Merthyr-Mawr - From 'A Topographical Dictionary of Wales' (1849)
MERTHYR-MAWR, a parish, in the union of Bridgend and Cowbridge, hundred of Ogmore, county of Glamorgan, South Wales, 1½ mile (W. S. W.) from Bridgend; containing 147 inhabitants. It is situated a little south of the turnpikeroad between Cardiff and Swansea, on the right bank of the Ogmore, near its mouth, forming the only portion of the hundred lying on that side of the river. A part of the parish, to the south, is occupied by low barren sand-hills; but a lofty and extensive elevation composes the greater part of it, at the eastern foot of which, near the bank of the river, stands its small and pleasant village, with the church. The manor, together with the castle and lordship of Talavan, was given by Robert Fitz-Hamon, on his dividing the ancient kingdom of Glamorgan among the Norman knights and others who had assisted him in his subjugation, to Sir Richard Syward. Leland says, "Martyr Maur, a fair manor place of stone, stondith on this west ripe, a mile above Ogor mouth:" in his time it belonged to the Stradlings. Near the church is an elegant modern mansion, surrounded by a thriving plantation, the seat of the late Right Hon. Sir John Nicholl, Knt., Dean of the Arches, by whom it was erected: it is now the residence of his son, the Right Hon. John Nicholl, D.C.L., M.P. The living is a perpetual curacy, endowed with £200 private benefaction, and £800 royal bounty; present net income, £69; patron, the Right Hon. John Nicholl. The church is dedicated to St. Teilaw. A day school in connexion with the Church is held in a very pretty building erected on the land, and at the expense, of the Right Hon. Mr. Nicholl, by whom the school is chiefly supported. There is a Sunday school kept in a farmhouse by the Calvinistic Methodists. Mrs. Elizabeth Jenkins, previously to 1769, left £5 to the poor, the interest to be distributed on Christmas-day; but since 1771, when interest was paid out of the parish rates on a moiety received from the minister, no trace of the charity can be discovered. Slight vestiges of an old chapel, commonly styled Capel St. Roque, are discernible.