Welsh Independence Dies with Llywelyn
Llywelyn is regarded by some as the last native Prince of Wales, though his brother Dafydd succeeded him briefly before meeting a horrible end in Shrewsbury in 1283.
Llywelyn ambitiously proclaimed himself Prince of Wales in 1258; allied his cause to that of Simon de Montfort , with whom he agreed the Treaty of Pipton in 1265 not long before the latter died at Evesham ; and was recognized in his self-proclaimed status by Henry III in the Treaty of Montgomery in 1267.
When Edward I returned from his crusade two years after his father’s death the situation changed; Edward and Llywelyn clashed for years until they reached a settlement at the Treaty of Aberconwy. That agreement effectively signalled the end to Welsh statehood in the coming years: Llywelyn was accorded limited territories in Northwest Wales, and his brother Dafydd a small fiefdom. But other lands were ceded to the English crown and its vassals, and significantly the Prince of Wales acknowledged Edward as his sovereign.
Edward bled Wales. Eventually this led to a rebellion in 1282. How Llywelyn came to die near Builth Wells is not clear, but it is thought he was tricked and isolated either by being drawn to meet English leaders away from his force; or attacked at the head of his army when expecting to parlay. Either way, he was slain and his head displayed first in Anglesey , and then at the Tower of London where it remained on view for 15 years. Dafydd, his brother, survived less than a year, a fugitive in a Wales already effectively under English control.
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