4 - Llywelyn ap Gruffydd

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  • Llywelyn ap Grufydd assassinated and Edward I takes lasting control of Wales
  • Edward determined to subdue any uprisings and builds loads of castles to keep the Welsh in check
  • Edward starts moving English settlers into Wales and creates an apartheid
  • Welsh peasants evicted from most fertile land and relocated to remote locations

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1282 Llywelyn ap Gruffydd

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Despite his political acumen, Llywelyn ap Grufydd or Llywelyn Ein Llyw Olaf was betrayed and assassinated in 1282 and Wales fell fully under the yoke of the English King Edward I. Edward was determined to stamp out any possibility of further rebellion and spent a fortune building his infamous ‘iron ring’ of castles to subdue the Welsh.

This shift also marked a deterioration of many of the fundamental rights of Welsh people from all classes. Part of the ‘iron ring’ included fortified towns such as Aberystwyth and Conwy – these were built specifically for new English settlers. These settlers referred to themselves as "the English burgesses of the English boroughs of Wales" and proclaimed that the new towns had been raised "for the habitation of Englishmen", excluding "mere Welshmen" from their privileges on the grounds that they were "foreigners" in the implanted boroughs. Welsh peasants also found themselves evicted from key lands – by 1334, 10,000 acres of the most fertile land in the vale of Clwyd had been taken by English settlers with the local Welsh population being relocated to remote villages in the hills and mountains.