RHYS, MORGAN (1716 - 1779), circulating schoolmaster, and hymn-writer

Name: Morgan Rhys
Date of birth: 1716
Date of death: 1779
Parent: Anne Lewis
Parent: Rhys Lewis
Gender: Male
Occupation: circulating schoolmaster, and hymn-writer
Area of activity: Education; Poetry; Religion
Author: Gomer Morgan Roberts

Born 1 April 1716 at Efail-fach, Cil-y-cwm, Carmarthenshire, son of Rhys and Anne Lewis. Little is known about his early days. He worked as a circulating schoolmaster in various places in Carmarthenshire and Cardiganshire between 1757 and 1775, and references to his industry as a teacher are found in Welch Piety. In 1770 he was called by his contemporaries 'a Methodistical preacher,' and his will makes it clear that the Methodist society was his spiritual home. Towards the end of his life he lived at Cwm Gwaun Hendy, Llanfynydd, and he was buried in Llanfynydd churchyard, 9 August 1779.

He published his first collection of hymns, Golwg o Ben Nebo, ar Wlad yr Addewid , from Farley's press, Bristol, in 1755, and this was followed by Cascliad o Hymau [ sic ] (Carmarthen, 1757) and Casgliad o Hymnau, etc. (R. Thomas, Carmarthen, 1760); Golwg o Ben Nebo (2nd imp., Thomas, Carmarthen, 1764); Golwg ar Ddull y Byd, etc., 1767; Golwg ar Ddinas Noddfa (which includes an elegy on the death of Ester Siôn of Llansawel), 1770; Griddfanau'r Credadyn, 1772; Griddfanau Credadyn (a different book) c. 1774; Y Frwydr Ysprydol (jointly with Thomas Dafydd), c. 1772-4; and Golwg o Ben Nebo (3rd imp., Ross, Carmarthen, 1775). He also published a number of elegies: Marw-Nad: … Lewis Lewis … Llanddeiniol (which includes some hymns), 1764; Marwnad … rhai o Weinidogion ffyddlon yr Efengyl (Howell Davies, William Richard, and Siôn Parry), 1770; and Hanes Byr o Fywyd … Morgan Nathan, yn Llandilo-fawr (including hymns by Morgan Rhys and M. Nathan), 1775. His hymns are characterized by profound spiritual experience, and he always gives a prominent place to the person of Christ. Examples of his work are to be found in every collection of Welsh hymns.


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.