Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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GRIFFITHS , WILLIAM ALONZO ( 1842 - 1893 ), Independent minister, hymn-writer and hymnologist ;

b. in 1842 at Pontargothi, Carms. , where, in Siloam chapel , he began to preach . He went to Carmarthen Presbyterian College in 1863 , was ordained minister of Abersychan in 1867 , and four years later moved to Shepherds Bush , London . He returned to Wales in 1875 and settled at Narberth whence he moved in 1886 to Sketty , Swansea . There he d. 7 Dec. 1893 . He wrote both in English and in Welsh . An English book, Sermons preached in London , attracted considerable attention at the time, and many of his sermons were published in various numbers of the Homilist . He was the first to publish a book on the Welsh hymnwriters , Hanes Emynwyr Cymru — a useful reference book in spite of its shortcomings. He wrote a great number of hymns and translated several; one of his translations from the German finds a place in Y Caniedydd Cynulleidfaol Newydd .


  • Oriel Coleg Caerfyrddin (1909) , 108;
  • A History of Carmarthenshire , ii, 428.


Reverend Richard Griffith Owen, M.A., (1890-1973), Bangor

Published date: 1959