Ubba

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"Vbba", Ubba's name as it appears in Harley MS 2278, a fifteenth-century Middle English manuscript.[1]

Ubba, also known as Hubba, Ubbe, and Ubbi, was a mid-ninth-century Viking chieftain and one of the commanders of the Great Army. Although contemporary English sources tend to describe the army's men as Danes and heathens, there is evidence to suggest that a proportion of the force originated in Frisia, and one source describes Ubba himself as dux of the Frisians. In 865, the Great Army, apparently under the command of Ivar, overwintered in the East Anglia, before invading and destroying the Kingdom of the Northumbrians. In 869, having been bought off by the Mercians, the Vikings conquered the East Angles, and in the process killed their king, Edmund, a man who was later canonised a saint. Whilst near contemporary sources do not associate Ubba with the latter campaign, some later less reliable sources associate him with the king's martyrdom. Others associate Ubba, and Edmund's martyrdom, in traditions concerning the saga-character Ragnar Lothbrok.

After the fall of the East Anglian kingdom, leadership of the Great Army appears to have befallen to Halfdan, Ivar's brother. Thenceforth, the Vikings campaigned against the West Saxons, and destroyed the Kingdom of the Mercians. In 873, the Great Army split in two, with Halfdan campaigning in the north before settling his troops in Northumbria. The second half, which came to be commanded by Guthrum, continued to campaign against the West Saxons. In the winter of 877/878, Guthrum launched a lightning strike deep into Wessex. There is reason to suspect that Guthrum's attack was coordinated with another Viking force simultaneously campaigning in Devonshire. The commander of this latter force, according to a near contemporary source, was a brother of Ivar and Halfdan. Some later sources identify him as Ubba. The commander's identity aside, his defeat and death may well have contributed to the collapse of Guthrum's campaign. Within weeks, Guthrum was defeated by the resurging West Saxons. In consequence, Guthrum was baptised a Christian, settled his troops in East Anglia, and ruled as a Christian king until his death.

Arrival and origins of the Great Army[edit]

Excerpt from Harley MS 2278, a fifteenth-century manuscript of John Lydgate's fanciful account of saints Edmund and Fremund. The scene depicts Hyngwar and Vbba setting forth to avenge their father, Lothbrocus, murdered by Bern.[2]

In the mid-ninth-century, an invading army descended upon Anglo-Saxon England. The earliest version of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle,[3] a near contemporary source, first compiled in the late ninth-century,[4] calls the invading host "micel here",[5] an Old English term generally translated as "the Great Army".[6][note 1] The exact origins of this formidable force are obscure.[8] The aforesaid source usually identifies its members as Danes or heathens.[9] Although the tenth-century churchman Asser stated in Latin that the invaders came "de Danubia", which translates into English as "from the Danube",[10] the fact that the Danube is located in what was known in Latin as Dacia suggests that Asser may have actually intended Dania, a Latin term for Denmark.[11] The tenth-century chronicler Æthelweard (d. 998?), in his Chronicon Æthelweardi, reported that "the fleets of the tyrant Iguuar arrived in the land of the English from the north", which may evidence a Scandinavian origin.[12] With the turn of the mid-ninth century, one of the foremost Viking leaders in Britain and Ireland was Ivar,[13] the aforesaid "tyrant" of Æthelweard's account.[14][note 2]

Danish Vikings depicted in the twelfth-century MS M.736.

