Skip to main content

St Wilfrid and two charters dated AD 676 and 680

  • Patrick Sims Williams

No original Anglo-Saxon charter bearing an AD date earlier than 736 is extant, which seems to suit the traditional view that dating by the Era of the Incarnation, as opposed to the indiction or regnal years, was due to its popularisation by Bede's treatise De temponim ratione and his Historia ecclesiastica. ‘Consequently,’ in R. L. Poole's words, ‘not a few Anglo-Saxon charters which contain the date from the Incarnation have been condemned as spurious or corrupt.’ He then added that ‘there seems, however, to be no reason to suppose that the adoption of this era was originated by the treatise of Bede’, maintaining that it is ‘much more likely’ that it was derived from the Easter Tables of Dionysius Exiguus, arguing on the basis of the accounts of St Wilfrid's instruction at Rome and his speech at the Synod of Whitby in 664, that the saint championed the use of the Dionysian computation. Kenneth Harrison has shown how likely this is on various grounds. These include a defence of four charters bearing AD dates in the seventh century and arguably connected with Wilfrid. Harrison's case has been accepted by Nicholas Brooks, though not by Anton Scharer, and Harrison later brought two more charters into the discussion. The earliest of Harrison's charters, the foundation charter of Bath, dated AD 676 and attested by Wilfrid, and a charter concerning Ripple, Worcestershire, dated AD 680, will be discussed in detail below. Three others, all attested by Wilfrid, belong to the group of charters which Anton Scharer and Patrick Wormald associate with Eorcenwald, bishop of London, who also attests: Casdwalla of Wessex's grant of Farnham, Surrey, dated (problematically)AD 688, Eorcenwald's grant of Battersea, Surrey, dated AD 693, and his charter for Barking monastery, in which his visit to Rome is dated (again problematically) to AD 677. It is entirely possible that Wilfrid was responsible for the inclusion of the annus Domini in these charters, even if their actual drafting was done by Eorcenwald or one of his circle; the absence of the annus Domini from the other credible ‘Eorcenwald’ charters is significant. (Eorcenwald attests the Bath foundation charter, but so does Wilfrid.) Harrison's remaining charter is Æthelred of Mercia's confirmation of a grant in Thanet to the Kentish abbess Æbbe, dated AD 691 in the best manuscript.6 Significantly, this is the only one of the thirteen charters between 675 and 737 in Elmham's Historia Monasterii S. Augustini Cantuariensis to bear an AD date. Wilfrid does not attest — the confirmation carries no witness list — but Brooks comments that, of the four charters originally discussed by Harrison (Birch, Cartularium Saxonicum, nos 42, 43, 51 and 72), only BCS 42 [the Thanet charter] has no evident connection with Wilfrid. Yet it shows Wilfrid's friend and protector, King Æthelred of Mercia, intervening in Kent by force in January 6gi (‘dum ille infirmaverat terram nostram’) at a time when the see of Canterbury was vacant. Wilfrid was by this time again running into difficulties with the Northumbrian king, and his biographer claims that he had been offered the succession to the see of Canterbury by Archbishop Theodore himself.

Hide All

ASE = Anglo-Saxon England; JSA = Journal of the Society of Archivists; MGH Auct. Ant. = Monumenta Germaniae Historica Auctores Antiquissimi; MHB = Monumenta Historica Britannica, i; CCSL = Corpus Christianorum Series Latina; MGH SS rer. Merov. = Monumenta Germaniae Historica Scriptores Rerum Merovingicarum; EPNS = English Place-Name Society

For advice at various places in this paper I am indebted to Mr K. Harrison, Dr M. Lapidge, Dr W. J. Ford, Prof. B. Cunliffe, Dr R. Sharpe and Mr O. J. Padel.

1 Cf. Stenton, F. M., Anglo-Saxon England, 3rd edn, Oxford 1971, 186 ; Harrison, K., ‘The beginning of the year in England, c. 500-900’, ASE ii (1973), 63 and 65. Scharer, A., Die angelsdcksiche Konigsurkunde im 7. und 8. Jahrhundert, Vienna 1982, 53 and n. 176, 180. Harrison, K., The Framework of Anglo-Saxon History to A.D. 900, Cambridge 1976, 98.

2 Studies in Chronology and History, Oxford 1934, 32–4 . See The Life of Bishop Wilfrid by. Eddius Stephanas, ed. Colgrave, B., Cambridge 1927 , ch. x. Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People, ed. Colgrave, B. and Mynors, R. A. B., Oxford 1969, iii. 25 and v. iq. , Harrison, op. cit. 49 and 62–5 ; Blair, P. Hunter, ‘Whitby as a centre of learning in the seventh century’, in Lapidge, M. and Gneuss, H. (eds), Learning and Literature in Anglo-Saxon England: studies presented to Peter Clemoes, Cambridge 1985, 21 . Cf. Crdini'n, D. Ò, “The Irish provenance of Bede's computus”, Peritia ii (1983), 232–3 and 245, who stresses dissemination via southern Ireland rather than Rome.

