The Northern Way

Part 1: A.D. 1 - 748

Page 7

A.D. 687. This year was Mull consigned to the flames in Kent, and twelve other men with him; after which, in the same year, Ceadwall overran the kingdom of Kent.

A.D. 688. This year Ceadwall went to Rome, and received baptism at the hands of Sergius the pope, who gave him the name of Peter; but in the course of seven nights afterwards, on the twelfth day before the calends of May, he died in his crisom-cloths, and was buried in the church of St. Peter. To him succeeded Ina in the kingdom of Wessex, and reigned thirty-seven winters. He founded the monastery of Glastonbury; after which he went to Rome, and continued there to the end of his life. Ina was the son of Cenred, Cenred of Ceolwald; Ceolwald was the brother of Cynegils; and both were the sons of Cuthwin, who was the son of Ceawlin; Ceawlin was the son of Cynric, and Cynric of Cerdic.

((A.D. 688. This year King Caedwalla went to Rome, and received baptism of Pope Sergius, and he gave him the name of Peter, and in about seven days afterwards, on the twelfth before the kalends of May, while he was yet in his baptismal garments, he died: and he was buried in St. Peter's church. And Ina succeeded to the kingdom of the West-Saxons after him, and he reigned twenty-seven years.))

A.D. 690. This year Archbishop Theodore, who had been bishop twenty-two winters, departed this life, (22) and was buried within the city of Canterbury. Bertwald, who before this was abbot of Reculver, on the calends of July succeeded him in the see; which was ere this filled by Romish bishops, but henceforth with English. Then were there two kings in Kent, Wihtred and Webherd.

A.D. 693. This year was Bertwald consecrated archbishop by Godwin, bishop of the Gauls, on the fifth day before the nones of July; about which time died Gifmund, who was Bishop of Rochester; and Archbishop Bertwald consecrated Tobias in his stead. This year also Dryhtelm (23) retired from the world.

A.D. 694. This year the people of Kent covenanted with Ina, and gave him 30,000 pounds in friendship, because they had burned his brother Mull. Wihtred, who succeeded to the kingdom of Kent, and held it thirty-three winters, was the son of Egbert, Egbert of Erkenbert, Erkenbert of Eadbald, Eadbald of Ethelbert. And as soon as he was king, he ordained a great council to meet in the place that is called Bapchild; in which presided Wihtred, King of Kent, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Brihtwald, and Bishop Tobias of Rochester; and with him were collected abbots and abbesses, and many wise men, all to consult about the advantage of God's churches that are in Kent. Now began the king to speak, and said, "I will that all the minsters and the churches, that were given and bequeathed to the worship of God in the days of believing kings, my predecessors, and in the days of my relations of King Ethelbert and of those that followed him -- shall so remain to the worship of God, and stand fast for evermore. For I Wihtred, earthly king, urged on by the heavenly king, and with the spirit of righteousness annealed, have of our progenitors learned this, that no layman should have any right to possess himself of any church or of any of the things that belong to the church. And, therefore, strongly and truly, we set and decree, and in the name of Almighty God, and of all saints, we forbid all our succeeding kings, and aldermen, and all lawmen, ever, any lordship over churches, and over all their appurtenances, which I or my elders in old days have given for a perpetual inheritance to the glory of Christ and our Lady St. Mary, and the holy apostles. And look! when it happeneth, that bishop, or abbot, or abbess, depart from this life, be it told the archbishop, and with his counsel and injunction be chosen such as be worthy. And the life of him, that shall be chosen to so holy a thing, let the archbishop examine, and his cleanness; and in no wise be chosen any one, or to so holy a thing consecrated, without the archbishop's counsel. Kings shall appoint earls, and aldermen, sheriffs, and judges; but the archbishop shall consult and provide for God's flock: bishops, and abbots, and abbesses, and priests, and deacons, he shall choose and appoint; and also sanctify and confirm with good precepts and example, lest that any of God's flock go astray and perish --"

A.D. 697. This year the Southumbrians slew Ostritha, the queen of Ethelred, the sister of Everth.

A.D. 699. This year the Picts slew Alderman Burt.

A.D. 702. This year Kenred assumed the government of the Southumbrians.

A.D. 703. This year died Bishop Hedda, having held the see of Winchester twenty-seven winters.

