Jordan, William (DNB00)

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JORDAN, WILLIAM (fl. 1611), Cornish dramatist, lived at Helston in Cornwall, and is supposed to have been the author of the mystery or sacred drama 'Gwreans an Bys, the Creation of the World.' The oldest manuscript is in small folio in the Bodleian Library (N. 219); with it is a later copy: another is in the British Museum (Harl. 1867), together with a translation made by John Keigwin; and a fourth was in 1858 in the possession of John Camden Hotten [q.v.]: a fifth copy, perhaps the same as the fourth, is in the possession of the Marquis of Bute, and a sixth belonged to W.C. Borlase. 'The Creation of the World' was inaccurately edited with Keigwin's translation by Davies Gilbert [q.v.] in 1827. In 1863, Mr. Whitley Stokes published in the 'Transactions' of the Philological Society an edition consisting of a new transcript of Bodleian MS. N. 219, with an original translation and notes. Jordan's name appears at the end of the Bodleian

manuscript, and there can be little doubt that he was the author. The drama is to some extent indebted to the Middle-Cornish drama called 'Origo Mundi,' but many parts are original. There is a modern Breton play on the same subject published in the 'Revue Celtique,' ix. 149, 322, x. 192, 414, xi. 254.

[Edition by Whitley Stokes; Norris's Ancient Cornish Drama; Boase and Courtney's Bibl. Cornub.]

W. A. J. A.