3 Harrison, K., ‘The Annus Domini in some early charters’, JSA iv (1970-1973), 551–7 ; Brooks, N., ‘Anglo-Saxon charters: the work of the last twenty years’, ASE iii (1974), 225 ; , Scharer, op. cit. 53 n. 176. , Harrison, Framework, 6775 , 97, 138. The two additional charters were Sawyer, P. H., Anglo-Saxon Charters: an annotated list and bibliography (hereinafter cited as Sawyer), London 1968 , nos 1246, 1248 . Cartularium Saxonicum (hereinafter cited as Birch), ed. Birch, W. de G., London 1885-1899, nos 87, 82.

4 Sawyer, nos 235, 1248, 1246. See , Scharer, op. cit. 129–41 ; Wormald, P., Bede and the Conversion of England: the charter evidence, Jarrow Lecture 1984 [Jarrow 1985] ; also Whitelock, D., Some Anglo-Saxon Bishops of London, Chambers Memorial Lecture 1974, London 1975, 510.

5 Cf. the argument below concerning the annus Domini in the Bath charter, probably drafted by Leutherius or one of his circle.

6 Sawyer 10. Cf. , Harrison, Framework, 142–5.

7 Ibid. 69 and n. 15; ‘Beginning of the year’, 63 n. 4.

8 , Brooks, ‘Anglo-Saxon charters’, 225 n. 1. Cf. idem. The Early History of the Church of Canterbury, Leicester 1984, 77 . Birch 42, 43, 51, 72 are nos 10, 51, 52, 235 in Sawyer.

9 Sawyer 51. I quote from the manuscript (using æ for its e caudata) since Birch is inaccurate, e.g. omitting Osuualdi (probably Osric's brother, cf. Sawyer 70) from the column of lay witnesses, and misspelling Ergnuualdus. A better edition is by Hunt, W., Two Chartularies of the Priory of St. Peter at Bath (Somerset Record Soc. vii, 1893), 67 , but here episcopus is omitted from Leutherius' attestation. The dating-clause was explained by , Harrison, ‘The Annus Domini,’ 553.

10 An archaic spelling of the name Beomgyth, cf. Campbell, A., Old English Grammar, Oxford 1959, §§42, 199 ; Scott, F. S., ‘The Hildithryth Stone and the other Hartlepool name-stones’, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4th ser. xxxiv (1956), 204.

11 Sawyer 1167. See Sims-Williams, P., ‘Continental influence at Bath Monastery in the seventh century’, ASE iv (1975), 110 . On the formula ‘In nomine Domini Dei saluatoris nostri Iesu Christi’, see Stevenson, W. H., ‘Trinoda Necessitas’, EHR xxix (1914), 702–3 ; on ‘ut habeatis jure dominioque uestro, quam monasterio uestro uindicetis’, see John, E., Land Tenure in Early England, 2nd imp., Leicester 1964, 6, 23 . There is no evidence for the supposition that Æthelmod was a Hwiccian prince. Stenton, F. M., The Early History of the Abbey of Abingdon, Reading 1913, 21 ; English Historical Documents, i, ed. Whitelock, D., 1st edn, London 1968, 346 ; Handbook of British Chronology, 3rd edn, ed. Fryde, E. B. et al., London 1986, 11 . Cf. n. 69 below. In her note on no. 57 in the 2nd edn of English Historical Documents, London 1979, 483 , Professor Whitelock points out that Sawyer 1167 is not necessarily in favour of Bath because it is in the Bath cartulary; however, the peculiarity of the name Folcburg and the occurrence of Æthelmod both here and in the foundation charter are highly significant.

12 , Sims-Williams, op. cit. 56 ; Sawyer 1164 ; Levison, W., England and the Continent in the Eighth Century, Oxford 1946, 227–8 . On Sawyer 1164 cf. also , Stenton, op. cit. 11, 16 ; Hoskins, W. G., The Westward Expansion of Wessex, Leicester 1960, 20 ; , Scharer, Konigsurkunde, 167 n. 38. Levison dares to identify the scribe with Boniface's teacher of the same name, the abbot of Nursling. He is followed by Wormald, P., ‘Bede and Benedict Biscop’, in Bonner, G. (ed.), Famulus Christi: essays in commemoration of the thirteenth centenary of the birth of the Venerable Bede, London 1976, 160 n. 39.

13 ‘The Annus Domini’, 554; Framework, 69. In a personal comment Dr Lapidge compares ‘piaclorum...meorum’ in , Aldhelm'sCarmen de virginitate, V. 2822 , Aldhelmi Opera, ed. Ehwald, R., MGH Auct. Ant., XV, Berlin 1919, 467.

14 These and other examples are cited by Harrison, ‘The Annus Domini’, 554 n. 20, and , Sims-Williams, ‘Bath’, 5 n. 1. If the episcopal attestations in Anglo-Saxon charters represented the bishops’ actual signatures, one might expect more than one example of the style of humility within a single witness list, cf. , Poole, Studies, 77 ; the rarity of this is therefore relevant to the matter of the production of charters. Sawyer 239 and 1164 may have been drafted by the bishop who uses the style of humility, even though the writing was due to the named scribe.

