The Laws in Wales Act 1535 annexed Wales to England and extended English law to Wales, abolished the marcher lordships and partitioned their lands into the counties of Brecon, Denbigh, Monmouth, Montgomery, and Radnor while adding parts to Gloucester, Hereford, and Salop.

(Monmouthshire was wholly subsumed into the court structure of England and so omitted from the subsequent Laws in Wales Act of 1542, which led to ambiguity about its status as part of England or Wales.) The Act also extended the Law of England to both England and Wales and made English the only permissible language for official purposes.

The once independent Principality of Wales fell under the control of English monarchs from the Statute of Rhuddlan in 1284.

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In 1282, after another rebellion, Edward I finally made a permanent conquest.

With Llywelyn dead, the King took over his lands and dispossessed various other allied princes of northern and western Wales, and across that area Edward established the counties of Anglesey, Caernarfonshire, Flintshire, Merionethshire, Cardiganshire and Carmarthenshire.

This caused consternation to Henry, who feared the establishment of a rival Norman state in Ireland.

With the authority of the papal bull Henry landed with a large fleet in 1171 and claimed sovereignty over the island.

This had the effect of creating an English-speaking ruling class amongst the Welsh, at a time when Welsh was the language of the great majority.

Wales was also now represented in Parliament at Westminster. Power was exercised by the heads of a few regional dynasties vying with each other for supremacy over the whole island.To help maintain his dominance, Edward constructed a series of great stone castles.Initially, the Crown had only indirect control over much of Wales because the Marcher lords (ruling over independent lordships in most of the country) were independent from direct Crown control.The exception was the lands of the Principality of Wales in the north and west of the country, which was held personally by the King (or the heir to the Crown) but was not incorporated into the Kingdom of England.However, between the 13th and 16th centuries the Crown gradually acquired most of the Marcher Lordships, usually through inheritance, until almost all of Wales came under Crown control.After invading England, land-hungry Normans started pushing into the relatively weak Welsh Marches, setting up a number of lordships in the eastern part of the country and the border areas.