Born at Llanwenog, Cardiganshire, 10 February 1818. He was a member of Aberduar Baptist church (Llanybydder, Carmarthenshire) (D. Jones, Hanes Bed. Deheubarth, 336), and went to Abergavenny Baptist Academy in 1835 (Rufus Williams, Hanes Athrofeydd y Bedyddwyr, 35), and thence to the newly-opened Baptist College at Pontypool (Hanes Athrofeydd y Bedyddwyr, 65) - his name is the first on the list of students. In 1838 he became pastor at Neath, and founded new churches at Aberdylais, Glyn Neath, and Pontardawe; he also initiated a Cymreigyddion Society at Neath. But internal disputes arose, and Isaac was also suspected of unorthodoxy (D. R. Phillips, Hist. of the Vale of Neath, 155), so in 1841 he moved to Trosnant church in Pontypool. His career there was stormy (Bradney, Monmouthshire, I, ii, 455; Y Bedyddiwr, January 1854; Yr Haul, 1854, 64) so in 1853 he became an Anglican, and went to S. David's College, Lampeter. He was ordained deacon 23 September 1855 at Llandaff (Haul, 1855, 363) and priested 21 September 1856 (Haul, 1856, 323), and licensed to the curacy of Llangattock-juxta-Neath. In 1858, he was given the perpetual curacy of Llangathen, Carmarthenshire; a note in the parish register (Transactions of the Carmarthenshire Antiquarian Society and Field Club, vii, 36) shows that he was diligent there, building a school and a vicarage, rebuilding a ruined chapel, restoring the church, and increasing the number of communicants. He was preferred in 1871 (Haul, 1871, 278) to the vicariate of Llangamarch, Brecknock, and died there 31 January 1876. Throughout his career, Isaac was an industrious (though unsystematic and uncritical) writer on history, antiquities, and philology. When a Baptist, he wrote much in Seren Gomer; as an Anglican, even in his Lampeter days, he was a voluminous contributor to Yr Haul - one may specify his articles on antiquities (Haul, 1854-5) and on the translators of the Bible (ibid., 1856), and the miscellany ' Llyfrgell Llwyd o Langathen ' (ibid., 1858-9); he also engaged in controversy with Dissent. He published in 1859 a volume, Siluriana, on the history of Monmouthshire and Glamorgan, a rather unskilful piece of quarrying in the manuscripts of William Davies of Cringell (on this matter, see D. R. Phillips in Jnl. Welsh Bibliog. Soc., ii, 29-33); and in 1860 an eisteddfodic prize-essay Hanes Llanbedr a'r Gymmydogaeth; according to Bradney, he also published a book on Whitland Abbey.
Published date: 1959
Article Copyright: http://rightsstatements.org/page/InC/1.0/
The Dictionary of Welsh Biography is provided by The National Library of Wales and the University of Wales Centre for Advanced Welsh and Celtic Studies. It is free to use and does not receive grant support. A donation would help us maintain and improve the site so that we can continue to acknowledge Welsh men and women who have made notable contributions to life in Wales and beyond.
Find out more on our sponsorship page.