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R. M. (Bobi) Jones 1929-2017

22 February 2018

Author and scholar, R. M (Bobi) Jones, passed away on 22 November 2017.

Bobi Jones graduated in Welsh from the University College of South Wales and Monmouthshire (a forerunner to Cardiff University) and went on to make an unparalleled contribution to Welsh language and culture.

Robert Maynard Jones was born on 20 May 1929 in Roath, Cardiff. He came from a non-Welsh language household and learned Welsh through the capital’s education system.

After studying Welsh at Cathays Secondary School, he went on to Cardiff University with the aim of achieving a degree in French. However, in his first year he registered to study Welsh. According to Dr Eleri James, who completed a PhD on Bobi Jones at Cardiff University’s School of Welsh, he found “more than an academic subject between the walls of the Welsh department”. In his own words, Bobi, said that he had found: a Cause, a Calling, Magic, Vision, a Campaign, Life.

Bobi, who became the first learner appointed a Professor of Welsh, enjoyed a varied and impressive career as an academic, educator, poet and theorist. For Eleri James, the pinnacles of his career included specialising in: “…the field of linguistics, psycho-mechanics of language and methods of teaching Welsh as a second-language; authoritative writing about Welsh literary history through the ages; establishing the Welsh Academy and establishing the Learner’s Society.”

Read Dr Eleri James’ full tribute to Bobi Jones and his enormous contribution to Welsh literature and culture.

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