Llwyd, Gruffydd (fl.1322) (DNB00)

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LLWYD, Sir GRUFFYDD (fl. 1322), Welsh hero, is said to have been a son of Rhys, the son of Ednyved Vychan [q. v.], and to have been knighted by Edward I for bringing to him at Rhuddlan news of the birth of his son Edward at Carnarvon in 1284. According to the popular story, Gruffydd, after living long on good terms with the English, grew disgusted with their oppressions, and treated with Edward Bruce (d. 1318) [q. v.] in Ireland. This must have been before 1318, the year of Edward Bruce's death, but the story seems to put it in 1322. Failing in his negotiations with Bruce, Gruffydd rose in revolt, but was defeated by a great English army and taken prisoner and shut up in Rhuddlan Castle. This fact is proved by two poems addressed to him by Gwilym Ddu the bard (Stephens, Literature of the Kymry, pp. 443-9; Myvyrian Archaiology of Wales, pp. 276-6). Gwilym Ddu laments, in the usual exaggerated terms, the captivity of his chief. 'The summer is comfortless,' 'our country looks like Lent,' because of the imprisonment of the 'lion of Trevgarnedd.' Trevgarnedd in Anglesey was the name of Gruffydd's home, and the owners up to 1750 claimed descent from him. There is no further record of him, but he is an important figure with the later genealogists. The absence of any reference to him in the English authorities makes it probable that his political importance has been exaggerated by his panegyrists.

[Williams's Eminent Welshmen, pp. 290-1, summarises the ordinary account; other authorities are referred to in the text]

T. F. T.