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Maredudd ap Owain, King of Deheubarth
Sandde Hardd of Mortyn
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Who Was Sir Robert Pounderling?
Sir Aaron ap Rhys
Eidio Wyllt - What Was His Birthname?
Ifor Bach, Lord of Senghenydd
Ancestors and Children of the Lord Rhys
                                            By Darrell Wolcott
NOTE - This paper conducts a technical analysis of the manner in which some medieval pedigrees were constructed and may not be of particular interest to casual students of Welsh history. 
            In researching the wife traditionally assigned to Idnerth ap Cadwgan ap Elystan Glodrydd (born c. 1050), we concluded the lady actually was a granddaughter of Payne fitz John and married a later man also named Idnerth ap Cadwgan.[1]  We have now conducted further work to understand the pedigree which derived "Aaron fitz Paen" from an otherwise unknown "Io ap Meirchion ap Padriarch".
           The earliest manuscript citing that pedigree appears to be Peniarth Ms 127 (c. 1510) written by Sir John ap Ieuan ap Deikws, and it is listed among a group of pedigrees from Malienydd, Elfael and Ceri.  It also occurs in Peniarth Ms 131 (c. 1515) written by Ieuan Brechva.  A number of later manuscripts contain the same pedigree, but those are mostly transcriptions of extant documents and not original compositions.  While none recite the home of its earliest generations, the sixth listed generation is "Y Golwg ap Paen" who is described in Llanwrin Ms I (c. 1582) as "of Cwm Golwg in Ceri".  Then, three generations later, a "Randwlff ap Iorwerth" is listed in Peniarth Ms 128 (c. 1550) under the heading "Ceri".
         We should pause here to note that this pedigree includes no reference to Aaron ap Paen nor the marriage of a daughter to an Idnerth ap Cadwgan.  That connection was first made c. 1600 by Lewys Dwnn in vol i, 297 of his Visitations of Wales, and was copied into other manuscripts written later in the 17th century.  The original citation appears as #61 in Peter Bartrum's "Pedigrees of Welsh Tribal Patriarchs" printed in the National Library of Wales Journal, vol xiii, pp 120.  It reads:
                                       CHART A
                                 Padriarc vrenhin da (or hen)
         The Llanwrin Ms of c. 1582 emended this to insert "ap Ioe" between Paen and Meirchiawn, evidently the source used by Lewys Dwnn for his "Dyddgu v Aaron Poen ap Payne ap Io ap Meirchion". When Peter Bartrum presented the pedigree in his classic "Welsh Genealogies 300AD - 1400", his dating of the men down through Randwlff was based on two marriage matches:
                                        CHART B
                                  Gen 0   Paen
                     l                                              l
        Gen 1  Golwg                          Gen 1  Aaron      Cadwgan
                     l                                             l                l
      Gen 2  Lleuci==Llewleyn Fraisg   Gen 2 Dyddgu==Inderth Gen 1
                                  Gen 1
         From his dating key, he places the birth of Paen at c. 1000, his two charted sons at c. 1030 and their daughters as c. 1070.  That something is amiss with those dates becomes evident further down in his chart where a man supposedly the son of Lleuci's brother is dated to c. 1270 and the great-great grandaughter of that brother is shown married to a man also born c. 1270.  It is clear his early dating of Paen was simply to accomodate the marriage of his daughter with an Idnerth of c. 1050, a marriage we believe was actually with an Idnerth of c. 1140.  But what about the other cited marriage?
          Bartrum begins a new family with a Llewelyn Fraisg and dates him to c.1030.  In a footnote, he explains giving this man no ancestry with the comment "Misidentified with Llewelyn ap Hywel" and references a man of that name who occurs c. 1270.  After noting his marriage with "Lucy f. Golwg", the principal line shown descending from him continues for 8 generations before a marriage match is noted (birthdate estimates are his):
                                CHART C
                    1030  Llewelyn Fraisg====Lucy  1030
                    1070  Llewelyn Goch
                      1100  Maredudd
                      1170  Llewelyn
                      1200  Gruffudd
                    1230  Gruffudd Foel         Rhys*   1270
                                    l                        l
                   1270  Gruffudd Fychan     Llewelyn  1300
                                    l                        l
                     1300  Maredudd             Ieuan  1330
                                    l                        l
                         1370  Ieuan=======Alis  1370
       *This man, descended from Llewelyn Aurdorchog, was the father of Dafydd ap Rhys who married a lady of Walcot in Salop; in the pedigrees of that family, Rhys is described as "of Bettws" and married a lady "of Mochdre".  While the former manor is in south Cydewain, Mochdre was in Ceri and the seat a prominent family descended from Elystan Glodrydd 
          Clearly Bartrum did not believe this pedigree was accurate, and showed large time gaps in the chart.  He was simply citing the medieval pedigrees as they stood and pointing to the obvious chonological problems.  So why didn't he simply date Llewelyn Fraisg a couple generations later to eliminate the time gaps which occur down to Ieuan ap Maredudd (a man we actually date to c. 1360)?  First, he was trying to accomodate a Lucy ferch Golwg of c. 1070 (a lady we date to c. 1150).  Secondly, he has charted another son of Llewelyn Fraisg named Einion who has a daughter, Alison, claimed to have married Cadfael ap Bod Hen (also called Matthew Hen in some pedigrees).
