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I Twm o'r Nant.

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Twm o'r Nant. SOCIAL REFORMER OF THE EIGI IT K E X T11 C E X Tu R V "TwIn o'r Xant was the subject of a lecture given by the Rev. D. D. Williams on 1-riday evening before "he Manchester Welsh National Society. The eighteenth century, the period in which Twm o'r Xant lived, produced, Mr. NN-lillaiiis said, some great poets in Wales. The period was characterised by -our great movements—the literary awakening a re- ligious revival the establishment of a num- ber of literary societies, such as the Cvm- mrodorion and a political revival, Parting in France, but soon developing into a world movement. The influence of the literary awakening was traceable n ore amongst the clergy and nobility than the common neople it was the second movement, the religious revival, which influenced them, and the sympathies of Twm o'r Xant were all ON THE SIDE OF THE MASSES. He desired to be known as a social reformer, and it is on record that he once requested his friend, the Rev. Thomas Charles, Bala, to look after the sheep whilst he would look after the wolves and it was in this light that Twm's history as a social reformer was ti) be understood. The lecturer mentioned that there are two classes of poets which influence an author. The first is that class of greater poets who form a sort of literary atmosphere, and give character to a period and the other class, a less prominent one, include those who influence an author through coming in close personal contact with him. The two classes must be considered in studying the history of Twm o'r Xant. To the former class be- longed Lewis Morris, Goronwy Owen, and others to the latter belonged Jonathan JInws, Ellis y Cowper, and those included in the Llanfair Talhaiarn zone. Little was known of the history of Twm o'r XTant th-ere were tiaditions concerning him, but few solid facts. The sources of his life were his autobiography, his poetical works, and the history of the period. The most important of his works were his In- terludes." They were valuable on account of the true poetry found in parts of them, :and (they were more valuable istill as a means to give us1 .an insight into the period in which the poet lived. Next in import- ance to the "Interludes came .the "Cerddi." The "Cerdd" in Wales carried out at this period the functions of the modern news- paper. The lecturer read selections from the Interludes and the Cerddi." Twm o'r Xant, said the lecturer, has made himself a place in Welsh literature. His range of N-isicii was somewhat narrow he came into contact with one section of Welsh life. He had his serious limitations, and undoubtedly he has been over-estimat- ed. To call him the Shakespeare of the Cymry" is a case of zeal, but not after knowledge. The comparison is unreason- able, and betrays ignorance. If he must be compared to an English poet, Samuel But- Jer, the author of Hudibras," would be more to the point, although this compari- son must not be carried too faT In ac- counting for THE MORAL AND RELIGIOUS CHAXGE that has come over Wales during the last hundred years a place must be allowed for Twm o'r Xant. It was not his lot to pro- phecy smooth things to his fellow-country- men, but to call their attention to their weak points with a view of weaning them from them. The meeting was well attended, and was presided over by Dr. Emrys Jones.

----.---The Fred W. Jones'…

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