PRICE family, of Rhiwlas, in the parish of Llanfor, Meirionethshire

The older pedigrees trace the ancestry of this family to Marchweithian.

RHYS AP MEREDYDD ('Rhys Fawr') (fl. 1485)

A fairly early ancestor who achieved some prominence. He lived somewhere at the foot of the south-western slopes of Mynydd Hiraethog, Denbighshire; it is thought that the old mansion of Foelas was his home. He was influential, rich, and a strong military leader. He raised a band of men from 'Y Berfeddwlad' and led it to Bosworth Field (1485) to join men from South Wales under Sir Rhys ap Thomas. By reason of his prowess at Bosworth, he received many favours at the hand of the new king (Henry VII). (Alabaster effigies of 'Rhys Fawr' and his wife, Lowry, are in Ysbyty Ifan church).

His son:

Sir ROBERT AP RHYS (died c.1534)

The 'sir' in this case denotes an ecclesiastic - became one of the chaplains at the court of Henry VII, continuing to serve in that capacity under Henry VIII. After the dissolution of the monasteries he acquired much land (Dôl Gynwal) in Ysbyty Ifan. According to letters from him to Henry VIII he also held much land in the parish of Llanfor. Sir Robert's wife was Mared (Margaret), daughter of Rhys (Rhydderch ?) Llwyd, Gydros, Llanfor; their numerous children included the heir, CADWALADR (Price) (below), Dr. Elis Prys, Plas Iolyn, Denbighshire, Thomas Vaughan, Pant Glas, and two other sons who became abbots of Aberconway (Griffith, Pedigrees, 204). Sir Robert, who became cross-bearer to Cardinal Wolsey, died before or in 1534; his will was proved at the P.C.C. of Canterbury; he also was buried in Ysbyty Ifan church.


of Rhiwlas, is described as the third son of Sir Robert ap Rhys. He married Jane, daughter of Meredydd ap Ieuan ap Robert of Gwydir. To him came much land which belonged formerly to the abbey of Strata Marcella (Ystrad Marchell), near Welshpool. Cadwaladr held lands in the commote of Penllyn in the time of Philip and Mary. The bard and herald Gruffudd Hiraethog sent him a cywydd (c. 1530) requesting him to send a ram to Mrs. Mostyn. Cadwaladr ap Robert (alias Cadwaladr Price) died in 1554 : a metrical version of the year appears in a memorial cywydd in NLW MS 436B , p.39.


When Lewis Dwnn, deputy herald at arms, visited Rhiwlas on 21 July 1588, he received the pedigree of the family at the hands of ' John Cadd,' i.e., John (Wynn) ap Cadwaladr ap Robert ap Rhys (son of Cadwaladr Price) (Visitations, ii, 228-9). He was high sheriff of Merioneth, 1576-7 and 1585-6, and Member of Parliament for the county in 1559. He married Jane, daughter and heiress of Thomas ap Robert, Llwyn Dedwydd, Llangwm, Denbighshire. Siôn Tudur wrote a cywydd in which he asks John Wynn to give a gun to Humphrey Thomas of Bodelwyddan.

His son was

CADWALADR WYNN, Member of Parliament

He was called 'Cadwaladr fab Siôn ap Cadwaladr' by the poet Edward Urien and 'Cadwaladr Prys' by two other poets - Siôn ap William Griffith and Ieuan Tew Brydydd. W. W. E. Wynne (Breese, Kalendars) says that he adopted the surname Price. He was Member of Parliament for Merioneth, 1585-6, and high sheriff, 1592-3. Ieuan Tew Brydydd was ' family bard ' at Rhiwlas in his time. Cadwaladr Wynn, i.e. Cadwaladr Price, married Catherine, daughter of Sir Ieuan Lloyd, Bodidris-yn-Iâl, Denbighshire; their eldest son was JOHN PRICE I (died 1613), high sheriff of Merioneth, 1608-9; he married Ann, daughter and heiress of John Lloyd, of Vaynol, S. Asaph, registrar of the diocese of St Asaph. This John Price was succeeded by his eldest son, JOHN PRICE II (died 1629) (ROBERT PRICE, vicar of Towyn, chancellor of Bangor, etc., was a brother to John Price II). The wife of John Price II was Elinor, daughter of Sir William Jones, Castellmarch, Caernarfonshire, and the eldest son of the marriage was

WILLIAM PRICE (1619 - 1691), Royalist colonel and Member of Parliament

Admitted to Christ Church, Oxford, May 1636, he was Member of Parliament for Merioneth from 1640 to 1644 when he was 'disabled' from sitting, colonel John Jones, Maesygarnedd, the regicide, replacing him; he represented the county again (1673-9). It has been suggested that as his wife, Mary, daughter and coheiress of David Holland, was sister to the wife of Sir John Carter, Parliamentary commander, colonel Price retained the Rhiwlas estate because of this connection; he was, however, fined £200. He was the Price who welcomed the duke of Beaufort in 1684.

