Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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EVANS , WILLIAM ( Cawr Cynon ; 1808 - 1860 ); colliery official and poet ,

b. in a small thatched cottage near Ynys-gau iron bridge , Merthyr Tydfil , son of Richard Morgan Dafydd Evan , miner and country ‘doctor.’ He became a miner , but devoted his spare time to studying the cynganeddion , and at an early age, won a prize for five englynion . He was a frequent competitor at the local eisteddfodau writing cywyddau and englynion ; he won a prize for an essay on the history of Caerleon-on-Usk at Abergavenny eisteddfod , 23 Nov. 1836 . A poem written on the birth of a son to Sir John and lady Charlotte Guest (q.v.) won him the admiration of lady Charlotte , and a post as foreman in the Dowlais works . He lived for a time at Hirwaun , and it was while there that he adopted the bardic title of Cawr Cynon . He returned to Dowlais , and later became the ‘ mine agent ’ at the Plymouth works for Anthony Hill (see the article on that family). He d. 15 Nov. 1860 , and was buried in Cefn Coed cemetery.


  • C. Wilkins , The history of Merthyr Tydfil (Merthyr Tydfil, 1867) , 1867 ;
  • Merthyr Star and Cardiff and Merthyr Guardian , Nov. 1860 ;
  • Y Greal sef Cylchgrawn Misol at wasanaeth y Bedyddwyr , 1860 , 285;
  • Tarian y Gweithiwr (Aberdâr) , 18 and 25 Dec. 1924 ;
  • Seren Gomer , April and Dec. 1837 .


Watkin William Price, M.A., (1873-1967), Aberdare

Published date: 1959