Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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DAVIES , DAVID (d. 1807 ), editor of Y Geirgrawn , Independent minister ;

a native, it would seem, of Llanybydder, Carms. He went to the Academy (then at Swansea ) in 1786 , but in 1787 was ordained pastor of the churches of Capel Sul ( Kidwelly ) and Pen-y-graig . In 1790 he moved to Holywell , and was there till 1800 . There he brought out a magazine, Y Geirgrawn (nine numbers, Feb. — Oct. 1796 ), in succession to the Cylchgrawn of Morgan John Rhys (q.v.) . It was pronouncedly Radical in its views (in it, e.g., was printed a Welsh version of the ‘ Marseillaise ’), and Thomas Roberts of Llwyn-‘rhudol ( 1765 - 1841 ) (q.v.) avers that Davies incurred considerable danger at the hands of the authorities. It may be that these views of his upset his congregation too, for letters in the library of the University College of North Wales ( Scorpion MSS. ) speak of ‘unhappy misunderstandings’ which ‘went on for years’ between Davies and his people, and note that ‘the Cause was dwindling very fast.’ We know nothing about him between 1800 and 1802 , when he removed to Welshpool , and thence ( 1803 ) to Stoneway church in Bridgnorth — a church which had a whole series of Welsh pastors. There, he lived in a house called Bridgen Hall , where he also kept school . He was very well thought of at Bridgnorth ; he d. there in 1807 , and was buried within the chapel.


  • Hanes Eglwysi Annibynnol Cymru , i, 373, iii, 443, 470, iv, 219;
  • Elliot , Congregationalism in Shropshire (1898) , 76;
  • R. T. Jenkins , Hanes Cymru yn y Bedwaredd Ganrif ar Bymtheg, Volume 1, 1789-1843 (Cardiff, 1933) , 1933 , 25-7.


Emeritus Professor Robert Thomas Jenkins, C.B.E., D.Litt., Ll.D., F.S.A., (1881-1969), Bangor

Published date: 1959