The eldest son of colonel William Price was

JOHN PRICE III (1644 - 1685)

He matriculated as from S. John's College, Oxford, in 1661. He died, without male issue, before his father and the estate passed to his brother, ROGER PRICE (1653/4? - 1719); high sheriff of Merioneth, 1709-10, high sheriff of Caernarvon, 1710-11. He died 17 October 1719. His wife was Martha, daughter of Robert, viscount Bulkeley, of Baron Hill, Anglesey.

By her he was the father of

WILLIAM PRICE II (1690 - 1774), antiquary

He matriculated, as from Jesus College, Oxford, in 1707. He was high sheriff of Merioneth, 1730-1, and Caernarvon, where he had extensive property, 1731-2. He was an antiquary; letters written by him to Charles Lyttleton between March 1745 and 1757, and dealing with antiquarian remains and with the eisteddfod held at Bala in 1747, survive in the Stowe collection in the British Museum. Five bards composed eulogistic englynion to him at an eisteddfod held at Bala, Whitsuntide, 1738. William Price II, who died 4 July 1774, was married twice - (1) to Mary, daughter of Price Devereux, 9th viscount Hereford, and (2) to Elizabeth, daughter of Richard, viscount Bulkeley, of Baron Hill. WILLIAM PRICE III, eldest son by the first marriage (there was no issue of the second marriage), died without issue in 1751, and in the lifetime of his father, and the estate went to his brother RICHARD PRICE THELWALL (1720 - 1775); he was Member of Parliament for Beaumaris, 1774-5, and high sheriff for Denbighshire, 1770. He bequeathed the estate to RICHARD TAVISTOCK WATKIN, otherwise called ' Richard Price ' (1755 - 1794), high sheriff of Merioneth, 1778-9. His heir, by his wife Eliza, eldest daughter of Richard Kenrick, Nantclwyd, Denbighshire, was RICHARD WATKIN PRICE (1780 - 1860), high sheriff of Caernarvon, 1829; high sheriff of Merioneth, 1846. An enlightened agriculturist, he was one of the founders of the Merioneth Agricultural Society (1810). He inherited the Rhiwaedog estate. By his wife Frances, daughter of John Lloyd, Rhagad, near Corwen, he was the father of RICHARD JOHN PRICE (1804 - 1842) who married Charlotte, daughter of Edward Lloyd, of Rhagad, by whom he was the father of

RICHARD JOHN LLOYD PRICE (1843 - 1923), sportsman and author

On the death of his father in 1842, became heir to his grandfather. R. J. Lloyd Price as he came to be known, was born 17 April 1843, matriculated (as of Christ Church, Oxford) in 1861, served as high sheriff of Merioneth, 1868, and was captain of the Merioneth Militia. He became very well-known in several capacities, particularly as a sportsman. He wrote several books: Rabbits for profit and rabbits for powder …, 1884 and 1888; Practical pheasant rearing, with an appendix on grouse driving, 1888; Dogs Ancient and Modern and Walks in Wales, 1893. (For details of the Rhiwlas 'battues' which became famous, see the Rhiwlas documents in N.L.W., briefly described in Journal of the Merioneth Historical and Record Society, i, 112-3; see also the inscription over the door in the building over the family vault in Llanfor churchyard). He also published, in 1899, a quaint but nevertheless interesting book, The History of Rulace, or Rhiwlas; Ruedok, or Rhiwaedog; Bala, its Lake; The Valley of the Dee River; and much more of Merionethshire and Counties adjacent thereto. He established the Welsh Whisky Distillery at Frongoch, not far from Rhiwlas, the 'Rhiwlas Brush Works,' etc. By his wife Evelyn (née Gregge-Hopgood), he was father of ROBERT KENRICK PRICE (1870 - 1927), who was educated at Eton and Sandhurst and joined 'The Buffs' in 1891.



Published date: 1959

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