Owain Glyndŵr statue, Corwen

Link to French translationLink to Japanese translationOwain Glyndŵr statue

This life-size bronze statue of Owain Glyndŵr on his horse was installed in the square at Corwen in 2007, across the road from the historic Owain Glyndŵr Hotel. It stands on an eight-ton plinth of polished granite. The sculptor was Chester-based Colin Spofforth.

Owain Glyndŵr was probably born in the 1350s (the plinth gives 1349). His father was Gruffudd Fychan (“Gruffudd the Small”), lord of Glyndyfrdwy and Cynllaith. Glyndyfrdwy is 7km east of Corwen along the A5. His mother Elen came from a landed family in Ceredigion. The young Owain was a typical nobleman, his etiquette honed at the Inns of Court in London.

He had homes in Carrog, near Corwen, and Sycharth in Powys (near Oswestry). He fought with the English against the Scots and Dutch before King Richard II was abducted in Colwyn Bay in 1399 and dethroned by supporters of Henry Bolingbroke, who then became Henry IV.

It’s unclear whether the change of monarch affected the outlook of middle-aged Glyndŵr. At around this time he began to argue with a neighbour, Baron Reginald Grey of Ruthin. In September 1400 he attacked Ruthin, and followed up with raids on other local boroughs. This quickly escalated into full-scale rebellion, as Welsh people saw a chance to hit back at English settlers and the privileges they received

The rebellion received military aid from France and powerful English allies. In 1404, envoys from overseas and Scotland watched his coronation as Prince of Wales, at a parliament held in Machynlleth.

With most of Wales under his control, in 1405 Glyndŵr and his allies drew up an agreement to overthrow the king and divide the country in three, with a considerable chunk of England added to Wales. However, French support dwindled, the rebels lost ground in Wales and in 1409 the English recaptured Harlech Castle – which had been Glyndŵr’s stronghold.

Glyndŵr was never captured, and it’s presumed that he died in hiding c.1415.

Postcode: LL21 0DE    View Location Map

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