Born 27 July 1870 at Penmorfa, Llangoedmor, Cardiganshire, eldest son of John Vaughan and Julia Ann (Morris). He was educated at Clifton College and at Keble College, Oxford, where he graduated. Having private means he was able from his early youth to pursue his interests in the study of history and literature, and in authorship. He produced and published over a dozen books, besides articles, studies and reviews; three novels and other works remain in MS. His first book was The Last of the Royal Stuarts (1906), a life of Henry Benedict Stuart, Jacobite Duke of York and later Cardinal of York. From 1899 to 1910, when he was writing on Italian history and topography, he lived in Italy, mainly in Naples and Florence. A visit to Australia in 1912-13 led to the writing of An Australasian Wander Year. During World War I he lived at Plas Llangoedmor, engaged in various types of war service, mainly on committees in the county of Cardigan, and in writing works of fiction, particularly Meleager: A Fantasy (1916) and The Dial of Ahaz (1917). Two books by him were published privately, Sonnets from Italy (1919), and Nepheloccygia: or Letters from Paradise (1929).
In 1924, Vaughan went to live at Tenby where he wrote his best known work of Welsh interest, viz. The South Wales Squires (1926); he had previously written a national eisteddfod essay on ‘The Welsh Jacobites’ (published in Cymm. Trans.; 1920) and a study of Thomas Johnes of Hafod and his private press (Cymm. Trans., two articles, 1911-12, 1919-20); he was also a contributor to West Wales Historical Records, the Journal of the Welsh Bibliographical Society, Western Mail, Welsh Outlook, and some of the better known English Reviews.
Vaughan deserves to be commemorated also for his long years of devoted service (1916-48) to the National Library of Wales, both as member or chairman of some committees, and for his gifts to that institution. He gave to the Library the Oriental manuscripts collected in India by his great-grandfather, Benjamin Millingchamp; on Millingchamp and the MSS. see his ‘Life and Letters of the Venerable Benjamin Millingchamp’ (now N.L.W. MSS. 13915-6) and H. Ethé, N.L.W. Catalogue of Oriental Manuscripts (1916). He was an authority on bookplates, helping to catalogue the Sir Evan Davies Jones collection and cataloguing for the National Library (1938) the Aneurin Williams collection. During his sojourn in Italy he had collected a large number of Italian books, some of them rare works; this Italian collection is now in the National Library. Just before he died he wrote (not for publication) ‘Memoirs of a Literary Bloke’ (now N.L.W. MS. 14341) and ‘Notes on the Life of Dorothy, Viscountess Lisburne’ (N.L.W. MS. 14647), a member of a family with which he claimed kinship. He died 31 July 1948 at Tenby.
Published date: 2001
Article Copyright: http://rightsstatements.org/page/InC-RUU/1.0/