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Idris Davies

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Culture (language, religion, ethnicity, etc.): 

Davies (1905-53) was a Welsh poet. He was born in the town of Rhymney, not far from Methyr Tydfil in South Wales. He was the son of a mine lift operator. Both his parents spoke Welsh as their native language. 

He left school at age 14 and worked for seven years as an underground miner. After a serious mine accident and participation in the General Stike of 1926 his pit closed.

He trained as a teacher and returned to the Rhymney valley to teach. He also became friends with Dylan Thomas and had a number of poems pubished in several magazines. He had several of his poems praised and selected by T.S.Eliot for a poetry compendium volume. His earliest poems were in Welsh but all of his later work was in English.

Thomas had read "Bells of Rhymney" as part of a St David's Day radio broadcast, but told Davies that he did not feel the poem was particularly representative of Davies' work, as it was "not angry enough".

The verses used by Pete Seeger in Seeger's song "Bells of Rhymney" are his best-known writing today.


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