Revised 18/01/2020






[CYNA101] Padarn beisrudd [=Paternus of the Scarlet Cloak] (born c.340, son of Tacitus) was a high-ranking Romano-British official who commanded troops (c.388) in either Votandi (afterwards Bernicia) or Manau Gododdin (afterwards Lothian).

[CYNA111] Edern [Eternus] (born c.360, son of Padarn).


[CYNA121] Cunedda wledig [=leader] (born near Edinburgh, c.390, son of Edern) married [WELS152] Gwawl (ferch Coel hen, see WELSH). He was leader (c.430) of the tribes of Votandi (Lothian), and was no doubt involved in wars against the Picts. According to tradition, he and his family moved south (c.450) to Venedotia (which later became Gwynedd) to protect north Wales from an Irish invasion. This left a power vacuum in the Lothian area, seized upon by the Picts.

Ceredig (5th son, ap Cunedda wledig) was the eponymous founder of Ceredigion.  He married Meleri ferch Brychan (see BRYCHEINIOG).

Cedig Draws ap Ceredig. Some charts omit this generation.

Sant ap Cedig [or Ceredig] had a relationship with Nonita/Non ferch Cynyr.

Dewi ap Sant, SAINT DAVID.

[PADA161] Gwron (ap Cunedda) does not appear in the recorded list of sons of Cunedda, but it was suggested by Owen Rhoscomyl, in "The Anglesey Antiquarian Society and Field Club Transactions" (1923), that Gwron is only a cognomen (means hero) and he was actually Ysfael ap Cunedda, and was thus the 2nd recorded son of Cunedda. See Gwron ap Cunedda wledig for further details.

[CYNA131] Einon yrth [=stricken] (7th son, born c.410, ap Cunedda), Lord of Carmarthenshire, married [TITH132] Prawst (ferch [TITH121] Tithlym Prydyn (born c.380) of Pictland, also known as Todlet, King of the Gwyddyl Ffichti [Picts] in Powys).

[CYNA141] Cadwallon lawhir [=long-hand] (born c.440, ab Einion) married [DYLA142] Meddyf (ferch Maeldaf ap Dylan Draws, see DYLAN DRAWS), and was 1st King of Gwynedd (499-517). He died c.534.

[CYNA151] Maelgwn Gwynedd (born c.497, ap Cadwallon) was King of Gwynedd (519-38, 541-47). He had five wives, including Gwallwen (ferch Afallach ap Beli mawr, legendary).

Gilda, a British monk, described Maglocunus [Maelgwn] of Gwynedd as a tyrannical ruler, "first in evil, mightier than many both in power and malice". Maelgwn disowned his former wife, though no longer his by vow of religion, and turned to another woman, the wife of a man then living, his own brother's son. This led to two murders, the killing of the aforesaid husband, and of his own former wife. Then he married the widow, being now free to do so, as false tongues asserted. Maelgwn's lawful wife seems to have been Sanan ferch Cyngen of Powys by Tudglid ferch Brychan. Sanan was sister of Brochwel Ysgithrog.

Maelgwn died of the yellow plague (547).

[CYNA161] Rhun hir [tall] (ap Maelgwn, but wife not shown), King of Gwynedd, married [WELS192] Perfawr (ferch Rhun Ryfedd fawr, see WELSH).

[CYNA172] Tymyr (ferch Rhun) said to have married [BRET181] Hoel II fychan (see BRETAGNE KINGDOM).

[CYNA171] Beli (ap Rhun), King of Gwynedd.

[CYNA181] Iago (ap Beli) was King of Gwynedd (593-abdicated later). He died 606.

[CYNA191] Cadfan (born c.586, ab Iago) married [POWY222] Tandreg ddu (ferch Cynan garwyn, see POWYS KINGDOM (1)), and was King of Gwynedd (593-613).

