History of Aberystwyth
1500-1600


~1530

Mill

Mill built in Aberystwyth from which the profits were used to maintain the port and the bridge.

1534/5

Chapel

There is known to be a chapel in Aberystwyth at this time - probably the one known as 'St Mary' which stood by the beach, in-front of 'Castle House' and was washed away by the sea around 1650.

1535

English Law

The Act of Union. Henry VIII, brings Wales into full union with England, which forced the English language into all official state institutions in Wales.

1536

Potato

Spanish conquistadors bring potates to Europe from Peru

1537

Local MP

Cardigan, as the county town, alone possessed the right to elect members to the House of Commons. Shortly afterwards, the right of the election was granted to all boroughs which contributed to the remuneration of the member.[16]

1539

1540

Little of note

The Itinerary of John Leland the Antiquary, Thomas Hearne, 1710, Oxford

From Cairdigan to Aberustwith a Market Toun ons waullid *xxx
From Aberustwith to Averdeuy vi. Miles Deuy devidith Cairdigan from Merionithshire in North Wales.

1544

Cocoa

Dominican friars bring a sample of cocoa to Europe from Guatemala

1545

Realistic Painting

Gemma Frisius publishes details of a 'camera obscura', triggering the change to 'realistic' painting in European art

1546

1561

Castle decayed

In more peaceful times the castle became run down but:

At Aberistwth is a castell of the King's decayed but the hall remeyneth yet covered in leade

1565

Hamlet

The size of the 'town' is reported as being just 75 houses[23]

1571

1572

November 2-6: New Star

A bright new star emerges, and for a few days is bright enough to be seen in daytime. Over the first couple of months its change in brightness and colour were easy to observe, and even though it started to fade, it was visible to the naked eye for a couple of years. This supernova explosion contradicted Aristotle's idea that the stars were 'unchangeable'.

1573

Milling Around

The question was raised by the Crown whether the inhabitants possessed the right to grind without the consent of the Crown official and payment of a toll. In 1573 an important trial took place at Hereford, between the Queen and the inhabitants of Aberystwyth, in which the Crown succeeded in establishing its right to the Mill. Since then it was called 'Our Lady's Mill' or 'The Mill of our Lady Queen Elizabeth'[16]

1582

October 14: It's a Date

Aloysius Lilius, living in what is now Italy, devised the Gregorian calendar to correct for the slight drift of the Julian calendar from the seasons. He removed 10 days to re-synchronise the calendar and tweaked the rules for leap years so that the average length of year was 365.2425 days which is more accurate than the 365.25 days of the Julian calendar. (It would not be until 1752 that Britain adopted the Gregorian calendar)

1586

Mill

The Crown leased the Mill with all its rights to a member of the Pryse family (of Gogerddan) for 40 years at the annual rent of £3. After the lease, Mr Pryse's consent had to be obtained for grinding at the Mill , and the tolls were paid to him. Subsequently, the Crown disposed of the Mill to Mr Pryse and his heirs for ever, subject to the annual payment of £3[16]