         A pedigree cited in Dwnn i, 302 says Cadvael Lloyd ap Matthew Hen married "Alson vrch Einion ap Llewelyn Fraisg".  We would note that the nickname "Fraisg" (sometimes seen as Fras) means "fat" and any number of men named Llewelyn may have borne that epithet. This same citation says Cadfael's mother was "Gwenllian vrch Merfyn Vrych" and calls Matthew Hen's father "Brochwel Scethrog, king of Powis". Our own work identifies Matthew Hen as a son of Brochwel ap Aeddan III and dates him to c. 1040.  The only other authority for Cadfael's marriage is the Cedwyn Manuscript of 1633 where his wife is called "Alson daughter and heir of Einion ap Llywelyn fras, Lord of Knwchlas". The latter is probably Cnwclas in Llanddewi Heiob, Maelienydd and explains why he might be "misidentified" as a man of the tribe of Elystan Glodrydd.  No such identification was made in the earlier Dwnn pedigree and we think it highly possible the author of the Cedwyn Ms added it because he knew of a Llewelyn Fraisg in Maelienydd and simply assumed he was the father cited for Einion. But neither citation identifies the father of its "Llewelyn the fat". Thus, like the marriage of Lleuci ferch Golwg, we are very doubtful the marriage of Alson ap Einion conclusively dates the Llewelyn Fraisg in our chart to c. 1030.
        One thread which runs through the course of all these pedigrees is the placement of the men in Rhwng Gwy a Hafren, the kingdom of Fferlys held by Elystan Glodrydd and his heirs.  Aaron ap Paen lived in Ceri as did other men descended from Paen. A Llewelyn Fraisg apparently held a lordship in Maelienydd.  The marriage of Ieuan ap Maredudd descended from Llewelyn Fraisg was to a lady with ties to Ceri.  We also note a family which Bartrum appended to his chart of Padriarc (the one which begins with Madog Fychan of c. 1230 father of Llewelyn of Mochdre) is actually a cadet of the tribe of Elystan Glodrydd and is misplaced.  That Madog Fychan was born c. 1255 and was the son of Madog ap Maredudd ap Maelgwn II ap Maelgwn ap Cadwallon ap Madog ap Idnerth ap Cadwgan ap Elystan Glodrydd.
         Outside the fertile imagination of an early 16th century genealogist, no family called "Meirchion ap Tanged ap Padriarc" is known to have existed.  Even that writer may have not meant the latter as a name; in Welsh, the letters "d" and "t" are often used interchangably and pronounced as "t".  And the Welsh word for "patriarch" is exactly the same as in English.  The author may have simply been saying the family descended from "a good (or old) king, the patriarch".  As we posit elsewhere, we think the "Paen" in this pedigree was Payne fitz John.  We previously discussed the descendants of his son, Aaron,[2] but did not mention the brother of Aaron called Golwg.
         The man called Golwg is also cited as "y Golwg", not a name but a reference to his residence, Cwm Golwg in Ceri.  It means "having a view of the valley", probably having built his home on high ground which afforded a panoramic view of the valley below.  We think his daughter, like that of his brother, married a man of the tribe of Elystan Glodrydd.  We would identify the Llewelyn Fraisg who married Lleuci ferch Y Golwg as a son of Hywel ap Seisyll ap Llewelyn ap Cadwgan ap Elystan.  Not only is he "Llewelyn ap Hywel" (which Bartrum alludes to), but the pedigree which Bartrum presents for this man[3] shows a son named Maredudd who had a son Llewelyn who had a son Gruffudd...a string of names which also occur in the Llewelyn Fraisg pedigree.
