Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Lloyd, David (1752-1838)

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LLOYD, DAVID (1752–1838), divine and poet, only son of Thomas Lloyd of Trevodick, by Mary, daughter of David James of Little Croscunnon, was born at Croscunnon Llanbister, Radnorshire, on 12 May 1752. Though he had as a boy to work on the paternal farm, he managed to pick up a knowledge of Latin and mathematics from the neighbouring schools, set himself to learn Greek unassisted, and was able in 1771 to establish a small school at Llanbister. His leisure he devoted to preparing himself for the church, and he took holy orders in 1778. He served a curacy at Putley, Herefordshire, from 1785 till 1789, when he became vicar of Llanbister. Here in 1792 he composed a religious poem, in distant imitation of Young, entitled ‘The Voyage of Life,’ in nine books. Encouraged by a critic's commendation of the ‘moral tendency of his muse,’ he dedicated a revised and enlarged edition of this work, ‘with other poems,’ to Thomas Burgess, bishop of St. Davids, in 1812. The title was altered to ‘Characteristics of Men, Manners, and Sentiments, or the Voyage of Life,’ London, 8vo. His only other work was ‘Horæ Theologicæ, or a Series of Essays on Subjects Interesting and Important, embracing Physics, Morals, and Theology,’ London, 1823. Apart from his writings, Lloyd displayed natural abilities as a mechanician and as a musician, devised ‘perpetual motion’ engines, and composed several pieces of music, of which a march, called ‘The Loyal Cambrian Volunteers,’ was published and met with success. Lloyd died at Llanbister, after an incumbency of forty-nine years, on 3 March 1838, leaving 500l. to the Church Missionary Society, of which he had been a zealous supporter (Church Missionary Record, 1839, p. 236). He married in 1779 Mary, daughter of John Griffiths of Leehall, Llangunllo, Radnorshire, and had one son, John, who died in childhood. Mrs. Lloyd died in 1836, aged 89.

[Williams's Eminent Welshmen, p. 281; Gent. Mag. 1838, i. 662–3; Lloyd's works in British Museum.]

T. S.