Welsh comedian, writer and director Terry Jones, best known for Monty Python, has died aged 77.
He died on Monday after having lived with dementia since 2016.
His family said in a statement, “We are deeply saddened to have to announce the passing of beloved husband and father, Terry Jones.
“Over the past few days his wife, children, extended family and many close friends have been constantly with Terry as he gently slipped away at his home in north London.
“We have all lost a kind, funny, warm, creative and truly loving man whose uncompromising individuality, relentless intellect and extraordinary humour has given pleasure to countless millions across six decades.
“His work with Monty Python, his books, films, television programmes, poems and other work will live on forever, a fitting legacy to a true polymath.”
Jones appeared in Monty Python’s Flying Circus and directed the comedy collective’s movie The Holy Grail in 1975 with fellow Python Terry Gilliam, as well as The Meaning Of Life in 1983.
It was Jones who was the driving force behind abandoning punch lines at the end of sketches and developing what became the show’s trademark stream of consciousness.
This also took a lot of pressure off the writers, who no longer had to dream up a killer line to round off a sketch.
His other credits include Personal Services, Erik the Viking, The Wind in the Willows, The Frost Report, Do Not Adjust Your Set, The Complete and Utter History of Britain, Crusades, Medieval Lives.
He received a standing ovation in 2016 when he appeared on stage to receive a BAFTA Cymru Award for his outstanding contribution to film and television.
Fellow Python Sir Michael Palin described Jones as “one of the funniest writer-performers of his generation”.
“Terry was one of my closest, most valued friends. He was kind, generous, supportive and passionate about living life to the full,” he said.
“He was far more than one of the funniest writer-performers of his generation, he was the complete Renaissance comedian – writer, director, presenter, historian, brilliant children’s author, and the warmest, most wonderful company you could wish to have.”