« PreviousContinue »
St. Kineburg and St. Kineswith. He reigned nearly thirty years. Oswiu, king of the Northumbrians, slew him, with thirty of his chief men, in battle, and brought his kingdom under his own sway: but to his son Peada, whom his father had made governor of the MidAngles, and who had been baptized in Northumbria, by bishop Finan, he gave the kingdom of the South Mercians: for he was his kinsman, having married his daughter Ahlfleda; but he was basely slain in the first year of his reign. Three years after king Penda was slain, the ealdormen of the Mercians raised his son Wulfer to the throne, and so bravely recovered their liberty and territorial limits. Wulfer was the first of the Mercian kings who received the washing of regeneration: he married St. Ermenild, daughter of Erconbert, the Kentish king, by his queen St. Sexburg, and had by her Kenred, and Wereburg, a most saintly virgin. His brother, St. Merewald, king of the West Hecanas, married St. Ermenberg, daughter of the petty king Ermenred, brother of the said king Erconbert, and by her had three daughters, namely, St. Milburg, St. Mildrith, and St. Mildgith, and one son, St. Merefinn. On Merewald's death, Mercelin his brother reigned in his stead. Alfrid, king of the Northumbrians, married their sister Kineburg. Her piety towards God induced her to abandon the nuptial bed, and she became a nun in the monastery which her brothers, Wulfer and Aethelred, built for her, and which was called after her," Kineburga's Castle:" her sister Kineswith also became a nun in the same monastery. King Wulfer died in the seventeenth year of his reign. He was succeeded by his brother, St. Aethelred, who married Ostrith, sister of Ecgfrid, king of the Northumbrians, and by her had a son, named Ceolred. Aethelred became a monk, in the thirtieth year of his reign, and gave up his kingdom to his nephew, Kenred. Kenred abandoned secular affairs, in the fifth year of his reign, and went to Rome, where he ended his days in the monastic habit. He was succeeded by Ceolred, son of his uncle Aethelred, who died in the ninth year of his reign. Aethelbald, the son of Alwi, who was the son of Eova, who was the brother of king Penda, succeeded him. The tyrant Beornred slew him at Seggeswald, in the forty-first year of his reign, and usurped his kingdom. The king's corpse was carried to Rheopedun, and royally buried. In the same year his cousin Offa, grandson of Eanulf, and son of Thingferth, slew the usurper Beornred in battle, and reigned in his stead. Offa's queen, Kinethrith, bore him two daughters; to wit, Eadburg, who married Brihtric, king of the West Saxons, and Alfrith, who remained a virgin, and one son, named Ecgferth. He died in the thirty-ninth year of his reign, and was succeeded by his son Ecgferth, who died in the same year. To Ecgferth succeeded the glorious Kenulf, the son of Cuthbert, who was grandson of the grandson of the grandson of king Pybba. By his queen, Alftrith, he had St. Kenelm, and two daughters, named Quendrith and Burgenild. He died in the twenty-fourth year of his reign, and lies buried at Wincelcumb: he left his son, St. Kenelm, heir to his kingdom, who was murdered in the same year by the treacherous arts of his sister Quendrith. His uncle Ceolulf succeeded him; but
two years afterwards was expelled, and Beornulf took possession of the kingdom. After the lapse of two years, Beornulf was slain in battle by the East Angles. His kinsman Ludecan succeeded him; but, two years afterwards, was slain by the East Angles, while he was endeavouring to avenge his predecessor.
Wiglaf succeeded Ludecan in the kingdom. His queen, Kinedrith, bore him a son named Wigmund, who had a son named Wistan, by Aelfled, daughter of Ceolulf, king of the Mercians. King Wiglaf died in the thirteenth year of his reign, and lies buried at Rheopedun: Beorhtwlf succeeded him. Beorhtwlf's queen, Saethrith, bore him a son named Beorhtferth, who slew St. Wistan. Wistan's body was carried to the monastery of Rheopedun, which was very celebrated in those days, and was buried there in the mausoleum of his grandfather, king Wiglaf. Heavenly wonders were not wanting at the place of his martyrdom: for from the spot where he was murdered, in his innocence, a column of light shot up to heaven, and remained visible to all the neighbourhood for thirty days. King Beorhtwlf died in the thirteenth year of his reign, and was succeeded by Burhred, who married Aethelsuith, daughter of Aethelulf, king of the West Saxons. In the twentysecond year of his reign an army of pagan Danes expelled him from his kingdom he shortly afterwards went to Rome, where he did not long survive, and lies buried in St. Mary's church, in the Saxon School. In the same year that Burhred was driven from his kingdom, the pagan Danes committed the temporary government of the Mercian kingdom to his thane, Ceolulf: but after three years they divided part thereof among themselves, and gave part to him, permitting him to reign over it: he was the last of the kings of the Mercians. After his death, Alfred, king of the West Saxons, in order that he might utterly expel the army of pagan Danes from his kingdom, recovered London and the adjacent territory by his bravery, and obtained possession of that part of the Mercian kingdom which Ceolulf had held.
