Skip to main content
Hide Articles List

10 articles on this Page








HISTORICAL NOTES. DAFTDD AB GWILYM. Yn mhob gwlad y megir glew." AT Broginin, in the parish of Llanbadarn-fawr, Gwilym Gam, father of the celebrated bard Dafydd Ab Gwilym, resided. The family of Gwilym Gam descended from Bran, one of the fifteen tribes of North Wales. The bard's father fell in love with Ardydfyl, daughter of Gwilym Fychan, of Cryngae, near Newcastle-Emlyn. Owing to some old dispute between the two families, both sides would not con- sent to the marriage of Gwilym Gam and Ardydfyl. I bey were very much attached to each other; but she loved too well, but not wisely. She proved enciente. On discovering her condition, her father in a most cruel manner turned her from the house at midnight, in the depth of Winter, and at the same time sending an injunction to all his relations not to admit her into their houses. After this she became an outcast, and wandered from place to place. On hearing of her destitution her lover went in search of her, and found her out. They started towards Glamorgan, for the purpose of proceeding to Maesaleg, the resi- dence of his uncle, Ifor HaeL Whilst they were travelling at midnight during a severe storm of wind, hail, and snow, Dafydd Ab Gwilym was prematurely born under a hedge. They reached Ltandaff next morning, where they were married. But this union was of short duration. Ardydfyl died the next day, and was buried at Llandaff. The child was baptized on her coffin. The following stanzas were composed by Gwilym Gam over her grave. The translation is from the pen of the late Mr. Edward Williams, lolo Morgan wg:— In memory of Ardydfyl, whom I yet Shall join, fair, gentle form, on Olivet, God's Holy hill I an angel to my eyes, In choir of saints above the starry skies. Deprived of her, oh I what a waste of tears To my lorn soul this dreamy world appears; Placed on its brink to her long home I shed My gush of anguish for Ardydfyl dead." After paying the last farewell to his Ardydfyl, he took his infant son to Gwern-y-gleppa, in Maesaleg, where he resided until his father's death. After that event he and his son returned to Broginin. Gwilym Gam married the second time but this match was very displeasing to Dafydd. He hated his step-mother, and he determined to quit his father's house, and he returned to Gwern-y-gleppa, where he resided for a long time. On finding that Dafydd was imbned with poetic genius, his uncle, Llewellyn, son of Gwilym Fychan, took him under his care, and taught him the metres of vocal song, by which meaus he became a famous j • Llewellyn was killed by a band of Saxons, and Uaiydd was obliged to seek an asylum once more at Maesaleg. lie was appointed by Ifor Hael his steward and a tutor to his daughter; and in a short time it was discovered that the tutor and the pupil were enamoured to each other. She was sent to a nunnery in the Island of Anglesey Thither he followed her, and hired himself as a servant in an adjoining monastery; but his plans proved futile. He again returned to Maesaleg, where he was wel- comed by his patron. During his stay here he was elected Chief Bard of Glamorgan.—To be continued. JOHN ROWLANDS, ( Girnidus.) Dinas Pouns, Glamorgan.




Family Notices