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Marchweithian, Lord of Is Aled, Rhufoniog
Osbwrn Wyddel of Cors Gedol
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Ednowain ap Bradwen
Who Was Sir Robert Pounderling?
Eidio Wyllt - What Was His Birthname?
Parents and Children of the Lord Rhys
                        MARCHWEITHIAN, LORD OF IS ALED IN RHUFONIOG
                                             by Darrell Wolcott
 
         Designated as the head of one of the 15 Noble Tribes of Gwynedd, Marchweithian was born c. 1015.  In a previous paper[1], we identified him as a first-cousin of Collwyn ap Tangno and descended from Pasgen ap "Urien Rheged"....not the 6th century Urien from Rheged in northwest Britian, but a 9th century Urien descended from Cunedda.
 
         The early family which descended from Marchweithian has been charted by the leading Welsh genealogists with two opposing views: those that make Heilyn Gloff the 5th generation after Marchweithian, and those place him in the 6th following generation.  These competing views show the following descents:
 
                  Peniarth 127, 119                Peniarth 128, 257
 
                    Marchweithian                     Marchweithian
                             l                                       l
                     Marchwystl                         Marchwystl
                             l                                       l
                       Ystrwyth                            Ystrwyth
                             l                                       l
                       Cadwgan                             Tangno
                             l                                       l
                       Cynddelw                             Tyfid
                             l                                       l
                          Tyfid                             Heilyn Gloff
                             l
                     Heilyn Gloff
 
         While there are other citations which agree with the two sources we cited[2], these two are representative of the competing views.  Peter Bartrum's solution was to "correct" the shorter list by assuming (a) Tangno and Cadwgan were a single man, and (b) the shorter list had omitted Cynddelw in error. Our work, however, finds that subsequent descendants and their cited spouses require two men named Heilyn ap Tyfid born a generation apart.  Which of the two men named Heilyn also bore the nickname "Gloff" is not known since most citations add it to any Heilyn ap Tyfid, but it is unlikely both men were lame.
 
          Additional evidence that both groups of citations are correct, and depict two separate branches of the family, can be found in the 1334 Survey of Denbigh.  In that manuscript[3], we find lands called Villa Carwedfynydd contained two gavellas:  Gavella Heilyn ap Tyfid and Gavella Elidyr ap Tyfid.  No doubt once called Wele Ystrwyth ap Marchwystl, the lands had subsequently been divided into gavellas bearing the names of men descended from Ystrwyth.  But this Heilyn ap Tyfid was NOT a brother of Elidyr ap Tyfid.  The 1334 holders of gavella Elidyr ap Tyfid can, by chronological analysis, be seen to be one generation farther removed from Marchweithian than the holders of gavella Heilyn ap Tyfid:
 
                                GAVELLA ELIDYR AP TYFID
 
                                       1080  Ystrwyth
                                                     l
                                       1110  Cadwgan
                                                     l
                                      1140  Cynddelw
                                                     l
                                         1175  Tyfid
                                                     l
                                         1210  Elidyr
                                                     l
                                      1245  Tegwared
                           ______________l____________
                           l                                              l
       1280  4 named brothers*                1275  Dafydd
                                                                          l
                                                           1305  Cynwrig*
 
             *living in 1334
 
              In the above chart, the 4 named sons of Tegwared[4] were still living in 1334, but their brother Dafydd had died and his part of the gavella was held by an adult son, Cynwrig ap Dafydd.  Another brother of Tegwared, he named Gronwy, also had two sons living in 1334 [5] and a third son dead but represented by Ieuan ap Llewelyn ap Gronwy. 
 
             Now compare this with the men holding the other gavella:
 
                                 GAVELLA HEILYN AP TYFID
 
                                           1080  Ystrwyth
                                                          l
                                            1115  Tangno
                                                          l
                                             1145  Tyfid
                                                          l
                                            1180  Heilyn
                                                         l
                                         1210  Llywarch
                                                         l
                                         1245  Cynwrig
                      ___________________l_____________
                      l                             l                            l   
 1280  2 named sons*[6]   1275  Einion      1275  Cynwrig Goch
                                                    l                            l
                             1305 3 named sons*[7]  1310 2 named sons*[8]
 
           *living in 1334
 
          Again, we find two generations of adult men alive in 1334, the older generation plus sons of their deceased brothers.  The same pattern exists for a cousin family descended from Einion ap Llywarch ap Heilyn, except that all 3 of that Einion's sons [9] were dead by 1334 and their lands held by each of their sons born c. 1300/1310.
 
