The Data Wales website contains many references to the Morgans of Monmouthshire in south Wales. The family, whose members were often known as the Morgans of Tredegar after their primary residence on the outskirts of the town of Newport, is well documented and its study illuminates many aspects of the history of Wales. The Morgans survived the depredations of the Norman French knights, the consequences of their support for Owain Glyndwr's revolt against the English crown and the upheavals of the English Civil War. They retained a degree of influence over the ages and achieved a final flowering in the 19th. century when their great wealth and land ownership allowed them to take a prominent part in the industrialisation of south Wales.
In 2001 we were contacted by a descendent of a branch of the family which had long ago removed to France. Servane de Morgan was kind enough to send me copies of sections of a 1612 pedigree and we publish these illustrations by express permission. (The scans which accompany this note are copyright of Data Wales and must not be published elsewhere.)
The pedigree takes the form of a roll and when extended measures
around ten metres in length. The roll format has fortunately protected the
contents and the skillfully painted crests retain their original bright colours.
(The present illustrations suffer from being heavily compressed in order to
allow a relatively fast download of this page.) The pedigree commences with the marriage of Brutus, a legendary King of Britain
supposed to to have descended from "Priamus, King of Troy". This
invocation of figures from classical antiquity was quite common in the old Welsh
pedigrees and seems to demonstrate a lingering memory of the days when Britain
enjoyed the comparative security of Roman rule and its first exposure to classical culture.
Nothing is known of Lewis Morris, the compiler of this pedigree. He writes that he has "collected and gathered" the genealogical information but does not specifically claim the illustrations. These are very intricate and demanded much skill. The shield above is only four inches wide in the original but contains thirty different crests, all carefully drawn.
|John Weston, 2001|
Data Wales Index