Dictionary of Welsh Biography


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DAVIES , HUMFFREY (‘ Wmffre Dafydd ab Ifan ; fl. 1600?-64? ), poet ;

sometimes described as sexton and sometimes as parish clerk of Llanbrynmair, Mont. It is sometimes said that William Phylip (q.v.) wrote his well-known ‘ Cywydd y Bedd ’ after visiting the grave of Wmffre Dafydd at Llanbrynmair ; it is possible, however, that the Llanbrynmair bard survived the author of ‘ Cywydd y Bedd ’ (who d. 1669 ). Richard Williams ( Mont. Worthies ) quotes this record from the parish register of Llanbrynmair : ‘Humphredus filius D. D. Evan sepultus fuit 8vo. die Julii Anno Dom. 1687’ but suggests that this may refer to the burial of some child and that the bard d. before 1663 ; it should, however, be noted that one piece by Wmffre Dafydd may belong to the year 1664 . He began to write c. 1620 (e.g. poems to Dr. John Davies , Mallwyd ). The bulk of his work is of a religious and didactic nature; it is in the form of cywyddau , englynion , carols, etc. He has one poem and about 150 englynion against war.

Sources:

  • Ffoulke Owens , Cerdd-lyfr yr hwn sydd yn cynnwys amryw garolau, a dyrifau o waith amryw awdwyr , Oxford, 1686 , 1686 ;
  • Carolau a Dyriau Duwiol. Neu goreuon gwaith y prydyddion goreu yng Nghymru , 1696 , 1696 ;
  • Bangor Manuscript at University College North Wales Library, Bangor 758;
  • Gwyneddon Manuscript 19;
  • Additional Manuscripts in the British Museum 14873, 14888, 14890, 14987;
  • Cardiff Manuscripts 23, 48, 64, 66, 84;
  • Cwrtmawr Manuscripts at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth 17, 40;
  • Llanstephan MSS. at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth 42, 66;
  • Mostyn MS. at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth 130;
  • NLW MSS 584, 672, 1244, 1580, 5269, 7191, 10249, 13169;
  • Peniarth Manuscripts at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth 153, 195.

Author:

Miss Menai Williams, Wrexham / Bangor

Published date: 1959