         In both gavellas, the only workable pedigree construction which allows the men alive in 1334 to be descended from a man named Tyfid is by acknowledging there were two such men, one born c. 1145 and another born c. 1175.  Surely Bartrum recognized there was something amiss in his charts (which show only the c. 1175 Tyfid) when he portrayed a number of descendants as born c. 1330 yet noted they were adults alive in 1334.[10]
 
          When we look at the family descended from each Tyfid, we find a string of same-named men born a full generation apart:
 
                     1145  Tyfid                    1175  Tyfid
                                l                                    l
                   1180  Heilyn (a)              1205  Heilyn (a)
                                l                                    l
                  1210  Llywarch               1240  Llywarch
                                l                                    l
                 1245  Cynwrig                 1270  Cynwrig
                                l                                    l
             1275  Cynwrig Fychan      1300  Cynwrig Fychan
                                l                                    l
                  1310  Heilyn (b)                 1335  Heilyn (b)
                                         l                                     l
                1340  Gruffudd (c)              1365  Gruffudd (c)
                               l                                      l
                 1370  Dafydd [11]            1400  Dafydd [12]
 
         (a)  One of these men was nicknamed "Gloff" but probably not the other
           (b)  One of these men was nicknamed "Frych" but probably not the other
           (c)  One of these men was nicknamed "Llwyd" but possibly not the other
 
                 While spouses cited for these men all chronologically align with men in one or the other of these families, not all the matches could have occurred in either family alone.  We will illustrate the problem by the most glaring set of marriages matches charted by Bartrum, whose charts assume the family shown on the right was the only family.  Bartrum shows 3 spouses for his single Dafydd, the one born c. 1400. 
 
             a.  Mali ferch Llewelyn Dew ap Madog ap Einion Rwth (descended from Braint Hir), a lady born c. 1375 and correctly assigned to Bartrum's generation 11.
             b.  Angharad ferch Gronwy ap Cynwrig ap Bleddyn Llwyd (descended from Hedd ap Alunog), a lady born c. 1370 but misdated by Bartrum to his generation 12.
             c.  Annes ferch Rhys ap Iorwerth ap Llewelyn Ddu (descended from Llywarch Hwlbrwch), a lady born c. 1415 and assigned to Bartrum's generation 13.
 
             Did Bartrum really believe a man could have married a woman his own age plus a woman a generation younger plus a woman a generation older than himself?  In fact, it was the c. 1370 Dafydd who married twice to ladies near his own age, and the c. 1400 Dafydd who married the lady born c. 1415.
 
             There is yet another branch of the Marchweithian family which used the same pattern of male names; it includes a Cynwrig ap Llywarch [13]of c. 1215 and a Cynwrig Fychan [14] ap Cynwrig ap Llywarch of c. 1320.  The wives and children of those men are all assigned to men in Bartrum's charts who lived a full generation too early or too late.  We suggest that family descended from the Llywarch ap Ithel ap Cadwgan ap Ystrwyth shown without children in Bartrum's charts but for whom, in 1334, a gavella in Talybryn, Is Aled [15] was named as its original owner.
 
           While we found no early sources to confirm it, Marchweithian was contemporary with King Gruffudd ap Llewelyn (ruled 1039-1063) and most likely served some important role in his court.  Neither is it known what brought him to be included among the heads of the 15 Noble Tribes.
NOTES:
[1] See the paper "Pasgen ap Urien 'Rheged', Lord of Gower" at the link below:
[2] Pen. 131, 68 and Pen. 127, 152 support the longer version of the pedigree, while Pen. 131, 30; Pen. 128, 257a; and Pen. 176, 75 support the shorter version. The Dwnn citations in vol ii, 228, 332 and 342 all support the shorter version
[3] Survey of Denbigh, p. 124
[4] These sons are Madog, Madog Fychan, Ithel and Iorwerth
[5] The other two sons of Gronwy ap Elidyr were Iorwerth Chwith and Cynwrig
[6] The sons of Cynwrig ap Llywarch still alive in 1334 were Cynwrig Fychan and Heilyn
[7] The 3 sons of Einion ap Cynwrig were Tudor, Einion Llwyd and Cynwrig Moel
[8] The sons of Cynwrig Goch ap Cynwrig were Einion and Madog. 
[9] The sons of Einion ap Llywarch were Cynwrig, Adda and Pyll, all dead by 1334.  Their lands were held by Ieuan and Dafydd ap Cynwrig; Einion and Heilyn ap Adda; and Maredudd, Gronwy and Dafydd ap Pyll.
[10] P.C. Bartrum "Welsh Genealogies AD 300-1400", page 'Marchweithian 4'
[11] Cited in Pen. 134, 265; Pen. 176, 93; Pen. 128, 262a; and Pen. 131, 102
[12] Cited in Pen. 127, 138; Pen. 128, 212a & 646a; and Pen. 176, 79
[13] This Cynwrig ap Llywarch married a daughter of Cynwrig Ddewis Herod, she born c. 1220, which Bartrum assigned to the Cynwrig ap Llywarch born c. 1270
[14] This Cynwrig Fychan married Gwenhwyfar ferch Llewelyn Dew ap Y Penwyn, a lady born c. 1335.  Bartrum assigned the match to a Cynwrig Fychan born c. 1300
[15] Survey of Denbigh, p. 136