csawlogo.jpg

Home
Legendary History Prior to 1st Century BC
Beli Mawr and Llyr Llediath in Welsh Pedigrees
The Bartrum "Welsh Genealogies"
Bartrum's "Pedigrees of the Welsh Tribal Patriarchs"
A study in charting medieval citations
The Evolution of the "Padriarc Brenin" Pedigree
Generational Gaps and the Welsh Laws
Minimum Age for Welsh Kingship in the Eleventh Century
The Lands of the Silures
Catel Durnluc aka Cadell Ddyrnllwg
Ancient Powys
The Royal Family of Powys
The Royal Family of Gwynedd
The 5 Plebian Tribes of Wales
Maxen Wledig of Welsh Legend
Maxen Wledig and the Welsh Genealogies
Anwn Dynod ap Maxen Wledig
Constans I and his 343 Visit to Britain
Glast and the Glastening
Composite Lives of St Beuno
Rethinking the Gwent Pedigrees
The Father of Tewdrig of Gwent
Another Look at Teithfallt of Gwent
Ynyr Gwent and Caradog Freich Fras
Llowarch ap Bran, Lord of Menai
Rulers of Brycheiniog - The Unanswered Questions
Lluan ferch Brychan
The Herbert Family Pedigree
Edwin of Tegeingl and his Family
Angharad, Heiress of Mostyn
Ithel of Bryn in Powys
Idnerth Benfras of Maesbrook
Henry, the Forgotten Son of Cadwgan ap Bleddyn
The Muddled Pedigree of Sir John Wynn of Gwydir
The Mysterious Peverel Family
The Clan of Tudor Trevor
The Other "Sir Roger of Powys"
Ancestry of Ieuaf ap Adda ap Awr of Trevor
The Retaking of Northeast Wales
Hedd Molwynog or Hedd ap Alunog of Llanfair Talhearn
"Meuter Fawr" son of Hedd ap Alunog
The Medieval "redating" of Braint Hir
Aaron Paen ap Y Paen Hen
Welsh Claims to Ceri after 1179
The Battle of Mynydd Carn
Trahaearn ap Caradog of Arwystli
Cadafael Ynfyd of Cydewain
Maredudd ap Robert, Lord of Cedewain
Cadwgan of Nannau
Maredudd ap Owain, King of Deheubarth
What Really Happened in Deheubarth in 1022?
Two Families headed by a Rhydderch ap Iestyn
The Era of Llewelyn ap Seisyll
Cynfyn ap Gwerystan, the Interim King
The Consorts and Children of Gruffudd ap Llewelyn
The 1039 Battle at Rhyd y Groes
The First Wife of Bleddyn ap Cynfyn
Hywel ap Gronwy of Deheubarth
The Brief Life of Gruffudd ap Maredudd
The Other Gwenwynwyn
Eunydd son of Gwenllian
Sandde Hardd of Mortyn
The Floruit of Einion ap Seisyllt
The Enigmatic Elystan Glodrydd
Cowryd ap Cadfan of Dyffryn Clwyd
Owain ap Cadwgan and Nest ferch Rhys - An Historic Fiction?
The "sons" of Owain ap Cadwgan ap Bleddyn
The Betrayal by Meirion Goch Revisited
Gwyn Ddistain, seneschal for Llewelyn Fawr
The Men of Lleyn - How They Got There
Trahaearn Goch of Lleyn
Einion vs Iestyn ap Gwrgan - The Conquest of Glamorgan
Dafydd Goch ap Dafydd - His Real Ancestry
Thomas ap Rhodri - Father of Owain "Lawgoch"
The "Malpas" Family in Cheshire
Einion ap Celynin of Llwydiarth
Marchweithian, Lord of Is Aled, Rhufoniog
Osbwrn Wyddel of Cors Gedol
Bradwen of Llys Bradwen in Meirionydd
Ednowain ap Bradwen
Sorting out the Gwaithfoeds
Three Men called Iorwerth Goch "ap Maredudd"
The Caradog of Gwynedd With 3 Fathers
Who Was Sir Robert Pounderling?
Eidio Wyllt - What Was His Birthname?
The Legendary Kingdom of Seisyllwg
The Royal Family of Ceredigion
Llewelyn ap Hoedliw, Lord of Is Cerdin
The Ancestry of Owain Glyndwr
Welsh Ancestry of the Tudor Dynasty
Gruffudd ap Rhys, the Homeless Prince
The Children of Lord Rhys
Maredudd Gethin ap Lord Rhys
The 'Next Heir' of Morgan of Caerleon
Pedigree of the ancient Lords of Ial
The Shropshire Walcot Family
Pedigree of "Ednowain Bendew II"
Pedigree of Cynddelw Gam

#17 - CARADOG FREICHFRAS
 
         Bartrum offers 8 different pedigrees for men of this name:
 
        (1) "Caradoc vreichvras ap Llyr merini ap Einion yrth ap Cunedda Wledic"
 
