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Rare Welsh manuscript returns home after 200 years

Sotheby's described opportunities to purchase medieval Welsh manuscripts like this as 'near legendary' Credit: ITV News Wales

A rare Welsh manuscript will go on display in Aberystwyth today - its first time on Welsh soil for more than two centuries.

The National Library of Wales bought the copy of the 'Laws of Hywel Dda' at auction for half a million pounds after it ended up in America.

It was auctioned by Sotheby's on behalf of the Massachusetts Historical Society, who were likely to have been given the manuscript as a gift from Welsh emigrants in the early 19th century.

The pocket-sized book, written in medieval Welsh and featuring coloured decoration, is a very early example of a key text in the history of Welsh law.

Support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Welsh Government and the Friends of the National Libraries helped to return the fragile manuscript home.

It will be available for public viewing until August 10th, before being taken into the care of the Library's conservators to be rebound and digitised.

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