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159 [136]

Eng. 5. tymes plagued by straunge nations. King Ethelwulphus. Ludouicus Pius. Fredericke.

return again into the land Westward, MarginaliaAnno. 834. Fabian. cap. 158. Rog. Houed. Lib. 5. cap. 1. where ioining with the Britaines, by the helpe and power of them, they assayled the landes of Egbert, & did much harme in many places of his dominion, and els where, so that after this day, they were continually abiding in one place of the realme of england or other, till the time of Hardeknutus, last king of the Danes bloud, so that many of them were maried to English women, and many that now be, or in times past were called Englishmen, are descended of them. And albeit that they were many and sundry times driuen out of the land, & chased from one countrey to an other, yet that notwithstāding, they euer gathered new strengthes and power, that they abode still within the land.

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MarginaliaEngland fiue tym s plagued by other natiōs. And thus (as by the storyes appeareth) this troublesome land of Britaine, now called England, hath bene hetherto by v. sundry outward nations plagued. First, by the Romains, then by the Scots & Pictes, 3. by the Saxons, 4. by the Danes, of whose outragious cruelty & hostilitie, our English histories do most exclayme & complayne: fiftly by the Normanes, which I pray God be the last. MarginaliaEx Rog. Houed. Lib. 5.

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Thē it followeth in the story, that the time of this persecution of the foresayd Paganes and Danes continuing, king Egbert when he had ruled the Westsaxons, and ouer the more part of England, by the terme of xxxvij. yeares, dyed, and was buried at winchester, leauing to his sonne Ethelwolfe his kingdome, which first was Byshoppe of Winchester (as Houeden recordeth) and after vpon necessity made king, leauing withal and pronouncing this saying to his sonne: Fœlicem fore, si regnum, quod multa rexerat industria, ille consueta genti illi non interrumperet ignauia.

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King Athelwolfus.

MarginaliaAnno. 837. AThelwulfus, the sonne of Egbert, in his former age had entred into the order of Subdeacon, and as some other say was made Byshop of Winchester. But afterward being the onely sonne of Egbert was made king through the dispensation (as Fabian sayth) of Pope Paschalis, but that can not be: MarginaliaA place in Fabian to be amended. for Paschalis then was not Byshopp: so that by the computation of tyme, it should rather seeme to be Gregory the 4. MarginaliaGuliel. Lib, de gestis pont. Anglor. sayth this Pope was Leo iiij. This Athelwulfe (as being himself once nuseled in that order) was alwayes good and deuoute to holye Church and religious orders. In so much that he gaue to them the tythe of all his goodes and landes in Westsaxons, with liberty and freedome from all seruage and ciuil charges. Whereof, his charte instrument beareth testimony after this tenour proceeding: much like to the donation of Ethelbaldus king of Mercians, aboue mentioned.

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The Priuiledges and donations geuen by king Ethelwulfus to the Clergie.

REgnante Domino nostro imperpetuum. 

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Charter of Ethelwolf
Foxe text Latin

REgnante Domino nostro imperpetuū ... aliqua parte leigamus. &c.

Cattley-Pratt, Vol. II, page 15 has in addition to the Foxe text

Placuit autem episcopis ecclesiæ Scireburnensis Alstano, et Winton Switheno, cum suis abbatibus et Dei servis, viris scilicet et fœminis religiosis quibus supradicta collata sunt beneficia, consilia inire, ut omnes fratres et sorores omni hebdomada, die Mercurii, hoc est Wednesday, in unaquaque ecclesia cantent psalmos 50 et unusquisqu presbyter duas missas, unam pro rege, et aliam pro ducibus ejus in hunc modum consentientibus, pro salute et refrigerio delictorum suorum. Postquam autem defuncti fuerimus, pro rege defuncto singulariter, et pro ducibus communiter. Et hoc sit firmiter constitutum omnibus diebus Christianitatis, sicut libertas constituta est, quamdiu fides crescit in gente Anglorum. Scripta est autem hæc donationis charta, anno gratiæ 855 indictione quarta quinto nonas Noveb. in urbe Wentana ante majus altare beati Petri apostoli.

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[Ex Flor. Hist. (Lond. 1570, p. 307; Francof. 1601, p. 158. The Latin in the text is according to the printed copies, from which Foxe a little varies.]


