From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Wermund runs to embrace his victorious son Offa. Illustration by the Danish Lorenz Frølich in a 19th-century book.

Wermund, Vermund[1] or Garmund is an ancestor of the Mercian royal family, a son of Wihtlaeg and father of Offa. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle makes him a grandson of Woden, but the Gesta Danorum written by Saxo Grammaticus goes no further than his father, while the Brevis Historia Regum Dacie of Sven Aggesen makes Wermund son of king Frothi hin Frokni.

According to the Gesta Danorum, his reign was long and happy, though its prosperity was eventually marred by the raids of a warlike king named Athislus, who slew Frowinus, the governor of Schleswig, in battle. Frowinus's death was avenged by his two sons, Keto and Wigo, but their conduct in fighting together against a single man was thought to constitute a national disgrace, which was only reconciled by the subsequent single combat of Offa.[2]

It has been suggested that Athislus, though called king of the Swedes by Saxo, was really identical with the Eadgils, king of the Myrgings, mentioned in Widsith,[citation needed] and Frowinus and Wigo are identified with the Freawine and Wig who figure among the ancestors of the kings of Wessex in the Anglo-Saxon royal genealogies. As Eadgils was a contemporary of Ermanaric, who died about 376, his date would agree with the indication given by the genealogies which place Wermund nine generations before Penda of Mercia.[2]

He is mentioned in lines 1958-1963 of the Anglo-Saxon epic Beowulf as Garmund the father of Offa of Angel and grandfather of Eomer.

...forþam Offa wæs
geofum and guðum gar-cene man,
wide geweorðod; wisdome heold
eðel sinne, þonon Eomær woc
hæleðum to helpe, Heminges mæg,
nefa Garmundes, niða cræftig.
...Hence Offa was praised
for his fighting and feeing by far-off men,
the spear-bold warrior; wisely he ruled
over his empire. Eomer woke to him,
help of heroes, Hemming's kinsman,
Grandson of Garmund, grim in war.(Gummere's translation)


  1. ^ Tom A Shippey; Andreas Haarder (1998). Beowulf: The Critical Heritage. Routledge. pp. 301–. ISBN 978-0-415-02970-4. Retrieved 6 December 2012.
  2. ^ a b  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Wermund". Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 28 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 523.

External links[edit]

Legendary titles
Preceded by King of the Angles Succeeded by
Preceded by King of Denmark Succeeded by