Dictionary of Welsh Biography


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JONES , EDWARD ( fl. 1781-1840 ), member (from 1781, not 1771 as D.N.B. says) of the London Gwyneddigion , and known to his fellows as ‘ Ned Môn ’ —

he was secretary in 1782 , president in 1785 , and life-member of council; as his nickname implies, he hailed from Anglesey . Though he was generally spoken of as ‘ Jones of the Temple ,’ his name appears in no register of any Inn of Court , and it seems more probable that he was a lawyer's clerk — so also Robert Hughes ( 1744 - 1785 ) (q.v.) , known to have been a clerk , is described as ‘of the Temple .’ Gwilym Lleyn ( Llyfryddiaeth ) attributes three books to him: an English translation of two of Cicero 's treatises ( 1776 ), Cyfreithiau Plwyf , on the duties of parish officers ( 1794 ), and a two-volume Index to Records … of the Exchequer ( 1793 and 1795 ) ‘by Edward Jones , Inner Temple .’ One may doubt whether the first and third of these works are by our man [yet it should be noted that Leathart (q.v.) . in a letter of 1840 , says that Jones ‘ is the author of some law works ’.] Little is said about Jones in Leathart 's book on the Gwyneddigion , though on p. 31 he has an amusing account of a squabble between him and David Samwell (q.v.) . W.O. Pughe (q.v.) described him to Leathart as ‘a prominent orator,’ and David Samwell ( Trans. Cymm. , 1926-7 , 130) recounts his participation in a political debate in the Caradogion Society . When Leathart 's book was published ( 1831 ), Jones was living in Paris , and was the oldest living member of the Gwyneddigion ; [in the letter mentioned above, Leathart describes him as ‘ so advanced in years that we can say nothing more to him than ask his health ’]. His help (and that of his brother Owen ) is acknowledged in the preface to the 1789 Dafydd ap Gwilym . He had two brothers, OWEN (‘ Owain Môn ’ and ‘ Cor y Cyrtie ’ — a nickname which may indicate that he, too, was a lawyer's clerk ), who was secretary ( 1789 ), vice-president ( 1792 ), and president ( 1793 ) of the Gwyneddigion , but was dead when Leathart wrote his book, and WILLIAM (‘ Bardd Môn ’), who d. in July 1820 ( Leathart , op. cit., 57) — William was a member of the Cymreigyddion Society , and had been president ( Y Llenor , 1938 , 231).

Sources:

  • Leathart , op. cit.;
  • [his letter of 1840 was communicated by Miss Rhiannon Francis Roberts of N.L.W.].

Author:

Emeritus Professor Robert Thomas Jenkins, C.B.E., D.Litt., Ll.D., F.S.A., (1881-1969), Bangor

Published date: 1959