Open main menu

Nathanael Jones (c. 1624 – 1683), Esq., of Hendwr, Merionethshire, was a Welsh gentleman-poet.

He was born in the parish of Llandrillo-yn-Edeirnion, the second son of Maurice Jones, Esq. of Faerdref Uchaf, and later moved to Hendwr, Merionethshire, an Elizabethan mansion of great antiquity, within the same parish.[1] He was descended from the Barons of Kymmer-yn-Edeirnion, and as such bore the 'Black Lion of Powys' on his arms and 'Kymmer-yn-Edeirnion' as his motto, in memory of the paternal barony.

During the English Civil War, he joined the Royalist army as a Lieutenant, along with his elder brother, and subsequently fought at the Battle of Marston Moor and was later captured at the Battle of Ormskirk, during the Royalist retreat through Lancashire.[2] In 1652, he married Mary Wynn, the daughter and heiress of Humphrey ap Hugh Wynn, by whom he inherited the Hendwr estate.[1][3]

From the 1650s, he began writing poetry and was a minor poet in the circle of Matthew Owen, 'the Bard of Llangar'.[1]. Though as a Justice of the Peace, Nathanael was expected to speak in English in public, his poetry is entirely in Welsh.[1] Due to the war, he had been unable to complete his education by going up to Oxford as had been family tradition, yet despite this he was still very well-educated for the time. His son Maurice however matriculated at Jesus College on 20 March 1673/4, aged 19.[4] He later served as High Sheriff of Merionethshire in 1673 and was the coroner for that county. He was also a translator of English textbooks into Welsh so that they could be more widely-read, surviving manuscripts include Taylor's 'Daily Rule' and 'The Act of Contentment'. He died in 1683, aged 59, whereupon he was succeeded by his son, Maurice Jones.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d Jones, E.D. (1952). "The Brogyntyn Welsh manuscripts: XII". Cylchgrawn Llyfregll Genedlaethol Cymru. 7: 277–315.
  2. ^ Tucker, N (1961). Royalist Officers of North Wales: 1642-1660. Denbigh. p. 35.
  3. ^ Burke, B (1866). A Genealogical History of the Dormant: Abeyant, Forfeited, and Extinct Peerages of the British Empire. p. 298.
  4. ^ Foster, J. (1891). Alumni Oxonienses: 1500-1714: Vol. 2. Oxford. p. 825.
  5. ^ Will of Nathaniel Jones, Esq. at the National Library of Wales (SA/1683/89).