John Wade, University of Sheffield

Our Lord Jesus Christ ruling for ever, in our times through the fires of wars, and the plunderings of our wealth, and also the most cruel depredations of barbarous enemies causing devastation, and the multiple tribulations of pagan nations afflicting us for our sins to our utter destruction, we see dangerous times pressing upon us. Therefore, I Ethelwulf, king of the West Saxons, together with the council of my bishops and chieftains, have affirmed a sound plan and uniform remedy: to grant some portion of my land to be held in everlasting right by God and the Blessed Mary and all the saints, namely a tenth part of my land, that it may be safe from burdens and free from all secular services, including greater and smaller royal payments, or taxes, which we call Witteredden: and may be free of all matters, for the remission of souls and my sins, to the service of God alone, without a campaign, the construction of a bridge, and the fortification of a citadel, so that they may the more diligently utter prayers without ceasing for us to God, by which we may in some way lighten their service. Moreover, it has pleased the bishops of the church, Alstan of Sherborne and Swithen of Winchester, with their abbots and servants of God, namely the religious men and women upon whom the above named benefits have been conferred, to devise plans, so that all the brothers and sisters each week on the day of Mercury, that is Wednesday, in each and every church should sing 50 psalms and each priest two masses, one for the king and the other for his leaders agreeing on this manner, for the salvation and consolation of their transgressions and, after we have died, individually for the dead king, and all together for the leaders. And let this be firmly established for all the days of Christianity, just as liberty has been established, for as long as the faith increases in the nation of the English. This charter of gift is written in the year of grace 855, in the fourth indiction, on the 1st November in the city of Winchester in front of the high altar of St Peter the Apostle.

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Dum in nostris temporibus per bellorum incendia, & direptiones opum nostrarum, nec non & vastantium crudelissimas depredationes hostiū, barbarum, paganarumq; gentium, multiplices tribulationes ad affligendum vsque ad internecionem, tempora cernimus incumbere periculosa. Marginalia Anno. 844. Priuiledges and temporalties graunted to the Church by king Ethelwulfe. Quamobrem, ego Ethelwulfus Rex occidentalium Saxonum, cum consilio Episcoporum & principum meorum, consilium salubre, & vniforme remedium affirmaui: vt aliquam portionem terrarum hæreditariam, Deo & sanctæ Mariæ, & omnibus sanctis iure perpetuo possidendam concedam, scilicet partem terræ meæ, vt sit tuta & immunis ab omnibus secularibus seruicijs, MarginaliaEx Flor. Hist. nec non regalibus tributis maioribus & minoribus siue taxationibus, quod nos dicimus Wittereden: sitq; libera omnium rerum, pro remissione animarum & peccatorum nostrorum, MarginaliaPro remis. Note the blinde ignoraunce and erroneous teaching in those dayes. ad Deo soli deseruiendum, sine expeditione, & pontis constructione, & arcis munitione: vt eo diligentiùs pro nobis ad Deum preces sine cessatione fundant, quo eorum seruitutem in aliqua parte leuigamus, &c.

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Hereby may it appeare, how when the Churches of England, began first to be indued with temporalties and lands: also with priuileges & exemptiōs enlarged. Moreouer (and that which specially is to be considered & lamented) what pernicious doctrine was this, wherewith they were led: thus to set remission of their sinnes, and remedy of their soules: in this donation and such other deedes of their deuotion, cōtrary to the information of Gods word, and no small derogation to the Crosse of Christ?

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These thinges thus done within the Realme, then the sayd Ethelwulfus the king, taking his iourney to Rome, with Alured his youngest sonne, committed him to the bringing vp of Pope Leo the iiij. where he also reedified the English schole at Rome: which being founded by king Offa, or rather by Iue king of Mercians (as in the flowers of Hist. is affirmed) was lately in the tyme of king Egberthis father, consumed with fire. MarginaliaPeter pence through the whole Realme graunted to Rome. Money bestowed to burne day light. Farther and besides, this king gaue and graunted there vnto Rome, of euery fire house a peny to be payd through his whole land, as king Iue in his dominion had done before. Also he gaue & graūted yearely to be payd to Rome. 300. markes, that is to the mainteining of the light of S. Peter. C. markes: to þe light of S. Paul. C. markes: to the vse of the Pope also an other hundreth. This done, returning home through Fraunce, maried their Iudith the daughter of Carolus Caluus, þe frēch king: whome he restored afterward, contrary to the lawes of westsaxons, to the title and throne of a Queene. For before, it was decreed among the Westsaxons (by the occasion of wicked Ethelburga, who poisoned Brigthricus her owne husband) that after that, no kinges wife there should haue the name or place of a Queene.

