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Contents of the Llanstephan Manuscripts

The collection consists of:

  • the manuscripts of Samuel Williams (c.1660-c.1722) and his son, Moses Williams (1685-1742) bought by Sir John from the Shirburn Castle collection in 1899 (Llanstephan MSS 1-154)
  • various other manuscripts collected by Sir John, including some manuscripts which belonged to Lewis Morris (1701-65) and Walter Davies (‘Gwallter Mechain’); 1761-1849) (Llanstephan MSS 155-200)

The collection was presented to The National Library in 1909. Amongst the manuscripts are

  • Chronicle of the Kings (Llanstephan MS 1)
  • The Red Book of Talgarth (Llanstephan MS 27)
  • The Gutun Owain Manuscript (Llanstephan MS 28)

Other manuscripts from Sir John Williams’ collection (including many that were bought by him at auctions of Sir Thomas Phillips’ manuscripts), are in the NLW Manuscripts series (numbers 1-500).


For descriptions of individual manuscripts in the Llanstephan Collection, see

J Gwenogvryn Evans’ catalogue, Report on Manuscripts in the Welsh Language (London, 1898-1910), vol. II, pp. 419-782.