A.D. 704. This year Ethelred, the son of Penda, King of Mercia, entered into a monastic life, having reigned twenty-nine winters; and Cenred succeeded to the government.

A.D. 705. This year died Ealdferth, king of the Northumbrians, on the nineteenth day before the calends of January, at Driffield; and was succeeded by his son Osred. Bishop Saxulf also died the same year.

A.D. 709. This year died Aldhelm, who was bishop by Westwood. The land of the West-Saxons was divided into two bishoprics in the first days of Bishop Daniel; who held one whilst Aldhelm held the other. Before this it was only one. Forthere succeeded to Aldhelm; and Ceolred succeeded to the kingdom of Mercia. And Cenred went to Rome; and Offa with him. And Cenred was there to the end of his life. The same year died Bishop Wilferth, at Oundle, but his body was carried to Ripon. He was the bishop whom King Everth compelled to go to Rome.

A.D. 710. This year Acca, priest of Wilferth, succeeded to the bishopric that Wilferth ere held; and Alderman Bertfrith fought with the Picts between Heugh and Carau. Ina also, and Nun his relative, fought with Grant, king of the Welsh; and the same year Hibbald was slain.

A.D. 714. This year died Guthlac the holy, and King Pepin.

A.D. 715. This year Ina and Ceolred fought at Wanborough; (24) and King Dagobert departed this life.

A.D. 716. This year Osred, king of the Northumbrians, was slain near the southern borders. He reigned eleven winters after Ealdferth. Cenred then succeeded to the government, and held it two years; then Osric, who held it eleven years. This same year died Ceolred, king of the Mercians. His body lies at Lichfield; but that of Ethelred, the son of Penda, at Bardney. Ethelbald then succeeded to the kingdom of Mercia, and held it one and forty winters. Ethelbald was the son of Alwy, Alwy of Eawa, Eawa of Webba, whose genealogy is already written. The venerable Egbert about this time converted the monks of Iona to the right faith, in the regulation of Easter, and the ecclesiastical tonsure.

A.D. 718. This year died Ingild, the brother of Ina. Cwenburga and Cuthburga were their sisters. Cuthburga reared the monastery of Wimburn; and, though given in marriage to Ealdferth, King of Northumberland, they parted during their lives.

A.D. 721. This year Bishop Daniel went to Rome; and the same year Ina slew Cynewulf, the etheling. This year also died the holy Bishop John; who was bishop thirty-three years, and eight months, and thirteen days. His body now resteth at Beverley.

A.D. 722. This year Queen Ethelburga destroyed Taunton, which Ina had formerly built; Ealdbert wandered a wretched exile in Surrey and Sussex; and Ina fought with the South-Saxons.

A.D. 725. This year died Wihtred, King of Kent, on the ninth day before the calends of May, after a reign of thirty-two winters. His pedigree is above; and he was succeeded by Eadbert. Ina this year also fought with the South-Saxons, and slew Ealdbert, the etheling, whom he had before driven into exile.

A.D. 727. This year died Tobias, Bishop of Rochester: and Archbishop Bertwald consecrated Aldulf bishop in his stead.

A.D. 728. This year (25) Ina went to Rome, and there gave up the ghost. He was succeeded in the kingdom of Wessex by Ethelhard his relative, who held it fourteen years; but he fought this same year with Oswald the etheling. Oswald was the son of Ethelbald, Ethelbald of Cynebald, Cynebald of Cuthwin, Cuthwin of Ceawlin.

ENDNOTES:

(22) He was a native of Tarsus in Cilicia, the birth-place of St. Paul. Back

(23) This brief notice of Dryhtelm, for so I find the name written in "Cotton Tiberius B iv." is totally unintelligible without a reference to Bede's "Ecclesiastical History", v. 12; where a curious account of him may be found, which is copied by Matthew of Westminster, anno. 699. Back

(24) Wothnesbeorhge, Ethelw.; Wonsdike, Malmsb.; Wonebirih, H. Hunt; Wodnesbeorh, Flor.; Wodnesbirch, M. West. There is no reason, therefore, to transfer the scene of action to Woodbridge, as some have supposed from an erroneous reading. Back

(25) The establishment of the "English school" at Rome is attributed to Ina; a full account of which, and of the origin of "Romescot" or "Peter-pence" for the support of it, may be seen in Matthew of Westminster. Back

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