There is reason to suspect that Great Army was composed of Vikings already active in England,[16] as well as men directly from Scandinavia,[17] Ireland,[18] and the Continent.[19] Specifically, there is evidence to suggest that a proportion of the army originated in Frisia.[20] For example, the ninth-century[21] Annales Bertiniani records that Danish Vikings devastated Frisia in 851,[22] and the twelfth-century[23] Annales Lindisfarnenses et Dunelmenses states that a Viking force of Danes and Frisians made landfall on the Isle of Sheppey in 855.[24] The same source,[25] and the tenth- or eleventh-century[26] Historia de Sancto Cuthberto describe Ubba—who is associated with Ivar in other sources—as dux of the Frisians.[27][note 3] Furthermore, whilst the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle calls the Viking army mycel here, the Latin Historia de Sancto Cuthberto instead uses the term Scaldingi, possibly meaning "people from the River Scheldt".[30][note 4] This latter source, therefore, may be evidence that Ubba was from Walcheren, an island in the mouth of the Scheldt.[33] The island itself is known to have been occupied by Danish Vikings over two decades before, when the Frankish emperor, Lothair I (d. 855), granted the island to a certain Danish royal dynast named Harald, in 841.[34] If Ubba's troops were indeed stemmed from the Frisian settlement started by Harald over two decades before, many of Ubba's men may well have been born in Frisia.[33] In fact, the considerable time that members of the Great Army appear to have spent in Ireland and the Continent suggests that these men were well accustomed to Christian society,[35] which in turn may partly explain their achievements in England.[33]

The Great Army under Ivar[edit]

Excerpt from Harley MS 2278 depicting Hyngwar and Vbba ravaging the countryside.[36] Lydgate's imaginative hagiography presents supposed ninth-century events in a chivalric context.[37]

In the autumn of 865, the Anglo Saxon Chronicle indicates that the Great Army successfully invaded, and overwintered in the Kingdom of the East Anglians.[38] That winter the Vikings evidently gained valuable intelligence, and the following spring the same source reveals that they burst forth from East Anglia, on horses gained from the subordinated population, and struck deep into the Kingdom of the Northumbrians, a dominion suffering in the midst of a civil war between kings Ælla (d. 867) and Osberht (d. 867).[39]

Late in 866, the Vikings seized York,[40][note 5] a significant urban site that was one of only two Anglo-Saxon archdioceses, and one of the richest trading centres in Britain.[45] Although Ælla and Osberht responded by putting aside their differences and joining forces, the chronicle indicates that their attack on Viking-occupied York was an utter disaster in which they both lost their lives.[40] With collapse of the kingdom and the destruction of its regime, the twelfth-century[46] Historia Regum reveals that the Vikings installed Ecgberht (d. 873) as a Northumbrian puppet king.[47][note 6]

Before the end of 867, the chronicle reveals that the Great Army struck into Kingdom of the Mercians, after which the Vikings seized and overwintered at Nottingham.[48] Although the respective Mercian and West Saxon kings, Burhred (d. 874?) and Æthelred (d. 871), responded by joining forces and besieging the occupied town, both the chronicle[49] and Asser record that the multinational Anglo-Saxon force was unable to dislodge the army.[50] In fact, the chronicle reveals that it was only through a haggled truce that the Mercians were able to force the Vikings to withdrawal back to York.[51] Safe and secure in the occupied town, the Great Army licked its wounds, and renewed its strength for future forays.[45]

Martyrdom of Edmund[edit]

Edmund's martyrdom, depicted in the twelfth-century MS M.736.[note 7]

In 869, the Kingdom of the East Angles fell to the Great Army. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle's account of the conflict reveals that the Vikings took up winter quarters at Thetford, where they fought and destroyed the East Anglian army, and killed Edmund, the king.[53] Although the chronicle's account of the conflict suggests that Edmund was slain in battle,[54] and Asser certainly stated as much in his version of events,[55] later hagiographical works portray the king in an idealised light, and depict his death in the context of a peace-loving Christian monarch, who willingly suffered martyrdom after refusing to shed blood in defence of himself.[56] One such account is Passio Sancti Eadmundi, by the eleventh-century churchmen Abbo of Fleury. Despite its obvious hagiographic embellishments, this source appears to be the latest useful source concerning Edmund's demise,[57][note 8] and its claim that Edmund was captured and executed is plausible.[61] In regard to Ubba, Abbo's account states that Ivar left him in Northumbria before launching his assault upon the East Angles.[62][note 9] In contrast to this source, the early twelfth-century[64] F-version of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle specifically identifies Ivar and Ubba as the commanders of the king's killers.[65] Although this passage suggests that Ivar and Ubba campaigned against the East Angles together, this could merely be a mistake on the chronicler's part.[64] Whatever the case, later less reliable literature concerning Edmund's demise associate these two Vikings with the deed.[note 10]

