KING EDWARD I left England in May 1286. If, as he sailed away, it had been suggested to him that within a year Earl Edmund of Cornwall, who was now keeper of the realm, would be faced with a full-scale revolt in Wales, led by the king's former collaborator, Rhys ap Maredudd, lord of Dryslwyn in Carmarthenshire, he would probably have dismissed the suggestion with scarcely a thought. For Prince Llywelyn the Last had been killed almost three and a half years before; his brother, David, had been dead since 1283; David's heir, Owain, had been incarcerated in Bristol castle; and in Carmarthen- shire itself a centralised system of administration was being riveted upon the Welsh. Least of all would rebellion be expected from Rhys ap Maredudd, for alone among the Welsh lords involved in the late wars for independence, he had thrown in his lot with Edward I. The broad outlines of his revolt were drawn by historians long ago. For more than three centuries, David Powel's narrative of 1584 served well enough; Dr. J. E. Morris gave it a new dimension by recon- structing its military side; and Sir David Evans has provided a brisk summary of its course.1 But the lines do call for some readjustment. Mr. J. Beverley Smith has begun the process by probing the origins of the revolt;2 and an attempt can now be made, by utilizing the labours of others, to establish a narrative of the revolt in detail and in depth. Of the Welsh rebellions after 1282, that of Rhys ap Maredudd is unique in its coverage by contemporary writers. More so than the widespread upheavals of 1294-95 or even the national outburst associated with Owain Glyn Dwr, Rhys's exploits have left well- informed reports in a number of contemporary English and Welsh chronicles. English chroniclers, however, have the incurable habit of depriving events in Wales of any exact geographical location. To them 'the Welsh' as a whole seemed to be in revolt, and their activities were given no greater precision than that they occurred 'in Wales'. I am indebted to Sir Goronwy Edwards, Professor Glanmor Williams, and Mr. J. Beverley Smith for a number of valuable suggestions. 1 David Powel, A Historie of Cambria (1584). slightly amended by W. Wynne in his edition. The History of Wales (1697); J. E. Morris. The Welsh Wars of Edward I (1901); J. E. Lloyd (ed.). A History of Carmarthenshire (2 vols.. 1935-39). I. 203-7. 2 J. B. Smith, 'The "Cronica de Wallia" and the Dynasty of Dinefwr'. Bulletin of the Board of Celtic Studies, XX, part iii (1963). 261-82; 'The Origins of the Revolt of Rhys ap Maredudd'. ibid., XXI. part ii (1965). 151-63.