Monastic Wales.

Event detail for site: Cwmhir

1176: Foundation

The abbey was founded by Cadwallon ap Madog (d. 1179) and colonised by monks from Whitland Abbey. The house was situated on the north bank of the Clywedog brook.

The abbey was founded in 1176 and not in 1144 by Maredudd, as was previously claimed. Nor is there sufficient evidence to support a site change (Robinson, The Cistercians in Wales, p. 230)

People associated with this event

Cadwallon ap Madog , Welsh prince; ruler of Maelienydd

Bibliographical sources

Printed sources

Medieval Religious Houses, England and Wales, ed. R. Neville Hadcock and David Knowles (Harlow, 1971) p. 115

Cowley, F. G., The Monastic Order in South Wales 1066-1349 (Cardiff, 1977) pp. 25-6

Remfry, P.M., The Political History of Abbey Cwmhir, 1176 to 1282 and the Families of Elystan Godrydd, Mortimer and the Princes of Gwynedd (Worcester, 1994,) p. 1

Robinson, David M., The Cistercians in Wales: Architecture and Archaeology 1130-1540, Society of Antiquaries of London, Research Committee Report (London, 2006) p. 230

Smith, J. Beverley and Butler, Lawrence A. S., 'The Cistercian Order: Cymer Abbey', in History of Merioneth, volume II: the middle ages, ed. J. B. Smith and L. B. Smith (Cardiff, 2001) p. 298

Other events in the history of this site

1176Foundation - The abbey was founded by Cadwallon ap Madog (d. 1179) and colonised by monks from Whitland Abbey. The house was situated on the north bank of the Clywedog brook. [5 sources]
1179Patronage - Following the death of its founder, Cadwallon, in 1179 Cwmhir was patronised by Roger Mortimer, the Marcher lord who was responsible for Cadwallon's death.  [1 sources]
1195Revolt - When the abbot of Cwmhir forbade ale to the lay-brothers they retaliated by stealing his horse. [2 sources]
1198-1199Daughter-house founded - Cwmhir sent a colony of monks to establish a new house at Cymer, NW Wales. [3 sources]
1199Charter - Roger Mortimer, lord of Maelienydd, issued a significant charter to the abbey in memory of his predecessors and in honour of those who had died in the conquest of 1195. [4 sources]
1214Royal protection - Following the death of Roger Mortimer, King John took the abbey into royal protection. [2 sources]
1228Destruction - One of Cwmhir's granges was burnt by royal troops.  [1 sources]
1231-2Royal confirmation - Henry III granted the community various privileges and issued a confirmation charter. [3 sources]
1231Allegations - Henry III attacked the house after allegations that a member of the Cwmhir community was responsible for tricking a troop of English soldiers into ambush. [2 sources]
1232Royal confirmation - Henry III reconfirmed his father's charter; this and King John's charter of protection in 1214 provide a valuable insight into the nature of the abbey's original endowment. [1 sources]
1234Burial - Cadwallon ap Maelgwn was buried at the abbey. [2 sources]
1252-4Royal support - Henry III further supported the abbey by instructing the men of Montgomeryshire not to waste or destroy the community's woods within their bailiwick. [2 sources]
1252Destruction - The abbey's woods in Ceri were damaged by the men of Montgomery. [2 sources]
1282Burial - Llywelyn ap Gruffudd was buried at the house following his death in December 1282. [2 sources]
1291Wealth - The house had an estimated income of £35 12s 0d. [4 sources]
1381Clerical poll tax - Payment required from the community: [1 sources][1 archives]
1387-9Numbers - At this time there were eight monks at Cwmhir. [1 sources]
c.1401Destruction - The abbey suffered destruction during the Owain Glyn Dŵr revolt.  [3 sources]
1524Bequest - Rhys ap Thomas, who died in 1525, left £8 to the community to buy a pair of organs for the abbey. [2 sources]
c.1532Numbers - At this time there were three monks. [1 sources]
c.1535Wealth - According to the Valor Ecclesiasticus the abbey had a net income of £28 17s 4d. [3 sources][1 archives]
1537Dissolution - On 2 March 1537 the abbey was suppressed. At this time there were just three monks.  [6 sources]
c.1540Fabric removed - Five bays of the nave arcade were taken to Llanidloes parish church where they have since remained. View. [1 sources]