The Great Army under Halfdan[edit]

After Edmund's death, and the destruction of his independent East Anglian kingdom, Ivar disappears from English sources altogether.[67] In the second half of 870, one of the commanders of the Great Army was apparently Ivar's brother, Halfdan, who led it against the Kingdom of the West Saxons.[67] Having established itself at Reading in 871, the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle reports that the army fought nine battles against the West Saxons.[68] The most important of these seems to have been an engagement early that year, somewhere on the Berkshire Downs at a place then known as Ashdown.[69] In fact, this particular conflict marks Halfdan's first appearance in documentary sources.[70] Despite the particular savagery attributed to these engagements by the chronicle, the actual battles seem to have been indecisive, and the Vikings appear to have been taken aback by the West Saxon's stiff resistance.[71] In consequence, the aforesaid source records that the Great Army accepted a truce from Alfred, the newly crowned West Saxon king.[68]

Upon the conclusion of the concord, the chronicle reports that the Vikings withdrew back to London and overwintered there.[72] At this point they may well have gained control of the town, since about a decade later, most versions of the chronicle appear to indicate that Alfred recovered London from Viking occupation.[73][note 11] In 873, certain versions of the chronicle reveal that the army marched north into Northumbria,[75] a relocation perhaps undertaken in the context of suppressing a revolt against their Norhumbrian puppet-king.[76][note 12] On the other hand, the relocation may have been part of a campaign in northern Merica,[79] as the chronicle indicates that the Vikings overwintered at Torksey, after which they forced Burhred from the Mercian throne, and installed a puppet-king in his place.[80]

In consequence of the Mercian kingdom's fall, the Great Army had secured a valuable land-route between East Anglia to Northumbria,[79] and only Wessex laid in the way of total Danish domination of Anglo-Saxon England.[81] At this point Historia Regum reports that the Great Army split in two, with Halfdan taking his troops northwards deep into Northumbria.[82] According to the chronicle, in the winter of 874/875, Halfdan based himself on the River Tyne, and waged war against the Picts and Strathclyde Britons.[83] This source appears to be partly corroborated by the Gaelic Annals of Ulster, an Irish source, which refers to a bloody encounter between the Picts and Dubgaill, in 875.[84][note 13] If the aforesaid Ímar of Irish sources is indeed identical to the Ivar of English sources, Halfdan's military actions in the north may have been conducted in conjunction with Ímar's previous northern campaigning.[86] Be that as it may, in 876 the chronicle indicates that Halfdan's army had dispersed, and that he allotted his men Northumbrian lands upon which they settled.[87]

Further campaigning under Guthrum[edit]

Whilst Halfdan consolidated control of Northumbria, the rest of the army under kings Guthrum, Oscetel, and Anwend[88]—men who may have linked up with the Great Army in 871[86]—headed southwards into East Anglia. In 875, the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle reveals that this army based itself at Cambridge, from where operations were directed at the West Saxons,[88] and the following year it is stated to have seized Wareham.[89][note 14] Although Alfred appeared to have gained another truce from the Vikings,[89] the chronicle shows that the Vikings deceived the West Saxons in 877, and made straight for Exeter. Unfortunately for Guthrum, an approaching Viking fleet with which he had apparently planned to link up with was destroyed by a storm, and the chronicle reports that he was forced to pull back into Mercia.[91][note 15]

A prehistoric barrow at Lanhill, near Chippenham, and Avebury. The tumulus was associated with Ubba by the seventeenth-century antiquary John Aubrey (d. 1697).[note 16]