[CYNA201] Cadwallon (born c.586, ap Cadfan) married (c.632) [PEND102] a sister of King Penda (see MERCIA KINGDOM), and was King of Gwynedd (613-34). In alliance with Penda, he defeated King Edwin I (the Northumbrian ruler, and first English king to invade Wales) at the Battle of Hatfield Chase, near Doncaster, (October 633); and went on to kill Edwin's successors, King Osric of Deira and King Eanfrith of Bernicia. Cadwallon was head of the confederate pagans, with his ally Penda. They pursued the defeated Northumbrians, and overran Northumbria. Finally, Cadwallon fought with King Oswald at the Battle of Hexham, at Heavenfield, (634), where he was slain and his army annihilated.

Mural in side chapel dedicated to St. Columba in Helmsley, All Saints Church (Yorkshire).


Oswald's small army
defeats the British hosts

Battle of Heaven's field AD 634
Cadwallon British prince
                slain by Oswald


Helmsley Church
(2 May 2013)

[CYNA221] Cadwaladr II fendigaid [=blessed] (born c.633, ap Cadwallon) married [BRET202] --- (daughter of King Alan of Little Breton, see BRETAGNE KINGDOM), and was King of Gwynedd (657-664, deposed), and died in a plague (664). Another source says he died on a pilgrimage in Rome (681).

[CYNA231] Idwal iwrch [=roebuck] (born c.660, ap Cadwaladr) was King of Gwynedd (664-712).

[CYNA241] Rhodri molwynog [=old and grey] (ab Idwal) married Fermael of Ireland, and was King of Gwynedd (712-54). He died c.754. Afterwards his widow, Fermael, married Rhodri's successor, King Caradoc of Gwynedd (754-98).

[CYNA251] Cynan dindaethwy (ap Rhodri) married Mahault (ferch Larll y Phlynt, Lord of Flint). He was co-King of Gwynedd (798-816). He died 816.

[CYNA262] Asylt/Ethylt (ferch Cynan), Regent of Gwynedd (816), married [GWY1271] Merfyn frych (ap Gwriad, see GWYNEDD (1), and see next entry).


[GWY1271] Merfyn frych [=freckled] (ap [GWY1261] Gwriad, see GWYNEDD (1)) married [CYNA262] Asylt/Ethylt (ferch Cynan Dindaethwy, see last entry above), and was King of Gwynedd (816, 825-44). He died (perhaps slain) at the Battle of Cetill (844).

[GWYN289] Rhodri mawr [=the great] (ap Merfyn) married 1. [SEIS292] Angharad (ferch Meurig, see CEREDIGION & SEISYLLWG KINGDOMS) then 2. ---. He was King of Gwynedd after the death of his father (844-78), King of Powys after the death of his uncle Cyngen (855-78), King of Seisyllwg after the death of his brother-in-law Gwgon (871-78). He was 1st King of Wales (872-78), his realm extending from Anglesey to Gower. He won a victory in Anglesey over Horm, leader of the Danes (856), but was killed in battle (together with his son Gwriad) at Prestatyn with the Mercians (878).

[GWY9301] Tudwal gloff [=lame] (born c.840, ap Rhodri mawr, by his 2nd unnamed wife), see GWYNEDD (9) for further details.

[GWYN294] Nest (ferch Rhodri mawr, of unknown mother) married [GLYW271] Owain (born c.885, ap Hywel, see GLYWYSING & MORGANNWG KINGDOMS).

[MERF291] Merfyn (ap Rhodri mawr, by 1st or 2nd wife), see MERFYN for further details.

[GWYN291] Anarawd (ap Rhodri mawr, by 1st wife) was King of Gwynedd (879-916). He was killed by Mercian forces at the Battle of Brecenanmere, near Llangorse Lake, near Brecon (19th January 916).

[GWRX301] Elise (ap Anarawd), was slain at the hands of the Saxons, together with his brother Edwal (942).

[GWRX312] Prawst (ferch Elise) married [GWYZ311] Seisyll (see GWYNEDD KINGDOM (2) below).

[GWYN301] Idwal foel [=bald] (ab Anarawd) married [GWY8282] Mereddon (ferch Cadwr Gwenwynwyn, see GWYNEDD (8)), and was King of Gwynedd (916-42), and was killed in battle during unsuccessful revolt against the English (942).