15 These examples are taken from charters listed by , Wormald, Bede and the Conversion, 30 nn. 24-6. At p. 10 Wormald associates the ‘“humility” formula’ with Eorcenwald, although he has it only in Sawyer 1246 (where he is servorum Dei servus at the beginning of the charter), and it is Aldhelm who is indignus abbas in Sawyer 235, the only other charter of Wormald's ‘Eorcenwald’ group, p. 30 nn. 23-4 (some references to Sawyer 1248 are wrong here), to contain the formula. He suggests that ‘the “humility” formula very probably appeared independently in Wessex’ and posits a Frankish as well as Gregorian background for it, at pp. 11, 16. On the Gregorian serous servorum Dei see , Levison, England and the Continent, 238 n. 6; also Theophilus: De diuersis arlibus, ed. Dodwell, C. R., London 1961, pp. xxxv–xxxvi ; Canterbury Professiom, ed. Richter, M. (Canterbury and York Society lxvii, 1973), p. xli n. 2 ; Charles-Edwards, T. M., ‘The seven bishop-houses of Dyfed’, Bulletin of the Board ofCeltic Studies xxiv (1970-1972), 259 ; Aldhelm: The Prose Works, transl. Lapidge, M. and Herren, M., Ipswich. 1979, 151 . Even Wilfrid describes himself as simplex et humilis servus servorum Dei episcopus, Colgrave, Life of Wilfrid, ch. li.

16 The appearance of both bishops is not suspicious; for possible explanations see the references in , Sims-Williams, op. cit. 4 n. 7 , to which add: English Historical Documents, 1st edn, i. 455 n. 11. Gibbs, M., ‘The decrees of Agatho and the Gregorian plan for York’, Speculum xlviii (1973), 241 and n. 105 ; , Harrison, Framework, 103, 108 ; , Brooks, Canterbury, 126 ; and the witness list of Sawyer 98. Yet another possibility is that we glimpse here an attempt to divide the West Saxon diocese that could have proved abortive when Leutherius died, cf. , Brooks, op. cit. 74.

17 , Harrison, op. cit. 65, 71-2, 98.

18 Ibid. 68. See , Bede, Historia ecclesiastica, iv. 6 . The exact date seems to depend on Florence’ of Worcester, MHB, ed. Petrie, H., London 1848, 535.

19 Colgrave, op. cit. passim. , Wormald, ‘Bede and Benedict Biscop’, 145–6.

20 , Bede, Historia ecclesiastica, iii. 25 and iv. 2 On Agilber t see , Sims-Williams, ‘Bath’, 48 ; Croinfn, O., ‘Irish provenance’, 245 ; Blair, Hunter, ‘Whitby’, 30–2.

21 sic; Hunt reads pro and silently emends sacramentum to sacramento.

22 sic; sujfragente Hunt.

23 This verb seems superfluous, since cathedram also seems to be governed by construere; see below.

24 ‘The Annus Domini’, 554; Framework, 68.

25 ‘Appendix’ to ‘Florence’ of Worcester, MHB, 622 (cf. Haddan, A. W. and Stubbs, W., Councils and Ecclesiastical Documents Relating to Great Britain and Ireland, Oxford 1869-1871, iii. 127–8) , and the closely related tract in Oxford, Corpus Christi College, MS 157, printed in Dugdale's Monasticon Anglicanum, ed. Caley, J. et al., London 1846, i. 607 . The occurrence of the phrase cathedram erexit pontificalem here may well be independent of the charter. Pontificalis cathedra is found already in Aldhelm's prose De virginitate, Opera, 257 line 16, 271 line 20.

26 Florentii Wigorniensis monachi chronicon ex chronicis, ed. Thorpe, B., London 1848-1849, ii. 8 ; The Vita Wulfstani of William of Malmesbury, ed. Darlington, R. R. (Camden Series xl, 1928), p. xxxi n. 1.

27 , Bede, Historia ecclesiaslica, iv. 5 . On the date see , Harrison, Framework, 84–5 . ‘Sinodalia decreta’ are also mentioned in Sawyer 1164 (on which see p. 165–6 and n. 12 above), and on references to statuta synodalia see , Wormald, Bede and the Conversion, 1011.

28 Anglo-Saxon episcopal lists, Part III’, ed. Page, R. I., Nottingham Mediaeval Studies x (1966), 224 , at p. 10, etc. Seaxwulf succeeded Wynfrith, who was deposed in 675 (thus ‘Florence’) or a little earlier; see Venerabilis Baedae Opera Historica, ed. Plummer, C., Oxford 1896, ii. 215 , and below, n. 52. Seaxwulf attests the Bath charter.

