Cadwgan was the son of a Welsh woman and an Irish priest, famous for his excellent preaching abilities. Heentered monastic life immediately he reached adulthood and was successively Abbot of Strata Florida and Whitland Abbey (from 1203) in Carmarthenshire. He appears to have been something of a dodgy character and was removed from office at Whitland during fraud investigations into wool sales by a party from Clairvaux. However, in 1215, Cadwgan managed - probably with the help of Prince Llywelyn the Great - to gain appointment to the vacant see of Bangor before the Archbishop of Canterbury was made fully aware of the situation. He was consecrated at Staines on 21st June. His episcopacy seems to have been unremarkable, although he was a famous theologian and wrote a number of spiritual tracts and commentaries, as well as a penitential, while in office. He was also known for his charitable works and, in 1234, imported a ship-load of corn from Ireland to feed the poor of his diocese. After twenty-one years, Pope Gregory IV gave him permission to retire, as an ordinary monk, into the Abbey of Dore, in Herefordshire. He gave the monastery there all his goods, including his horses and a fine library of books. However, he does not appear to have been very popular and, towards the end of his days, the Chapter heard accusations of his neglecting the Cistercian observances, particularly breaking their silence. Probably, he had been allowed some latitude due to his previous status, thus incurring jealousy amongst his fellows. Cadwgan died in 1241 and was buried at Dore Abbey under a wooden effigy of him in full Episcopal regalia. Around the 1750s, the socialite, Richard Bateman, acquired his monument, if not his body, and transferred it to a tomb erected in the garden of 'The Priory' (previously Grove House), his gothicized home at Old Windsor. It was finally sold, along with the rest of the house's contents, in 1805.
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