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bolde, and Ætherede, and me'; and which of us soever were longest, that he should take to all.

2. But it came to pass that Æthelbold' died; and we two Æthered [and' I] with all the West-Saxon witan's witness, our part did give in trust to Æthelbyrhte king our brother, on the condition that he should re-deliver it to us as entire as it then was when we did make it over to him. And he then did so, both by that estate, and that which he by our joint concurrence had obtained, and what he himself had acquired.

3. When it so happened that Æthered' succeeded, then prayed I him before our nobles all, that we two the inheritance might divide : and he would give to me my share. Then said he to me, that he might not easily divide, for that he had, at many different times, formerly taken possession. And he said concerning that which he enjoyed of our joint property, and (that

[I which he] had acquired, after his days, he would give it to no man rather than to me. And I there-with, at that time, was well satisfied.




4. But it came to pass that we all by the heathen folk o despoiled

Then discoursed we concerning our children that they would need some support to be given by us out of these estates, as to us was given. Then were we in council at Swinbeorg"; when we two declared, in the West-Saxon nobles' presence, that which soever of us two were longest liver, that he should give to the other's children those lands that we two ourselves had acquired, and those lands that Athulf the king gave to us two

(3) K. Ethelwolf made no mention, in his will, of his second son Ethelbert, having, in his life-time (on the death of Athelstan uncle of Ethelbert), in 851, given him the kingdom of the South-Saxons, East-Saxons, and Kent.

(4) Ethelbald, the eldest brother of Alfred, died Dec. 20, A. D. 860. (5) The words and IC seem to be wanting in the original.

(6) Who succeeded to the kingdom on the death of Ethelbald, A. D. 860; and was now the eldest surviving brother of the three.

(7) Ethelred succeeded to the throne on the death of Ethelbert, A. D. 866.

(8) The words 'thæs the he,' though not expressed in the original, must be understood as absolutely necessary to enable the reader to distinguish between the two species of estate here mentioned, 1. that which Ethelred was seised of by joint heirship with Alfred, and, 2. that which he had acquired himself.

(9) The whole reign of this prince was one continued war with the Danes, who are here meant by the ‘hæthen folc.'

(10) I find no place of this name at present in England.

while Æthelbolde was living ; except those that he to us three brothers bequeathed. And of this, each of us two to the other his security did give, that whether of us two should live longest, he should take both to the land and to the treasures; and to all his possessions, except that part, which either of us to his children should bequeath.

5. But it came to pass that Æthered the king deceased, when no man communicated to me no title-deed, nor no evidence, that it was any other than as we before had agreed it before witness. Then heard we now of many inheritance-suits. Now therefore brought I Athulf the king's will into our council at Langadene;' and they read it before all the West-saxon nobles. When it was read, then prayed I them all for my love (and to them my security gave, that I would never bear ill will to none of them for that they should speak right) that none of them wonld neglect, neither for my love nor for my fear, that they should declare the common right ; Jest any man should say, that I had wrongfully excluded my kinsfolk, whether elder or younger. And they then all for right pronounced and declared, that they could conceive no more rightful title nor hear of in a title-deed. “ Now (said they) it is all delivered there into thy hand : Wherefore thou mayest bequeath and give it, either to a relation or a stranger, as may be to thee most eligible.” And they all thereupon gave their security to me and their hand-setting, that, during their life, no man ever should pervert it in none other wise but so as I my self should direct it on the next day.

6. I Alfred, of the West-Saxons. King, by God's grace, and before this company of witnesses, declare how I will concerning my estates after my day.

7. First I give to Eadweard' my eldest son the land at Strætneat®


(1) King Ethelred died Apr. 23, A. D. 871 ; when Alfred succeeded to the crown. (2) There are diverse places in England of the name of Langdon and Longdon ;

but which of them this was, it is impossible to say. If this point should be settled, and the time at which the council was holden, we could ascertain the date of the will as well as the place at which it was made.

(3) Alfred being king at the time he made his will, it must have been made between A. D. 871, when he came to the crown, and A. D. 885, in which bishop Esne, one of the legatees therein mentioned, died.

(4) Edward, the eldest son of Alfred, was born a little before his father ascended the throne; and afterwards succeeded him therein, by the name of Edward the Elder.