29 Historia ecclesiastica, iv. 23. , Plummer, op. cit. ii. 246 , takes Bede's paulo ante to mean that Tatfrith's election took place ‘shortly before’ Oftfor's election in the early 690s. Apart from the problems Plummer himself mentions, this strict interpretation is impossible to reconcile with Bosel's attestation of Sawyer 1167 already in 681.

30 See n. 23 above.

31 In such expressions conslruere may refer to physical construction, as in Bede's ‘monasteria magnifico opere construentes’, CCSL cxix A. 303, but it is safer to translate ‘establish'; this meaning is clear from the letter of Gregory 1 discussed by Ferrari, G., Early Roman Monasteries, Vatican City 1957, 11 . Th e letter also suggests that a woman could be called abbatissa in anticipation of the founding of her house. Both points are relevant for the interpretation of the wording of Anglo-Saxon charters.

32 See Pretty, K. B., The Welsh Border and the Severn and Avon Valleys in the Fifth and Sixth Centuries A.D.: an archaeological survey, unpubl. Ph D diss., Cambridge 1975.

33 Historia ecclesiastica, iv. 13.

34 But without royal title, Sawyer 1165. , Scharer, Konigsurkunde, 136 , is misleading on Osric's dates.

35 On the problems in interpreting funerary evidence see Bullough, D., ‘Burial, community and belief in the early medieval West’, in Wormald, P. et al. (eds), Ideal and Reality in Frankish and Anglo-Saxon Society: studies presented to J. M. Wallace-Hadrill, Oxford 1983, 177201 , and my review of this volume in this Journal xxxvii (1986), 114–17.

36 ‘The Annus Domini,’ 553; Framework, 68.

37 ‘Bath’, 2 n. 2. Cf. Lapidge, M., ‘The hermeneutic style in tenth-century Anglo-Latin literature’, ASE iv (1975), 99101 ; , Scharer, op. cit. 213 n. 9. On ‘Regnante ac gubemante regimonia regni Osrici regis’ in the dating clause (cf. Sawyer 268 and Stenton, F. M., The Latin Charters of the Anglo-Saxon Period, Oxford 1955, 26) , see , Harrison, ‘The Annus Domini’, 553 . For such a degree of alliteration already in Aldhelm, see Lapidge, M., ‘Aldhelm's Latin poetry and Old English verse’, Comparative Literature xxxi (1979), 219–23.

38 , Ehwald, Opera, 269, 261–2 ; , Lapidge and , Herren, Aldhelm, 90, 85 . In a personal communication D r Lapidge compares the charter's ‘gratia…enitesceret’ with Aldhelm's ‘gratia enituerit’. , Ehwald, op. cit. 250 line 18, and notes that its ‘subnixis precibus’ (in the sanctio) is also Aldhelmian, ibid. 713, s.v. subnitor. See also above, nn. 13 and 25.

39 Thus Grierson, P., ‘Les livres de l'abbe Seiwold de Bath’, Revue Benedictine lii (1940) , in Cf. M. Lapidge, ‘Surviving booklists from Anglo-Saxon England’, in , Lapidge and , Gneuss, Learning and Literature, 60–1.

40 , Lapidge and , Herren, op. cit. 13-15, 137.

41 Cf. Sims-Williams, P., ‘An unpublished seventh—or eighth-century Anglo-Latin letter in Boulogne-sur-Mer MS 74 (82)’, Medium Mvum xlviii (1979), 910 , 20 n. 88. It has been suggested that Aldhelm and Boniface encouraged the Rule in Wessex, but see ibid. 20 n. 87.

42 On Bath and Hatton 48 see ibid. 9-10 (to be elaborated elsewhere). For Bath's association with (perhaps ‘dedication to’ is too strong) Benedict see S. Keynes, ‘King Athelstan's books’, in , Lapidge and , Gneuss, op. cit. 160–2 . Bath acquired a relic of St Benedict (among many other saints), according to the eleventh-century relic list in CCCC in. , Hunt, Two Chartularies, p. lxxvi , but too late to be relevant to the Athelstan inscription discussed by Keynes, for the same donor, Heorstan, also gave relics of St Ethelwold and St Alphege (d. 1012). A problem with the assumption that Bath was originally dedicated to Peter and Benedict is Cynewulf's grant of 808 (recti 757 x 8) ‘fratribus in monasterio sancti Petri’ (Sawyer 265), but this charter is in the twelfth-century cartulary and was produced as evidence in a land dispute in 1121 , , Hunt, op. cit. xxiv , so it may well have been edited to accord with the standard later dedication, cf. ibid. p. lxxvi; Sawyer 414, etc.; and , Keynes, op. cit. 162 n. 101. It has been argued that Sawyer 265 has been edited in respect of the date (but cf. , Sims-Williams, ‘Bath’, 8 n. 10) , and its reference to fratribus may not be wholly trustworthy. For possible late Anglo-Saxon evidence for a nun at Bath see Cunliffe, B., ‘Saxon Bath’, in Haslam, J. (ed.), Anglo-Saxon Towns in Southern England, Chichester 1984, 353.