[GWYN311] Meurig (ab Idwal) died 986.

[GWYN321] Idwal (ap Meurig) died in exile (996).

[GWYN331] Iago II (ab Idwal ap Meurig) married [GWYP332] Afandreg (ferch Gwair ap Pyll, see PYLL AP CYNWRIG), and was King of Gwynedd (1033-39), and was murdered by a hatchet blow to the head (1039) at the instigation of Gruffydd ap Llywelyn (see below).

[GWYN342] Tangwystl (ferch Iago ab Idwal) married [HOWL341] Llywarch Howlbwrch (see HOWLBWRCH).

[GWYN341] Cynan (ab Iago) sought refuge with the Danes in Dublin after his father was murdered, and whilst there he married [DUBL352] Ragnhildr (ferch Olaf, see DUBLIN KINGDOM). He died c.1060.

[GWYN351] Gruffydd II (born in Dublin c.1055, ap Cynan) tried to regain his grandfather's lands (see Iago II above). With an army of Danes and Irish he landed on the banks of the Menai, and defeated King Trahaearn ap Caradog of Gwynedd (see GWYNEDD (3)) at the Battle of Gwaed Erw (c.1074), and pressed on to Rhuddlan. He failed to take the castle there, where the people of Llyn put up a good fight. Learning this, King Trahaearn returned to the attack, and defeated Gruffydd at the Battle of Bron-yr-erw (1075), and sent him back to Ireland. Gruffydd returned again six years later, this time landing near St. David's. He joined forces with Rhys ap Tewdyr (see SOUTH WALES PRINCES), and together overcame and killed both Prince Caradog ap Gruffydd and King Trahaearn at the Battle of Mynydd Carn (1081). Once more he was King of Gwynedd. But not long after he was captured by men of Hugh, 2nd Earl of Chester, and imprisoned for 12 years, when he managed to escape in 1093. He again seized power (1094), and married (c.1095) [OWAI372] Angharad (born c.1080, ferch Owain, see SEISYLLWG (2)). He again fled to Ireland (1096) as the Norman forced pushed eastward towards Anglesey, but returned two years later. He died (1137) and was afterwards buried at Bangor Cathedral. Angharad died 1162. Later mediaeval pedigrees state that "Gruffydd had five sons and three daughters with at least three other partners". Two of these partners were (apparently) an unnamed daughter of Llychwy of Llanbeulan Llifon, and Perwyr ferch Bran ap Danawal.

[GWYN365] Susanna (ferch Gruffydd, by Angharad) married [MADO361] Madog (ap Maredudd, see POWYS KINGDOM (2)).

[GWYN363] Gwenllian (ferch Gruffydd, by Angharad) married [RHYS361] Gruffudd (ap Rhys, see SOUTH WALES PRINCES).

[GWYN361] Owain (born on Anglesey c.1100, 2nd ap Gruffydd, by Angharad) married 1. [LLYW362] Gwladys (ferch Llywarch, see GWYNEDD (3)); then 2. his cousin Christina (ferch Gronwy ab Owain, see SEISYLLWG). He was King of Gwynedd (1137-70). He paid homage to King Henry II (1157), died on 28th November 1170, and was buried at Bangor Cathedral.

  Bangor Cathedral
(21 May 1997)

[GWYN372] Gwenllian (daughter of Owain ) married  [MADO373] Owain ap Gruffydd.(see POWYS KINGDOM (2)

[GWYN373] Angharad (daughter of Owain) married [MADO371] Gruffydd Maelor I (ap Madog) (see POWYS KINGDOM (2)


[GWYN371] Iorwerth drwyndwn [=flat-ose] (ab Owain, by Gwladys) married [MADO372] Margred (born 1134, ferch Madog, see POWYS KINGDOM (2)). ---. Iorwerth was Lord of Arfon and a Prince of Gwynedd. He died in Pennant Mehangell (1174).

