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' OLD BRECKNOCK CHIPS." A Column of Antiquarian Chit-Chat relating to the County of Brecknock. NOTES, QUERIES, AND REPLIES, on Subjects inter¬ esting to Breconshire, must be addressed EDITOR, Brecon County Times, Brecon. Real names and addresses must be given in confidence, and MSS. must be written legibly, on one side of the paper only. FEBRUARY 11th, 1887. NOTES. HUGH THOMAS, THE BRECONSHIKE HERALD'S MANUSCRIPTS. (By Peakmain, in " Bye Gones " Oswestry Advertizer.) HARL. MS., 6870 : BVGH THOMAS'S MSS.—In reply to your correspondent, " T. Q.D.," who though residing so far away from the " old country," still retains an interest in her ancient MSS., I, though unable to give the lengthy answer that would be neces¬ sary if I gave the names of all whose pedi¬ grees are dealt with in the three MSS., will try to give him and other readers of Bye- Gones some idea as to what the MSS. con¬ tain. In the first place there are three volumes in the Harleian Library at the British Museum, called Hugh Thomas's MSS., Nos. 6823, 6831, and 6870 named above. 6831 is the most important of the three. It is folio in size, and contains 500 folios, or 1,000 pages. 6823 is octavo con¬ taining 167 folios. 6870 is also octavo containing 196 folios. The three may be considered as parts of one plan. Hugh Thomas was a herald painter, residing at Brecon, and having become acquainted with E. Lhuyd, the celebrated antiquary, he appears to have replied to certain queries which Lhuyd had sent to him, and probably to others in Wales, and thus seems to have been recognized by Lhuyd as an able herald and genealogist, as the following title page of MS. 6831 in Lhuyd's handwriting (as I judge) will show. It is probable that to him Hugh Thomas was indebted for the idea of the work which he proposed, but failed to carry out:— A GENEALOGICAL HISTORY OF THE ANTIENT NOBILITY AND GENTRY OF ALL WALES, And of several families descended thence, now living in England ; to the Union of England and Wales, in the reign of King Henry the 8th, and something later, continued to such of the Present Nobility and Gentry as shall contribute towards the author's expenses for five years, or otherwise encourage the same, in three parts:— First—Of such as are of the Ancient British Race. Second—Of such Families as Beated themselves in Wales by Conquest. Third—Of such families as seated themselves in Wales since the Conquest thereof. From authentick Records, Inscriptions on Grave¬ stones, Collections, and Visitations to aUthe Churches and places of Note in Wales and the neighbouring parts. Adorned with Copper Plates of the Arms, Monu¬ ments, Grave-stones and Glass-windows of the Principal Benefactors to this Worke. Nothing of this nature being ever yet published. By Hugh Thomas. " We whose names are hereunto subscribed doe judg Mr Hug-h Thomas capable of this undertaking, and doe very well approve the designe " Hum. Lhuyd. Lhuyd's is the only signature, and is written, leaving space for half-a-dozen other names above it. The design is explicitly defined in the foregoing title page. The collection of MSS., bound together in Vol. 6831, comprises replies from many persons to whom Thomas had either written or personally applied. In addition to these there are many letters from correspondents, and a miscellaneous compilation of Notes by Thomas. The present Volume is made up of leaves from other books of various sized pages, scraps of paper with bits of genealogical information written on them, same on backs of letters, also on backs of other persons' compilations. So your correspondent will preceive it is a very heterogeneous collection. I noticed in scanning the folios three or four communications in Lhuyd's handwriting (which I will transcribe for Bye-Gones). Nearly all the letters are written on foolscap ; many are addressed to Thomas at different places in London, which he seems to have frequently visited. The following will give some idea of the variety of subjects : — Folios 1, 2, English Coats. 3. A letter, no address, no signature, on a business matter. 4, 5, 6. A Pedigree of the Stafford Family in the form of a letter, brought down to Henry, * created Earl of Stafford 5 Oct , 4 Jas. II. {" living now 1688,") without issue. 7. 8. Curious account of the origin of Llynsavathan (a large lake near Talyllyn Station on the Mid Wales Railway.) 9, 10. Some account of Brecknock Town and Parish, 12. Translation of Charter granted by Thomas de Aven to Margam Abbey, 10 Feby., 1349. 13. A Genealogical Compilation commencing at " Ludd." There are many others of this " heroic " character; one I noticed went up to nearly 4000 years before the Christian era began. 14. Copy of the account of Thomas Vaughan, High Collector of the County of Brecknock, of the assessment for nine months, beginning 24 June, 1647, ending 25th March following at £103 6 2 per mensem, total £930 0 0. 15. 16, 17. Short notes of pedigrees of several families. The back of folio 15 is written over with similar material. The back of 17 has an account of some of Bernard Newmarch's exploits. 18. Pedigrees. 19. 20. Arms of various noble families (86). 20. "Brecknockshire Worthies " both native and others, and short genealogical sketches. On this folio there are 86 separate families dealt with. 23. A short letter relating to a business matter ; on the inside, decents from 24 —26. Brutus, ending with Meredith ap Owen, king of Cardigan, 1235. Taken as a whole I should consider the bulk of the contents, if classified, would be found to relate to South Wales, though I observed some pedigrees that are connected with your district, and might be