https://www.geog.ox.ac.uk/graduate/research/kroyce.html.

Dewch i’n gweld ni!

Os yw hyn wedi codi awydd arnoch i ddysgu mwy, dewch i weld ein sbesimenau sylffwr a pyrit yn Amgueddfa Genedlaethol Caerdydd. amgueddfa.cymru/caerdydd, neu gallwch ddysgu am fwyngloddio a diwydiannau tebyg yn Big Pit Amgueddfa Lofaol Cymru https://amgueddfa.cymru/bigpit/ ac Amgueddfa Lechi Cymru https://amgueddfa.cymru/llechi/.

The shrine of St David in St David’s Cathedral, Pembrokeshire, was an extremely important pilgrimage site in the Middle Ages. Two pilgrimages there were worth one to Rome, and thousands of people would have visited before the shrine was destroyed at the Reformation.

Inspired by the ‘Beneath our Feet’ project run by Narberth Museum and Tenby Museum and Art Gallery, which is looking at the theme of pilgrimage in Pembrokeshire, Saving Treasures; Telling Stories decided to find out more. What did those long-ago travellers leave behind them?

Pilgrim Objects

Two kinds of objects were commonly associated with pilgrims in the Middle Ages: ampullae, and badges.

Ampullae were little lead scallop-shaped flasks containing holy water that were pinned to clothing or hung around the neck in the belief that they offered spiritual protection. You might expect to find large numbers of them in Pembrokeshire, with its important holy shrine.

It seemed a fair bet that local metal detectorists had found plenty over the years.

But, a search on the Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) database, where over a million detectorist finds are recorded, revealed some surprises.

In fact only SIX examples from Pembrokeshire have been recorded with PAS – a surprisingly small amount! Surely there should be many more?

To compare, we looked at the records for Kent, home of medieval England’s most important pilgrim destination – the shrine of St Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. Even here, only 50 pilgrim ampullae have been recorded with PAS, not such a huge number considering the many thousands of people who travelled there.

Contrast this with Lincolnshire, where 232 ampullae have been recorded, the biggest number of any county in Wales and England. Lincoln Cathedral boasted two important shrines (both to saints called Hugh), but this does not explain such a big difference in numbers.

What’s going on?

Confused, we turned to pilgrim badges. These were usually made of lead or pewter and depicted saints, letters and religious scenes and symbols. They were bought at shrines as souvenirs and pinned to clothing.

Surely lots of these cheap objects would have been lost by the visitors to St David’s?

But a search on the PAS database turned up NO examples from Pembrokeshire at all!

Even in St Thomas Becket’s Kent, no more than 11 badges have been recorded with PAS. Greater London has by far the highest number, at 119.

Then we saw that five pilgrim badges had been reported from Swansea, which seemed unusual as there was no important medieval shrine in the town. One of them was a badge of none other than Thomas Becket himself. How had that got there?

It turned out that each one of these badges had been discovered, not in the city itself, but under the sands of Swansea Bay.

Intrigued, we chose a random sample of the London badges and discovered that they had all been found in the River Thames.

We checked the find spots of the ampullae, and sure enough, two had been found on Tenby beach and two others in the coastal village of Manorbier. There was a definite watery theme!

Giving thanks?

In an age when travel was difficult and dangerous, ships were the fastest method of transport, though not necessarily safe.

So it makes sense that pilgrims going on long journeys would travel at least part of the way by water, and would be relieved and thankful when they reached the shore safe and sound. The evidence of all these badges and ampullae dug from the sands and fished from the Thames suggests that returning pilgrims threw them into the water, perhaps as a way of giving thanks for a safe return.

This is a community project led by volunteers from Dre-fach Felindre Gardening Club in conjunction with the National Wool Museum and involving the local primary school’s Eco group. The main aim is to provide a sustainable attractive garden using plants that traditionally have been used for their natural dyes. The plant materials are harvested and used in the end of season workshops.

Early in 2019, the Natural Dye Garden Group was approached by Dr Nicol, of the Sustainable Places Research Institute, Cardiff University, regarding the Economic Botany Collection. This is held in National Museum Cardiff.

Dr Nicol had met with the group some time previously to help explore how this collection of 3,500 specimens might support the public’s understanding and valuing of biodiversity. These specimens were wide ranging but only included one specimen of dye plant material from the UK.

The Museum asked if the Natural Dye Garden Group could provide a contribution to the Economic Botany Collection to expand the range of dye plants held. We were delighted to be able to help.

Every year plant materials from the Natural Dye Garden are harvested and stored for use in the natural dye workshops. From this resource it was possible to provide 13 specimens, labelled and boxed for the Economic Botany Collection.

Additionally, another box was prepared of corresponding dyed samples of wool fibre. In all, 20 colours were included, as examples of colour modifications were added such as yellow from weld overdyed with blue from woad to make green.

These boxes have significantly expanded the natural dye plant selection of the Economic Botany Collection and have all been grown on the National Wool Museum site here in West Wales.

Dewch i ailddarganfod trysor Rhufeinig ddaeth i’r fei yng Nghaerllion ym 1926!

Defnyddiwch yr Ap i archwilio'r Amffitheatr a'r Barics yng Nghaerllion. Dilynwch gliwiau a chwrdd â chymeriadau hanesyddol i helpu chi i ddarganfod trysorau'r Amgueddfa - lle cawsant eu darganfod un wreiddiol. Os dewch o hyd iddynt i gyd byddwch yn agor rhith-Amgueddfa Lleng Rufeinig Cymru. Mae'r Ap hwn yn brosiect partneriaeth rhwng Amgueddfa Cymru a Cadw. Mae'n cysylltu trysorau amgueddfeydd â'r lleoedd lle cawsant eu darganfod yn y safleoedd hanesyddol a gynhelir gan Cadw yng Nghaerleon.

 

Sut i chwarae:

    • Defnyddiwch eich dyfais a'r map trysor i ganfod y chwe chliw cudd yn yr amffitheatr a'r barics.
    • Rhaid i chi gerdded i bob un o'r chwe chliw llun yn y grid.
    • Pan fyddwch chi'n agosáu at y man iawn bydd ceiniog yn ymddangos ar eich dyfais. 
    • Pwyswch y geiniog i weld y cliw a chasglu pob ateb i ganfod yr allwedd sy'n agor yr Amgueddfa Lleng Rufeinig Rithwir.

     

    Cwestiynau Cyffredin

    • Mae'r ap yn gweithio orau ar Android 4.3 a'r iOS 9.1 neu yn hwyrach. Ni fydd yr ap yn gweithio ar rai ffonau android syml.
    • Mae'r ap yn defnyddio data yn ystod y profiad
    • Os ydych yn cael trafferth lawrlwytho'r ap, sicrhewch fod gennych gysylltiad gwe da a digon o le ar eich ffôn.

     

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