Born in Llanfihangel-ar-Arth, Carmarthenshire, Evans left school at 14 to work as a draper's assistant and subsequently became a periodicals' editor in London. Begin with the stories in My People (1915), which gained him notoriety in Wales for their fiercely satirical treatments of the greed, hypocrisy, and religious oppression he saw behind the pieties of a chapel-dominated culture. The compelling originality of these pared-down tales is partly due to their surreally eloquent blend of biblical pastiche and literally translated Welsh phrasings. Several further collections of similar material include Capel Seion (1916) and Pilgrims in a Foreign Land (1942). The best of Evans's novels is Nothing to Pay (1930), which draws on his experiences of the drapery trade in tracing its comically small-minded hero's career as a shop assistant in Carmarthen and London.
Dylan Thomas, H. G. Wells (Kipps) DH