MORGAN, ROBERT (1608 - 1673), bishop of Bangor

Name: Robert Morgan
Date of birth: 1608
Date of death: 1673
Spouse: Anne Morgan (née Lloyd)
Child: Margaret Wynn (née Morgan)
Child: Elizabeth Humphreys (née Morgan)
Parent: Mary Morgan (née Lloyd)
Parent: Richard Morgan
Gender: Male
Occupation: bishop of Bangor
Area of activity: Religion
Author: Arthur Herbert Dodd

Born in 1608 at Bronfraith, Llandysul, Montgomeryshire, the third son of Richard Morgan, an Oxford man who had represented Montgomeryshire in the 1593 parliament. His mother was Mary, daughter of Thomas Lloyd of Gwernbuarth. After studying at home under the father of Simon Lloyd, later archdeacon of Merioneth, he entered Jesus College, Cambridge (6 July 1624), where he graduated B.A. 1628, M.A. 1631, B.D. 1638, D.D. 1661. Ordained in December 1629, by the bishop of Peterborough, he became chaplain (1631) to David Dolben, bishop of Bangor, who presented him to a Montgomeryshire vicarage and two sinecure rectories in Denbighshire. On Dolben's death (1632) he returned to Cambridge (S.Johns) till 1637, when he became chaplain to William Roberts (1585 - 1665), bishop of Bangor, and acquired an additional Denbighshire living, which, on becoming prebendary of Chester (1 July 1642), he exchanged for Anglesey livings. By buying from the Bulkeley family the unexpired lease of the tithes of Llanddyfnan, Anglesey — which he later presented as an augmentation of the living — he retained this parish when he was extruded from his other preferments during the Interregnum, living with the Lloyd family of Henblas, Llangristiolus, whose political views he shared. He helped to draft the loyal declaration from Anglesey (14 July 1648), and in a funeral sermon on Owen Holland of Berw (2 December 1656) castigated the ‘new and phantastick revelations’ of the Puritan preachers (N.L.W. MS. 3069). After the Restoration he recovered his living of Trefdraeth, became archdeacon of Merioneth (24 August 1660), and ‘comportioner’ of Llandinam, Montgomeryshire, took up the prebend of Penmynydd to which he had previously been nominated, and completed his Cambridge D.D. (1661). In 1666 he was consecrated bishop of Bangor in place of Robert Price, who had died before institution. He helped to restore the cathedral fabric after the neglect of the Interregnum, and endowed it with an organ; he also preached assiduously in both Welsh and English. His sequestration of the rectory of Llandyrnog as an appurtenance of the see led to a bitter lawsuit with Thomas Jones (1622? - 1682), who had retired to the living on dismissal from his chaplaincy to the future James II, and was now left in poverty; otherwise Morgan eschewed controversy, ignoring the conventicles in his diocese, the appeals of Dr. Michael Roberts for help in the recovery of his Fellowship at Jesus College, Oxford, and the pleas of his ‘cousin’ Sir Richard Wynn of Gwydir for preferment of unsuitable protégés. He died on 1 September 1673; the memorial inscriptions in Bangor cathedral are quoted in Browne Willis, Bangor, 1721, 23, 27-8. He married Anne, daughter of William Lloyd, rector of Llaneilian, and had four sons, three of them educated at Oxford, of whom one entered the diplomatic service under Sir Leoline Jenkins and the others obtained ecclesiastical preferment.

Author

Published date: 1959

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