[GWYN389] Llywelyn fawr [=the great] (born at Dolwyddelan, Nantconwy, 1173, ab Iorwerth) married 1. ---; then 2. (1205) [PLAN394] Joan (born illegitimate c.1191, see PLANTAGENET KINGS); and had an illicit relationship with 3. [HOWL382] Tangwystl Goch (born c.1168, ferch Llywarch Goch, see HOWLBWRCH).

A papal decree (April 1226) declared Joan to be legitimate on the grounds that her parents were both unmarried at the time of her birth, but did not give her claim to the English throne.

  Llwelyn built a 2-storey castle at Dolwyddelan from c.1210, to which his grandson Llywelyn ap Gruffudd added a 3rd-storey.

The English later built an adjacent second castle, but little of this has survived.
         Dolwyddelan Castle (c.1210) on left.
Remains of later English castle on right
(19 July 2011)
    Dolbadarn Castle
ruins above Llanberis
(11 October 2018)

Dolbadarn Castle was built by Llywelyn at the base of Llanberis Pass in North Wales

He was Prince Llywelyn of Gwynedd, Prince of Abeffraw and Lord of Snowdonia (1230-), and also referred to as Prince of North Wales. Llywelyn ab Iorwerth conquered the territory of his uncle Dafydd in 1194 and established his supremacy in Gwynedd east and west of the river Conwy. He strengthened outlying regions of Gwynedd and gradually assumed overlordship over other independent Welsh rulers. By 1201 he had emerged as the ruler of the whole of Gwynedd. He paid homage to King John, marrying one of his daughter in 1205. He laid the basis of the Welsh feudal principality and is regarded as having been the most powerful and successful of independent rulers in medieval Wales. He asserted his supremacy over the other Welsh lords to such an extent that King John sent an expedition against him (1211) to force him the come to terms. However, in 1215 Llywelyn sided with the barons in their disputes with the king, and entered into an alliance with Reynold, 13th Lord Abergavenny, giving him his daughter Gwladys ddu hand in marriage. Another of his daughters, Margred, married (c.1217) John de Braose, Marcher Lord of Gower, and in 1222 he married off another daughter, Helen, to John the Scot, nephew and heir of Ranulf de Blundeville, Earl of Chester.

In 1220 Llywelyn attacked Wiston (in Fleming territory near Haverfordwest), destroying the castle and burning the town.

In April 1226 King Henry III decreed that Llywelyn's wife Joan was legitimate, both parents having been unmarried at the time of her birth, though without prejudice to the king or realm (i.e. having no claim to the throne).

Whilst William, 14th Lord Abergavenny, (see ABERGAVENNY BARONY) was being held prisoner by Llywelyn (1229), he succeeded in having a relationship with Llywelyn's wife Joan. When Llywelyn learned of this, he had William publicly hanged at St. Clears, near Carmarthen, (May 1230).

He built a handful of stone castles, one of which was at Criccieth, mid-way between Caernarfon and Harlech, which Llewelyn commenced building in c.1230, and its strategic position meant it was subsequently improved upon by both Llewelyn ap Gruffydd and King Edward I.


Criccieth Castle
(28 September 2001)

Joan, Lady of Wales, died (2nd February 1237) at Pen y Bryn in Aber Garth Celyn (later Abergwyngregyn, but now plain Aber) on the north coast of Gwynedd. Her coffin was later placed in Llanfaes Friary (consecrated 1240) across the Menai Strait on Anglesey. Following the Friary's dissolution in the 16th Century, the empty coffin was used as a horse trough, until finally placed in the nearby Parish Church of Saints Mary & Nicholas at Beaumaris.

Beaumaris Parish Church
(23 July 2011)
Joan's coffin in the porch
(23 July 2011)
Accompanying plaque
(23 July 201)
                This plain Sarcophagus, (once dignified, as having
contained the remains of JOAN, daughter of King
JOHN, and consort of LLEWELYN ap JORWERTH
Prince of North Wales, who died in the year 1237) having
been conveyed from the Friary of Llanfaes and, alas! used
for many years as a horse=watering trough, was rescued from
such indignity, and placed here for preservation, as well as
to excite serious meditations on the transitory nature
of all sublunary distinctions. By THOMAS JAMES
    (transcription of the plaque)
Joan's head
(23 July 2011)
Joan's hands
(23 July 2011)
part of intricate carving
(23 July 2011)

The intricate carving bears a resemblance to the carving on a coffin stone at Valle Crucis Abbey, shown below, now bearing signs of ravages from pigeons and neglect.

