A nobleman called Tegid Foel once lived in Penllyn, with his wife, Ceridwen. Ceridwen was a witch and she lived with Tegid in a mansion at the centre of the land where Llyn Tegid lies today. They had a son called Morfran ab Tegid and a daughter called Creirfyw. They also had another son, called Afagddu, and poor Afagddu was the ugliest man in the whole world. Ceirdwen worried that Afagddu would never be accepted among noblemen and decided to boil a spell in a cauldron to make him handsome.
The spell had to be boiled for a year and a day, until three excellent drops of the spell were obtained from the cauldron. Gwïon Bach was put in charge of boiling the spell and Morda was given the job of keeping the fire burning.
Around a year after starting to boil the spell Gwïon had an accident and dropped three excellent drops of the spell on his finger. The spell had been sabotaged and to make the situation even worse, the spell was so hot, Gwïon put his finger in his mouth and instantly learnt everything, including the fact that Ceridwen was a threat to him. Gwïon had such a fright that he escaped to his home in Powys.
When Ceridwen saw that the spell had been spoiled, she was manic and struck Morda with a club, until his eyeball was dislodged.
“Why did you attack me?”, asked Morda, “I’m not to blame for your loss.”
“You’re right”, said Ceridwen, “Gwïon Bach did the damage”.
Gwïon transformed into a hare, to escape from Ceridwen, but she was a very clever witch, and turned herself into a greyhound, so that she could run faster than him. Gwïon then turned himself into a fish and jumped into the river, but Ceridwen became an otter and swam after him. Ceridwen had almost caught up with him, when Gwïon turned himself into a bird and flew into the air, when Ceridwen became a hawk and caught up with him again. When Gwïon saw a pile of grain, he became a particle and jumped into the pile, but Ceridwen, never one to miss an opportunity, became a hen and ate the whole pile, including Gwïon. Soon after, Ceridwen fell pregnant and she realised that the baby she was carrying was Gwïon. She was livid, and intended to kill the baby, but once she saw the beautiful child, she knew that she couldn’t go through with it. Instead, she lapped the baby in animal skins, and put him in a vessel on the sea. Elffin found the vessel near Cors Fochno in Ceredigion and named the baby ‘Taliesin’ because of his high forehead. Tre Taliesin, the village near Aberystwyth, was apparently named after this Taliesin.