Although the chronicle states that much of the Guthrum's army started to settle down,[97] in a region later known as the Five Boroughs,[98][note 17] the chronicle[100] and Asser indicate that Guthrum soon launched a surprise attack against the West Saxons in the winter of 877/878. Setting off from their base in Gloucester, these sources reveal that the Vikings drove deep into Wessex, where they sacked the royal vill of Chippenham.[101][note 18] In fact, there reason to suspect that this operation was carefully coordinated with another recorded in 878.[104]

Arx Cynuit, and the brother of Ivar and Halfdan[edit]

Wind Hill, near Countisbury, possibly the site of a disastrous Viking defeat at the hands of local Devonmen in 878.[105] Some medieval sources claim that Ubba led of the vanquished army, and that he was amongst those slain.

Most versions of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle locate the battle to Devonshire,[106][note 19] and Asser specified that it was fought at a certain fortress called Arx Cynuit,[108] a name which appears to equate to what is today Countisbury, in North Devon.[109][note 20] Asser's account further reveals that this Viking force made landfall in Devonshire from a base in Dyfed, where it had previously overwintered.[111] In fact, the Viking force may have originated in Ireland, from where it descended upon Dyfed and Devonshire.[112]

Without identifying the army's commander by name, the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle describes him as a brother of Ivar and Halfdan, stating that this unnamed Viking was slain in the encounter.[113] Although Ubba was identified as the slain commander by the twelfth-century chronicler Geoffrey Gaimar, in his Anglo-Norman Estoire des Engleis,[114] it is unknown whether this was an inference on Gaimar's part or if he merely followed a now lost source before him.[115][note 21] In fact, it is possible that Gaimar's identification was influenced by the earlier association of Ivar and Ubba in the legends surrounding Edmund's martyrdom.[117] Gaimar further specified that Ubba was slain at "bois de Pene" in Devonshire, and that he was buried by his men in a mound called "Ubbelawe", a word meaning "Ubba's Barrow".[118][note 22]

The battle itself was a West Saxon victory,[123] and Æthelweard reveals that victorious commander was Odda, a Devonshire ealdorman.[124] The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle numbers the Viking fleet at twenty-three ships,[125] and most versions number the Viking casualties at eight hundred and forty fatalities.[126][note 23] It is possible that the Viking commander at Arx Cynuit undertook his operation in the context of sheer opportunism, seizing upon Guthrum's simultaneous campaigning to launch a Viking foray of his own upon the West Saxons.[132] On the other hand, the location and timing of the engagement at Arx Cynuit may be evidence that the slain commander was instead campaigning in coordination with Guthrum. In fact, the two Viking armies appear to have coordinated their efforts in an attempt to corner Alfred in a two-pronged pincer movement after his withdrawal into the wetlands of Somersetshire.[104] If Vikings at Arx Cynuit were indeed working in cooperation with those at Chippenham, their previous actions in Dyfed may have been related to Guthrum's campaign against Alfred as well.[133][note 24] Unfortunately for the Guthrum, however, the destruction of his counterpart's army at Arx Cynuit may have left him overextended, and appears to have allowed Alfred's forces to assail the Great Army's exposed lines of communication.[134]

Although Alfred's position was still perilous, with his contracted kingdom teetering on the edge of total collapse,[98] the events at Arx Cynuit foreshadowed a turn of events. Only a few weeks later in May, the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle reveals that Alfred was able to assemble his troops at Athelney, and launch a successful surprise attack against Guthrum at Edington.[135] Following Guthrum's crushing defeat, Alfred forced the latter to accept peace under West Saxon terms. In consequence, the Viking king was baptised a Christian, and led the remainder of his forces into East Anglia where they dispersed and settled.[136] From this time onwards, Guthrum kept peace with the West Saxons, and ruled as a Christian king for more than a decade until his death in 890.[137]

Later Lothbrok-lore[edit]