  Stone slab at Valle Crucis Abbey
(15 July 2011)

Llywelyn suffered a stroke (1237), then died at Aberconwy (11th April 1240). His arms form part of the (current) coat of arms of the Prince of Wales. In the case of the two daughters mentioned below, there is a dispute over their respective mothers.

[GWYN399] Margred (ferch Llywelyn, by ?Joan) married 1. [BRAM461] John (see BREWOSE BARONY); then 2. [CLIF451] Sir Walter (see CLIFFORD).

[GWYN398] Gwladys ddu (ferch Llywelyn, by ?Tangwystl) married 1. (1215) [ABER381] Reynold (see ABERGAVENNY (BRIOUZE) BARONY); then 2. (1230) [MORT461] Ralph (see WIGMORE (MORTIMER) BARONY).


[GWYZ311] Seisyllt I (born c.940, [according to one source] ab [GLAM391] Ednywain, see GLAMORGAN KINGDOM) married [GWRX312] Prawst (born c.940, ferch Elise, see under GWYNEDD KINGDOM (1) above).

as an aside:

For a time, the Kings of Gwynedd were selected from either Gwynedd (1) or Gwynedd (2).

[GWYZ321] Llywelyn (born at Rhuddlan, c.974, ap Seisyll) married [GWRI349] Angharad (born c.982, ferch Maredudd, see SEISYLLWG, DEHEUBARTH & GWYNEDD KINGDOMS), and was King of Gwynedd (1005-23), and King of Deheubarth (1018-23). After his death (1023), Angharad married 2. (1023) [MADO331] Cynfyn (ap Gwerystan, see POWYS KINGDOM (2)).

[GWYZ331] Gruffydd (born c.1007 else c.1020, ap Llywelyn) succeeded Iago ab Idwal ap Meurig (see above) as King of Gwynedd (1039-63). He also defeated Leofric, Earl of Mercia, at Rhyd-y-groes near Welshpool (1039). Gruffydd was also King of Powys (1039-53), then King of Deheubarth (1044-47 and 1055-63), and Sovereign over all Wales (1055-63). He defeated Hywel ab Edwin ab Owain ap Hywel dda at Pencader (1041). Hywel's wife then became Gruffydd's captive as part of the "spoils of war", and subsequently became his concubine. Hywel was later slain by Gruffydd's men at the Battle at the mouth of the River Tywi (1044). Gruffydd married (c.1057) [MERC352] Ealdgyth (born c.1042, see MERCIA EARLDOM (2)). Gruffydd in Snowdonia was slain by his own people (5th August 1063) and his head, together with ornaments, was sent to Earl Harold Godwinsson of Hereford, which he presently brought to King Edward the Confessor. Afterwards Ealdgyth married 2. (c.1064-66) [GODW341} King Harold II (see EARL GODWINE). After Harold's death at the Battle of Hastings (14th October 1066), Ealdgydd went into exile on the Continent [presumably to Brittany taking her unmarried daughter Gwenta]. She died sometime after 1098. No sons of Gruffydd appear in any genealogy, but two sons (Idwal and Maredudd) are mentioned in chronicle sources. They both died in 1070, and could have been his children by Hywel's captive wife.

[GWYZ349] Nest (born at Rhuddlan, c.1059, ferch Gruffydd) married 1. [LLYW341] King Trahaearn (ap Caradog, see GWYNEDD (3)) who then became King of Gwynedd (1075, see GWYNEDD (3)); then 2. [SAY2401] Osbern FitzRichard (see SAY BY ADOPTION).

[GWYZ348] Gwenta (born 1050, ferch Gruffydd ap Llewelyn) married [ARU241] Alan FitzFlaaid (Seneschal of the Dol in Brittany). See ARUNDEL (FITZALAN) EARLDOM).