Born 16 September 1746, son of Thomas Rees of Pen-hydd Fawr, Margam, Glamorganshire. His spiritual conviction took place under the ministry of Evan Dafydd Evan of Tŷ'r-clai, and he came under the influence of William Davies (1729? - 1787), Methodist curate of Neath. He joined the congregation at Gyfylchi chapel and began to preach to the local societies. He married Catherine, daughter of John Lewis of Llanfihangel Ynys Afan, and went to live for a time at Aberafan, but left this place to go to Goetre, near the old chapel of Dyffryn, Tai-bach, where he spent the remainder of his life. He died 26 December 1807, and was buried in the churchyard at Llanfihangel Ynys Afan - now known as Cwmafan. 'Siencyn Pen-hydd' was one of the most remarkable preachers of his generation and became talked of throughout the country because of his odd pulpit mannerisms, his uncouth appearance, and his harshness as a preacher. He was immortalised when Edward Matthews wrote his biography, which was read by generation after generation of Welsh people.
Published date: 1959
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