Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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WILLIAMS , ELISEUS ( Eifion Wyn ; 1867 - 1926 ), poet .

His parents came from the Eifionydd countryside, but he himself was b. at Portmadoc 2 May 1867 and spent the last thirty years of his life as clerk and accountant in the office of the North Wales Slate Co. in that town. He had been a schoolmaster for a short time — at the Board School , Portmadoc , and at Pentrefoelas . About 1889 he began to preach in Independent chapels but refused all calls to the ministry. In 1907 he m. Ann Jones of Efail Bach , Aber-erch . He wrote a great deal of poetry both in the classical and ‘free’ forms — awdlau , cywyddau , englynion , lyrics, hymns, and satires — and won a number of chairs in local and provincial eisteddfodau , as well as prizes at the national eisteddfod , at which he also acted as an adjudicator . His best known work in the classical form is an awdl , ‘ Y Bugail ’ (the best entry in the opinion of one adjudicator , Tafolog , q.v. , for the chair competition at the Liverpool national eisteddfod , 1900 ), and his host of englynion , many of which were successful at the national eisteddfod. As far as the ‘free’ forms were concerned, his reputation as a lyricist was established by his ‘ Maes a Môr ’ lyrics. He published Ieuenctid y Dydd , 1894 ; Awdl y Bugail , 1900? ; and Telynegion Maes a Mor , 1906 ; Caniadau'r Allt , 1927 , and O Drum i Draeth , 1929 , were posthumously published under the editorship of Harry Edwards of Portmadoc . Eifion Wyn was the author of the words in a children's hymn-book, Tlws y Plant , published at Llanwrtyd , 1906? In 1919 the University of Wales gave him the degree of M.A., honoris causa . His hobbies were fishing , politics ( Liberal ), and billiards . He d. 13 Oct. 1926 at Portmadoc , and was buried in Chwilog cemetery, Eifionydd .


  • Yr Ymwelydd Misol (Wrexham, 1903-14) , March 1912 ;
  • Y Genedl Gymreig , 18 Oct. 1926 ;
  • Yr Herald Cymraeg (a'r Genedl) , 19 and 26 Oct. 1926 ;
  • Baner ac Amserau Cymru , 21 Oct. 1926 ;
  • Yr Athro , June 1935
  • (‘Eifion Wyn a Barddoniaeth Natur,’ D. Myrddin Lloyd ).


Sir Thomas Herbert Parry-Williams, D.Litt., (1887-1975), Aberystwyth

Published date: 1959