Dictionary of Welsh Biography


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JONES , JOHN ROBERT ( Alltud Glyn Maelor ; 1800 - 1881 ), poet and hymn-writer ;

b. at Llanarmon-yn-Iâl in 1800 , a kinsman of Ehedydd Iâl ( William Jones , 1815 - 1899 , q.v.) , and by trade, almost throughout his life, a shoemaker . After his marriage (of which six sons were born), he lived at Cefn Mawr ; in 1827 he joined the Baptists . In 1834 he moved to Brymbo , where he spent the rest of his days; a Baptist congregation was incorporated at his house in 1836 , and it was for that occasion that he wrote the most famous of his hymns. His health and circumstances deteriorated in his last years, but he was given light employment in the Brymbo iron-works . He d. 11 May 1881 . He wrote a good deal for denominational periodicals , and two books of his were published, Y Fodrwy Arian , 1877 , and Y Rhosyn Diweddaf , 1889 (posthumously). There are also elegies by him on Christmas Evans (q.v.) and on John Williams ( 1806 - 1856 ) (q.v.) , besides many carols and a great quantity of light verse on humorous subjects. He had the quaint habit of publishing his hymns in the form of printed cards , which he sold for a penny or two. One of his sons, William Jones ( 1834 - 1895 ) of Fishguard , is separately noticed.

Sources:

  • E. K. Jones in Trafodion Cymdeithas Hanes Bedyddwyr Cymru , 1942 , 33-44.

Author:

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

Published date: 1959