Tributes paid to historian Dr John Davies

17 February 2015

Dr John Davies
Dr John Davies

It is with great sadness that we note the death of historian and former member of staff Dr John Davies, who died on Monday 16 February

A graduate of Cardiff University and Trinity College Cambridge, Dr Davies joined Aberystwyth University as a lecturer in the Department of Welsh History in 1973. He was promoted to senior lecturer in 1981 a continued as a member of the department until he retired early in 1990.

In 1974 he was appointed Warden of Pantycelyn. He fulfilled this role for 18 years, until 1992.

Professor April McMahon, Vice-Chancellor of Aberystwyth University said:

"Dr John Davies was a hugely talented member of a distinguished generation of Welsh historians and his writings helped to re-shape our perceptions of the Welsh past.

"He will be best remembered for his justly renowned Hanes Cymru (History of Wales), the only book published by Penguin in a language other than English since the Second World War. It is a major scholarly achievement and found a new international audience in its English translation.

"Dr Davies’s work also encompassed work on the development of the Welsh landscape, the history of Cardiff, an official history of broadcasting, and a trenchant study of health between the wars. His upbringing, first in industrial Rhondda and then rural Cardiganshire, is reflected in the range of historical themes he studied and shed light on.

"He will be fondly remembered by former colleagues and a generation of students who studied under him during his time as a member of staff at the Department of Welsh History, and for his inspired pastoral work as Warden of Pantycelyn.

"We extend our deepest sympathies to Dr Davies’ widow, Janet and the family."


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