Obviously Jones was not a success as a pastor . Nor, indeed — so many irons had he in the fire — did he make a financial success of his publishing business, despite his indefatigable industry. But he accomplished much, and rendered very great service. He was an out-and-out Radical , with a passion for diffusing knowledge of all kinds (especially in theology and politics) among his countrymen. Only a few of his numerous publications can be named here. At Caernarvon he had a hand in Caledfryn 's periodical Y Seren Ogleddol , and began to publish the Welsh Biblical Dictionary by William Jones ( 1784 - 1847 ) (q.v.) of Bridgend . At Merthyr Tydfil , as has been mentioned, he published a Radical newspaper . At Cowbridge he finished publishing the Biblical Dictionary , and started the periodicals Yr Odydd and Y Gwron Cymreig . He kept up the Gwron at Carmarthen , and published there also a number of books, of which his Daearyddiaeth Ysgrythyrol (Scripture Geography) was one. Most fruitful of all was his Aberdare period; there he published Y Gweithiwr and The Aberdare Times , and a good number of books. The most famous of the latter is the two-volume biographical dictionary Y Geiriadur Bywgraffyddol ( 1867 , 1870 ), much of which he himself wrote. It is not only uneven in execution but chaotic in arrangement — true, it is ‘alphabetical’ in the sense that all its ‘Joneses’ are under ‘J’, but they follow each other without the slightest regard to alphabetical order, and the work has no index. Still, the book is invaluable, and contributors to the present work owe much to it. It is the largest of all Welsh biographical dictionaries, and contains articles on a good many people who figure in no other dictionary (not, for example, in the present work), but concerning whom a student may well want information.
Some very well known Welsh littérateurs from time to time worked in J. T. Jones 's printing offices; Iago ap Dewi and Cawrdaf (qq.v.) may serve as examples. [ David Griffiths ( 1756 - 1834 ) (q.v.) of Nevern was J. T. Jones 's uncle.]
Emeritus Professor Robert Thomas Jenkins, C.B.E., D.Litt., Ll.D., F.S.A., (1881-1969), Bangor
Published date: 1959