DAVIES, Gruffydd (by 1517-83 or later), of Caernarvon and Caerhun in Llanbedr-y-Cennin, Caern.

Published in The History of Parliament: the House of Commons 1509-1558, ed. S.T. Bindoff, 1982
Available from Boydell and Brewer



Family and Education

b. by 1517, 3rd s. of Dafydd ap Robert of Caerhun by Margaret, da. of Rhys ap William ap Ieuan Lloyd of Gorddinog. m. by 1538, Alice, da. of John ap Hywel ap Heilyn, 5s. inc. Maurice 1da.1

Offices Held

Bailiff, Caernarvon by 1542-6 or later; j.p. Caern. 1543, 1555-83, q. 1558/59-79; escheator, 1545-6, 1560-1; commr. relief 1549, 1550, loan 1557, subsidy 1559; sheriff 1555-6, 1564-5, 1572-3; dep. justice N. Wales temp. Mary.2


Gruffydd Davies was descended from Ednyfed Fychan, steward to Llewelyn the Great and ancestor of the house of Tudor. A younger brother of Thomas Davies, who became bishop of St. Asaph in 1561, he became a prominent figure at Caernarvon and in the shire. Although he is not known to have had legal training, in the reign of Mary he was employed as deputy to Richard Hassall, justice of North Wales at the Caernarvonshire great sessions. He was perhaps still bailiff of Caernarvon when returned for the Boroughs to the Parliament of March 1553, and his successor in that office, Henry Robins, was also to succeed him in the next two Parliaments. John Wyn ap Hugh, the knight of the shire with whom Davies was returned, had fought against the Norfolk rebels in 1549, so that Davies may have shared in the favour shown to Wyn ap Hugh by the Duke of Northumberland, under whose aegis the Parliament was summoned. Nothing is known of his part in the House but the experience may have prompted him to support his son Maurice’s election in 1559. Little more has come to light about him beyond his record in county administration. In 1575 the council in the marches was informed that on ground of age he had been relieved of duties in two districts in the south of the county, and four years later he ceased to be of the quorum although retained as a justice until 1583. If he made a will it has not been found.3

Ref Volumes: 1509-1558

Author: P. S. Edwards


  • 1. Date of birth estimated from marriage. Griffith, Peds. 162, 233.
  • 2. SC6/Hen. VIII, 4963 m.11, 4964 m.12, 4965 m.12, 4966 m.14; CPR, 1553, p. 363; 1563-6, p. 31; E179/220/138-40, 145; Cal. Wynn (of Gwydir) Pprs. 1515-1690, p. 4; NLW ms Wales 20/4; Cal. Caern. Q. Sess. Recs. ed. Williams, 246.
  • 3. DNB (Davies, Thomas); DWB (Davies, Thomas); Biog. Reg. Univ. Oxf. 1501-40, p. 163; NLW ms Wales 20/4; CPR, 1557-8, p. 347; R. Flenley, Cal. Reg. Council, Marches of Wales, 75, 135.