William Cragh (a.k.a. William ap Rhys) Aged 29 in 1290

Malefactor or criminal; a rebel against Anglo-Norman rule; miraculously revived after his hanging

Role: witness

William Cragh was a poor but free man from Swansea, in the diocese of St Davids. He was a local, properly named William ap Rhys for his father, Rhys ap Gwilym, his mother being Swanith of the neighbouring parish of Llanrhidian. He is different from the other inhabitants of Swansea interviewed by the commissioners, in that he is able to move between areas of the town to which no one else has access – even William de Briouze Jnr does not have the same extent of mobility, as he does not go to Gibbet Hill, remaining safely within the castle to watch the hanging. 

Witness events timeline...

Key contributions to narrative

  • William Cragh claimed he professed his innocence to the crimes 
  • He remembered nothing after the hanging
  • He had a vision in gaol of the Virgin Mary and St Thomas
  • Bells were rung in Hereford to announce the miracle