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165 [164]

King Ethelbald. Danes King Ethelbald. Danes.

ously persecuted the innocent Christians: iniuriously possessed their land and habitatiō: chasing the inhabitaūtes out of huose and countrey: besides the violent murther of the Monkes of Bangor, and diuers foule slaughters agaynst the poore Britaines, who sent for them to be their helpers. Wherfore, Gods iust recompence fallyng vpon them, from that tyme neuer suffered them to be quiet from foreine enemyes, till the commyng of William the Normand &c.

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MarginaliaThe first entryng of the Danes.Moreouer concernyng the outward occasions geuen of the Englishmens partes, mouing the Danes first to inuade the Realme, I finde in certaine stories two, most especially assigned. The one iniustly geuen and iustly takē. The other not geuen iustly, and vniustly taken. Of the whiche two, the first was geuen in Northumberland, by meanes of Osbryght reignyng vnder kyng of Weastsaxons, in the North partes. This Osbryght, vpon a tyme, iorneyng by the way, turned into the house of one of his nobles called Bruer. MarginaliaEx historia Iornalensi.
Example, what mischief cōmeth by adultery.
Who hauyng at home a wife of great beautie (he beyng absent abroad) the kyng after his dinner, (allured with the excellencie of her beautie) tooke her to a secret chamber, where hee forceably contrary to her will did rauishe her. Whereupon she beyng greatly dismayde, and vexed in her mynde, made her mone to her husband returnyng, of this violence and iniury receaued. Bruer consultyng with his frendes, first went to the kyng, resignyng to his handes all such seruice and possessions, which he did hold of him. That done tooke shippyng and sayled into Denmarke, where he had great frendes: and had his bryngyng vp before. MarginaliaCodrinus king of Dēmarke.There makyng his mone to Codrinus the kyng, desired his ayde in reuengyng of the great vilany of Osbryght against him & his wife. Codrinus hearyng this, and glad to haue some iust quarell to enter that land: leuied an army with all speede: & preparyng all thynges necessary for the same, sendeth forth MarginaliaInguar and Hubba captaines of the Danes.Inguar, and Hubba two brethrē, his chief Captaines, with an innumerable multitude of Danes into England. Who first arriuyng at Holdernesse there brent vp the countrey, & killed without mercy both men, women and childrē, whom they could lay handes vpō. Then marchyng toward Yorke, entred their battaile, with the foresayd Osbryght, where he with the most part of his army was slayne. And so the Danes entred the possession of the Cittie of Yorke. MarginaliaAn other cause of the commyng of the Danes.Some other say (and is by the most part of story writers recorded) that the chief cause of the commyng of Inguar and Hubba with the Danes, was to reuenge kyng Edmund reignyng vnder the Weastsaxōs ouer the Eastangles in Northfolke and Southfolke: for the murderyng of a certaine Dane beyng father to Inguar and Hubba, which was falsely imputed to kyng Edmund. The story is thus told.

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MarginaliaLothbroke father to Inguar and Hubba.A certaine nobleman of the Danes, of the kings stocke, called Lothebrocus, father to Inguar and Hubba, entring vpon a tyme with his Hauke into a certaine schaffe or cockbote alone: by chaunce through tempest was driuen with his Hauke to the coast of Northfolke named Rodhā, where he beyng found and deteined was presented vnto the kyng. The kyng vnderstandyng his parētage, and seyng his case: enterteined him in his Court accordingly. And euery day more and more perceauyng his actiuities, and great dexteritie in huntyng & haukyng, bare speciall fauour vnto him. MarginaliaWhat miserable enuy worketh.In so much that the kynges faukner, or master of game, bearyng priuye enuy agaynst him, secretly as they were hūtyng together in a woode, did murther him, & threw him in a bush. Thus Lothebroke beyng murdered, within two or three dayes began to be missed in the kynges house: of whō no tydinges could be hard, but onely by a dogge or spaniell of his, which continuing in the woode with the corps of his master, at sondry tymes came and fawned vpon the king: MarginaliaMurther will out.so long that at length they folowyng the trase of the hoūde, were brought to the place where Lothebroke lay. Whereupon inquisition made, at length by certaine circumstaunces of wordes and other euidences, it was knowen how and by whom he was murthered, that was, by the kyngs huntesman named Berike. Who thereupon beyng conuicted, was set into the same bote of Lothebroke alone, and without any takelyng: to driue by Seas, either to be saued by the weather or to be drowned in the deepe. And as it chaūced Lothebroke from Dennemarke to be driuen to Northfolke, so it happened that from Northfolke he was cast into Dennemarke. Where the bote of Lothebroke beyng well knowen, handes were layd vpon him, and inquisitiō made of the partie. In fine, in his tormentes, to saue him selfe, he vttered an vntruth of kyng Edmūd, saying: that the kyng had put him to death in the countrey of Northfolke. Wherupon grudge first was cōceiued, then an armey appointed, & a great multitude sent into England, to reuenge that fact: where first they arriuyng in Northumberland, destroyed (as is sayd) those parties first. From thence sayling into Northfolkethey exercised the like tyranny there, vpon the inhabitaunts therof: especially vpon the innocēt Prince, and blessed martyr of God, kyng Edmund. Cōcernyng the farther declaration wherof, hereafter shall folow (Christ our Lord, so permittyng) more to be spoken, as place & obseruation of tyme and yeares, shall require.