The origin of the Kingdom of the Kings of the Bernicii.
In the year 547 of our Lord's incarnation, according to the computation of Dionysius, Ida, the son of a very valiant chief, named Eoppa, began to reign in Bernicia. By his queens he had six sons, named Adda, Bealric, Theodric, Aethelric, Osmear, and Theodher: and by his concubines, six others, named Occa, Alric, Ecca, Oswald, Sogor, and Sogother: and he reigned twelve years. His eldest son Adda succeeded him.
The commencement of the Kingdom of the Kings of the Deiri.
In the 559th year of our Lord's incarnation, according to the computation of Dionysius, Aella, the son of a very valiant chieftain named Iffi, began to reign in Deira, and he reigned for nearly thirty years. Meanwhile, and during Aella's lifetime, the following kings reigned over the Bernicians: Adda, the eldest son
of Ida, for seven years; Clappa, for five years; Theodulf, for one year; Freothulf, for seven years; Theodoric, for seven years; and Aethelric for two years. On Aella's death Aethelric expelled his son Edwin, then three years old, from the kingdom, and reigned over both provinces for the space of five years. On his death, his son Aethelfrid took the helm of the kingdom. His queen, Acha, a daughter of king Aella, bore him seven sons, namely, Eanfrid, Oslaf, Oslac, St. Oswald the king, king Oswiu, Offa, and Oswudu; and one daughter, namely the holy abbess Aebba. His brother, Theodbald, was slain in a battle wherein he conquered Aidan, king of the Scots. And he too was slain in battle by Redwald, king of the East Angles, in the twenty-fourth year of his reign. He was succeeded by St. Edwin, the son of Aella. To him, while in exile, Quenburg, daughter of Creoda, king of the Mercians, bore two sons, named Osfrith and Eadfrith, the latter of whom had a son, named Hereric, who had by Beorhtsuith two daughters, namely, the holy abbess Hild, foundress of the monastery called Streoneshalh [Whitby], and St. Hereswith, queen of the East Angles. By his queen, St. Aethelburg, daughter of Aethelbert, the Kentish king, he had two sons, namely, St. Aethelhun and St. Wuscfrea, and two daughters, namely, St. Eanfleda and St. Aetheldrith. In the seventeenth year of his reign, and the forty-eighth year of his age, he and his son Osfrid were slain by Penda, the pagan king of the Mercians, and Ceadwala, the barbarian king of the Welsh. He [Edwin] was succeeded by St. Oswald, son of his predecessor, Aethelfrid, and his sister Acha. In the ninth year of his reign, Oswald was slain by the aforesaid Penda, king of the Mercians, and was succeeded by his brother Oswiu. In the ninth year of Oswiu's reign, St. Oswin, the son of Osric, who was the son of Alfric, who was the uncle of king Edwin, began to reign over the Deiri, and was slain in the seventh year of his reign. He [Oswin] was succeeded by Aethelwald, son of king Oswald. By his queen, Eanfleda, who was a daughter of king Edwin, king Óswiu had two sons, Ecgfrid and Aelfwin, and three daughters, namely, Osthrith, whom St. Aethelred, king of the Mercians married; and Alhfleda, married to Peada, king of the South Mercians; and Alfleda, whom her father dedicated to God as an offering of thanksgiving, after Penda, king of the Mercians, was slain: for three years he ruled over the Mercian and other southern provinces. He died in the twentyeighth year of his reign, leaving his son Ecgfrid heir to his kingdom. Ecgfrid was slain by the Picts, in the fifteenth year of his reign. His brother Alhfrid succeeded him, and died in the twentieth year of his reign. Alhfrid was succeeded by his son Osred, who was slain in the eleventh year of his reign. Osred was succeeded by Kenred, the son of Cuthwin, who was grandson of a grandson of king Ida; after two years he died, and Osric was made king. Osric died in the eleventh year of his reign, and Ceoluulf, his predecessor's brother, succeeded. Ceoluulf became a monk in the ninth year of his reign, leaving the government of the kingdom to his nephew, Eadbriht, son of Eata. Eadbriht became monk in the nineteenth [twenty-ninth] year of his reign, and his son Oswlf was made king;
who after reigning one year was slain by the Northumbrians. Moll Aethelwald succeeded; but in the seventh year of his reign he abdicated the kingdom, and Alhred, the son of Eanwin, grandson of a grandson of a grandson of king Ida, succeeded to the kingdom. Him the Northumbrians expelled from the kingdom in the ninth year of his reign, and raised to the throne Aethelred, also called Aethelbert, son of king Moll. The Northumbrians deposed Aethelred in the fifth year of his reign, and made Alfwold king, who was slain the eleventh year of his reign by a very powerful man, named Siga. On the spot where he was slain,
"Sent down from heaven, a light resplendent shone."
