princes of gwynedd


Gruffydd ap Llewelyn

Deganwy Castle

Deganwy Castle

  • Born circa 1196 – Died 1244
  • Married: Senena
  • Four sons: Owain Goch (c1219-c1282), Llewelyn (1228-1282), Dafydd (1238-1283) and Rhodri (d.1315) plus possibly some daughters.

Gruffydd was the illegitimate first born son of Llewelyn Fawr, his mother being Tangwystl. Whilst he was still a child, Gruffydd was handed over to the English as a hostage together with the sons of a great number of other Welsh princes in the belief that King John would not harm children. In 1212, the other children were hanged but Gruffydd was spared and in 1215 he was finally allowed to return to Wales.

Gruffydd greatly resented the fact that his brother Dafydd had been declared his father's sole heir and his father Llewelyn Fawr was forced to imprison Gruffydd for 6 years in Deganwy Castle to save trouble between his two sons.

In 1240 Gruffydd refused to submit to his brother as Prince of Gwynedd and he was imprisoned for a further 11 months in Criccieth Castle. Gruffydd was then handed over to the English King, Henry III, who imprisoned Gruffydd in the Tower of London for 2½years before Gruffydd made a disastrous escape attempt; the improvised rope broke and Gruffydd fell to his death.

Gruffydd's body was returned to Wales a couple of years later and he was buried at Aberconwy Abbey.

List of all Characters

Llewelyn ap Iorwerth

Fought to unite Wales and became known as Llewelyn the Great.
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Wife of Llewelyn ap Iorwerth and mediator between the Welsh and her father, the English King.
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Dafydd ap Llewelyn

The first person to claim the title ‘Prince of Wales’.
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Gruffydd ap Llewelyn

The overlooked eldest son whose resentment led to tragic results. (You are on this page).

Llewelyn ap Gruffydd

The first Prince of Wales recognised as such by the English and known to the Welsh as ‘Our Last Leader’.
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The Successors

What happened to the successors to the title of Prince of Gwynedd and Prince of Wales?
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Contact Information

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E-mail: info at princesofgwynedd dot com

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