The present work was designed not as a history of the Normans in South Wales but as an extended commentary upon that history. This particular approach was made possible only through the previous eforts of Sir Coronwy Edwards, J. E. Lloyd, T. Pierce-Jones, William Rees, and others. Therefore, the first task of these Acknowledgments must be to record my indebtedness to those scholars upon whose work I have attempted to build.
Whatever new I have brought to this task also I owe to others. Among these are three of my former teachers to whom I feel a special debt of gratitude. Barnes F. Lathrop introduced me to those standards of judgment and performance which make up the historian's craft. What is more, by precept and example he made those standards worthwhile for a man to pursue. Walter Prescott Webb introduced me to a greater breadth of vision by pointing out that History is one great whole and that the arbitrary divisions of time and function of which historians are so fond lead more often to confusion than to convenience. My chief debt, however, I owe to A. R. Lewis, who insisted always that research be something more than the mere collection and arrangement of data. He guided me in undertaking the present work, and offered advice and encouragement at every step. He has been both teacher and friend, and I cheerfully attribute all the virtues of this work to him. The defects I keep for myself.
I have been encouraged and assisted by a host of people and can single out but a few for special thanks. The Regents of The University of Texas made possible the grant under which I was able to pursue research in England and Wales. The libraries and staffs of the Universities of Texas, Kansas, London, and Wales, together with those of the Institute of Historical Research and the British Museum, have been unfailingly kind and helpful.
My friends and associates have been generous with both time and patience. To them I can only say that I hope that my work is worthy of the good will they have shown. Finally, my special thanks to my wife, Carolyn, who has steadfastly refused to be bored by the whole affair.
L H. Nelson
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