43 Three Old English Elegies, ed. Leslie, R. F., Manchester 1961, 22–8 . Cf. , Cunliffe, op. cit. 349–50 , and idem. The City of Bath, Gloucester 1986, 51–2 ; Page, R. I., Anglo-Saxon Aptitudes: an inaugural lecture, Cambridge 1985, 20–4 . Bath is ‘famoso urbe’ (sic) in Sawyer 210 (also ‘celebri vico’ in Sawyer 148, but cf. , Sims-Williams, op. cit. 9 n. 8).

44 Dialogi, ii. 8.10-11, ed. Vogüé, A. de, Grégoire le Grand: Dialogues (Sources Chrétiennes ccli, cclx, cclxv, 1978-1980), ii. 166–8 . At ii.19.1 (p. 194) Gregory refers to sanctimoniales in a nearby vicus whose inhabitants Benedict had converted from idolatry. For Benedict's duodecim monasteria see ii.3.13 (p. 150). On a copy of the Dialogi at Bath see , Grierson, ‘Seiwold’, 107 ; , Lapidge, ‘Booklists’, 59.

45 , Sulpicius, Vita S. Martini, xiii. 9 and xiv. 6, ed. Fontaine, J., Sulpice Severe: Vie de saint Martin, Sources Chretiennes cxxxiii-cxxxv, i. 282 and 284. On Sulpicius' language see ibid. ii. 787-8; on the probable influence on Gregory's Benedict see Petersen, J. M., The Dialogues of Gregory the Great in their Late Antique Cultural Background, Toronto 1984, 119 ; and on the historical context see Stancliffe, C., St. Martin and his Hagiographer, Oxford 1983, 155, 328–40.

46 I am indebted to Dr W. J. Ford for these comments on the unpublished excavation. Cf. also Ford, W. J., ‘Blacklow Hill, Warws (SP 2905 6755)’, West Midlands Archaeological News Sheet xiv (1971), 21–2 ; Rahtz, P. A., ‘Buildings and rural settlement’, in Wilson, D. M. (ed.), The Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon England, London 1976, 70, 85 , 411. For place-names see Gelling, M., Signposts to the Past, London 1978, 160 ; Wilson, D., ‘A note on OE hearg and weoh as place-name elements representing different types of pagan Saxon worship sites’, Anglo-Saxon Studies in Archaeology and History iv (1985), 179–83 ; cf. Bronnenkant, L.J., ‘Place-names and Anglo-Saxon paganism’, Nomina viii (1984), 72.

47 , Cunliffe, City of Bath, 47–8 . Cf. ibid. 48-9, 61; and The Temple ofSulis Minerva at Bath, i, part 1: The Site, ed. Cunliffe, B. and Davenport, P. (Oxford University Committee for Archaeology Monograph vii, 1985), 6678 . The location of Berta's monastery is uncertain, but it may have been on the temple site; see , Cunliffe, op. cit. 48 , and ‘Saxon Bath’, 348. Rodwell, W., ‘Churches in the landscape: aspects of topography and planning’, in Faull, M. L. (ed.), Studies in Late Anglo-Saxon Settlement, Oxford 1984, 78 . It has been suggested that some Romano-British shrines were used by pagan Anglo-Saxons, but there is no solid evidence for this; cf. Rahtz, P. and Watts, L., ‘The end of Roman temples in the west of Britain’, in Casey, P.J. (ed.), The End of Roman Britain (British Archaeological Reports, British ser. lxxi, 1979), 183210.

48 Birch 51; Sawyer 52. See , Harrison, ‘The Annus Domini’, 552 ; Framework, 67.

49 , Petrie, MHB, 536 (s.a. 680). , Dugdale, Monasticon, i. 607–9 . Cf Finberg, H. P. R.The Early Charters of the West Midlands, 2nd edn, Leicester 1972, nos 222, 59, 257 ; also Robertson, A. J., Anglo-Saxon Charters, 2nd edn, Cambridge 1956, 264.

50 Keynes, S., The Diplomas of King Æthclred ‘the Unready’, Cambridge 1980, 33–4.

51 Framework, 67; ‘The Annus Domini,’ 553. He detects a similar explanatory tone in a Bedan reference, and suggests emending sexta to octaua.

52 See n. 28 above. Th e reason is suggested by , Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England, 137 , following Haddan and , Stubbs, Councils, iii. 122 . D. P. Kirby goes beyond the evidence in stating that Wynfrith was driven out by Wulfhere and appealed to Rome, ‘Northumbri a in the time of Wilfrid’, in Kirby, D. P. (ed.), Saint Wilfrid at Hexham, Newcastle 1974, 12.