(5) Probably Stratton in Cornwall. See the next note.




in Tricon-shire,' and Heortigtune,' and the book-land all that Leofheah holds, and the land at Carumtune, and at Cylfantune, and at Burnhamme, and at Wedmor. And I am a petitioner to the families’ at Ceodre, that they would chuse him on the cordition that we had formerly expressed; with the land of Ciwtune, and that which thereto belongeth. And I to him give the land at Cantuctune, and at Bedewind,' and at Pefesigge, and Hysseburn, and at Suttune,' and at Leodride,' and at Aweltune.•

8. And all the book-land that I in Cent [Kent] have, and at the Nether Hysseburn,' and at Cyseldene,” let it be given to Wintanceastre [Winchester,] on the condition on which my Father formerly gave it; and that my private estate which I gave to Ecgulf in trust at the Nether Hysseburn.

(6) I take Tricon-shire to have been, without all doubt, Cornwall; it being but a small Saxon variation from Trigshire, as it was called by the British inhabitants. See Borlese's Cornish Vocabulary.

(7) Perhaps Hardington in Co. Som. as most of the lands here bequeathed are in that County or Wilts. (8) Carhampton, Co. Som.

(9) Chilhampton, Co. Wilt. (10) Burnham, Co. Som.

(1) Wedmore, Co. Som. (2) These “ Families," at Cheddar, in Somersetshire, were the Ceorls, who occupied the tenemental lands there. They were so far analogous to those who, in the succeeding feudal times, were called privileged villains, as that they could not be compelled to hold their lands against their own consent. Hence it was that Alfred had stipulated with them, on the ground of a requisition on his part, to chuse Edward his son to be their landlord ; i. e. to continue his tenants after he himself should be dead and gone. (3) Chewton, Co. Som.

(4) Quantock, Co. Som. (5) Bedwin, Co. Wilt. (6) Pewsey, Co. Wilt. (7) Hussebourn, Co. Hant.

(8) There are so many places in England of the name of Sutton, that it is hard to say which of them is here meant; but, doubtless, one of those of this name in Somersetshire or Wilts.

(9) Probably Lethered in Surrey.

(10) I take this to have been Aulton in Wilts, which was given by some of his successors to the Cathedral of Winchester, Cart. 29. E. 1. n. 54. For Aulton in Hants seems to have been given to that church by Egbert the grandfather of Alfred. Dug. Mon. I. 979. Yet Camden takes it for granted to have been Aulton in Hants; and, following the printed Latin Translation of the will, says, that Alfred gave it to the keeper of Leodre. Edit. Gibs. p. 146.

(1) Nether Hussebourn in Hants; which was afterwards given by Edward to the cathedral of Winchester.

(2) Chiseldon or Chistleton in Wilts ; which was given to the old Foundation at Winchester for the present; but, as it seems, for the benefit of his intended New Minster, at that place, which appears to have been possessed of it in 4 Edw. iii. Rom. 4. E. 3. m. 4. apud Tann. Notit. p. 156.





9. And to my younger son the land at Eaderingtune and that at Dene,' and at Meone, and at Ambresbyry,' and at Deone, and at Sturemynster,' and at Gifle,° and at Cruærn,' and at Whitchurch, and at Axanmouth,' and at Brancescumbe, and at Columtune, and at Twyfyrd,' and at Mylenburn,' and at Exanmynster, and at Sutheswyrth, and at Liwtune," and the lands that thereto belong; which are all that I in Weal district' have, except Triconshire. 10. And to my eldest daughter the manor at Welewe.


1 11. And to the middlemost '[that] at Cleare,’ and at Cendefer. 3 (3) This younger son of Alfred was Ethelward, born about A. D. 880. He was ducated at Oxford, became a very learned man, and died 16 Oct. A. D. 922.

(4) Adrington, Co. Som.

(5) There are places of this name both in Hants and Wilts, as well as in many other counties. But I take it to have been in one of those two, as most of the estates here bequeathed lay among the West-Saxons.

(6) East and West-Meon, Co. Hant. (7) Ambresbury, Co. Wilt.

(8) Down. Co. Dors. or Devon. (9) Sturminster, Co. Dors.

(10) Gidley, Co. Devon. (1) Crewkern, Co. Som.

(2) Whitchurch Canonicorum, Co. Dorset. (3) Axmouth, Branscomb, Columbton, Co. Devon. (4) Twyford, Co. Hant. (5) Milbourn, Co. Dors. or Som.

(6) Axminster, Co. Devon. (7) Of this I find nothing. (8) Litten, of which there is one in Dorset, and one in Somerset.