        (2) "Kariadoc freichfras ap Llyr meirini ap Meirchiawn gul ap Grwst ledlwm ap Kenau ap Koel godeboc"
 
        (3) "Kariadoc freichfras iarll Henffordd ap Llyr merini ap y Keilioc myngrudd or gogledd (ap Marinwy) ap Ethrys ap Eidion darianlas ap Kenau ap Koel godeboc"
 
       (4) "Kradoc vraichvras ap Llyr merini ap Merinwch brennin y gogledd a iarll Kaer Ffawydd ac oi enw ef y gyrrwyd erni Kaer Gradoc, a heddiw y gelwir hi Henffordd"
 
       (5) "Kariadoc vreichvras ap Llyr meirini ap Einion yrth ap Kunedda wledic; medd rrai Kariadoc vreichvras yw hwnn ap Llyr meirinwch ap y Keilioc myngrudd orr gogledd, a sikr yw bod dau Gariadoc vreichfras ac am hynny barner."
 
       (6) "Karadoc freichfras iarll Henffordd ap Llyr meirini ap Einion yrth ap Kunedda wledic.  Yr ail Karadoc freichfras oedd yn myned ir Keilioc myngrudd or gogledd yr hwnn oedd dwyn y llew haneroc"
 
       (7) "Kariadoc freichfras iarll Henffordd ap y Kelioc myngrudd or gogledd ap Eidol darianlas ap Kenau ap Koel godeboc....Eraill a ddwaid yn y modd hwnn: Kariadoc freichfras ap Llyr mereni ap Einion yrth ap Cunedda wledic...Edrych pa vu orav."
 
       (8) "Caradoc vreichfras ab Llyr (ap) Meirini ab Echrys ab Iddon darianlas ab Meirchion ap Gorwst ab Kenau ab Koel godeboc."
 
         In his notes to these pedigrees, Bartrum says:
 
         "It is clear that in the sixteenth century Caradog Freichfras was associated with Radnor and Hereford.  This tradition may be ancient, for in the Life of St Padern he is mentioned in connection with that saint, who had foundations in Maelienydd and Elfael. (The introduction of Brittany into that part of the Life is certainly an error).  On the other hand none of the saints who were supposed to be his descendants, namely Cadfarch, Maethlu, Tangwn and Dyfnog are associated with region.  For more on Caradog Freichfras see TPY pp. 299-300.
 
          "Generally speaking the North Wales genealogies traced Caradog Freich Fras to Cunedda Wledig, while those of Powys and South Wales traced hom to Coel Godebog.  There are exceptions in the later manuscripts which trace Maenyrch to Caradog Freichfras and then to Cunedda.  None of the versions deserve much credence. The alternative versions caused some perplexity and some concluded that there were two persons of the name.  This is reflected in the fact that the supposed arms of Caradog Freichfras appear in two entirely different versions, one for South Wales and one for North Wales.  Pedigree #8 is an attempt to combine pedigrees #2 and #3.
 
         "The wife of Caradog Freichfras is given as "Tec eurfronn ferch brenin Pelafr"; "Degay ayrfronn ferch brenin Pelays"; "Tegau aurfron ferch Pelen aur; and "Tegay hirfron d. to king Pelinor".  King Peleur appears in the We;sh version of a Grail Romance, but not as father of Tegau Eurfron.  Y Ceiliog Myngrudd 'the red-maned cock' also appears in the pedigree of Ifor Bach.  Marinwy, Merimwch in pedigrees #3 and #4 are apparently doublets of Marini on the epithet of Llyr"
 
GENERAL COMMENTS:
 
         In fact there were two different men called Caradog Freich Fras.  The earliest was born c. 470 and is associated with the Ewias/Gwent families descended from Bran ap Llyr Llediath; he is often described as a cousin of King Arthur.  The later Caradog Freich Fras was a Rhos man, born c. 820, and descended from Einion Yrth ap Cunedda.  Neither man was a descendant of Coel Godebog (Hen) of the North.  That idea came from the misidentification of the man named Meirchion (born c. 295) found in the pedigree of the south Wales Caradog, with Meirchion Gul ap Gwrwst Ledlum ap Cenau ap Coel; actually he was Meirchion ap Gwrgan Frych ap Arthfael which Arthfael was a brother of Eudaf Hen.
 
PEDIGREE #1:
 
          Meant to be the ancestor of Heilig ap Glannog of Gwynedd, this pedigree begins with the earlier south Wales Caradog ap Llyr Merini and attaches him to the pedigree of the later north Wales Caradog.
 
PEDIGREE #2:
 
         Meant to be the ancestor of Maenrych of Brychieniog, this is a corrupt version of the pedigree of the south Wales Caradog, omitting 4 generations between Llyr Merini and Meirchion, then continuing with the wrong Meirchion.
 
