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and 64 ft. 9 in. across at the narrowest end. The walls of the quadrangle are unusually thick, viz., from 2 ft. 9 in. to 3 ft., composed chiefly of very large stones; at the present time this wall varies from 5 ft. to 2 ft., but originally it was possibly 10 ft. to 12 ft. high.
The approach is by way of a gate-house (Fig. 3) a compact little building of two storeys, built flush with the exterior face of the walls of the quadrangle. The ground floor space of the gate-house is occupied by the entrance, a kind of detached porch, with an arched doorway, and the one room of the upper floor is
approached by outside stone steps from the interior of the quadrangle.
In an old picture of Gilar the quadrangle is represented as having on each of the two sides a row of buildings, where there are only walls at present; the entrance was shown by the gate-house, the main building facing the gate-house on the opposite side of the quadrangle. From the gate-house to the door of house is a path of cobble stones, and in them are the letters (in white pebbles), T.P.W. Over the arched gateway is inscribed T.P.W. The present house was probably built by this Thomas Price Wynn, who was
Fig. 4. Inscription, Gilar
(W. F. Price, del.)
High Sheriff of Denbighshire in 1624. On a stone in the wall to the left of the gateway are the date 1675 and the letters R.P. (Fig. 4). Robert Price was High Sheriff of Denbighshire in 1658. To the right of the gateway is a horse-block with an overhanging tree. The door, apparently as old as the gateway, is of oak, studded with great iron nails. Over the fire-place in the upper room of the gate-house are the arms (Fig. 5) of Thomas Price Wynn, consisting of a lion, rose, griffin, and a chevron between three Englishmen's heads, the same as the arms of Ednyfed Fychan, bestowed upon him by Llywelyn ap Iorwerth.
There is a fine porch to the mansion, and on one side of this was a window, now blocked up, but there is still
the usual small opening. The door is of oak, nailstudded, with hinges two yards long, and was protected by a wooden bolt. To the left of the entrance hall is a large room, separated from the hall by a partition of planks, beaded, and of oak. One side of the room is panelled in oak, with a recessed oak seat; there is another oak seat under the window, and an oak cupboard built into the wall to the left of the fire-place.
There were two windows in the room, but one has been blocked up. A writer in the Antiquary, 1883, pp. 253-4, states that this room resembles the old parlours at Owlebury in the Vale of Churchstoke, which resemblance tends to determine the date, viz., the second half of the sixteenth or the first half of the seventeenth century. To the right of the hall are several rooms, now used as kitchens, dairy, etc., and at the far end are traces of a stone staircase. The rooms on the first floor, as is usually the case in
houses of this type, are approached through one another, and in one of the rooms are fragments of some fine mouldings.
THE PRICES OF PLAS IOLYN.
Doctor Ellis Price ("Doctor Côch "), a notorious lawyer of Tudor times, is generally mentioned as of "Plas Iolyn," a place possessed by his paternal great grandfather Meredith. The alabaster effigies of his father (Sir Robert ap Rhys ap Meredith), his mother (Lowry), and his grandfather (Rhys), are still preserved in Yspytty Church. His father was chaplain and cross-bearer to Cardinal Wolsey, two of his brothers were Abbots of Maenan, and of his sisters Katherine Lloyd married William Salesbury and Lowry married Robert Salesbury.
"Doctor Côch" was a dreaded oppressor, a creature of Dudley, Earl of Leicester, and devoted to all his master's bad designs. He secured the sinecure rectorship of several parishes, but was never in holy orders; he obtained the grant of the manor of Yspytty and was made Custos Rotulorum of Merioneth; an attempt was made, unsuccessfully, to secure his appointment to the Bishopric of Bangor. He was four times Sheriff of Denbighshire (1550, 1557, 1569, 1573), seven times Sheriff of Merionethshire, and twice Sheriff of Anglesey; these appointments gave him tremendous power. Queen Elizabeth issued a Commission for holding an Eisteddfod at Caerwys in 1568, and in this Dr. Ellis Price was styled "Our trusty and right wellbeloved Ellis Price, Esq., Doctor in Civil Law and one of the Council in Our Marches of Wales."
The accompanying illustration (Fig. 6) is taken by kind permission of the late Lady Augusta Mostyn, of Gloddaeth, from a portrait dated 1605, and long preserved at Bodysgallen and Gloddaeth. Dr. Côch is represented with white jacket, broad turnover, yellow hair and beard (the latter thin), and with a visage very long, lank, and hypocritical.
Capt. Thomas Price, of Plas Iolyn (1550-1610), the eldest son of Dr. Ellis Price, a distinguished officer and poet, succeeded to the large estates of his father. He fitted out a privateer against the Spaniards, and in one of his poems relates the history of an engagement
in which he was roughly handled by the enemy. He excelled in satire and humour, and in laconic alternations in Welsh verse, which might be illustrated by some lines' to the memory of Richard Middleton, Governor of Denbigh Castle, and Jane his wife. Capt. Thomas 1 Camb. Briton, March, 1820.