Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 40.djvu/39

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Of the printed pieces attributed to the Nanmors, (1) the Cywydd to the Hair of Llio, daughter of Rhydderch ab Ieuan Llwyd of Gogerddan; (2) that to Llio's brother David; and (3) the elegy upon the bard's dead love (Cymru Fydd, iii. 22–3) appear to belong to the elder Dafydd. A poem referring to the troubles of the Wars of the Roses (‘Cawn o ddau arwydd barlamant cynddeiriog’), printed by Charles Ashton in ‘Cymru,’ ii. 85, is attributed to Rhys, and this seems also the better ascription in the case of the cywydd to Henry of Richmond, ‘when a babe in his cradle in Pembroke Castle’ (1457), which is printed in ‘Brython,’ iv. 221–2. The cywydd to Rhys ab Maredudd of Tywyn, near Cardigan, the ode to the same person and the elegy upon his son Thomas (all printed, with 1 and 2 above, in Gorchestion Beirdd Cymru, 2nd edit., pp. 132–42), must be assigned to the younger Dafydd, who was probably also the author of the poem to Henry VII, printed in the Iolo MSS. 313–5. The fragments of a cywydd to ‘Rhys of Ystrad Tywi,’ given in the introduction to Glanmor's ‘Records of Denbigh’ (pp. vii, viii), do not enable the critic to assign the poem to either Dafydd, and the chronology of the three poets' lives must remain somewhat uncertain, pending the publication of a complete edition of their poems, the great bulk of which are still in manuscript in various collections of mediæval Welsh poetry.

[Gorchestion Beirdd Cymru; Iolo MSS.]

J. E. L.

NANTGLYN, BARDD. [See Davies, Robert, 1769?-1835, Welsh poet.]

NAPIER, Sir ALEXANDER (d. 1473?), second of Merchiston, comptroller of Scotland, was the elder son of Alexander Napier, burgess of Edinburgh and provost of the city in 1437, who made a fortune by his extensive dealings in wool, had money transactions with James I previous to 1433, and as security got a charge over the lands of Merchiston, which were then in the king's hands. In 1436 he secured a charter of these lands, reserving a power of redemption to the king. But the redemption never took place, probably owing to the confusion caused by the king's murder at Perth on 20 Feb. 1436–7 (Exchequer Rolls, iv. and v.). Alexander died about 1454. The son was one of the household of the queen-mother, Jane Beaufort (widow of James I, who afterwards married Sir James Stewart, called the Black Knight of Lorn), and was wounded in assisting to rescue her and her husband when they were captured on 3 Aug. 1439 by Alexander Livingstone and others in Stirling Castle. As a reward for his conduct on this occasion Napier, after the forfeiture of Livingstone, obtained from James II on 7 March 1449–50 the lands of Philde (or Filledy-Fraser), forming part of the lordship of Methven, Perthshire (Reg. Mag. Sig. Scot. 1424–1513, entry 324), and the charter was confirmed to him and his wife Elizabeth, 9 March 1450–1 (ib. entry 425). These lands were again, however, in the possession of the Livingstones before December 1466 (ib. entry 898). After the arrest, on 23 Sept. 1449, of Robert Livingstone, comptroller of the household, Napier succeeded to his office (Exchequer Rolls, v. 369), and he held this office, with occasional intervals, until 7 July 1461. He was one of the ambassadors to England who on 14 Aug. 1451 signed a three years' truce (Rymer, Fœdera, xi. 293; Cal. Documents relating to Scotl. 1357–1509, entry 1139), and took advantage of his visit to London to make a pilgrimage to the tomb of Thomas Becket at Canterbury.

Napier had a charter of the lands of Lindores and Kinloch in the county of Fife, 24 May 1452 (Reg. Mag. Sig. Scot. 1424–1513, entry 565), as security for the sum of 1,000l. advanced by him to the king. In 1452, 1453, 1454, 1456, 1469, and 1470 he was provost of Edinburgh (List of Provosts in Extracts from the Records of the Burgh of Edinburgh, 1403–1528, pp. 258–261, Burgh Record Society's Publications). During his tenure of office the choir of St. Giles's was building, and this may account for his arms appearing over the capital of one of the pillars. On 10 May 1459 Napier, along with the Abbot of Melrose and others, had a safe-conduct from the king of England to go to Scotland and return at pleasure (Cal. Documents relating to Scotland, 1357–1509, entry 1299). He was knighted and made vice-admiral some time before 24 Sept. 1461, when he was appointed one of the ambassadors to the court of England. By commission under the privy seal, 24 Feb. 1464–5, he was appointed one of the searchers of the port and haven of Leith to prevent the exportation of gold and silver, and he had a similar appointment in 1473. In 1468 he was named joint-commissioner with Andrew Stewart, lord chancellor, to negotiate a marriage between James III and Margaret, daughter of Christian I of Denmark. He was one of the commissioners appointed by the parliament of 6 May 1471 with power to determine all matters that should occur for the welfare of the king and common good of the realm. In 1472 he was in Bruges ‘taking up finance’ and purchasing armour for the king (Receipt in Wood's Peerage, ed. Douglas, ii. 284;