He was succeeded in the kingdom by his nephew Osred, son of Alhred; after the space of a year the Northumbrians expelled him also, and took back king Aethelbert whom they had previously deposed. He being slain by his subjects, Osbald succeeded to the kingdom, and held it for a few days: he was succeeded by Eardulf, who reigned for one year.
For the next seventy-six years, the country was governed by kings, of whom Osbriht and Aella were the last; these, in the 867th year of our Lord's incarnation, according to the computation of Dionysius, were slain at York by pagans, consisting of Danes, Norwegians, Swedes, Goths, and people of other nations. From this year, the Anglian kings, who had reigned for three hundred and twenty-one years in Northumbria, ceased to reign there for fifty-one years. And they remained for the space of eight years without a king, pillaged by, and in bondage to the said pagans. For during that period, St. Eadmund, king of the East Angles, being slain, and Burhred, king of the Mercians, being driven beyond sea, and their kingdoms brought under the Danish sway, and Alfred, king of the West Saxons, being nearly ruined, and the greater part of his kingdom being overrun, these Danes kept marching through and sailing round England, and were continually burning monasteries with the monks and nuns therein, and churches with the clerks thereof, and cities, towns, and vills, laying waste the fields, and slaughtering the inhabitants. Nor is this to be wondered at, for so powerful and numerous an army neither previously nor afterwards came to England. It was commanded by eight kings, namely, Bagseg, Halfdene, Hynguar, Hubba, Guthrum, Oskitell, Amund, and Eowils, and more than twenty earls, and was furnished with a great variety of weapons. Whoever wishes to become acquainted with the atrocities of all these, will find them set down seriatim and at large in the Chronicle of Chronicles: in this tract we have been careful to insert only the more important events. It only remains to be observed that Aethelstan, the glorious king of the West Saxons, was the first of the Anglo-Saxons who was sole monarch of all England; he became so in the 926th year of our Lord's incarnation, according to the computation of Dionysius, and the 477th year from the arrival of the Angles in Britain; he was crowned king of England, and was universally acknowledged as ruler of all Britain.
The Genealogy of the Kings of the West Saxons.
The English Chronicle states that in the 519th year from our Lord's incarnation, according to the computation of Dionysius, Cerdic and his son Kenric began to reign in West Saxony; Cerdic died in the sixteenth year of his reign, and Kenric became sole king: he died in the thirty-sixth [26th] year of his reign. His son Ceaulin succeeded and reigned thirty-three years. Ceol, who was his brother Cuthwlf's son, and whom he had made king under him two years previously, ungratefully rebelled against him [Ceaulin], and having expelled him from his kingdom, reigned for five years in his stead. After Ceol's death, Ceolulf, the son of Cutha, succeeded to the kingdom, and died in the fourteenth year of his reign. He was succeeded by Kinegils, son of his brother Ceol: he was the first of the kings of the West Saxons who received christian baptism, doing so with all his people in the twentyfourth year of his reign, at the hands of St. Birin, the first bishop of the West Saxons: king Quichelm, his son, died in the following year, having been baptized by the same bishop. King Kinegils died in the thirty-first year of his reign, and his son Coenwalch succeeded to the government of the kingdom. Coenwalch was baptized in East Anglia by St. Felix, first bishop of the East Angles: he built the church at Winchester, where the episcopal see is, and died in the thirty-first year of his reign. His queen, Sexburg, reigned after him for the space of one year. Then Kenfus reigned for two years, so says king Alfred: but the English Chronicle says that his son Aescwin reigned for nearly three years after him. Then came Kentwin, son of king Kinegils, and he died in the eighth year of his reign. He was succeeded by Ceadwalla the son of Kenbriht, who was a great-grandson of Ceaulin : for Christ's sake,
"Leaving soon afterwards his earthly realm,
By Sergius wash'd in baptism's sacred stream,
Ina, son of the subregulus Kenred, who was grandchild of a grandchild of king Ceaulin, succeeded him in the kingdom, and built Glastonbury ;
"Then the king spurn'd away his royal pomp
From love to God his sovereign,-went to Rome,
He had a brother named Ingels, and two sisters, namely, St. Cuthburg and St. Quenberg. Ina was succeeded in the kingdom by Aethelhard, who was descended from king Cerdic, and died in the fourteenth year of his reign. His relation Cuthred succeeded him, and died in the fifteenth year of his reign. Cuthred was succeeded by Sigebert, son of the subregulus Sigeric, who reigned for one year. Kineuulf, a descendant of king Cerdic, drove Sigeric from the kingdom and reigned in his stead. Kinehard, the etheling, who was son of Sigeric, and brother of Sigebert, slew