John Williams (Ab Ithel)

John Williams (Ab Ithel)

John Williams (Ab Ithel)

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John Williams (bardic name: Ab Ithel) (1811–27 August 1862), was an antiquary and Anglican priest. Born in Llangynhafal, Denbighshire Wales in 1811, he graduated from Jesus College, Oxford in 1835 to become the Anglican curate of Llanfor, Merionethshire, where he married Elizabeth Lloyd Williams. In 1843 he became perpetual curate of Nercwys, Flintshire, and rector of Llanymawddwy, Merionethshire, in 1849.

Writing career

For much of his early life he adopted the pseudonym Cynhaval, after his birthplace in Llangynhafal, Denbighshire, however took the pseudonym Ab Ithel from the surname of his grandfather, William Bethell. His first book entitled The Church of England independent of the Church of Rome in all ages, concerned the relationship between the Church of England and Rome. This book was published in 1836. It was followed by another in 1844 on the ecclesiastical antiquities of Wales entitled Ecclesiastical Antiquities of the Cymry or The Ancient British Church. In 1856 Archdeacon Williams produced Rules of Welsh Poetry and Medical Practice of Rhinwallon and his Sons with the Welsh MSS. Society. By 1860 he had two more pieces of work ready for publication; Chronicle of the Princes, and Annales Cambriae were both published in Rolls series.

Williams was industrious both as a parish priest and as an antiquary. He was regarded by many of his contemporaries as one of the leading Welsh scholars of his day, and was able to exert a considerable and decidedly...
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