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Edward Williams (Iolo Morganwg) was born and lived for the greater part of his life in Glamorgan. He is said to have received no schooling other than from his mother and from the numerous poets he met throughout his life and who taught him their craft. It was while residing in London from 1791 to 1795 that Iolo began to expound the doctrines of bardism and to hold 'druidical' gorseddau on Primrose Hill. When an eisteddfod was held in Carmarthen in 1819 under the auspices of the Dyfed Provincial Society Iolo succeeded in including the gorsedd as a prominent part of the proceedings. He maintained that he had discovered 'bardic' manuscripts in Glamorgan and in his old age busied himself in arranging to publish the material in his Cyfrinach Beirdd Ynys Prydain ([?1828]). Iolo has been considered something of a charlatan: he invented much of the bardic, literary and historical material he wrote, including alleged 'medieval' poetry, as well as the 'druidic' 'traditions' as they are expressed in eisteddfodau to this day. He was, however, an excellent poet in his own right and was possessed of a complex, if unorthodox, mind.

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