Dictionary of Welsh Biography

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SKENE , WILLIAM FORBES ( 1809 - 1892 ), Scottish historian and Celtic scholar ;

b. 7 June 1809 at Irvine , Inverness-shire , and d. 29 Aug. 1892 in Edinburgh . In 1868 he published The Four Ancient Books of Wales , containing Welsh verse from ‘ The Book of Aneirin ’, ‘ The Book of Taliesin ’, ‘ The Black Book of Carmarthen ’, and part of ‘ The Red Book of Hergest ’; the verse was translated for him by D. Silvan Evans and Robert Williams ( DWB , 223-4 and 1067-8). This work was an attempt at separating the historical element from the imagined and fictitious in old Welsh poetry.


  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography


Thomas Isfryn Jones, Aberystwyth

Published date: 2001