53 Historia ecclesiastica, iv. 3 and 6.

54 Colgrave, Life of Wilfrid, ch. xxv. Wynfrith is in France in 678, on the road to Rome (reason unspecified), and is attacked and robbed, being mistaken for Wilfrid, who had fortunately travelled via Frisia. Bede does not have this story and gives the impression that Wilfrid's going to Frisia was accidental, Historia ecclesiastica, v. 19. Cf. , Plummer, Baedae Opera Historica, ii. 324–5 ; Kirby, D. P., ‘Bede, Eddius Stephanus and the “Life of Wilfrid”’, EHR xcviii (1983), 109 . An early twelfth-century York writer noted the problem of distinguishing the names Wilfrid and Winfrid. The Historians of the Church of York and its Archbishops, ed. Raine, J. (Rolls Series, 1879-1894), ii. 330.

55 Cf. , Page, ‘Anglo-Saxon episcopal lists, III’, 5 , etc.

56 For the date see , Plummer, op. cit. ii. 318 and , Levison, England and the Continent, 51 and n. 1. For the political context see , Brooks, Canterbury, 72–5 . On the time a journey to Rome took, see , Harrison, ‘Beginning of the year’, 58.

57 See the proceedings of Pope Agatho's Easter council, quoted in the Life of Wilfrid, ch. liii, cf. , Bede, Historia ecclesiastica, V. 19 . Cf. , Haddan and , Stubbs, op. cit. iii. 140 , 261. , Plummer, op. cit. ii. 318 ; , Whitelock, Documents, 1st edn, 678 n. 8. Haddan and Stubbs, iii. 141 n. b and , Poole, Studies, 77–8 wrongly see a contradiction between the subscription by Wilfrid in the Acts of the Council of the 125 bishops and the report of proceedings in the Vita Wilfridi and Bede. On these Acts see also Levison, W., ‘Englische Handschriften des Liber Pontificalis’, Neues Archiv xxxv (1910), 376 , no. 4 ; Thomson, R. M., ‘William of Malmesbury's edition of the Liber Pontificalis’, Archivum Historiae Pontificiae xvi (1978), 100 . The wording of Wilfrid's subscription is slightly different in the text in Cambridge, University Library, Kk. 4.6, fo. 265V.

58 Historia ecclesiastica, iv. 13 and 26.

59 Life of Wilfrid, chs xxxiv-xxxix. , Poole, Studies, 68 , thinks that Wilfrid's biographer lost touch with the saint on his return to England in 680, while Kirby argues that their personal involvement did not begin until c. 703, ‘Bede, Eddius Stephanus’, 103 and n. 7. Poole rightly prefers Bede's account of Wilfrid in Sussex, but is probably mistaken in saying, p. 61, that Acca, Bede's informant for the interpolated iv. 14 at least, accompanied Wilfred, cf. , Colgrave and , Mynors, Ecclesiastical History, p. xli ; see D. Whitelock, ‘Bede and his teachers and friends’, in , Bonner, Famulus Christi, 1939 , 37 n. 56. , Gibbs, ‘Decrees of Agatho’, 234, 245 , notes Ceolfrith and Bishop Daniel as possible informants about Wilfrid.

60 , Plummer, Baedae Opera Historica, ii. 318–19 ; , Poole, Studies, 69 . Cf. , Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England, 138 ; Moore, W. J., The Saxon Pilgrims to Rome and the Schola Saxonum, Fribourg, Switzerland 1937, 29 and nn. 3 and 5. , Kirby, op. cit. 110.

61 That is, to 711 x 715, unless the chapter is an addition to the original Vita. Cf. , Poole, Studies, 57 ; Kirby, op. cit. Kirby argues that Stephen had particular connections with Ripon and with Mercia. For Levison's dating of ch. xl see his edition, ‘Vita Wilfridi’, MGH SS rer. Merov. vi. 163-263, at p. 174.

62 , Raine, Historians of York, i. 56 ; , Colgrave, Life of Wilfrid, 80–1 ; Eddius Stephanus: Het Leven van Sint Wilfrid, ed. Moonen, H., 's-Hertogenbosch 1946, 142 . Cf. Darlington, R. R. in the Handbook of British Chronology, ed. Powicke, F. M. and Fryde, E. B., 2nd edn, London 1961, 15 ; Campbell, J., ‘Bede's words for places’, in Sawyer, P. H. (ed.), Names, Words, and Graves: early medieval settlement, Leeds 1979, 42 ; P. Wormald, ‘Bede, the Bretwaldas and the origin of the Gens Anglorum’, in , Wormald, Ideal and Reality, 112 . Stephen had just used praefectus without vir in chs xxxvi, xxxviii.

63 , Levison, ‘Vita Wilfridi’, 233 ; , Raine, op. cit. i. 141, 201 ; Willelmi Malmesbiriensis De Geslis Pontificum Anglorum, ed. Hamilton, N. E. S. A. (Rolls Series, 1870), 232 . Raine and Colgrave cite the variants perfectum/perfecto from the Cotton manuscript only, thereby implying that praefectumjpraefecto in their main texts are the readings of the Fell manuscript; however, the latter has the standard abbreviation for per on both occasions (fo. 46V). Dr Richard Sharpe kindly checked this for me.

64 Ibid. 351-2; Sawyer 1169; Birch 65. Cf. , Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England, 69, 151 ; and Darlington and Wormald, as in n. 62 above. William says he was Wulfhere's son, perhaps guessing.

