St. Weluela alias St. Gulval
(Born c.AD 496)
(Welsh: Woluela; Latin: Velvela; English: Wilgitha)

Weluela is a more correct form of the name commonly given in Kernow (Cornwall) as Gulval. She was born of noble parents, the daughter of Lord Perphir from Penychen (around Western Cardiff in Glamorgan). She was part of a large family of nine brothers - amongst them Paul, Pautel, Nautel and Bana - as well as three sisters - herself, Aude and Sadfyl. Their mother died when several of them were still teenagers. Their father married again and they settled in Halstock in Dorset and then at Caer Uisc (Exeter) in Eastern Dumnonia. However, after her sisters, Aude and Sadfyl, were murdered - ultimately by their step-mother - Weluela evidently felt it prudent to move away.

She travelled far and eventually settled as a reclusive nun at Laniskly (Gulval) in Kernow, overlooking Mount's Bay. Next to nothing is known of her, other than the fact that her feast day is 12th November. However, she is almost certainly the sister whom St. Paul is recorded to have visited, although she is mistakenly named as Sadfyl. This sister was concerned by the encroachment of the Sea and asked her brother for help. He bade her place a line of pebbles along the shoreline and spent the night praying for divine help. In the morning, the pebbles had miraculously transformed into huge boulders and the eroding power of the Sea was broken. Paul is said to have afterwards moved on to Staverton on the edge of Dartmoor in Devon, where he dedicated St. Gulval's Well, at adjoining Ashburton, to his sister.

Records of St. Weluela date back to the 11th century. She is generally considered legendary.


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