ROBERTS, WILLIAM (1784 - 1864), Calvinistic Methodist minister

Name: William Roberts
Date of birth: 1784
Date of death: 1864
Child: Ellen Thomas (née Roberts)
Gender: Male
Occupation: Calvinistic Methodist minister
Area of activity: Religion
Author: Richard Thomas

Born 19 September 1784 at Aberach, Llaneilian, Anglesey. As a child he was unable to go to school and was only 10 years of age when he began work at the Parys copper mine. Later he went to work with one David Roberts of Amlwch who, in due course, sent him, now a strong and responsible young man, to Llannerch-y-medd as bailiff of some land which he owned there. The spiritual awakening he experienced under the influence, chiefly of Peter Williams and Robert Roberts of Clynnog, led him to thirst for knowledge and he went for three months to a school kept by the Rev. John Evans at Amlwch. After that he proceeded to educate himself in the most remarkable manner, being undoubtedly assisted by his friend, John Elias. When he was 21 years of age he was elected an elder at Amlwch, and at the age of 23 began to preach. In 1817 he opened his own shop, and the same year was ordained minister. He did not allow either his shop or anything else to interfere with his work as an evangelist and minister. The outstanding characteristic of his preaching is said to have been its earnestness. Another remarkable feature of his preaching was that, although he would start haltingly and clumsily, as he went on his spiritual ardour would clear his thoughts and fire his speech until he became truly eloquent. He was a great man and his congregations knew of no one who could compare with him except John Elias. He died 19 July 1864 at the age of 80. His influence in Anglesey was unbounded, and he could curb even John Elias.


Published date: 1959

Article Copyright:

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.