D Geraint Lewis honoured as Fellow

14 July 2014

Aberystwyth University Vice-President, Gwerfyl Pierce Jones (left), presenting D Geraint Lewis as Fellow of Aberystwyth University
Aberystwyth University Vice-President, Gwerfyl Pierce Jones (left), presenting D Geraint Lewis as Fellow of Aberystwyth University

Author, former Education and Children’s Librarian for Dyfed and Assistant Director of Education at Ceredigion County Council, D Geraint Lewis, has been honoured as Fellow of Aberystwyth University.

Originally from Ynys-y-bwl in Cwm Clydach, he was educated at Aberystwyth University and is the author of Geiriadur Cynradd Gomer, Y Llyfr Berfau, Pa Arddodiad?, Y Treigladur, and Geiriau Lletchwith.

He has been the Honorary Secretary of the Welsh Books Council since 1986 and was the winner in 1996 of the Tir na n-Og award for his dictionary Geiriadur Gomer yr Ifanc.

Mr Lewis was presented by Dr Mari Elin Jones, Director of the Centre for Welsh Language Services at Aberystwyth University, during the first of the 2014 graduation ceremonies which was held on Monday 14 July.

Presentation of D Geraint Lewis as Fellow of Aberystwyth University byDr Mari Elin Jones, Director of the Centre for Welsh Languages Services, Aberystwyth University.

Madam Vice-President. It is my pleasure to present Mr D Geraint Lewis.

 Nid pawb sy’n gwirioni’r un fath”, dyna eiriau D Geraint Lewis wrthyf pan gysylltais ag ef i drafod y seremoni hon. A diolch bod yr ysgolhaig hwn wedi gwirioni gymaint ar eiriau, ymadroddion a gramadeg y Gymraeg gan roi inni gyfoeth o adnoddau o’r [Fy] Llyfr Geiriau Cyntaf i’r Llyfr Berfau a’r Treigladur, heb sôn am eglurhad o’r [Y] Geiriau Lletchwith! Mae’r cyfrolau hyn, ymhlith cyhoeddiadau eraill ganddo, yn gyfeirlyfrau gwerthfawr ar ddesg pob myfyriwr, athro, cyfieithydd, academydd a gweinyddwr sy’n parchu’r iaith ysgrifenedig. Mae’n fraint cael ei groesawu ef a’i deulu i’r seremoni hon heddiw.

Geraint Lewis has made an invaluable contribution to Welsh lexicography, and his numerous publications are a labour of love and testament to his mission and enthusiasm in presenting the Welsh language and its grammar to children and adults alike.

Geraint was born in Ynys-y-bŵl, a coal mining village near Pontypridd, South Wales. Welsh was replaced by English as the language of the home following his sister’s experience as a patient in a prestigious children’s hospital in England where no one understood her when she asked for a drink of water in Welsh.  

Roedd hwnnw’n ddigwyddiad arwyddocaol a newidiodd iaith ei blentyndod ond, wrth gwrs, nid oedd Geraint a’i deulu yn eithriadau yn ystod y cyfnod hwnnw pan gollodd cenhedlaeth o blant eu mamiaith. Yr hyn oedd yn unigryw am Geraint oedd bod geiriau ac iaith yn bwysig iddo, a phwy a wŷr na fu’r newid ieithyddol cynnar hwn yn ysgogiad iddo, maes  o law, i fynd i’r afael â hynodrwydd y Gymraeg.

His experience as a Welsh learner has made him very aware of aspects of the Welsh language which may appear completely obvious to first language speakers, but which are mystifying for Welsh learners. This is what drives him to provide support and explanation through his work.

Yng Nghapel Tabernacl yr ysbrydolwyd Geraint a’i gyfoedion i afael yn y Gymraeg yr oeddynt mewn perygl o’i cholli. Yr oedd cerddoriaeth a’r capel yn ddylanwadau mawr arno, ac yn parhau felly. Blodeuodd ei ddiddordeb mewn cerddoriaeth yn Ysgol Ramadeg y Bechgyn, Pontypridd, a than ddylanwad ei athro cerddoriaeth, Haydn Wyn Davies, treuliai ei wyliau ysgol ar gyrsiau cerddorol amrywiol gan ennill lle yng Ngherddorfa Ieuenctid Cymru yn canu’r Corn Ffrengig. Ymhlith ei gyhoeddiadau y mae cyfrolau cerddoriaeth a chyfrolau am gerddoriaeth, megis Awn i Fethlem, Wrth y Preseb a Clychau’r Nadolig – caneuon a charolau y mae plant o Fôn i Fynwy yn gyfarwydd â’u canu mewn cyngherddau Nadolig.

Geraint is a talented French Horn player, and one of the founding members and currently Vice-President of Philomusica, Aberystwyth’s Symphony Orchestra. During his time as Chairman of the Philomusica he made an important contribution in bringing the orchestra under the auspices of the University – bringing town and gown together, and assisting in providing music bursaries for students. He has published a Kindle E-book, satirising the art of horn playing, entitled “’When all else fails’ – a Horn players vade mecum” in which he writes:

“Striking the correct note on the horn is akin to the strategy for winning a battle.  In order to achieve one’s objective, one must first occupy a good deal of the surrounding territory.”

