a Norman family surnamed ‘de Wintona,’ settled apparently at Llandough (it may be Llandow), Glam., changed its name in the 14th century to ‘Wilcoline’ or ‘Wilkyn,’ and in the 17th to ‘Wilkins.’
THOMAS WILKYN (died 1623), his son ROGER WILKINS (died 1648), and his grandson
were successively rectors of S. Mary church (Llan-fair), Glam. The last-named Thomas Wilkins went to Jesus College, Oxford, in 1641, and took a law degree in 1661; in addition to S. Mary church he also held the rectories of Gelli-gaer (1666) and Llan-maes (1668), and a prebend at Llandaff. He died 20 August 1699, aged 74. He had married Jane, daughter of Thomas Carne of Nash and grand-daughter of Sir Edward Stradling of S. Donat's; they had five children. Wilkins is a very important figure in the history of Welsh literature, not indeed in virtue of any works of his own but as an antiquary (a disciple of Rice Merrick,) and a collector of manuscripts; some of the most important medieval Welsh manuscripts were in his possession, notably the ‘Red Book of Hergest’ and the ‘Book of the Anchorite.’ His eldest son,
who gave the two manuscripts mentioned to Jesus College, Oxford, was a lawyer; he became deputy-protonotary for the Brecknock circuit (not protonotary, as is generally said), and was the originator of a family which (with its connections by marriage) played a considerable part in the legal, financial, and industrial history of Brecknock and north Glamorgan. It would seem that he died in 1736, but this is very uncertain — a ‘Wilkins’ signs as deputy from 1726 to 1736, and another (?) ‘Wilkins’ from 1744 to 1758; the latter seems more likely to have been John Wilkins. He was thrice married; the children of his first marriage (whose associations were with Bristol) were the first to resume the surname ‘de Winton.’ By his second marriage, Thomas Wilkins was the father of
b. 15 November 1713, deputy-protonotary from 1759 (at least) till 1784; he married SYBIL JEFFREYS, niece and heiress of WALTER JEFFREYS (died 1746), a banker, of a Llywel family. Here lay the origins of ‘Wilkins and Co.’, or the ‘Brecon Old Bank’ (now merged in Lloyds Bank), whose notes circulated throughout the region (including north Glamorgan) and which was deeply concerned in the early phases of its industrial development.
Three of John Wilkins's children should be noticed:
made a fortune in India, bought Maes-llwch, Rads., and was Member of Parliament for Radnorshire, 1796-1828; his descendants assumed (1839) the name ‘de Winton’;
said to have been his fifth son (but this is in conflict with other statements), was deputy-protonotary, 1784-99, and protonotary from 1799 till his death in 1812;
(3) ANNE WILKINS, who m. John Maybery (died 1784), son of Thomas Maybery, a Worcestershire industrialist, who in 1720 had set up iron-works at Brecon — in 1758 ‘Maybery and Wilkins’ erected a furnace at Hirwaun. Their son,
was from 1804 (at least) till 1812 deputy-protonotary to his uncle William Wilkins, and succeeded him as protonotary in 1812. His son, WALTER MAYBERY (1800 - 1862), became protonotary in 1830 and was the last protonotary of Brecknock, as the Great Sessions were abolished in October of that year.
Published date: 1959
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