Excerpt from Harley MS 2278, folio 39r, depicting Lothbrocus and his sons, Hyngwar and Vbba.[138]

Although Ubba and Ivar were associated with each other by Abbo and the eleventh-century churchman Ælfric of Eynsham (d. c. 1010), the hagiographies composed by these two churchmen do not record that Ubba and Ivar were related in any way.[139] The first source to claim kinship between the two is the Annals of St Neots,[140] an eleventh- or twelfth-century source,[141] which asserts in Latin that they were siblings of the three daughters of a certain Lodebrochus. The particular passage in question concerns battle-spoils won by the English at the conflict which Asser located at Arx Cynuit. One plundered item singled-out by the Annals of St Neots is a magical banner named "Reafan", stated to have been woven by Lodebrochus' aforesaid three daughters.[142] Although certain versions of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle note the capture of a raven banner, they do not mention any magical attributes, or note Lodebrochus and his progeny.[143][note 25] In fact, the source from which the author of the Annals of St Neots drew these fantastical details is unknown,[144] and the accounts of Asser and Æthelweard make no note of the banner whatsoever.[145]

Lodebrochus appears to be an early reference to Ragnar Lothbrok,[146] a saga-character of dubious historicity, who may be an amalgam of several historical ninth-century figures.[147][note 26] According to Scandinavian sources, Ragnar was a Scandinavian of royal stock, whose death at the hands of Ælla in Northumbria was the catalyst for the invasion of Anglo-Saxon England by the former's vengeful sons, resulting in the death of Ælla at their hands.[152] The only Scandinavian source of Lothbrok-lore that notes Ubba is the Latin Gesta Danorum, composed by Saxo Grammaticus.[153] In this source, Ubba's parents are Regnerus and an unnamed daughter of a certain Hesbernus.[154][note 27] According to thirteenth- or fourteenth-century Ragnarssona þáttr,[157] an important source for Lothbrok-lore, Ivar had two bastard sons, Yngvar and Husto, who tortured Edmund as per Ivar's instructions.[158] In fact, no other source mentions these supposed sons,[159] and they appear to be replications of Ivar and Ubba instead. Some of the confusion may have resulted from the inability of the þáttr's compiler to recognise Ivar's name in sources concerning Edmund.[160][note 28] In regard to Husto, the Old Norse name accorded him in the þáttr is Hústó, a name that appears to stem from the compiler's misreading of a source before him.[162] For example, two letter 'b's could have appeared to be an 's' and 't' to the compiler, and an 'e' could have been mistaken for an 'o'.[163] As for Yngvar and Husto, the base-birth accorded to them suits the cruelty that they inflicted upon Edmund in the tale.[161]