          In constructing a chart which is chronologically stable, we have incorporated all the data found in the pedigrees discussed above, with a single exception; the marriage link to Cadfael ap Matthew Hen is omitted.  Whatever Llewelyn Fraisg was the grandfather of Cadfael's wife Alison, it could not be the one in our chart:
                                            CHART D       
                               1035  Eustace de Conteville*
                                 1060  John de Burgo
                                      1085  Payne**  ob 1137
                              l                                 l
                 1115  Y Golwg                      Aaron  1120
             _________l_______                    l
             l                            l                    l
 1150  Lleuci         1145  Trahaearn       Dyddgu*** 1155
       (Chart E)                 (Chart F)   
          *Listed as a companion of William the Conqueror at Hastings as Eustace fitz John in the Roll of Battle Abbey
        **Sheriff of Herefordshire and Shropshire who erected Painscastle in Elfael about 1130, and for whom it was named    
      *** This family was charted and disscussed in the paper "Aaron Paen ap Y Paen Hen"
                                        CHART E
             990  Elystan Glodrydd
              1020  Cadwgan
              1055  Llewelyn
                1085  Seisyll
                1115  Hywel
               l                                    l                          1150
1145  Llewelyn Goch     1145  Llewelyn Fraisg===Lleuci ferch Y Golwg
               l                                    l
1180  Maredudd Hen     1175  Maredudd Bengoch
               l                                    l
1210  Llewelyn y Moelwyn  1205 Llewelyn
                                      1235  Gruffudd
                                   1265  Gruffudd Foel
                                  1295  Gruffudd Fychan
                                     1325  Maredudd
                                       1360  Ieuan======Alis  1370
        When compared to Bartrum's effort (CHART C above), our dating Llewelyn Fraisg to c. 1140 instead of 1030 makes the succeeding generations occur normally, without any 70 year gaps between generations.  However, we have removed Llewelyn Goch as a son of Llewelyn Fraisg and portrayed him as a brother.  (Bartrum's charts portray Maredudd Hen and Maredudd Bengoch as brothers)  Notice how each of those men then named a son Llewelyn and that all but one of those six men were given nicknames to prevent confusion as to which Maredudd ap Llewelyn ap Hywel, for example, you were addressing.  We prefer our constuction for that reason as well as better fitting the family timeline.
        Our final chart depicts a redated Trahaearn ap Golwg and connects him to the single marriage Bartrum cites for his descendants:
                                      CHART F
              1145  Trahaearn ap y Golwg    Maelgwn ap Cadwallon* 1142
                                     l                           l
                        1175  Iorwerth              Maelgwn II  1172
                                     l                           l
                        1210  Randwlff              Maredudd  1200
                                     l                           l
                       1240  Randwlff II**          Iorwerth  1235 
                                     l                           l
                        1275  Madog               Ieuan Lloyd  1265
                                     l                           l
                       1310 Gwenllian======Gruffudd  1300
        *ap Madog ap Idnerth ap Cadwgan ap Elystan Glodrydd
        **this generation is left blank in Bartrum's chart; we posit it was a second man called Randwlff since Gwenllian is cited as "verch Madog ap Randwlff"
           With our construction, Gwenllian is no longer a generation older than her husband[5], but actually younger than him.  We pointed out earlier that the Madog Fychan which Bartrum portrays as a brother of Gwenllian ferch Madog was the son of a wholly different man, and occurs c. 1255.  The family shown to descend from him is wholly consistent with that dating. 
          The final family on Bartrum's "Padriarc" chart is portrayed as a Hywel descended from Trahaearn ap Golwg but with many generations missing between his date estimates.  We suspect he was Hywel ap Trahaearn ap Iowerth ap Trahaearn (and born c. 1235), a date which fits the single marriage cited for that line some 200 years later.
         As we sometimes do, we undertook this research project not because it features families with whom any casual reader of Welsh history would recognize, but to describe how many family pedigrees have evolved, with each succeeding transcriber adding links by marriage to other families which at least seemed to connect.  Only by rigorous chronological tests can the flawed links be detected and their correct placement can then often be determined by examining those families known to have held the lands ascribed to the linked family.
          Once the genealogist misdates a marriage which has been cited for a same-named man (in our case, Idnerth ap Cadwgan) his resulting charts can likewise misdate another family (as in Llewelyn Fraisg).  But in such cases, the resulting pedigrees will contain many generation gaps which, if assembled correctly, do not actually exist.
[1] Refer to the paper "Aaron Paen ap Y Paen Hen" at the link below:
[2] ibid Note 1
[3] See Bartrum's "Welsh Genealogies AD 300-1400" under "Elystan Glodrydd, 2
[4] Since writing the paper referenced in Note 1, we found a claim by the contemporary historian of English castles, Paul Remfry, that may help explain the enmity between Payne and the Mortimer family which led the former's family to relocate to Ceri under the protection of Madog ap Idnerth and Cadwallon ap Madog, another family whose lands south of Ceri were overrun and stolen by the Mortimers. Remfry believes that sometime after Ralph Mortimer was banished to France in 1100, Henry I had granted his castle at Wigmore to Payne.  About 1135, King Stephen restored it to Ralph's son, Hugh Mortimer.
[5] Bartrum's pedigree for Padriarc places Gwenllian in his Generation 7 with her husband assigned to Generation 8.  Using his dating scheme, we would assign both to Generation 9.  (His charts for Ieuan Lloyd omit Maelgwn II from his ancestry, which accounts for him being placed a generation too early)