Dictionary of Welsh Biography


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EVANS , JOHN (‘ I. D. Ffraid ’ or ‘ Adda Jones ’; 1814 - 1875 ), Calvinistic Methodist minister and author .

Born at Llansantffraid Glan Conwy , 23 July 1814 . He attended Thomas Lloyd 's school at Abergele for a few months in 1824 , and in 1830 went for a short time to John Hughes 's school at Wrexham . He began work in his uncle's shop at Glan Conwy when he was 11 years of age, where, apart from his term at Wrexham , he remained his whole life. He acquired control of four other concerns — a nail factory, a sawmill, a watermill, and another shop. He m. in 1836 and had six children. His wife d. in 1850 and he m. again in 1853 . At the age of 16 he wrote Hanes yr Iddewon ( Llanrwst , 1831 ). He was the editor and part author of Difyrwch Bechgyn Glannau Conwy ( Llanrwst , 1835 ). He produced Geiriadur Saesneg-Cymraeg , which included a glossary of herbs ( Llanrwst , 1847 ), and wrote Pennau Teuluoedd a'r Ysgol Sabothol ( Denbigh , 1870 ). He became celebrated as a translator ; his masterpiece was a translation of Paradise Lost ( Coll Gwynfa , Wrexham , 1865 ), but he also translated The Life of Dick Turpin ( Bywyd Turpin Leidr , Llanrwst , 1835 ), and Young 's Night Thoughts (unpublished; N.L.W. MS. 4757 ). He began to preach in 1840 and was ordained in 1853 , but never took charge of a church. He was in constant demand as an eisteddfod adjudicator , and was one of the chief leaders of the temperance movement in North Wales . He was also an agent of the ‘ Liberation Society .’ He was the author of ‘ Llythyrau Adda Jones ,’ a series of 483 letters which appeared in Baner ac Amserau Cymru from Jan. 1869 to Dec. 1874 . He was presented with a national testimonial in 1869 . He d. 4 March 1875 .

Sources:

  • Y Geninen (Gŵyl Dewi), 1888 , 1-11;
  • essay (manuscript) by O. Gaianydd Williams on John Evans, by courtesy of Miss M. Gaianydd Williams .

Author:

Wilbert Lloyd Roberts, M.A., (1925-96), Llanberis / Bangor

Published date: 1959