dency to spell all words according to their supposed etymology. But his version is remarkable for the wealth of its vocabulary—especially as he had often ‘to form his theological terms for himself’—while his attempt to combine various dialects both in the text and by means of copious marginal variants renders the work extremely valuable to the philologist. But it never acquired much popularity, and was soon superseded in general use by Bishop Morgan's version, which was mainly a revision of Salesbury's work, with his linguistic peculiarities eliminated.
A few years after the publication of the New Testament, Salesbury appears to have returned to Abergwili, where, according to their contemporary, Sir John Wynn (Hist. of Gwydir Family, 1878, pp. 93–4), he and Bishop Davies were engaged ‘for almost two years’ in translating ‘homilies, books, and divers other tracts in [to] the British tongue,’ as well as the Old Testament into Welsh. About 1576 a ‘variance for the general sense and etymology of one word’ caused a rupture between them and put an end to their partnership. Sir John Wynn, who had a grudge against Bishop William Morgan (1540?–1604) [q. v.], says that Morgan, in translating the Old Testament, had ‘the benefit and help of Davies and Salesbury's works, who had done a great part thereof’ (Gwydir Family, p. 96). Salesbury appears to have had no share in the production of Morgan's Welsh version of the Old Testament of 1588.
After the dispute with Davies, Salesbury ‘gave over writing (more was the pity)’ (Wynn; cf. Addit. MS. Brit. Mus. 15034, f. 187). Another work, mainly completed by him before 1550, was, however, published subsequently; it was a Welsh book on rhetoric, entitled ‘Egluryn Phraethineb’ (i.e. ‘The Elucidator of Eloquence’), London, 1595, 8vo, which is described on its title-page as commenced by Salesbury, added to and completed by Henry Perry [q. v.], and published at the expense of Sir John Salisbury of Llewenny, brother of Thomas Salisbury (1555?–1586) [q. v.] John Davies, in his ‘Grammar’ (1621, pp. 213), refers to it thus: ‘De figuris syntaxeos consule Wilhelmi Salesbury Rhetoricam MS. ab Henrico Perrio interpolatam et in lucem editam.’ The work as published was completed after 1580. A second edition, with a few omissions, was published under the editorship of Dr. Owen Pughe [q. v.] in 1807 (London, 8vo), of which a reprint appeared in 1829 (Llanrwst, 12mo). A manuscript copy prepared for publication by Sir Thomas Williams or ab William [q. v.] is in the British Museum (Addit. MS. 15046, ff. 299–348). Williams doubtless had the advantage of perusing many of Salesbury's manuscripts, besides consulting him personally.
Rowlands doubtfully records (Cambr. Bibl. p. 81) under 1607 a translation of ‘Prideaux on Prayer,’ which he says was ascribed to Salesbury.
But although Salesbury published nothing after his rupture with Davies, he was busily engaged in scientific and antiquarian studies. It was in his later years that he wrote a Welsh Botanology, a transcript of which, made in 1763 from the original manuscript, now lost, was recently in the possession of John Peter (Ioan Pedr) of Bala. It was an original work, quite abreast of the time, and showing close observation of plant life (Y Traethodydd, 1873, xxvii. 156–81). Under the date of 1586 Lewis Dwnn mentions Salesbury as one of the gentry ‘by whom he was permitted to see old records, &c.’ in the compilation of his pedigrees (Her. Visit. i. 8). Among the Marquis of Bute's manuscripts there is a volume containing (inter alia) ‘poetry, pedigrees, &c., collected from various Welsh authors, and in that language by W. Salesbury of Llanrwst’ (Hist. MSS. Comm. App. to 3rd Rep. p. 207; cf. Harleian MSS. vol. 2289, No. 7, f. 76). Another manuscript, containing pedigrees of Welsh saints by Salesbury, is quoted in the ‘Myvyrian Archaiology’ (2nd ed. p. 417), while letters of his are among the Addit. MSS. (14929 f. 189, 14936 f. 105, 15034 f. 187, 15059 f. 121) (Gwenogvryn Evans's Cat. of Welsh MSS.). A tract on the bardic office, apparently forming part of some larger work now lost, has been attributed to him, and is reproduced in Edward Jones's ‘Musical and Poetical Relics’ (i. 51–9). Salesbury died about 1600. His place of burial is unknown. He married Catherine, a sister of Dr. Ellis Price [q. v.] of Plas Iolyn; Salesbury's elder brother married another sister. A son, John, married Mary Salesbury of Stour, Kent, and by her had two sons, the elder of whom lived at Plasisaf in 1612, and the other died at Cae Du in 1630.
Salesbury was ‘the best scholar among the Welshmen’ of his time (Dr. T. C. Edwards, p. 60). According to his contemporary, Sir John Wynn (op. cit. p. 94), he was ‘especially an Hebrician, whereof there was not many in those days.’ Skilled in no less than nine languages, he seems to have grasped the value of the comparative method in studying languages, and to have been a pioneer of the science of philology. But his interests were wide; he was