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the peers of the realm, until the demise, issueless, of Hugh de Camois, who left his sisters (Margaret, married to Ralph Rademelde, and Aleanor, wife of Roger Lewknor) his coheirs. A branch of the family which had settled in Pembrokeshire, there enjoyed large possessions, and, as lords of Camaes and St. Dogmaels, exercised almost regal sway. In the conquest of Monmouthshire and Glamorganshire, the Camays were much distinguished, and were rewarded with grants of “Kemeys Commander” and “Kemeys Inferior.” One branch became established at Llannarr Castle, in Monmouthshire (now in the possession of Colonel Kemeys-Tynte), and another fixing itself at Began, in Glamorganshire, erected the mansion of Kevanmably, the residence of the present chief of the family.
“Edward Kemeys, son of Edward Kemeys who was at the conquest of Upper Gwent, married the daughter and heiress of Andrew de Began, lord of Began, a lineal descendant of Blethyn Maynerch, lord of Brecon, and thus acquired the lordship of Began, which, for centuries after, was the principal abode of his descendants. His great-great-great-grandson, Jenkin Kemeys of Began, married Cristley, daughter of Morgan ap Llewellyn, by whom he had one son, Jevan; and a daughter, married to Jevan ap Morgan of New Church, near Cardiff, in the county of Glamorgan, and was grandmother of Morgan Williams-living temp. Henry VIII.—who espoused the sister of Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex, and had a son, Sir Richard Williams, who assumed, at the desire of Henry VIII., the surname of his uncle Cromwell; and through the influence of that oncepowerful relative, obtained wealth and station. His great-grandson was the Lord Protector, Oliver Cromwell.* From Jenkin Kemeys was lineally descended Sir Nicholas Kemeys of Kevanmably, who represented the county of Glamorgan in parliament, and was created a baronet 13th May, 1642. This gentleman, remarkable for his gigantic stature and strength, was pre-eminently distinguished by his loyalty to Charles I., and on the breaking out of the civil war (as we have already observed), having raised a regiment of cavalry, was invested with the command of Chepstow Castle.”
Notwithstanding the alliance with the blood of Cromwell, loyalty seems to have been hereditary in the house of Kemeys. In the family biography we have the following anecdote : "Sir Charles Kemeys-knight of the shire for Monmouth, in the last parliament of Queen Anne, and for Glamorgan in the two succeeding parliaments-when on his travels, was shown great attention by George I. at Hanover, and frequently joined the private circle of the Elector. When his majesty ascended the British throne, he was pleased to inquire why his old acquaintance Sir Charles Kemeys had not paid his respects at court ;
* This connection of the tw~ Murmupalle. through the Kemeys family, is worth notice.
and commanding him to repair to St. James's, sent him a message, the substance of which was—that the King of England hoped Sir Charles Kemeys still recollected the number of pipes he had smoked with the Elector of Hanover in Germany. Sir Charles, who had retired from parliament, and was a stanch Jacobite, replied, that he should be proud to pay his duty at St. James's to the Elector of Hanover, but that he had never had the honour of smoking a pipe with the King of England.”
Sir Charles Kemeys died without issue, when the baronetcy expired, and his estates devolved on his nephew, Sir Charles Kemeys-Tynte, Bart. of Halsewell, at whose demise, also issueless, his estates vested in his niece, Jane Hassell, who married Colonel Johnstone, afterwards Kemeys-Tynte,* and was mother of the present (1838) Colonel Kemeys-Tynte of Halsewell and Kevanmably. Through the Hassells, the family of Kemeys-Tynte claim descent from the Plantagenets.t
We now proceed to a brief description of the castle in its ruinous state.
• Of the Tynte family, Burke gives the following of six crusaders; whereupon he conferred on him for account:
arms, a lion gules on a field argent, between six crosslets “ The family of Tynte has maintained for centuries of the first, and for motto, Tynctus cruore Saraceno.'” a leading position in the west of England; of its sur- - Commoners. name, tradition has handed down the following deriva | C. J. Kemeys-Tynte, Esq., M.P., F.R.S.-whose tion :- In the year 1192, at the celebrated battle of father, C. Kemeys-Tynte, Esq., succeeded to the estates Ascalon, a young knight of the noble house of Arundel, of his great-uncle, the last baronet—is coheir to the clad all in white, with his horse's housings of the same barony of Grey-de-Wilton; and in July, 1845, was colour, so gallantly distinguished himself on that declared by a committee for privileges of the House of memorable field, that Richard Caur-de-Lion remarked Lords, to be senior coheir of the whole blood to the publicly, after the victory, that the maiden knight had abeyant barony of Wharton.- Dod's Parliam. Comp., borne himself as a lion, and done deeds equal to those 1847.