National Geographic : 1955 Oct
Next day the Prior received the dread sum mons to the mainland, where the King's order for the dissolution of his monastery was wait ing to be signed. As he was about to leave, the monk knelt for his blessing, saying: "Bless me, father, for when you return I shall not be here to receive your blessing." Thinking that this remark referred only to the completion of the task of hiding the treasure, the Prior blessed him and went his way, never to return. That same night, the legend continues, the monk locked himself in the room where the stone and mortar had been collected. He + Clifftop Hotels and Georgian Houses Ring Tenby's Snug Harbor Tenby, a Welsh resort town, supplies provisions for Caldy. Fishing boats crowd its harbor; bathers sun on the wide, sheltered beach (right). Caldy Island's north face appears across a 2/2-mile channel. Cultivated fields cover most of the island. Aero Films Ltd. solemnly bricked up both the treasure and himself in a cavity in the massive wall. Ever since, his ghost has haunted the island. As the postmaster finished his tale, he pointed upward to the Priory tower, which leans 14 inches out of the perpendicular. "When that comes down, as it may well do one day, perhaps the treasure will come to light," he remarked, and we entered a small court paved with the smallest cobblestones I had ever seen. My guide took me up a turret stairway, crude in structure and unskilled in design, the work of a primitive people. At one point I peeped in through an embrasure just wide enough for a bowman to flight his arrow. Treasure Hunters Raid the Priory Ducking our heads, we entered a low-ceil inged room, formerly a guest chamber. It was completely bare except for a pile of rub ble. Above this heap a hole big enough for a man to step through was torn in the wall. "There you are!" exclaimed Mr. Grigg dra matically. "That's what the last treasure seeker did only six months ago." I gaped at the cavity and asked whether anything had been found. "Not so far as we know; you see, he was bundled off the island the same day." The postmaster pointed to another place in the wall where three rough stone steps led to a door which had obviously been sealed for years. "The Black Monk appears there!" From further remarks I learned that, a year before, two students who had not known of the ghost's existence claimed to have seen such a figure. One described the spirit as a man dressed in a long black gown, who had stalked across the room and disappeared through the bricked-up door. In the Priory church Mr. Grigg showed me one of Caldy's real treasures, an inscribed slab of stone 5 feet long and about 18 inches wide. Some 1,400 years old, it was found in a field thought to have been an old Celtic burial ground. As its value was not imme diately recognized, the slab was used as a window sill, then as a garden seat.