Whilst medieval Scandinavians sources tend to locate tales of Ragnar in a Northumbrian context, medieval English sources tend to place them in an East Anglian context.[164] The first author to associate Lothbrok-lore with East Anglia was Geoffrey of Wells, in his De Infantia Sancti Eadmundi, a Latin account that explains political events through personal motives.[165] In this source, "Lodebrok" is extremely envious of Edmund's fame, and taunts his own sons—Ivar, Ubba, and Wern—for not having achieved as much as Edmund, provoking the three to slay Edmund and destroy his kingdom. At one point, this account ascribes Ubba diabolical powers enabling him to gain victory in battle.[166] By the thirteenth-century, an alternate rendition appears on record. For example, in the version of events of the thirteenth-century churchman Roger of Wendover (d. 1236), in his Latin Flores Historiarum, "Lothbrocus" washes ashore in East Anglia, where he is honourably received by Edmund. The former is then murdered by Bern, an envious huntsman. After Bern is duly expelled for his crime, he convinces Lothbrocus' sons—Ivar and Ubba—that it was Edmund who murdered their father, causing them launch an invasion and destroy Edmund.[167] The theme of revenge in Roger's account appears to have been borrowed from the Lothbrok-lore concerning the killing of Ælla.[168]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ The earliest form of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle is the A-version. The Old English term mycel hæðen here, meaning "great heathen raiding-army", is accorded to the army in later versions (B, C, D, and E).[7]
  2. ^ Later in the thirteenth- and fourteenth-centuries, Ivar came to be remembered in Scandinavian tradition as 'Ivar the Boneless'.[15]
  3. ^ Annales Bertinian is a West Frankish source.[21] At least one of the scribes who wrote Annales Lindisfarnenses et Dunelmenses was Symeon of Durham.[28] Historia de Sancto Cuthberto was composed in northern Anglo-Saxon England.[29]
  4. ^ Elsewhere in Historia de Sancto Cuthberto, the term Scald is used to refer to the same river.[31] Other possible meanings of Scaldingi include "shieldmen", "descendant of Scyld", and "men of the punted ship".[32]
  5. ^ The taking of York is dated to 1 November, the Feast of All Saints, by Libellus de exordio atque procursu istius hoc est Dunhelmensis ecclesie,[41] a twelfth-century source often attributed to the churchman Symeon of Durham (d. c. 1128),[42] and the thirteenth-century Flores Historiarum, by the churchman Roger of Wendover (d. 1236).[43] Attacking a populated site on a feast day was a noted tactic of the Vikings. Such celebrations offered attackers easy access to potential captives who could be ransomed or sold into slavery.[44]
  6. ^ Although one manuscript of Historia Regum attributes its composition to Symeon, this identification is debatable.[46]
  7. ^ This miniature is one of several in the manuscript's illuminated copy of Abbo's Passio Sancti Eadmundi. The manuscript is held in Pierpont Morgan Library, New York.[52]
  8. ^ Abbo's account likens Edmund to Jesus Christ and St Sebastian. Specifically, Edmund is mocked and scourged like Christ, and later tied to a tree and shot like St Sebastian.[58] Not long after Abbo wrote Passio Sancti Eadmundi, the eleventh-century churchman Ælfric of Eynsham (d. c. 1010) composed an adapted form of it. Ælfric's version, however, does not offer any further historical details concerning Edmund's demise.[59] Abbo wrote his account at least one hundred sixteen years after Edmund's death. Abbo claimed that his account—except for the final miracle—was derived from a tale that he had heard told by the elderly Dunstan, Archbishop of Canterbury (d. 988) tell the tale. According to Abbo, Dunstan had heard this tale told, as a young man, from a very old man who claimed to have once been Edmund's armour-bearer.[60]
  9. ^ Abbo's account makes no mention of the Vikings' actions in East Anglia in 865, and implies erroneously that they arrived in Northumbria by sea.[63]
  10. ^ One such example is Estoire des Engleis, by the twelfth-century chronicler Geoffrey Gaimar. In this work, Gaimar identifies Ivar and Ubba as prominent Viking commanders, stating that after the defeat of Edmund and fall of his kingdom, Ivar and Ubba cruelly put the king to death.[66]
  11. ^ Only the A-version of this source fails to refer to this event.[74]
  12. ^ This move into Northumbria is omitted in the D- and E-versions of the chronicle,[77] and is not mentioned by Æthelweard.[78]
