Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Hughes, Hugh (1805-1864)

HUGHES, HUGH (Tegai) (1805–1864), Welsh poet, was born in the small village of Cilgeraint, Llandegai, Carnarvonshire, in 1805. His father was a deacon of the independent church at Cororion, and district president of the British and Foreign Bible Society. Hugh derived all his education from a Sunday school. When the independent church to which his family belonged was closed, he joined the Wesleyans, but subsequently returned to the independents, and became well known in the district as a powerful preacher. He was prevailed upon to take charge successively of churches at Rhos–y– lan, Tabor, and Llanystumdwy, at Jackson Street, Manchester, and at Capelhelyg, Chwilog, and Abererch in Carnarvonshire. At Abererch he set up a printing–press, and edited 'Yr Arweinydd,' a penny monthly, for many years. In 1859 he removed to Aberdare, where he took charge of the new church at Bethel, and gathered a large congregation. Hughes was Arminian rather than Calvinistic, but in his views of church organisation he was a pronounced independent, holding that each church should have the sole management of its own affairs. He lost money by his publications, and a public subscription was raised for him by friends during the last year of his life, but he died, 8 Dec. 1864, before the testimonial was presented.

Hughes was more voluminous as a writer than any Welshman of his day. He contributed largely to the current magazines. In early life he competed frequently and successfully at Eisteddfodau, and later often acted as an adjudicator. His principal works are:

  1. 'Rhesymeg' (logic), Wrexham, 1856.
  2. 'Y Drydedd Oruchwyliaeth' (The Third Dispensation), Pontyprydd, 1859.
  3. 'Grammadeg Barddoniaeth,' Carnarvon, 1862.
  4. 'Ioan yn Ynys Patmos' (Awdl)—an ode on St. John in the Isle of Patmos, Aberdare, 1864.
  5. 'Grammadeg Athronyddol,' stereotyped after 4th ed.
  6. 'Yr Ysgrifell Gymreig,' three editions, Wrexham.
  7. 'Crynodeb o Rammadeg Cymraeg,' i.e. introduction to Welsh Grammar, Carnarvon.
  8. 'Catechism of Welsh Grammar,' Carnarvon.
  9. 'Agoriad Gwybodaeth' (on composition).
  10. 'Review of Cole, and an Essay on Divine Government,' Carnarvon. Dr. Hughes (Cowlyd) says this is the best specimen of reasoning in the Welsh language. It was written when Hughes left the Wesleyans, and supplies a full account of his religious views.
  11. 'Bwrdd y Bardd ' (the first published collection of his poetical works).
  12. 'Essay on Independency.'
  13. 'Olyniaeth Apostolaidd.'
  14. 'Moses and Colenso.'
  15. 'Cydwybod.'
  16. 'Bedydd Cristeinogol.'
  17. 'Deddf, Pechod, a Gras.'
  18. 'Ydrydedd Oruchwyliaeth.'
  19. 'Cofiant J.Jones, Talsarn.'
  20. 'Casgliad o Emynau.'
  21. 'Telyn y Saint.'

[J. T. Jones's Geiriadur Bywgraffyddol, i. 567-70; three articles in Y Geninen, 1889.]

R. J. J.