Born at Betws-y-coed in October 1836, son of Joseph Owen. He left Llanrwst British school at 14 to work in a Ffestiniog quarry. Having begun preaching in 1857, he went to the school at Clynnog, kept by Eben Fardd, and thence to a school at Dublin, where he became assistant. From 1860 till 1863 he was at Bala C.M. College, where he matriculated in London University. From 1863 till 1877 he was pastor at Acrefair, Denbighshire.
His scholarly tastes (he was in particular a good linguist) led him in 1872 to spend a term in Germany, and in 1876 he went to Tübingen University, where he graduated Ph.D. (including M.A.). At the end of 1877, ill-health led him to remove to Conway, where he kept a grammar school, in which several Calvinistic Methodist ministers were educated; he was also for a time (1879-86) pastor of the Calvinistic Methodist church there. He retired in 1903 to Colwyn Bay, and died 16 September 1906, a month before his 70th birthday; he was buried at Betws-y-coed.
He attained no prominence in denominational circles, being neither a popular preacher nor an administrator, but rather a thinker and a poet. He published several books, e.g. Y Drych a'r Ffynnon (sermons), 1901; Odlau'r Pumafon (hymns), 1905; and a new translation of Romans, 1903. But his most important book was his history of Greek philosophy, Hanes Athroniaeth y Groegiaid, 1898 — a pioneer book in Welsh on that subject.
Published date: 1959
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