  13. ^ The Gaelic words Finngaill and Dubgaill translate as "Fair Foreigners" and "Dark Foreigners". Although these terms were used to differentiate different groups of Vikings in Gaelic sources, it is uncertain whether the words referred to specific ethnicities or different factions.[85]
  14. ^ Oscetel and Anwend are last recorded in 875. It is unknown if they were killed or if they left Guthrum's army.[90]
  15. ^ This fleet may be identical to the Viking force that Æthelweard alluded to when noting Guthrum's actions at Cambridge and Wareham, in the previous year.[92]
  16. ^ Aubrey, in his seventeenth-century Monumenta Britannica, called the site "Hubbaslow", and stated that it was the site "where they say that one Hubba lies buried". Aubrey appears to have assumed that Ubba was slain at the battle of Chippenham. Aubrey himself seems to have been the earliest source to associate Ubba with the site.[93] It is sometimes claimed that the village of Hubberston in Pembrokeshire is named after Ubba, and that he overwintered in nearby Milford Haven. In fact, there is no evidence for this assertion,[94] and the name itself does not have Scandinavian roots.[95] It was first recorded in the thirteenth-century as Hobertiston and Villa Huberti, meaning "Hubert's Farm" and "Hubert's manor" respectively,[96] and has only been known as Huberston since the late fifteenth-century.[94]
  17. ^ This Scandinavian settlement consisted of Derby, Leicester, Lincoln, Nottingham, and Stamford. The region is first named in the tenth century.[99]
  18. ^ A vill was an administration unit, roughly equating to a modern parish.[102] Chippenham appears to have been a significant settlement during the period, and may well have been a seat of the West Saxon kings.[103]
  19. ^ The B- and C-versions of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle do not locate the conflict to any specific place.[107]
  20. ^ Over the years, other locations have been suggested. Once such location is near Appledore, where it was claimed that a mound called Ubbaston or Whibblestan existed before being lost to the tide.[110]
  21. ^ Gaimar based much of his Estoire des Engleis off the Anglo-Saxon Chroncle.[116]
  22. ^ A twelfth-century Latin passage in Pembroke College MS. 82 states that Ubba was slain at Ubbelaw in Yorkshire.[119] This source relates that a brother of Ubba destroyed a church at Sheppey, and was miraculously killed in an act of divine retribution, as he was swallowed alive by the ground at Frindsbury, near Rochester.[120] According to the late-fourteenth- or early-thirteenth-century[121] Liber Monasterii de Hyda, Ubba met his end the same way.[122]
  23. ^ The B- and C-versions of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle state that the Vikings suffered eight hundred and sixty dead.[127] All versions of this source number the Viking casualties in a peculiar manner, stating that eight hundred "men with him" and a further forty (or sixty) "men of his army" fell.[128] In fact, the Old English heres, generally taken to mean "army" in this passage, may actually be an error for hīredes, a term for a personal retinue particularly attached to its leader.[129] Asser numbered the Viking dead at one thousand two hundred.[130] Æthelweard, on the other-hand, gave eight hundred, and numbered the fleet at thirty ships. Unlike other sources, Æthelweard wrote that the Vikings were victorious.[131]
  24. ^ The King of Dyfed at this time was Hyfaidd ab Bleddri, a man who was an ally of Alfred by 885.[133]
  25. ^ The raven banner is noted in the B-, C-, D-, and E-versions of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, but not in A- and F-versions.[143]
  26. ^ It wasn't until the early-twelfth century, in Ari Þorgilsson's Íslendingabók, that forms of the names Ragnar and Lothbrok were used in conjunction for this character.[148] One possible historical figure from which the literary-character may have been drawn from is Reginheri, a Viking leader who raided Paris in 845.[149] In fact, there is reason to suspect that Ragnar's Old Norse epithet loðbrók, usually translated as "hairy breeches",[150] may actually mask the feminine personal name Loðbróka, and thus a feminine historical personage.[151]
  27. ^ At one point in this account, Hesbernus encourages Ubba to revolt against Regnerus before the latter slays Hesbernus, overcomes the rebels, and makes peace with Ubba.[155] A namesake of Ubba in Gesta Danorum is a particular hero of the legendary Battle of Bråvalla, identified as a Frisian.[156]
  28. ^ The Old Norse forms of Yngvar and Ivar's names are Yngvarr and Ívarr. The former is an older form of the latter.[161]