Ond dilyn trywydd iaith a llenyddiaeth Gymraeg a wnaeth Geraint yn academaidd ac fe’i perswadiwyd i ddilyn ôl troed ei athro Cymraeg, Aneurin Jones, i Goleg Prifysgol Cymru Aberystwyth, ac i gynnig am le ar gwrs newydd arbrofol ar gyfer dysgwyr dan ofal Dr E G Millward. Yn Adran y Gymraeg, Aberystwyth, y daeth Geraint i werthfawrogi gwaith beirdd mawr Cymru ddechrau’r Ugeinfed Ganrif – T Gwynn Jones a T H Parry-Williams – ac wrth gwrs, cafodd gyfle i ddysgu wrth droed un o feirdd cyfoes a phwysicaf y cyfnod, Gwenallt. Derbyniodd swydd yn Llyfrgell Ceredigion a dyna bryd y cyfarfu â’i arwr mawr, y diweddar Alun R Edwards.  

After completing a degree in Welsh on an innovative course for Welsh learners in the Department of Welsh, in Aberystwyth, Geraint gained professional qualifications as a Librarian in the College of Librarianship Wales, here in Aberystwyth. He worked as Ceredigion Schools Librarian, Dyfed Education and Children’s Librarian and latterly as Assistant Director of Education responsible for cultural services in Ceredigion.

Bu’n Gadeirydd Panel Llenyddiaeth Plant Pwyllgor Llenyddiaeth Cyngor y Celfyddydau, Cadeirydd gwahanol Bwyllgorau a phaneli llyfrau plant Cyngor Llyfrau Cymru, ac yn 1986 olynodd ei arwr, Alun Edwards, fel Ysgrifennydd Mygedol y Cyngor Llyfrau. Un uchafbwynt oedd ennill Gwobr Tir Na ‘Nog am ei waith, Geiriadur Gomer yr Ifanc, gwobr haeddiannol sy’n gydnabyddiaeth o’r cyfraniad sylweddol y mae wedi ei wneud i lythrennedd a llenyddiaeth plant.

Geraint has some sixteen publications on Welsh grammar and lexicography to his name and even though he has now retired he is not idle! He is currently working on three new dictionaries which will be published this summer – Geiriadur Pinc a Glas Gomer and Geiriadur Mor, Mwy, Mwyaf Gomer for children, and A Welsh Reading Dictionary which lists the 10,000 most used Welsh words for readers who do not understand much Welsh.

Mae’n cydweithio â’i fab, Nudd, sydd wedi llunio meddalwedd cyfrifiadurol sy’n dygymod am y tro cyntaf â holl ffurfdroadau’r Gymraeg er mwyn cyhoeddi’r geiriadur electronig, Y Gweiadur. Maent hefyd yn gweithio ar gyfrol sylweddol a phwysig i CBAC, Geiriadur Cymraeg Gomer, ar gyfer myfyrwyr sy’n astudio drwy gyfrwng y Gymraeg yn y Chweched Dosbarth. Bydd y gwaith hwn yn rhoi’r arfau ieithyddol i annog mwy o ddarpar fyfyrwyr i astudio drwy’r Gymraeg yn y Prifysgolion.

This is the first of two ceremonies to celebrate Geraint’s contribution this summer as he will be made an honourable member of Gorsedd y Beirdd, the Gorsedd of Bards, at the National Eisteddfod in August. 

Gwisg go wahanol fydd ganddo yn Llanelli!

Mae Geraint Lewis wedi cyfrannu gymaint i’w filltir sgwâr, i’w wlad ac i’w iaith a diolch iddo am y gymwynas fawr honno. Mae’n anrhydedd cael ei gyflwyno yn Gymrawd Prifysgol Aberystwyth.

Madam Is-Lywydd. Mae’n fraint ac yn bleser gennyf gyflwyno i chi, Mr D Geraint Lewis, yn Gymrawd Prifysgol Aberystwyth.

Madam Vice-President. It is an honour and pleasure to present to you, Mr D Geraint Lewis, as a Fellow of Aberystwyth University.

2014 Fellows

Eleven Fellows are being honoured this week by Aberystwyth University during this year’s Graduation ceremonies which take place at the University’s Arts Centre from Monday 14 until Friday 18 July.

The title of Fellow is awarded to individuals who have a close association with Aberystwyth and the University, or who have made an outstanding contribution to professional or public life in Wales.

Also being honoured are:

  • Professor John Harries, renowned atmospheric physicist and Wales’ first Chief Scientific Adviser.
  • Jeremy Bowen, BBC Middle East Editor.
  • Sir Michael Moritz, Cardiff-born venture capitalist and philanthropist.
  • Rhodri Meilir, actor and Aberystwyth graduate who recently appeared in the National Theatre of Wales’ highly acclaimed Mametz.
  • Ed Thomas, playwright, director and producer, and founder member and creative director of TV production company Fiction Factory.
  • Rhod Gilbert, comedian and radio and TV presenter.
  • Professor Bonnie Buntain, Assistant Dean Professor of Public Health at the University of Calgary in Canada and former Chief Public Health Veterinarian at the Food Safety and Inspection Service for the US Department of Agriculture.
  • Dr John Sheehy, Emeritus Head of Applied Photosynthesis and Systems Modelling Laboratory at the International Rice Research Institute and an alumnus of Aberystwyth University.
  • Brian Jones, farmer, entrepreneur, and founder and Managing Director of Castell Howell Foods Ltd.
  • Baroness Kay Andrews, Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords, former Chair of English Heritage and an Aberystwyth alumna.

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