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Parents and Children of the Lord Rhys
                                      HYWEL ap MAREDUDD ap BLEDDYN  
                                                  By Darrell Wolcott
 
          Maredudd was the youngest (born c. 1065) son of Powys king Bleddyn ap Cynfyn, and only after the death of all his brothers and one of his nephews did he ascend to kingship.  He married Hunydd (1080) ferch Einudd (1045) ap Morien (1015) of Dyffryn Clwyd [1] by whom he had sons Gruffudd (1095), Madog (1098) and Hywel (1101). By various mistresses, Maredudd also had sons Dafydd and Iorwerth Goch.  Of those base sons, only Iorwerth Goch made a name for himself during the 1157 to 1165 wars with King Henry. [2]  Dafydd ap Maredudd sired a family residing in the Welshpool area, doing nothing to warrant mention in the Brut.
 
          The eldest son, Gruffudd, had been groomed to succeed his father as king of Powys, but he died unexpectedly in 1128.  Madog ap Maredudd was installed as king when his father died in 1132.  The younger brother, Hywel IS mentioned in the Brut, but not in a role which most wish to share.  In 1142, he was murdered, some say by his own people and others say by "someone". [3] Never mentioned again, this crime was apparently unsolved and no one seemed to care. One gets a sense that folks DID know who killed him and why, but chose to remain silent.  It is only in old pedigree manuscripts where we learn that Hywel had fathered a son, Maredudd, by Cristyn ferch Gronwy ap Owain ap Edwin. [4]  This marriage likely took place in 1127, when his brother, Gruffudd, first fell seriously ill. 
 
                                   1025  Bleddyn                 Owain  1050
                                                 l                           l
                                 1065  Maredudd               Gronwy  1080
                                                l                            l
                                   1101  Hywel========Cristyn  1114
                                                              l
                                              1128  Maredudd
 
          Young Maredudd would have been a lad abut age 14 when his father was killed, and no other children are known for this marriage.  As explained below, it was not his mother who was unable to bear additional children since, once she remarried, she quickly bore four more.  This leaves us with a Hywel who quit fathering children as quickly as he'd begun, and who was murdered as soon as his child left the nest, for reasons and by persons unknown.  And even though he'd been the son of the Powys king (who had predeceased him), no one apparently mourned his death. 
 
          His son later was named Lord of Edeyrnion by his uncle, King Madog ap Maredudd. [5] This suggests the boy had been reared, beginning at age 14, at the Powys royal court, leaving his mother free to marry again.
  
          Peter Bartrum charted the family of Gronwy ap Owain ap Edwin as containing, aside from a son, Cadwgan, 3 daughters.....two of which were named Cristyn.  He assigns one Cristyn as the wife of Hywel ap Maredudd  and the other as the second wife of Owain Gwynedd.  We have seen nothing which suggests a single Cristyn, born c. 1114, could not have married Hywel and birthed a son in 1128, and when widowed in 1142, remarried Owain Gwynedd [6] and bore a first son, Dafydd, about 1143.
 
          We suggest this IS what occurred and that Cristyn did not remain a widow very long. We shall refrain from speculating that Owain Gwynedd's desire to marry Cristyn had anything to do with the murder of Hywel.
 
          Maredudd ap Hywel ap Maredudd is usually cited as "yr Hen Maredudd", not because he lived to be an old man but simply to distinguish him from a same-named son, Maredudd Fychan. [7]  He also had other sons, including one named Hywel.  That Hywel ap Maredudd, whether deliberately or not, caused mass confusion for later historians by naming a son Maredudd, and you guessed it, he was also called "yr Hen Maredudd" since he named one son Maredudd Fychan [8] and another son Hywel.  We have not seen a single ancient source who realized that this family contained a Hywel (1225) ap Maredudd Hen (1195) ap Hywel (1165) ap Maredudd Hen (1130) ap Hywel (1101) ap Maredudd (1065) ap Bleddyn. The family chart looks like this:
 

hywelmareduddchart.jpg

CHART DATING DISCUSSION:
 
(a)  He married Gwladys (1130) ferch Maredudd (1095) ap Cadwgan (1055) ap Bleddyn (1025) ap Cynfyn.  [9]  This was probably NOT his first wife, nor mother of his children
 
(b)  He married Gwenllian (1165) ap Rhiryd (1130) ap Gwrgeneu (1100) of Maelor. [10]  This was the non-Penllyn "Rhiryd Flaidd" who had a brother, Arthen. See our discussion of this lady at the following link:    http://www.ancientwalesstudies.org/id290.html
 
(c) He married, (1) Angharad (1210) ferch Gruffudd (1175) ap Hywel (1140) ap Cynan (1110) ap Idwal (1075) ap Gruffudd (1041) ap Cynan (1014) nephew of Iago [11], and (2) Efa (1205) ferch Owain (1175) ap Dafydd (1143) ap Owain Gwynedd. [12] 
 
(d)  She married Maredudd (1175) ap Robert (1145) ap Robert (1110) ap Llywarch (1070) ap Trahaearn (1035) ap Caradog. [13]
 
(e)  He married Lleuci (1220) ap Hwfa (1195) ap Iorwerth (1160) ap Ieuaf (1130) ap Nynnio (1095) ap Cynwrig (1065) ap Rhiwallon (1030) ap Cynwrig (995) ap Rhiwallon (965) ap Dyngad (930) ap Tudor Trefor. [14]
 
(f)  She married Madog (1220) ap Samuel (1190) ap Cadafael (1160) ap Samuel (1130) ap Cadafael Ynfyd (1100) ap Llywarch (1070) ap Trahaearn (1035). [15]  This Efa and the Efa in item (d) above are discussed at the following link:  http://www.ancientwalesstudies.org/id150.html
 
(g) She married Gronwy (1215) ap Iorwerth (1185) ap Hywel (1155) ap Moreiddig (1125) ap Sandde Hardd (1095). [16]

NOTES:
[1]  ABT 1c & ABT 8f cite Hunydd as ferch Einudd ap Gwenllian ferch Rhys ap Marchen, while Pen 134, 349 cites the father of Einudd (and husband of Gwenllian) as Morgan ap Morgeneu ap Elystan ap Gwaithfoed.
[2]  ByT 1157 & 1165
[3]  ByT 1142 where most manuscripts mention his killer as "his own men" and others only say "someone".  The obit contains no words of praise on his behalf
[4]  Pen 127, 116
[5]  In 1176, Maredudd ap Hywel, Lord of Edeyrnion granted land to the monks of the Abbery of Ystrad Marchell per Mont. Collections 4, 20
[6]  ABT 2b
[7]  Pen 127, 100
[8]  Pen 129, 51 & 93
[9]  Pen 127, 116
[10] Pen 287, 356
[11] Pen 128, 590b
[12] Pen 131 86
[13] Cydwen Ms in Mont. Coll. vol 10, 147
[14] Pen 128, 177a but inserts Maredudd Hen as father of Maredudd Fychan.  See discussion at this link:
[15] Dwnn i, 136 but makes same error mentioned in Note 12 above. 
[16] Pen 287, 133