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WILIAM PENLLYN (fl. c. 1550-1570), chief harpist

Name: Wiliam Penllyn
Gender: Male
Occupation: chief harpist
Area of activity: Eisteddfod; Music; Performing Arts; Poetry
Author: David James Bowen

His name is included in the list of harpists in the province of Aberffraw, given in Pen. MS. 147 (203), and he graduated chief harpist (and instructor, Pen. MS. 144 (267)) at the Caerwys eisteddfod, 1568. An entry in Moelyrch manuscript (Pen. MS. 103 (66)) by Wiliam Penllyn states that he entertained there ‘when Christmas fell on Friday’ (i.e. 1551, 1556, or 1562) in company with other harpists and players of the crwth — Huw Dai, Robert ap Siôn Llwyd, Wiliam Penfro, Wiliam Goch Grythor, Wmffre Grythor, Morus Grythor, Tomas Grythor of Cegidfa, and Hywel Gethin. He wrote englynion to Lewis Gwynn, constable of Bishop's Castle (died 1552) (Pen. MS. 114 (109)) and Gruffudd Dwnn of Kidwelly (Llanst. MS. 133 (881)). A transcript of his music-book in the hand of Robert ab Huw is extant (B.M. Add. MS. 14905). See also Bodewryd MS. 2 (313), Cardiff MS. 7 (252), B.M. Add MS. 14998 (32); N.L.W. MS. 5247.


Published date: 1959

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