OWEN, LEWIS ('Baron Owen'; died 1555), judge

Name: Lewis Owen
Date of death: 1555
Gender: Male
Occupation: judge
Area of activity: Law; Public and Social Service, Civil Administration
Author: Robert Thomas Jenkins

Son of Owen ap Hywel ap Llywelyn, of Llwyn, Dolgelley. Under Henry VIII he was appointed deputy-chamberlain of North Wales and baron (i.e. judge) of the exchequer at Caernarvon; he was sheriff of Merioneth in 1545-6 and 1554-5, and Member of Parliament for the shire in 1547, 1553, and 1554; he lived at Cwrt Plas-yn-dre, Dolgelley. As sheriff, he undertook to extirpate the ' Red Bandits of Mawddwy,' and in revenge was killed, 12 October 1555, on the spot still known as ' Llidiart-y-barwn,' near Mallwyd, Meironnydd.

Owen was twice married, and from his first marriage issued an unusually large number of the later gentle families of Merionethshire who appear in the present work; see J. E. Griffith, Pedigrees, 363. From the eldest son, JOHN OWEN of Llwyn, came the Bronclydwr family (see Hugh Owen, 1639 - 1700). The second son, HUGH LEWIS OWEN of Cae'rberllan, Dolgelley, a lawyer, would appear to have been the ancestor of the Tan-y-gadair family (see Henry Owen, 1716 - 1795), but the pedigrees are inconclusive on this point. The third son, EDWARD OWEN of Hengwrt (Griffith, op. cit. 201), was the grandfather of the antiquary Robert Vaughan and the ancestor of the later Hengwrt and Nannau families. The fourth son, GRIFFITH OWEN, of Tal-y-bont, Llanegryn, married the heiress of Peniarth (Griffith, op. cit., 323); some hold that his eldest son, Lewis, was identical with the Lewis Owen who is the subject of the next article - if so (but the evidence is shaky), the 'spy' would be the grand-father of the famous Dissenter Hugh Owen of Bronclydwr, for Susan, daughter of Lewis Owen of Tal-y-bont, was Hugh Owen's mother; it will be noticed that the Bronclydwr and Tal-y-bont families, each descended from ' baron ' Owen, had intermarried. Another of Griffith Owen's sons was Henry, father of the Independent divine John Owen (1616 - 1683). The fifth of ' baron ' Owen's sons was ROBERT OWEN of Dolserau (Dolgelley) - see Griffith, op. cit., 363 - grandfather of the Quaker Robert Owen (died 1685), and great-grandfather of the Quaker Griffith Owen.


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.