Citations[edit]

  1. ^ Hervey 1907 p. 458; Harley MS 2278.
  2. ^ Hervey 1907 pp. 453–457; Harley MS 2278.
  3. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 64, 64 n. 16; Thorpe 1861a p. 130 (§ 866).
  4. ^ Whitelock 1969 p. 217.
  5. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 64, 64 n. 16; Earle; Plummer 1892 pp. 68–69 (§ 866); Thorpe 1861a p. 130 (§ 866).
  6. ^ Downham 2013a pp. 13–14; McLeod 2013 p. 64.
  7. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 64.
  8. ^ Downham 2013a p. 13.
  9. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 64; Woolf 2007 p. 71.
  10. ^ Downham 2013a p. 13; Downham 2013b p. 53; Downham 2007 p. 64; Conybeare 1914 p. 98 (§ 24); Cook 1906 p. 13 (§ 21); Giles 1906 p. 50; Stevenson 1904 pp. 18–19 (§ 21); Stevenson 1854 p. 449.
  11. ^ Downham 2013a p. 13; Downham 2013b p. 53; Downham 2007 p. 64.
  12. ^ Downham 2013a p. 13, 13 n. 23; Downham 2007 p. 64; Conybeare 1914 p. 156 (§ 1); Giles 1906 p. 25; Stevenson 1854 p. 427 (§ 866).
  13. ^ Downham 2007 pp. 64–65; Woolf 2007 pp. 71–73.
  14. ^ Woolf 2007 p. 73.
  15. ^ Downham 2007 pp. 6, 15; Woolf 2004 p. 95.
  16. ^ Downham 2007 pp. 63–65.
  17. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 76; Keynes 2001 p. 54.
  18. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 76, 76 n. 67; Downham 2007 pp. 64–65; Woolf 2007 p. 71; Keynes 2001 p. 54.
  19. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 76, 76 n. 67; Downham 2007 pp. 64–65; Keynes 2001 p. 54.
  20. ^ McLeod 2013 p. 84; Woolf 2007 pp. 71–72; Woolf 2004 p. 95; Bremmer 1981.
  21. ^ a b Rech 2014.
  22. ^ Woolf 2007 pp. 71–72; Nelson 1991 p. 73; Waitz 1883 p. 41.
  23. ^ Woolf 2007 p. 259; Stancliffe 2002 pp. 28–29.
  24. ^ van Houts 1984 p. 116; Bremmer 1981 pp. 75–76; Whitelock 1969 pp. 223 n. 25, 227; Pertz 1866 p. 506.
  25. ^ Davidson 1998 p. 156 n. 38 (vol. 2); van Houts 1984 p. 116; Bremmer 1981 p. 76; Whitelock 1969 pp. 223 n. 25, 227; Pertz 1866 p. 506.
  26. ^ Woolf 2007 p. 359; South 2002 p. 2.
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  36. ^ Harley MS 2278.
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  105. ^ MDE1236 - Countisbury Castle...; Countisbury circular walk....
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  160. ^ Waggoner 2009 p. 111 n. 14; Halldórsson 2000 pp. 58–59; Smith 1928–1936 p. 230; Mawer 1908–1909 p. 84.
  161. ^ a b Ashman Rowe 2009 p. 355.
  162. ^ Ashman Rowe 2009 p. 355 n. 9; Waggoner 2009 p. 111 n. 14; Mawer 1908–1909 p. 84.
  163. ^ Ashman Rowe 2009 p. 355 n. 9.
  164. ^ Whitelock 1969 pp. 225–226.
  165. ^ Frantzen 2004 p. 64; Davidson 1998 p. 156 n. 38 (vol. 2); Whitelock 1969 p. 228.
  166. ^ Frantzen 2004 p. 64; Whitelock 1969 p. 228; Hervey 1907 pp. 134–161; Arnold 1890 pp. 93–103.
  167. ^ Whitelock 1969 pp. 229–230; Hervey 1907 pp. 168–199; Coxe 1841 pp. 303–315; Giles 1841 pp. 193–201.
  168. ^ Whitelock 1969 p. 229.

References[edit]

Primary sources
Secondary sources