Robert Gwynne ( fl. 1578) was probably of the same family, but no record of his origins has as yet come to light.
He procured from his uncle ‘ Hugh Morgan of Hilton ’ — whom Mr. J. M. Cleary plausibly identifies with Hugh Owen — funds for maintaining a Welsh scholar at Rome , by means of which David Lewis (d. 1679 ) , nephew of Fr. Augustine Baker ( 1575 - 1641 ) , was enabled to enter the English College ( 1638 ). In 1618 Gwynne inherited the fortune of Hugh Owen , who had disinherited the heir at law, John Owen the epigrammatist ( 1560? - 1622 ) , because his works were on the papal Index. Gwynne erected a tablet to Owen 's memory in the English College at Rome (text in Arch. Camb. , 1853 , 130-1).
On 2 Aug. 1642 he was given leave of absence by the House and a store of arms for the defence of ‘his home in Wales ,’ but by May 1643 he had become a commissioner of array for Caernarvonshire and a ‘ custos rotulorum ’ for Anglesey , and he attended the Oxford Parliament in Jan. 1644 , when he was also admitted to the degree of D.C.L. there. When the Oxford Parliament adjourned in July, Bodvel took his family to Caerfryn , serving as governor of Caernarvon castle from March 1646 ( N.L.W. Brogyntyn Coll. , unscheduled letter from Lord Byron to Bodvel and others 13 March 1646 ), helping as colonel and commissioner of array both in the defence of the island and in the negotiations for its surrender in July 1646 .
His estates were sequestered in Nov. 1647 , and he incurred further fines by supporting the Royalist rising of 1648 in Anglesey . He appears to have fled abroad on the king's execution , and on his return his name was included in the Act of 1651 for the sale of delinquents’ estates, but the sales were quashed in 1652 and he was finally cleared of delinquency in April 1655 .
In 1657 his wife, a strong Puritan who had already ( 1646 ), appealed to the Lords for the removal of their children from the father's custody on the ground of his bad example, arranged without his consent a marriage between their second daughter and Robert , son of the Cornish lord Robartes , a wealthy Presbyterian and former Roundhead field-marshal . Bodvel , after refusing to recognize the match, relented after the restoration and stood godfather to his second grandson Charles Bodvel Robartes , promising to make him his heir and to give him a Welsh education. But his distant cousin Thomas Wynn of Boduan (d. 1673 ) — grandson of the Thomas Wynn named above (see Charles Gwynne , 1582 - 1647 ) and ancestor of the first lord Newborough — had long been intriguing for the succession to the Bodvel estates , and he now got Bodvel into his power by poisoning him against his family and hiding him from importunate creditors in the slums of London , where, in the extremity of squalor and sickness of body and mind, he made a new will ( 1662 ), leaving his estates to Wynne 's son Griffith (who assumed the name of Bodvel) and another distant cousin.
After his death ( March 1663 ) lord Robartes and his son contested the will in Chancery and the House of Lords , eventually ( 1666 ) obtaining an Act of Parliament which set it aside in favour of CHARLES BODVEL ROBARTES ( 1660 - 1697 ), who on the death of his paternal grandfather (created earl of Radnor 1685 ) succeeded, owing to the prior death of his elder brother, as 2nd earl of Radnor . During his minority Bodvel House was licensed under the Declaration of Indulgence ( 1672 ) for Independent worship and was for a time the residence of James Owen ( 1654 - 1706 ) . Overtures for a marriage into the Gwydir family broke down when he was 19 ( 1679 ). On his father's death in 1682 he succeeded him as mayor of Caernarvon and constable of the castle ; but after succeeding to the earldom he disposed of his Welsh estates, discharging his Welsh offices (with that of chief forester of Snowdon , 1692 ) by proxy, and living in London , where he became the close friend of Dean Swift .
Emeritus Professor Arthur Herbert Dodd, M.A., (1891-1975), Bangor
Published date: 1959