65 Stenton, F. M., Preparatory to ‘Anglo-Saxon England’, ed. Stenton, D. M., Oxford 1970, 52 n. 7 ; , Whitelock, Documents, 1st edn, i. 343 and n. 2. See also Chaplais, P., ‘The origin and authenticity of the royal Anglo-Saxon diploma’, JSA iii (1965-1969), 4861 , 56 n. 70-66 The date of Bosel's consecration is uncertain; cf. 168 above. A point in favour of the dating clause, since Theodore is a witness, is perhaps the use of'concurrent dating'; cf. , Harrison, ‘The Annus Domini,’ 555 , and Framework, 69-70. , Haddan and , Stubbs, op. cit. iii. 169 , place the synod at Burford, but the early forms of the latter do not suit. It could be Beorhford where the Mercians and West Saxons fought in 752; see , Stenton, op. cit. 57 n. 4; idem, Anglo-Saxon England, 204 n. 3.

67 If one may believe its charters at all, for which see ibid. 69. , Stenton, Preparatory, 52 and n. 7. Darlington, R. R. in The Victoria County History of Wiltshire, ii, London 1955, 35 ; and , Sawyer, Anglo-Saxon Charters, 516 . See also Haslam, J., ‘The towns of Wiltshire’, in Haslam, J. (ed.), Anglo-Saxon Towns of Southern England, 113–14 . (Malmesbury is wrongly included in Worcester diocese in the map in Blair, P. Hunter, An Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England, 2nd edn, Cambridge 1977, 145 , and the discussion of the border by Hart, C. R., ‘The Tribal Hidage’, Transactions of the Royal Historical Society, 5th ser. xxi (1971), 149–50 makes uncritical use of charters.) Somerford Keynes was transferred from Wilts, to Glos. in 1897.

68 , Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England, 68–9 ; idem, Preparatory, 52-3. Malmesbury claimed to have been granted an estate embracing Somerford by Caedwalla in 688; see Sawyer 234, with the comments of , Finberg, West Midlands, 32 , no. 4A (cf. ibid, nos 94, 180).

68 For sub-kings in Wessex at the period see , Bede, Historia ecclesiastica, iv. 12 ; , Stenton, Abingdon, 1718 ; Sawyer, P. H., From Roman Britain to Norman England, London 1978, 46 . Æthelmod (n. 11 above) may be one, or may have ruled in Middle Anglia, where the subject of his grant, the Cherwell, lay.

70 , Stenton, Anglo-Saxon England, 151 : , H. M. and Taylor, J., Anglo-Saxon Architecture, Cambridge 1965-1978, ii. 556–8 ; Taylor, H. M., ‘The eighth-century doorway at Somerford Keynes’, Transactions of the Bristol and Gloucestershire Archaeological Society lxxxviii (1969), 6873.

71 , Hamilton, Gesta Pontificum, 337–9 ; , Ehwald, Aldhelmi Opera, 500–2 ; , Lapidge and , Herren, Aldhelm, 168–70 . On the difficult problem of the date of the letter cf. ibid. 150-1 ; , Plummer, Baedae Opera Historica, ii. 327 ; , Haddan and , Stubbs, Councils, iii. 135 ; , Whitelock, Documents, i, 1st edn, 730 ; , Gibbs, ‘Decrees of Agatho’, 240 n. 101 . Whatever its date, it shows that Wilfrid would probably have had Aldhelm's support in dealing with Berhtwald.

72 Sawyer 1667-8 an d 1674-5. Cf. Robinson, J. A., Somerset Historical Essays, London 1921, 32, 63 ; Roper, M., ‘Wilfrid's landholdings in Northumbria’, in , Kirby, Wilfrid at Hexham, 61–2 . The relevant texts are printed in. Johannis Glastoniensis chronica sive historia de rebus Glastoniensibus, ed. Hearne, T., Oxford 1726, ii. 370, 375–6 ; The Early History of Glastonbury, ed. Scott, J., Woodbridge 1981, 94, 142, 198 n. 88 ; The Chronicle of Glastonbury Abbey, ed. Carley, J. P., Woodbridge 1985, 40, 92, 286 n. 156.

73 , Colgrave, Life of Wilfrid, chs xiv (referring especially to 666-9, cf. , Plummer, op. cit. ii. 317) , xliii, lxiv-lxv (see also ch. li).

74 Colgrave translates ‘the kings’, referring back to Ecgfrith and Ælfwine, but in that case one might not have expected reges to be repeated as subject of dederunt; I have therefore preferred the translation of , Stenton, Latin Charters, 32 . The Latin is quoted from Levison's edition.

75 , Colgrave, op. cit. chs lxii–lxv ; , Roper, ‘Wilfrid's Iandholdings’, 63 . Kirby argues that Stephen was particularly interested in Wilfrid's Mercian connections (see n. 61 above).

