MORGAN ap HYWEL (fl. 1210-1248), Welsh lord of Gwynllwg or Caerleon

Name: Morgan ap Hywel
Child: Gwerful ferch Morgan ap Hywel
Gender: Male
Occupation: Welsh lord of Gwynllwg or Caerleon
Area of activity: Land Ownership; Royalty and Society
Author: Robert Thomas Jenkins

under the earls of Gloucester (lords of Glamorgan), a descendant of Rhydderch ap Iestyn ap Gwrgant. It may be useful to enter under his name a note on his family, compiled from Lloyd, A History of Wales (see the genealogy on p. 771 of that work).

Caradog ap Gruffudd, grandson of Rhydderch ap Iestyn, was killed in the battle of Mynydd Cam (1081). By 1140 we hear of Caradog's son, OWAIN AP CARADOG, in Gwynllwg ('Wentloog'); and in 1154 his son, MORGAN AB OWAIN, was recognized by Henry II as lord of Caerleon - this was the Morgan who was killed by Ifor Bach in 1158. He was followed by his brother, IORWERTH AB OWAIN. In 1171 Iorwerth, somehow, fell under the king's displeasure, and lost Caerleon. When (1172) it seemed that the two were once more coming to terms, Iorwerth's son, OWAIN, was killed by the earl of Gloucester's men, and Iorwerth, with his surviving son HYWEL, blazed out against the king and the Normans. Taking advantage of the great 'rebellion' of 1173, they seized Caerleon and other castles in Gwent; and though they had lost these castles by 1175, their friendship with the 'lord' Rhys availed to induce the king to return Caerleon to them; in 1184-5 Hywel was one of the six men who held castles in Glamorgan and Gwent in the king's name.

It was c. 1210 that Hywel was succeeded by his son Morgan, whose name heads this note. As will be seen in the article on the Marshals, Morgan was involved in their fortunes; he lost Caerleon castle to William Marshal in 1217, and William's sons refused to restore it to him (though he generally kept his hold upon Machen castle) - indeed, Morgan died, a little before 15 March 1248, still deprived of Caerleon. He was followed by his grandson, MERDUDD (son of his daughter Gwerful), who died in 1270 - see the article Morgan (fl. 1294-5). The lordship, like other Clare lands in Gwent, came into the hands of Elizabeth, youngest daughter of the Gilbert de Clare who fell in 1314, and so eventually into those of the Mortimer family.


Published date: 1959

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