Owen and William Wynne

On the wall of the north cloister of Westminster Abbey is a marble tablet with a sculpted coat of arms to Owen Wynne. The inscription is rather difficult to make out but reads:

To the memory of Owen Wynne of Gwynfynyd in the county of Anglesey, late of this parish Doctor of Laws, Warden of the Mint to K. James II for many years, Under Secretary of State. He married Dorothy the daughter of Francis Luttrell of Greys Inn, Esqr. by whom he had seven children & dyed in ye year 1700 aged 49 & lies buried with two of his children in the north isle of St Margaret's Church [Westminster] leaving a loving & sorrowful widow indeed who persevered in that state in a devout & irreproachable conversation & in a strict imitation of her husband's vertues being as it were a mother to many others besides her own children. She dyed Mar. 24 1724 aged 65 & lyes buried underneath this place.

The arms, once painted, show "gules a chevron between three lions rampant or, in base three eagles displayed fess-wise argent" impaling the arms of Luttrell. There is no memorial or gravestone visible in St Margaret's for Owen. His wife Dorothy was a sister of Narcissus Luttrell. The baptisms of six of their children appear in the St Margaret parish registers.


Their son William was buried with his mother on 23rd May 1765 and was a barrister and serjeant at law. His wife was Grace Brydges and  she was buried 27th November 1779. They had six sons and two daughters - three were buried in the north cloister ie. Francis, an infant, Edward who was a barrister and died unmarried, and Luttrell (died 29th November 1814 aged 76) who was rector of St Erme in Cornwall and died unmarried. Luttrell's grave is marked just with his initials "L.W. 1814". 

William also had a monument on the wall but this was removed in the early 20th century due to decay. A history of the Abbey published in 1812 records the inscription as:

William Wynne Esquire, Serjeant at Law, who died May 16 1765 aged seventy two years and ten months. He was the son of Owen Wynne, Doctor of Civil Law, Under Secretary of State to Charles II and James II, by Dorothy his wife, who lies near this place, sister of Narcissus Luttrell Esq. of Little Chelsea. Sep. 30 1728 he married Grace, one of the daughrers and coheiresses of William Brydges Esq, Serjeant at Law, by whome he had six sons and two daughters: three of whom, Susannah, Edward and Luttrell, with his widow, survived him. Grace Wynne died in 1779 aged 79; and Edward Wynne Esq., barrister at law, died Dec.26 1784 aged 50

The coats of arms on this monument showed Wynne, Luttrell, Brydges and Noell. This was seemingly erected after 1784 unless the later entries were added to the tablet.

A monument to Luttrell, which was at the north end of the west cloister and was by sculptor John Bacon junior, was also removed due to decay. A history of the Abbey published in 1823 gives this Latin inscription which can be translated:

To Luttrell Wynne LL.D. born of an ancient and noble family, sometime Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, Rector and Patron of the church of St Erme in the county of Cornwall; a man abundantly steeped in learning in the humanities and in philosophy, with a wonderful kindness of character, with the utmost benevolence of the soul, pure in faith, of a simple piety, a most respected man. He died on the 29th November 1814 aged 76. May this be some sort of memorial worthy of him. Edward William Wynne Pendarves Esq. of Pendarves in the county of Cornwall, his son and heir, caused this memorial to be set here

Owen and Dorothy's other children were Elizabeth buried 1734, Sarah buried 1735 and Catherine who married William Miles. William Miles was buried in 1729.

Further reading

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography - William Wynne




North Cloister

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Owen and William Wynne
Owen Wynne memorial

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