Thomas Evans “Tomos Glyn Cothi” 1764 – 1833

Unitarian minister, poet and author, was born in the parish of Llanfihangel-Rhosycorn, Carmarthenshire. His early education was very limited, but his desire for knowledge was intense. At an early age he joined the Unitarians. In 1797 he was charged with high treason, on account of an English song he is said to have composed. He denied the charge, but was convicted, and sentenced to two year’s imprisonment. While in prison; he prepared an English-Welsh Dictionary (460 pp.) which was published in 1809.

In 1793 he published what was probably a translation of Priestley’s “Triumph of Truth,” being an account of the Trial of Elwall for publishing a book in defense of the Unity of God. In 1795 he issued the first number of a Welsh quarterly magazine, “The Miscellaneous Repository,” but it was discontinued after the appearance of the third number. In 1811 he issued a hymn-book, containing 100 hymns, all original, for Unitarian congregations, a second edition appearing in 1822. He became minister of the Old Meeting House, Aberdare, in 1811, not 1813 as generally stated; the church cash book is conclusive on this point. Mr. Evans was the author of the first Unitarian sermon ever published in Welsh.