JONES, CADWALADR (1783 - 1867), Independent minister and first editor of Y Dysgedydd

Name: Cadwaladr Jones
Date of birth: 1783
Date of death: 1867
Parent: Dorothy Cadwaladr
Parent: John Cadwaladr
Gender: Male
Occupation: Independent minister and first editor of Y Dysgedydd
Area of activity: Literature and Writing; Printing and Publishing; Religion
Author: Richard Griffith Owen

Born May 1783 at Deildre Uchaf, Llanuwchllyn, Mer., the only child of John and Dorothy Cadwaladr. His parents were never Nonconformists and were not regarded as particularly devout, although they inclined to the Church of England. He was 11 years of age when George Lewis (1763 - 1822) became minister at Llanuwchllyn, and it was Dr. Lewis who admitted him to membership of the Old Chapel in 1803. He began to preach in 1806 and the same year was admitted to Wrexham Academy, at which he paid his own expenses, spending the summer at home on the farm. William Williams (1781 - 1840) and Michael Jones were his fellow students for part of the time. In May 1811 he was ordained as the successor of Hugh Pugh (1779 - 1809) at Brithdir; ‘his ministry extended from the Garneddwen to Barmouth, and from Bwlch Oerddrws to the uplands of Ganllwyd.’ Cadwaladr Jones gave up charge of Llanelltyd and Cutiau in 1818, and of Brithdir and Rhyd-y-main in 1839, confining his labours to Dolgelley and Islaw'r-dref until 1858. After that, and until his death in 1867, he worked with E. Davies of Trawsfynydd at Llanelltyd and with E. Ellis of Brithdir at Tabor. He was buried in Brithdir cemetery.

He was known as ‘Yr Hen Olygydd’ (the Old Editor) because he edited Y Dysgedydd from 1821 to 1852. The first number appeared in November 1821 under the title Y Dysgedydd Crefyddol. Shortly before this he had published a pamphlet, Amddiffyniad o'r Ymneillduwyr, mewn Llythyr at y Parchedig John Elias; yn cynnwys Sylwadau ar ei Lythyr o Ganmoliaeth i Bregethu Mr. Hurrion ar Brynedigaeth, 1821 (see Cofiant John Jones, Tal-y-sarn, 470). It appears that John Elias had made an attack on the Independents because of their doctrines, and this was probably the reason why a number of prominent Independent ministers founded Y Dysgedydd and appointed Cadwaladr Jones as its editor. The periodical became a focal point in the field of theological discussion, and Jones proved a wise and able editor; for all that, he had a highly individual outlook and a most determined nature (see Ap Vychan, Cadwaladr Jones, 138). Although he was George Lewis's ‘spiritual son,’ yet, ‘in the next generation he became Michael Jones's supporter in the battle of the Systems.’ He was a Liberal in politics but was too moderate for some of his fellow-Independents.


Published date: 1959

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