Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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FRANCIS , GRIFFITH ( 1876 - 1936 ) and OWEN ( 1879 - 1936 ), known as ‘ Y Brodyr Francis ’ (‘ The Francis Brothers ’), musicians ,

b. at Bryn-y-wern , Cwm Pennant, Caerns. Griffith in Dec. 1876 and Owen on 15 June 1879 , the sons of William and Mary Francis . Their father, who was a good musician , was an official in Moelfre quarry ; their mother ‘ Mair Alaw ,’ singer , was a native of Nantlle . The brothers became quarrymen . Griffith , who was a poet , published Telyn Eryri , containing poems dealing with the lives of quarrymen and smallholders ; he collected material for another book but that was not published. Owen was a musician who wrote some songs. Much work by the brothers appeared in the columns of Y Genedl Gymreig and periodicals. In the early days of radio they took part in the first Welsh concert broadcast from Dublin ; they took part in some hundreds of concerts . The two always sang together and both died in the same year — Owen on 6 April 1936 (he was buried in Salem chapel burial ground, Llanllyfni ) and Griffith on 15 June 1936 (he was buried in Macpela chapel burial ground , Pen-y-groes ).


  • Y Cerddor , Aug. 1936 ;
  • notices in issues of Y Genedl Gymreig and Baner ac Amserau Cymru , 1936 .


Robert David Griffith, M.A., (1877-1958), Old Colwyn

Published date: 1959