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MarginaliaK. Ethelwulphe deceaseth.In the meane season, kyng Ethelwulphe in this chapiter here presently touched, whē he had chased the foresayd Danes (as is aboue rehearsed) from place to place: causing thē to take the Sea, he in the meane while departeth hym selfe both from land and life: leauyng behynd him foure sonnes, whiche reigned euery one in his order after the decease of their father. The names of whō, were Ethelbaldus, Ethelbrightus, Ethelredus, and Aluredus.

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¶ Kyng Ethelbalde.

MarginaliaAn. 857.
Kyng Ethelbald.
K. Ethelbright.
KYng Ethelbald þe eldest sonne of Ethelwulfe, succedyng his father in the prouince of Westsaxe: & Ethelbright in the prouince of Kent: reigned both together þe terme of. v. yeares, one with the other. Of the which two, Ethelbald the first left this infamie behynd him in stories, for marying and lying with his stepmother, wife to his owne father, named Iudith. After these two succeeded Ethelred the iij. sonne, MarginaliaAn. 867.
Kyng Etheldred.
Yorke burned by the Danes.
whom in his tyme was so encombred with the Danes, brustyng in on euery side: especially about Yorke (which Citie they then spoyled and brent vp) that he in one yeare stode in ix. battailes agaynst thē, with the helpe of Alured his brother. In the begynnyng of this kynges reigne, the Danes landed in East England, or Northfolke and Southfolke. But (as Fabian writeth) they were compelled to forsake that countrey, & so tooke agayne shypping, and sayled Northward, and landed in Northumberland: where they were met of the Kynges then there reignyng, called Osbright and Ella, which gaue to them a strōg fight. But that notwithstandyng, the Danes, with helpe of such as inhabited the countrey: wanne the Citie of Yorke, and held it a certaine season as is aboue foretouched.

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In the reigne of this Ethelred, the Northumberlanders rebellyng agaynst the kyng, thought to recouer agayn the former state of their kyngdome out of the Westsaxons hand: MarginaliaWhat discorde doth in a commō wealth.by reason of which discorde (as happeneth in all lādes where dissention is) the strength of the Englishe nation was thereby not a litle weakened, and the Danes the more thereby preuayled.

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MarginaliaAn. 870.About the latter tyme of the reigne of this Etheldred, which was about the yeare of our Lord. 870: certaine of the foresayd Danes being thus possessed of the North coūtrey: after their cruell persecution and murther done there, (as partly is touched before) tooke shippyng from thēce intendyng to sayle toward the Eastangles: Who by the way, vpō the Sea met with a flote of Danes, wherof the Captaines or leaders were named Inguar, and Hubba. Who ioyning altogether in one counsaile, made all one course, & lastly landed in East Englād or Northfolke, and in processe of tyme came to Thetford. Therof hearyng Edmund, then vnder Kyng of that prouince: assembled an host, that gaue to them battaile. MarginaliaS. Edmūd kyng of Eastangles.But Edmund and his company was forced to forsake the field, and the kyng with a few persons fled vnto the castle of Framinghā, whom the Danes pursued. But he in short while after, yelded him selfe to the persecution of the Danes: aunsweryng in this maner to the messēger, that told him in the name of Inguar Prince of the Danes: which most victoriously (sayth he) was come with innumerable legions, subduyng both by Sea and land many natiōs vnto him: MarginaliaThe message of the Danes to K. Edmund.and so now arriued in those partes, requireth him likewise to submit him selfe, yelding to him his hid treasures, and such other goodes of his auncetors, and so to reigne vnder him. Which thing if he would not do, he should (said he) be iudged vnworthy both of life and reigne. Edmūd hearing this proude message of the Pagane, consulted with certaine of his frendes: And amongest other, with one of his Byshops, beyng thē his Secretary, who seyng the present daunger of the Kyng, gaue him counsell to yeld to the conditions. Vpon this the kyng pausing a litle with hym selfe, at length rendred this aunswere: Bidding the messenger go tell his Lord in these wordes: MarginaliaThe aunswere of kyng Edmund.That Edmūd a Christian Kyng for the loue of temporall lyfe, will not submitte him selfe to a Pagane Duke, vnlesse he before, would be a Christian. Incontinent vpon the same, the wicked & crafty Dane approchyng in most hasty speede vpon the Kyng, encountred with him in battaile (as some say) at Thetford: where the kyng being put to the worse, and pitieng the terrible slaughter of his men: thinkyng with him selfe rather to submitte his owne person to daunger, then his people should be slayne, did flye (as Fabian sayth) to the castle of Framingham: or (as my author writeth) to Halesdon, now

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