Born at Pant-y-croy, Llanfihangel-ar-Arth, Carmarthenshire, 31 December 1878, and christened David, son of William Evans, auctioneer, and Mary (née Powell). He spent most of his childhood at Lanlas, Rhydlewis, and attended the board school there before he was apprenticed to the drapery trade. He worked as a shop assistant for some twelve years-in Carmarthen, Cardiff and London. In London he attended classes at the Toynbee Hall and the Working Men's College in Crowndale Road and became an accomplished writer. He entered journalism as a free-lance journalist but held various editorial posts, most particularly with Ideas and T.P's Weekly. His first stories appeared in the English Review, 1914; his first volume was My People, 1915. This caused great offence to many of his countrymen, as did almost everything he wrote thereafter. His work includes five collections of short stories, My People, 1915, Capel Sion, 1916, My Neighbours, 1919, Pilgrims in a Foreign Land, 1942, The Earth Gives All and Takes All, 1946; five novels, of which the best is Nothing to Pay, 1930; a play, Taffy, 1923; and a posthumously published Journal. He also devilled for other writers. His best stories rank with the best of his time. In 1934-35 he returned to Wales and helped run a theatre at Aberystwyth. In 1939 he settled at Aberystwyth and then at New Cross. He was twice married, (1), to Rose Ware, 1907 (divorced 8 March 1933), and (2), to Marguerite Helene (‘Oliver Sandys’), daughter of Col. H.P. Jervis, in May 1933. He had no children. He died 11 January 1945 in Aberystwyth hospital.
Published date: 2001
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