(9) “On wealcynne." The author of the printed Translation hath rendered this “sub cælo,” as if Alfred had meant to say, under the Welkin. But, besides that this word is always written, in the Saxon language, weolcen, wolcen, or welen, the

very termination, cynne, naturally refers us to some district. The only question is, What that district was ? --Now the Britons, who retired into the west of England, were called, by our Saxon ancestors, wealas, and their Tribes, weala cynne, i. e. Britannorum gentes. The word indeed, is, at present, retained in the name of those only who retired to the extremity of the island, who are to this day called Corn-wealas. But this does not hinder but that it might formerly extend farther. Nay, the prefix, Corn, applied to one set of the wealas, seems to imply that there were other wealas besides these, and bordering upon them. Accordingly, I suppose that, by a latitude peculiar to common speech, the inhabitants of Devon, or even of Somersetshire, might be called wealas also : And that, therefore, when Alfred had bequeathed his estates in these parts, he finished with saying, “Which are all that I have in the west of England, except in Cornwall.” And, as a proof of this, it is observable, that none of the lands hereafter bequeathed are farther west than Wiltshire.

(10) His eldest daughter was Ethelfleda, who married Ethelred, earl of Mercia ; after whose death, A. D. 912, she governed that province till her own decease, 15 June A. D. 919. Welewe is Wellow, Co. Hant.

(1) His middlemost daughter, as he calls her, was Ethelgeda, a Nun, and afterwards Abbess of Shaftsbury, where she died and was buried.

(2) King's Clere, Co. Hant.

(3) Probably one of those places in Hampshire which still bear this addition to their Name. viz. Preston-Candever, Chilton-Candever.






12. And to the youngest,' the Manor at Welig, s and at Æsctune, and at Cippanhamme.'

13. And to Æthelme, my brother's son, the Manor at Ealding- . burn,' and at Cumtune," and at Crundell,' and at Beading, and

10 at Beadinghamme, and at Burnham, and at Thunresfield,' and at Æsceng.

14. And to Athelwold,' my brother's son, the Manor at Godelming, and at Gyldeford, and at Stening."

15. And to Osferthe, & my cousin, the Manor at Beccanlea, and at Rytherfield, and at Dicceling, and at Suthtune, and at Lullingminster, and at Angmering, and at Felham, and the lands that thereto belong. 16. And to Ealhswith, the Manor at Lamburn,' and at

10 Waneting, and at Ethandune. ?

17. And to my two sons, one thousand pounds; to each five hundred pounds.

18. And to my eldest daughter, and to the middlemost, and to the youngest, and to Ealhswith, to them four, four hundred pounds; to each one hundred pounds.

(4) The youngest daughter of Alfred was Elfrida, who married Baldwin II, earl of Flanders; and dying 7 Jun. A. 929, was buried in the Monastery of St Peter at Ghent. (5) Willey, Co. Wilt.

(6) Ashton, Co. Wilt. (7) Chippenham, Co. Wilt. (8) Æthelm, the eldest son of K. Ethelbert elder brother of Alfred. (9) Aldingbourn, Co. Sussex. (10) Compton, Co. Sussex. (1) Crundal, Co. Hant.

(2) Beden, Bedingham, and Barnham, Co. Sussex. (3) I take this to have been the Manor of Thunderfield in the parish of Horsey, near Reygate in Surrey, where was formerly a castle considerable strength.

(4) Probably Eashing in the parish of Godalming in Surrey, the manor of which also belonged to Alfred.

(5) Ethelwold, the youngest son of king Ethelbert elder brother of Alfred, who died in arms against Edward his cousin, the son and successor of Alfred, A.D. 905.

(6) Godalming and Guildford, both in Surrey.
(7) Steyning in Sussex.
(8) Who this Osferth his cousin was, I do not find.

(9) Beckley, Rotherfield, and Dichling, Sutton, Lullington, Angmering, and Felpham, all in Sussex.

(10) Ethelswitha was the wife of Alfred, and daughter of Ethelred the Big, earl of Mercia. She survived her husband four years; and, dying A. D. 904, was buried in the nunnery at Winchester of her own foundation.

(1) Lamburn and Waneting, now Lambourn and Wantage in Berks, at the latter of which king Alfred was born.

(2) Edingdon, near Westbury in Wilts, where Alfred defeated the Danes, A. D. 878.

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