76 See below.

77 Apud. , Colgrave, op. cit. 164. Cf. , Poole, Studies, 72 ; Blair, P. Hunter, ‘The Northumbrians and their southern frontier’, Archaeologia Aeliana, 4th ser. xxvi (1948), 123–4 ; John, E., ‘The social and political problems of the early English Church’, Agricultural History Review xviii (1970) , supplement ‘Land, Church, and people: essays presented to H. P. R. Finberg’, ed. Thirsk, J., 41 n. 2 ; Cox, B., ‘The place-names of the earliest English records’, Journal of the English Place- Name Society viii (1975-1976), 45 . On Dent and Yeadon see Ekwall, E., The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-Names, 4th edn, Oxford 1960, 142, 543–4 ; Smith, A. H., The Place-Names of the West Riding of Yorkshire (EPNS xxx-xxxvii, 1961-1963), iv. pp. xi, 155 ; vi. 252-3; and vii. 76 n. 1; idem. English Place-Name Elements (EPNS xxv-xxvi, 1956), i. 143, 305 ; , Cox, ‘Place-names’, 29, 3940 . On Catlow see ibid. 18 ; Ekwall, E., The Place Names of Lancashire, Manchester 1922, 86 , 91. On Dunutinga see also the interesting suggestion of Morris, J., The Age of Arthur, London 1973, 573.

78 See , Ekwall, Dictionary, 385–6 ; , Smith, West Riding, vii. 93 , 135-6; cf. , Gelling, Signposts, 39 ; Llawysgrif Hendregadredd, ed. Morris-Jones, J. and Parry-Williams, T. H., Cardiff 1933, 17 (transl. Williams, Gwyn, Welsh Poems, Sixth Century to 1200, London 1973, 33).

79 See , Ekwall, op. cit. 388 ; , Smith, Elements, ii. 84 ; Mawer, A. and Stenton, F. M., The Place-Names of Worcestershire (EPNS iv, 1927), 158 . Cf. Dyer, C., Lords and Peasants in a Changing Society: the estates of the bishopric of Worcester, 680-1540, Cambridge 1980, 94 fig. 8.

80 On these formations see , Ekwall, op. cit. pp. xviii–xx , and , Smith, op. cit. i. 5-7, 32–3 , 281; also , Plummer, Baedae Opera Historica, ii. 103–4.

81 Leland, John, De Rebus Britannicis Collectanea, ed. Hearne, T., 2nd edn, London 1774, iv. 109–10.

82 Ibid. iv. 154. , Levison, ‘Vita Wilfridi’, 188.

83 Collectanea, iv. 105-11. Leland's travels in Yorkshire are described in part i of his Itinerary, for Ripon see The Itinerary of John Leland, Parts I to III, ed. Smith, L. Toulmin, London 1907, 80–4 and map 1. His rough notes in part xi unfortunately lost a quire just before he comes to Ripon, see The Itinerary of John Leland, Parts IX, X, and XI, ed. Smith, L. Toulmin, London 1910, pp. vii-viii and 136.

84 , Leland, Collectanea, ed. , Hearne, iv. 109 . Leland underscored the last five letters of Geding and wrote dene above them. This may represent a revision of his first reading, an emendation, or a variant from some other text of the Vila. For Amounderness see , Ekwall, Place Names of Lancashire, 139 ; Anderson, O. S., The English Hundred Names, Lund 1934, 29.

85 , Leland, op. cit. iv. 110–11 ; , Robinson, Somerset Historical Essays, 130.

86 , Leland, op. cit. iv. 110.

87 Cf. , Raine, Historians of York, i. 26 nn. 1-3 ; , Levison, ‘Vita Wilfridi’, 191-2, 212 nn. 2-4. For Dunnington see Book, Domesday and Smith, A. H., The Place-Names of the East Riding of Yorkshire and York (EPN S xiv, 1937), 273.

88 Ripon and York interests can hardly be distinguished here since Wilfrid was the patron of both, and York had absorbed Ripon estates; see, for example, Sawyer 1453. Stevenson, W. H., ‘Yorkshire surveys and other eleventh-century documents in the York Gospels’, EHR xxvii (1912), 1819 ; and Domesday Book.

88 Sawyer 407. Early Yorkshire Charters, i, ed. Farrer, W., Edinburgh 1914, 15 ; , Raine, op. cit. ii. 339 and 475. Cf. , Stenton, Latin Charters, 30 n. 3. Whitelock, D., ‘The dealings of the kings of England with Northumbria in the tenth and eleventh centuries’, in Clemoes, P. (ed.), The Anglo-Saxons: studies presented to Bruce Dickins, London 1959, 72–3, 85-6.

90 It seems most likely, however, that the nomina regionum refer back to the regiones given 182 by kings and not to the diversae regiones in which the loca sancta were to be found, as is assumed by, among others. Phillimore, E.apud The Description of Penbrokshire by George Owen, ed. Owen, H., London 1892-1906, iii. 132.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

The Journal of Ecclesiastical History
  • ISSN: 0022-0469
  • EISSN: 1469-7637
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-ecclesiastical-history
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed