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Owen, Robert, Sir, 1658-1698
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Barddoniaeth a rhyddiaith,

  • Brogyntyn MS II.55 [RESTRICTED ACCESS].
  • File
  • [late 16 cent.]-[18 cent., first ½].
  • Part of Brogyntyn manuscripts

A composite manuscript of loose papers and fragments of manuscript volumes. It contains poetry and prose, mostly in Welsh, much of the poetry being addressed to the Owen family of Brogyntyn and Clenennau and other related families. Apart from a late-sixteenth century awdl by Wiliam Llŷn (ff. 57-58), the other items all belong between the first half of the seventeenth century and the first half of the eighteenth century.
Fragments apparently once part of books, some of which perhaps were never bound, are: a narrow folio of cywyddau and englynion by Mathew Owen, in the hand of Nathanael Jones (ff. 20-26), written not before 1656 (see ff. 24 verso-25), with autograph englynion added by Harri Howel (f. 20 verso) and by Nathanael Jones (f. 20 verso, 23); a folio manuscript containing cywyddau to Lewis Anwyl of Parc and his family, dated 1627-1636 (ff. 38-55), written by two good hands of the first half of the seventeenth century, one responsible for ff. 38-50 verso, the other ff. 51-55; a quarto manuscript with transcripts of poetry of the Gogynfeirdd (ff. 113-122; paginated 1-20), by a seventeenth-century hand similar to that of Morris Evans (cf. ff. 93-94, 123-141); pedigrees of Welsh royal lines, the Maurices of Clenennau, etc., in English (ff. 123-141; original foliation 1-12 survives), in the hand of Morris Evans (ff. 123-127 verso, 129-134 verso) and a second hand (ff. 128 recto-verso, 135-141); a narrow folio of canu brud attributed to Myrddin, Taliesin, etc. (ff. 178-186), written by Nathanael Jones, not before 1651 (ff. 182 verso, 183 verso 'aetatis suae a 21o Feb: 1650 27'); a folio manuscript of canu brud, mainly cywyddau, by Dafydd Llwyd and others (ff. 189-207), in a poor hand of the mid seventeenth century, probably that of Thomas Edwards to judge by pentrials on f. 196 verso, who refers to Tregeiriog (f. 199 verso) and 'Llanfylling fairings' (f. 207 verso); an octavo manuscript containing poems by Robin Clidro, etc., in a seventeenth or eighteenth century hand (ff. 210-219); and a folio manuscript of autograph cywyddau and englynion by Huw Morys, some addressed to William Owen and Sir Robert Owen (ff. 222-226 verso). Poetry written on loose papers includes autograph poems by Huw Morys (ff. 12-18), John Owens (ff. 59-71; f. 69 recto-verso may be his italic hand), Harri Howel (ff. 75-76 verso, 90 recto-verso), Owen Gruffydd (ff. 84-89, 230-231), William Phylip (ff. 97-98 verso), John Morgan, later vicar of Conwy (f. 101 recto-verso, the poem incomplete and anonymous, dated 1688, the hand his), Siôn Rhydderch, 1732 (ff. 104-105, 227-228), and Edward Lloyd, Brewis (f. 221 recto-verso). There are probable autograph poems by Edward Rowlant (ff. 72-74 verso, 79-80) and John Richard (f. 81), and possible autograph poems by 'J. Ll.' (f. 26 verso), Mathew Owen (ff. 77-78, 232 recto-verso), Siôn Roberts (ff. 91-92), Huw Cadwaladr (ff. 106-108) and 'R.C.' (f. 163). Other poetry is in the hands of Morris Evans (ff. 93-94) and 'Theo: Ro:' (ff. 152-154 verso). Also included is a letter, 1652, from the antiquary Meredith Lloyd to Thomas Vaughan, the alchemist and poet (ff. 1-3 verso), followed by a copy of Hanes Taliesin (ff. 5-10 verso). The 'Cywydd Marwnad i Mr William Owen o Borkynton' by Huw Morys, beginning 'Mae gwaedd oer lem Gweddw [yw'r wlad]', discussed in E. D. Jones, 'The Brogyntyn Welsh Manuscripts', National Library of Wales Journal, 7 (1951-2), 165-198 (pp. 186-189, 196-197), has not been found.

Barddoniaeth a rhyddiaith,

A volume containing Welsh poetry, mostly in strict metre (pp. 1-433), together with some prose items, including recipes for making inks and baits for catching trout (pp. xvii-xviii), a short Welsh vocabulary (pp. xix-xxii), descriptions of the coats of arms of Welsh families (pp. 444-454) and the names of the Fifteen Tribes of Gwynedd (pp. 454-456), written in a late-seventeenth century hand.
Many of the sixteenth- and seventeenth-century poems are addressed to members of the families of Owen of Clenennau and Brogyntyn and Wynn of Glyn and Ystumcegid: the manuscript was probably compiled for Elizabeth Wynn of Glyn and Ystumcegid or for her daughter Margaret Wynn shortly after the latter's marriage in 1683 to Sir Robert Owen of Clenennau and Brogyntyn (see pp. 23-25). An index to the poems is supplied by the scribe on pp. 434-443. Poetry in more than one hand has been added between c. 1691 and c. 1713 on pp. vii, 457-476, 484-485, 489-510, including elegies to Sir Robert Owen by Huw Morys (pp. 468-471) and to his sister-in-law Mrs Catherine Pennant by David Davies (p. 473), and a poem in free metre, dated 1713, probably by Dafydd Williams, Rhuthun (p. vii).

Clenennau Letters and Papers,

Letters exchanged between members of the Maurice and Owen families of Clenennau and Brogyntyn, and other correspondence from friends or associates in Wales and England, together with a number of important official documents deriving from county administration in Caernarfonshire during the Tudor and Stuart periods, 1485, 1573-1698. Many of the early letters and papers, 1580-1622, relate to the joint deputy lieutenancy in Caernarfonshire of Sir William Maurice and Sir John Wynn, showing their preoccupation with the raising and organisation of militia troops for the defence of Caernarfonshire and for despatch to Ireland. Other topics include Sir William Maurice's position as deputy vice-admiral of North Wales and the protracted civil lawsuits in which he was engaged. The collection also constitutes an important historical source for the conduct of the Civil War in North Wales. Items from that period primarily concern Sir John Owen and his brother, Col. William Owen, Royalist commanders at Conwy and Harlech respectively, and their subsequent treatment under the Commonwealth and Restoration, 1643-1666. Many of the letters from 1678 to 1698 reveal the life of Sir Robert Owen, his debts, estate business, cultural interests and attachment to the Jacobite cause, together with contemporary political news. Apart from individuals already mentioned, prominent correspondents include the Privy Council of Elizabeth I, mostly through Henry Herbert, President of the Council in the Marches of Wales, 1587-1600; Sir Henry Johnes of Abermarlais, 1605-1616; Ralph, Lord Eure, 1607-1617; members of the Brynker family, 1603-1681; the Wynn family of Glyn and Sylfaen, 1625-1697; the Anwyl family of Park, 1636-1693; Charles I, Prince Rupert and Prince Maurice, 1642-1647; Lord Byron, 1644-1648; John Williams, Archbishop of York, 1645-1646; George Twisleton, 1649-1660; the Godolphin family of Abertanat, 1658-1698; John Gadbury, 1679-1688; and Edward Lhuyd, 1696-1697.

Maurice, William, Sir, 1542-1622.

Legal papers,

Legal papers, 1410-1834, which include writs, bills of complaint, defendants' answers, breviates, court orders, cases with opinions of counsel, affidavits, interrogatories and depositions of witnesses, jury lists, copies and abstracts of deeds, lawyers' accounts, pedigrees to prove title and notes on legal procedure.
A large part of the records comprises disputes over title to land, inheritance or debt in North Wales and Shropshire, which took place in the High Court of Chancery, the Court of the Exchequer, the Court of King 's Bench or the Council in the Marches of Wales, or which were treated as equity cases in the Court of Great Sessions. The most substantial of them concern Sir William Maurice 's quarrels with the Ellis family of Ystumllyn over the title to lands in Gest, [c.1597]-1620; his financial disputes with his step-son, Sir Henry Johnes of Abermarlais, 1611-1620; and Sir Robert Owen 's disputes with Col. William Price of Rhiwlas over the title to lands in Rhedynogfelen and Gest, 1679-1694. A number of the cases provide information about the distribution of both freehold properties and leasehold crown lands in Eifionydd, Caernarfonshire, during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Several other files contain papers relating to the Flintshire estates of the Conway family of Nant, dated from around 1540 to 1633; boundary disputes and trespasses in Merionethshire, 1587-1749; property of the Wynn family of Glyn, 1587-1686; the indebted estate of Sir Robert Owen, 1698-1705; and the illicit activities of William Owen 's agents on the Caernarfonshire and Merionethshire estates, 1733-1754.

Maurice, William, Sir, 1542-1622.

Letter books,

A letter book of Edward Lloyd of Llanforda, 1680, containing copies of outgoing correspondence to family members, Sir John Trevor, Sir Robert Owen, John Gadbury, Sir William Williams, and other acqaintances in London and Shropshire, relating to financial, legal and estate matters, horticulture, political and religious disputes of the Stuart period, publishing, domestic arrangements and personal affairs; there are occasional remarks on the activities of his son, 'Neddy' [Edward Lhuyd]. The letters include several scathing responses to a scurrilous attack on the author 's character, involving a Betty Rawson and her associates, which resulted in the publication of a retaliatory pamphlet entitled 'The Westminster Jilt'. The file also contains the empty cover of a letter book of Sir Robert Owen, inscribed 1702 by his daughter, later owned by William Owen and Robert Godolphin Owen.

Letters to Sir Robert Owen,

Letters to Sir Robert Owen, 1681-1697, notably from William Price of Rhiwlas on a dispute over title to lands in Gest, [1682x1687]; George Twisleton on reports of an attack on Anglesey by Irish rebels, 1688; and John Wynn of Melai soliciting political support for his nephew, Griffith Nanney, 1680. Further correspondents include William Lloyd, bishop of St Asaph, Edward Samuel (in Latin), 1693, and others on personal matters; a financial agreement with Catherine Anwill and settlement of the Cemais estate, [1689x1698]; the introduction of stamp duty, 1694; litigation relating to lands in Oswestry and Brithdir Mawr, 1681-1682; parliamentary news, 1691; loyalty to the Crown; anti-Catholic riots and imprisonment of the earls of Salisbury and Peterborough, [c. 1688].

Lloyd, William, 1627-1717.

Manuscript newsletters,

Manuscript London newsletters from John Gadbury and others, 1676-1710, addressed mainly to Sir Robert Owen, which strongly reflect the government, politics and society of the Stuart period. Recurrent topics are the relations between the Stuart monarchs and Parliament; proceedings of Parliament and government departments; English election results; events at the royal court; the establishment of Protestantism; antipathy towards Catholics and Protestant dissenters; political conspiracies; foreign affairs in Europe; British overseas trade and colonisation; local government in London; City gossip and Oxford University news. Items of specific interest include the murder of Sir Edmund Berry [Godfrey], 1679; rebellion of the Scottish Covenanters, 1679; the Titus Oates plot and its repercussions, 1679-1685; the trial of Lord Stafford, 1680; the Rye House Plot, 1683; the formation of a mounted bodyguard for Charles II, 1683; effects of Quo Warranto, 1683, and subsequent restoration of London and other corporation charters, 1688; the Austro-Turkish War, 1683-1691; the controversial electorship of Cologne, 1688; a protest by seven bishops against the Declaration of Indulgence, 1688; the abdication of James II and accession of William and Mary, 1688-1689; reviews of revenue and excise, 1688-1689; abolition of the Council of the Marches of Wales, 1688-1689; Jacobite rebellions in Ireland and Scotland, 1688-1691; War of the Grand Alliance, 1688-1697; the papal successsion, 1689; government of the Scottish Church, 1689; the suicide of Lord Teviot, 1694; the War of Spanish Succession, 1710; and activities of Dr Sacheverell, 1710.

Gadbury, John, 1627-1704.

Miscellaneous correspondence : Wynn family and others

Letters of various individuals connected to the families of Maurice, Owen, Ormsby-Gore and Godolphin through marriage, friendship or business and a small number of items where neither the author nor the recipient can be identified, 1582-1933.
They comprise letters to, from or about the Wynn family of Glyn, 1596-1690 (whose correspondents include Hugh Pennant, [c. 1663]), Anne Jones of Clenennau, 1679-1695, Rowlands of Nant, [1680s], Glynne of Eleirnion, [1680s]-1703, Humphrey Humphreys, 1700, Waller [of Castletown], 1706-1710, James Brynker, 1724, John Egerton, 1756, Edward Lloyd of Llanforda, 1680, the Seymour family, 1831-1868, Frank Weston, 1914, and others, 1582-1933. Topics include threats of invasions by the Spanish 1596, and the French, 1743; genealogies of Glynne of Glynllifon, [1605] and Gore, 1912; collection of the ship mise in Merionethshire, 1618; Sir Robert Owen 's dispute with Col. William Price of Rhiwlas over land in Gest, 1679-[c. 1694]; estate business of Margaret Lloyd of Cesail Gyfarch, 1729; claims on the estates of Richard Clayton, 1735, and of Robert Godolphin Owen, 1793; church administration in Llanyblodwel and elsewhere, [1730s?], 1756, 1868, 1914; parliamentary elections in Montgomeryshire, 1774 and Leitrim, 1874; the compulsory purchase of Oswestry Corporation property for improving access to London Bridge, 1831; complaints about the Shrewsbury and Hereford Railway, 1854; the Crimean War, 1855; First World War action against the Turks, 1918; and other items of national and international news. - - - The Stuart correspondence (mainly copies) includes James I to Sir George Calvert on the priveleges of the House of Commons, 1621; the Covenanters to the Earl of Essex, 1639; Sir William Temple to the Countess of Essex on the death of her daughter, [pre-1699]; and others, on the Oath of Allegiance, [1606], the rebellion and conquest of Ireland, 1649-1652, and the character of Sir George Jeffreys, 1680.

Pennant, Hugh, d. 1669.

Papers relating to the affairs of Sir Robert Owen of Porkington

Papers relating to the affairs of Sir Roberts[?] Owen of Porkington:
(a) List of contributors towards erecting a Hall and gaol at Krikieth; and a list of subscribers who did not pay, 1694 ;
(b) Statement by Bishop Humphreys on the arrest (and the consequent alarm of his creditors) of Sir Robert Owen, at the instance of a papist agent, when he was to appear as witness against one Gethin, a convert to popery, who had said in his presence that the Princess of Orange and Princess Anne were illegitimate, [n.d.];
(c) Case of Lady Owen in respect of a House and Garden with a Prothonotary's Office and room to keep the Records of the Counties of Northwales in the town of Carnarvon adjoining to the Shire Hall, which was in the possession of Sr Robert Owen of Porkington, Knight, and is claimed by the Justices of the Peace for co. Caernarvon, [n.d.];
(d) 1. Thomas Webb of Kensington, Middlesex; 2. The Rt Rev. Father in God Humfrey, Lord Bishop of Bangor. Assignment of a judgement and a bond against Sir Robert Owen of Porkington. Counterpart. 1701, July 29;
(e) Declaration by Bishop Humphreys that the money mentioned as paid by him in (d) was the money of Dame Margaret Owen of Porkington, Shropshire, widow, 1703/4, Feb. 1;
(f) Draft of a letter of attorney from Sir Robert Owen to William Griffith of Reiniog, co. Carnarvon, [n.d.];
(g) Miscellaneous rough accounts, largely in the hand of Bishop Humphreys, relating to Lady Owen's estate.