Idris Gawr

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Idris Gawr (English: Idris the Giant; c. 560 – 632) was a king of Meirionnydd in early medieval Wales. He is also sometimes known by the patronymic Idris ap Gwyddno (Idris son of Gwyddno).

Cadair Idris, a Welsh mountain, literally means "Chair of Idris". Idris was said to have studied the stars from on top of it and it was later reputed to bestow either madness or poetic inspiration to whoever spent a night at its summit. According to John Rhys, there were three other giants in the Welsh tradition along with Idris – Ysgydion, Offrwm, and Ysbryn – and all of them have mountains named for them near Cadair Idris.[1]

The historical Idris is thought to have been killed during a battle with Oswald of Northumbria near the River Severn around 632, although the Welsh annals merely state he was strangled in the same year.[2]


  1. ^ Rhys, John. Rhyddiaith Gymraeg, 1488–1609. Parry-Williams (Cardiff), 1954. (Welsh)
  2. ^ The Annals of Wales (B text), p. 8.

This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainWood, James, ed. (1907). "article name needed". The Nuttall Encyclopædia. London and New York: Frederick Warne.