Oswestry has been home and birthplace to many famous and notorious individual throughout the centuries, but one Welsh poet seemingly disappeared from public knowledge following his death in 1580.

William Llyn was born in 1535, allegedly somewhere on the Llyn Peninsula. He was educated on traditional bardic poems by Welsh poets such as Sion Brwynog, Owain ap Gwilym and Gruffudd Hiraethog, and on Mr. Hiraethog’s death, Llyn inherited his entire estate. Llyn eventually thrived and became a highly-educated poet, being crowned as ‘Pencerdd’ [or ‘Chief of Song’] at the 1567 National Eisteddfod in Caerwys in his tenth year as a composer.

Llyn moved to Oswestry in the late 1560s, where he moved to a house in Willow Street, met a lady named ‘Elizabeth’ and produced a son named ‘Richard’ in or around 1569, as the St. Oswald’s Church parish register states the baptism to have occurred in October.

The house in which Llyn and his family lived is unknown, although Church Wardens’ records state that the Town Rate in 1609 was Threepence, which was the standard amount for smaller properties in the area at the time. Ironically, Rhys Cain, a Welsh herald and former student of Llyn, purchased the house and the remainder of Llyn’s estate in 1587 and lived there until his own death in 1614.

Llyn passed away in 1580 and was recorded as being buried in the Chaunsell of St. Oswald’s Parish Church on August 31.

Otherwise, the precise location of the grave is no longer known; it seems the only two individuals to have known were Messrs.

Richard Muckleston and Robert ap David, who were the two Churchwardens at the time.

Although the identity and works of William Llyn are scarcely-known in Oswestry itself, Llyn was one of three famous Welsh poets to have had links to Oswestry, with the other two being Messrs. Guto’r Glyn and Tudor Aled.

Today, Llyn is a major figure in Welsh poetry and something of a national hero to Welsh literary individuals.


‘An Oswestry Miscellany’ [Pages 63 and 64], by John Pryce-Jones

https://cy.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wiliam_Llyn [in Cymraeg/Welsh]