Born at Ffos-y-ffin, Cefn Llanio, Llanddewi-brefi, Cardiganshire, and christened 25 August He was educated at a local school, and, after teaching at Tregaron, Llangeitho, Llanllawddog, and Pencader, before proceeding to the Presbyterian College, Carmarthen, and then to Ystrad Meurig. He was ordained deacon 22 September 1805, by bishop Burgess of S. David's and licensed to the curacy of Llanfihangel-y-Creuddyn, Cardiganshire; he received priest's orders 20 September 1806. On 1 June 1808 he was licensed to the curacies of Llanwnnog and Carno, Montgomeryshire, but after two years, on the recommendation of John Jenkins (Ifor Ceri), he was chosen to go as a missionary to S. John's, Newfoundland, under the auspices of the S.P.G., sailing in June 1810. He remained there till 1816, when, owing to ill-health, he returned to Europe; after travelling on the Continent he came back to Wales and was licensed to the curacy of S. Peter's, Carmarthen, in January 1818. With John Jenkins, Walter Davies (Gwallter Mechain), and others, he was instrumental in making preparations for the Carmarthen eisteddfod of 1819, and became the first secretary of the Cambrian Society. On 7 January 1820, he was instituted to the vicariate of Tregaron, but he died on 29 February, and was buried at Carmarthen. He married a Miss Matthews of Llanwnnog, who, with one son, survived him.
Rowlands had a high reputation for scholarship, and some poems and carols by him are published in Blodau Dyfed (Carmarthen, 1824) and Cymru (O.M.E.), 1896, 256.
Published date: 1959
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