PEDIGREE #3:
 
        Again meant as the ancestor of Maenrych, this version is accurate back to Eidion Darian Las (if we read "Marinwy" as "Meirnwch") but is thereafter corrupt.  But the description of Caradog as "Earl of Hereford" and Y Ceiliog Myngrudd as "of the north" are no more than medieval conjecture.
 
PEDIGREE #4:
 
        This pedigree says the ancestor of Maenyrch was "Caradog Freich Fras ap Llyr Merini ap Merinwch, king of the North and Earl of Fort Beech Tree, but today his name is wrongly associated with Fort Cradock and Hereford".  Again, we see medieval thought as to the location and titles held by this family.
 
PEDIGREE #5:
 
        Here we read that the ancestor of Maenyrch was "Caradog Freich Fras ap Llyr Merini ap Einion Yrth ap Cunedda Wledig; some say Caradog Freich Fras ap Llyr Merini ap Y Ceiliog Myngrudd of the North. It is certain there were two Caradogs called Freich Fras, so that one (the one from whom Maenyrch descended) requires a judgement".  The author of this pedigree appears to agree there were two different men called caradog Freich Fras, but left it to the reader to judge which of those men was the ancestor of Maenyrch.
 
PEDIGREE #6:
 
         This pedigree says the ancestor of Maenrych was "Caradog Freich Fras, Earl of Hereford, ap Llyr Merini ap Einion Yrth ap Cunedda Wledig.  The second Caradog Freich Fras was a son of Ceiliog Myngrudd and it was that one who took a lion half and half". 
 
         The final phrase appears to refer to a coat of arms which several sources assign the Caradog of Rhos: Blue, a lion rampant per fess gold and silver in a silver border.  Thus half the lion is one color and half another color.  But the pedigree has switched the two Caradogs, incorrectly making the ancestor of Maenyrch descend from Cunedda and giving the arms of the Rhos Caradog to the south Wales Caradog.  The 5th century Caradog Freich Fras of south Wales was assigned arms of "Black, a chevron between 3 spear-heads silver".
 
PEDIGREE #7:
 
        Here we are told the ancestor of Heilig ap Glannog and of Llywarch Hwlbwrch was "Caradog Freich Fras, Earl of Hereford, ap Y Ceiliog Myngrudd of the North ap Eidol Darian Las ap Ceneu ap Coel Godebog.  Others say he was Caradog Freich Fras ap Llyr Merini ap Einion Yrth ap Cunedda Wledig...see which one is good."
 
        By that last phrase, the author invites the reader to make his own examination as to which Caradog "works" as ancestor to the named men of north Wales.  But neither pedigree is "good" as given here.
 
PEDIGREE #8:
 
        Given as the ancestor of Maenyrch, this pedigree omits 2 generations between Llyr Merini and Ethys/Echrys before appending the wrong ancestry to Meirchion.
 
CONCLUSION[1]:
 
        The north Wales Caradog Freich Fras was a man of Rhos and his correct pedigree should read "ap Hywel (c. 785) ap Caradog (c. 745) ap Meirion (c. 715) ap Rhufon (c. 680) ap Einion (c. 645) ap Idgwyn (c. 615) ap Cadwallon Crisban (c. 580) ap Cyngen (c. 550) ap Meig (c. 515) ap Cynglas (c. 480) ap Owain Ddantgwyn (c. 445) ap Einion Urdd (c. 415) ap Cunedda (c. 385).  He was the ancestor of Heilig ap Glannog, Llywarch Hwlbwrch, Cadwgan of Nannau, Pasgen ap Urien, Marchweithian, Collwyn ap Tangno, Nefyfdd Hardd, and Iarddur ap Cynddelw among others.
 
        The Caradog Freich Fras of Ewias in south Wales was contemporary with King Arthur, and his pedigree should read "ap Llyr Merini (c. 445) ap Y Ceiliog Myngrudd (c. 415) ap Meirnwch (c. 385) ap Ethys (c. 355) ap Iddon Darian Las (c. 325) ap Meirchion (c. 295) ap Gwgan Frych (c. 265) ap Arthfael (c. 230) ap Einudd (c. 190) ap Gwrddwyfn (c. 160) ap Gorug (c. 130) ap Meirchion Fawr Filwr (c. 100) ap Owain (c. 65) ap Cyllin (c. 35) ap Caradog (c. 5) ap Bran (c. 30BC) ap Llyr Llediath (c. 60BC).  He was the ancestor of Bleddyn and Drymboenig ap Maenrych of Brychieniog[2].
 
NOTES:
[1]  The previous 6 men in this series (beginning with #10 - Iarddur ap Cynddelw) are said to descend from one of the two men called Caradog Freich Fras.  Notes to each of those "Patriarchs" apply, at least partly, to the material presented in this discussion and will not be duplicated here.  
[2]  It is possible that Rhys Goch of Ystrad Yw also descended from this Caradog Freich Fras, but we opt for an alternate ancestry.  See Patriarch #16 in this series.