Back to the video list: History of the British Isles


Edward I of England conquered Wales during the 13th century. After the conquest Wales became an integral part of the English Kingdom. You also may be interested in the two Sottish Wars of Independence:






  • Date: 1277 – 1283
  • Location: Wales
  • Event: Military conflict between Welsh princes & Edward I for the domination of Wales


Parties & Persons Involved

  • Edward I (1239 – 1307)
  • Llywelyn the Last (1223 – 1282)



  • The Normans conquer the south of Wales & establish the Marcher Lordships after their invasion of England (1066)
  • Welsh principalities survive in the centre & the north
  • Continuous tensions between England & the Welsh principalities
  • Gwynedd under Llywelyn the Last becomes the mightiest principality during the 13th century
  • After several wars Llywelyn & Henry III of England sign the Treaty of Montgomery:
    • Llywelyn is Prince of Wales
    • Llywelyn is vassal of the King of England




  • 1272: Henry III dies & Edward I ascents to the throne
  • 1274: The Welsh prince Gruffydd ap Gwenwynwyn & Llywelyn’s brother Dafydd ap Gruffydd flee to England
  • 1275: Llywelyn refuses to pay homage to Edward I in Chester
  • 1275: Marriage by proxy of Llywelyn & Eleonor de Monfort, daughter of an adversary of Edward I
  • Nov 1276: Edward I declares war on Llywelyn


Campaign of 1277

  • Jan – Jun 1277: Small units of Edward march into southern & central Wales
  • Welsh princes & leaders join the English
  • Jul 1277: Edward invades Wales via Flint, Ruddlan & Deganwy & devastates these areas
  • Llywelyn regards his situation as desperate & surrenders
  • Nov. 1277: Treaty of Aberconwy:
    • Llywelyn retains the title Prince of Wales & the west of Gwynedd
    • East Gwynedd is divided between Edward & Llywelyn’s brother Dafydd
    • The rest of Wales is organised as a fiefdoms of Edward


Campaign of 1282/83

  • Jan – May 1282: Dafydd, dissatisfied with the rewards he is given by Edward, & other northern rulers raid English controlled territories
  • Llywelyn & the rulers in the south join the rebellion which is now a national war
  • Jun 1282: Edward invades Wales in the north, centre & south Anglesey
  • 17 Jun 1282: Welsh forces defeat the Earl of Gloucester in the Battle of Llandeilo Fawr
  • 30 Oct 1282: Roger Mortimer, Edward’s commander in central Wales, dies
  • 06 Nov 1282: Welsh victory in the Battle of Moel-y-don
  • Nov 1282: Llywelyn advances into central Wales
  • 11. Dec 1282: Decisive English victory in the Battle of Orewin Bridge, during which Llywelyn is killed
  • Jan 1283: Edward attacks the north of Snowdonia & and more English troops advance from the south
  • Jun 1283: Gwynedd is entirely conquered & Dafydds is captured


Consequences & Impact

  • Wales loses her independence & the territory is newly divided
  • The English kings secure Wales by (1) English settlers, (2) erecting several castles & (3) the introduction of English law
  • The Laws in Wales Acts (1535 & 1542) make Wales a part of the Kingdom of England
  • The tradition begins after which the English heir apparent is crowned Prince of Wales