Llywelyn the Great facts for kids
Quick facts for kidsLlywelyn Fawr
|Prince of Gwynedd|
|Predecessor||Dafydd ab Owain Gwynedd|
|Successor||Dafydd ap Llywelyn|
|Prince of Powys Wenwynwyn|
|Predecessor||Gwenwynwyn ab Owain|
|Successor||Gruffydd ap Gwenwynwyn|
Dolwyddelan, Kingdom of Gwynedd
|Died||11 April 1240
Cistercian Aberconwy Abbey, Principality of Wales
|Burial||Aberconwy Abbey, Wales|
|Spouse||Joan, Lady of Wales|
|Issue||Dafydd ap Llywelyn
Gruffydd ap Llywelyn
Elen ferch Llywelyn
Marared ferch Llywelyn
Angharad ferch Llywelyn
Susanna ferch Llywelyn
|Mother||Marared ferch Madog|
Llywelyn the Great (Welsh: Llywelyn Fawr), full name Llywelyn mab Iorwerth), (c. 1173 – 11 April 1240) was a King of Gwynedd in north Wales and eventually ruler of all Wales. By a combination of war and diplomacy he dominated Wales for 45 years.
During Llywelyn's childhood, Gwynedd was ruled by two of his uncles, who split the kingdom between them, following the death of Llywelyn's grandfather, Owain Gwynedd, in 1170. Llywelyn had a strong claim to be the legitimate ruler and began a campaign to win power at an early age. He was sole ruler of Gwynedd by 1200 and made a treaty with King John of England that year. Llywelyn's relations with John remained good for the next ten years. He married John's natural daughter Joan in 1205, and when John arrested Gwenwynwyn ap Owain of Powys in 1208, Llywelyn took the opportunity to annex southern Powys. In 1210, relations deteriorated, and John invaded Gwynedd in 1211. Llywelyn was forced to seek terms and to give up all lands east of the River Conwy, but was able to recover them the following year in alliance with the other Welsh princes. He allied himself with the barons who forced John to sign Magna Carta in 1215. By 1216, he was the dominant power in Wales, holding a council at Aberdyfi that year to apportion lands to the other princes.
Following King John's death, Llywelyn concluded the Treaty of Worcester with his successor, Henry III, in 1218. During the next fifteen years, Llywelyn was frequently involved in fights with Marcher lords and sometimes with the king, but also made alliances with several major powers in the Marches. The Peace of Middle in 1234 marked the end of Llywelyn's military career, as the agreed truce of two years was extended year by year for the remainder of his reign. He maintained his position in Wales until his death in 1240 and was succeeded by his son Dafydd ap Llywelyn.
Images for kids
Dolwyddelan Castle was built by Llywelyn; the old castle nearby may have been his birthplace.
Statue of Llywelyn the Great, Conwy
Criccieth is one of a number of castles built by Llywelyn.
Wales c. 1217. Yellow: areas directly ruled by Llywelyn; Grey: areas ruled by Llywelyn's client princes; Green: Anglo-Norman lordships.
Strata Florida Abbey, the site of the council of 1238
Llywelyn the Great Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.