Brochfael Ysgythrog, King of Powys
(Born c.AD 502)
(Latin: Brogmaglus; English: Brockbald)

Brochfael (sometimes Brochwel) of the Tusks presumably had very big teeth. He was a younger son of King Cyngen Glodrydd and his wife, St. Tudlwystl, a daughter of Brychan ap Gwyngwen ap Tewdwr. The famous Taliesin was his bard for a time.

Brochfael is particularly known for an incident involving St. Melangell. This stunning young woman had taken to the life of a hermit, living in a small cell in the Powys wilds. One day, Brochfael was out hunting a hare when the creature made for Melangell's hermitage and hid in her skirts. The dogs would not attack, and the King became so enamoured of the lady's pious beauty that he asked her to marry him. She humbly declined, so Brochfael gave her land to build a monastery instead. 

Brochfael married Arddyn Benasgel, daughter of King Pabo Post Prydain of the Pennines, and together they had at least four sons: Cynan Garwyn, St. Tysilio, Mawn and Iago. Brochfael died around AD 560/70 and may have been buried at Pentrefoelas in Gwynedd where the grave of a six foot man, with a covering slab bearing the name 'Brohomagli' has been uncovered. He was succeeded by his eldest son, Cynan.

Brochfael should not be identified with the Commander of Caer-Legion (Chester), of the same name, who died at the great battle there in AD 613.

Records of King Brochfael date back to at least the 11th century. He may well be historic.


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