WILLIAM(S), ROBERT (1744 - 1815), poet, and farmer

Name: Robert William (S)
Date of birth: 1744
Date of death: 1815
Gender: Male
Occupation: poet, and farmer
Area of activity: Nature and Agriculture; Poetry
Author: Robert Thomas Jenkins

of Pandy Isaf, Tre Rhiwedog (Bala); born (according to his tombstone) in 1744. Hardly anything is known of his life. He learned the bardic craft from Rolant Huw, and became himself the teacher of Ioan Tegid (John Jones, 1792 - 1852) and others. He used to write 'C.C.' ('Friend of the Cymmrodorion') after his name, and wrote an elegy on the death of Richard Morris of Anglesey, and a cywydd on the Day of Judgement, which his master Rolant Huw thought not unworthy of comparison with the better-known cywyddau of Goronwy Owen and William Wynn (of Llangynhafal) on the same subject. He also wrote a to Dafydd Ionawr (David Richards), and exchanged englynion with Twm o'r Nant (Thomas Edwards). But the bulk of his work consists of elegies of purely local interest, carols, and 'club songs' - there is a manuscript volume at N.L.W. Though his name does not occur in the records of the neighbouring Calvinistic Methodist chapel (Llwyneinion), he had affinities with Methodism : he extolled the Bible Society (a line of his on its work has passed into common parlance) and was warm in his praises of Peter Williams (1723 - 1796) - indeed, his elegy on Peter Williams was, as far as is known, one of the only two works of his which he printed and published (Oswestry, 1797; see Y Drysorfa, 1944, 60-1). Selections from his work were printed by O. M. Edwards (Cymru Fydd, iv, 41-4; Cymru, ii, 210-3; Beirdd y Bala, 40-8) - for that matter, nearly all our knowledge of him and his works is due to Owen Edwards. He died in August 1815 - he was buried at Llanfor, 1 September. William Edwards (1773 - 1853), the hymnwriter, was a nephew (brother's son) and bardic disciple of his.


Published date: 1959

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