Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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DAVIES , EDWARD ( Iolo Trefaldwyn ; 1819 - 1887 ), poet and eisteddfodwr .

Born at Moel-y-frochas , near Llanfyllin, Mont. His parents were the first members of the Calvinistic Methodist society at Rhos-y-brithdir . He received a smattering of education at the school kept by Morris Davies ( 1796 - 1876 ) (q.v.) at Llanfyllin , but was forced to leave to work on the land at home. He soon left the farm, however, and obtained employment first at Llangynog quarry and then at the Rhyd-y-mwyn lead works . Then, for a time, he was a coal merchant in Liverpool , but this venture failed. He now settled in Wrexham , where he became traveller for a firm of Scottish publishers . He was a faithful frequenter of eisteddfodau and a regular competitor — too regular, indeed, to produce any work of real merit. In 1870 he won the chair at the Liverpool Gordofigion eisteddfod for his pryddest ‘ Goleuni ’ (Light). There was considerable demand for his services at local eisteddfodau and competitive meetings as adjudicator , reciter , and singer of penillion . Shortly before his death he published a book of verse, Caneuon Iolo Trefaldwyn . He could turn out an excellent englyn and was one of the best epitaph writers of his day. He was for twenty-one years precentor of Zion C.M. chapel , Wrexham . He d. 4 Jan. 1887 and was buried in the new cemetery at Wrexham .


  • R. Williams , Montgomeryshire Worthies (1894) , 36;
  • Cymru (O.M.E.) , iii, 269;
  • Bye–Gones, relating to Wales and the Border Counties , 1887 .


Dr Enid Pierce Roberts, M.A., D.Litt., Bangor

Published date: 1959