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And forsomuch as I haue here entred into the mention of Iudith, daughter of Carolus Caluus: the occasion thereof putteth me in memory, here to insert by the way a matter done, although not in this Realme, yet not impertinent to this ecclesiasticall history. And first to deduct the narration hereof from the first originall. The father of this Carolus Caluus, whose name was Ludouicus, first of that name, called Pius king of Fraunce, had two wiues: whereof by the first, he had iij. sonnes, Lothary, Pipin, and Lewys. Which iij. sonnes vnnaturally and vnkindly, cōspiring against their father, and his second wife, with her sonne, their youngest brother, persecuted him so, that through a certaine councell of Lordes spirituall and temporall, they deposed the same their naturall and right godly father, MarginaliaNote here the holy and holesome counsailers and doynges of the spiritual Lordes. dispossessing and discharging him of all rule and dominion. Moreouer, caused him to renounce his temporal habite, inclosing him in the Monastery of S. Marke, for a monke or rather a prisoner. All which done, they deuided his Empire and kingdome among themselues.

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Thus was Ludouicus Pius, of impious sonnes left desolate. MarginaliaLudouicus Pius, Emperour king of Fraunce. But the power of God, whiche worketh when all earthly power ceaseth, of hys deuine mercy so ayded and recouered him out of all this tribulation to this Imperial dignitie agayne: that it was to all his enemyes confusion, and to all good men a miracle. But this by the way. By his 2. wife whose name was Iudith, he had this Charles the Bald here mentioned. Which Iudith was thought and so accused to the Pope, to be within such degree of aliance, that by the Popes law, she might not continue hys wife without the popes dispensation. It so fell out in the meane time that this Ludouicus the Emperour, had promoted a young man named Frederick to be Bishop of Vtricke: MarginaliaFredericke Byshop of Vtricke. and to hym had geuen sad and good exhortation, that he remembring and following the constancy of his predecessours, woulde mayntayne right and trueth without all exception of anye person, & punish misdoers with excommunication, as wel the riche as the poore, with such like wordes of godly coūsaile. Fredericke hearing the king thus to say, sitting at dinner with him, as the manner was beyng newly inuested, in these words answered to the Emperor again. I thanke your maiestie saith he, which with your so wholesome exhortation putteth me in mind of my profession. But I beseech you of your benigne fauour & patience, that I may freely disclose, that which hath long encombred and pierced my conscience. To whō leaue being geuen, thus he began. MarginaliaByshop Fridericke openly admonisheth the Emperour at the table. I pray you (Lord Emperor) to shew me herein your mynd (pointing to the fish before him) whether is it more according, to attain this fish here present, beginning first at the head or at the taile? What a tale is this, quoth the Emperor, of the taile & of the head: At the head quoth he. Then Frederike taking thereof his occasion, proceedeth: Euen so let it be (Lord Emperour) sayth he, as you haue sayd. Let Christian fayth and charitie first begin with your selfe, as with the head, admonishing you to cease frō your fact, and error, that your subiects by your example be not boldned to follow your misdoing. Wherefore first forsake you, your vnlawful wedlock, which you haue made with Iudith your neare kinswoman. MarginaliaNote there were ii. Iudithes one the mother of Carolus Caluus, the other his daughter, whom king Ethelwulfe did marry. These wordes of the new Bishop, although they moued Ludouicus the Emperor not a litle, yet he, with a gentle modestie, and modest silence was contented, suffring the bishop to go home in peace. But the word beyng vttred in such an audience, could not so be concealed but spread and brast out in much talke in the whole court, and especially among the Bishops, consultyng earnestly with themselues about the matter. Through whose counsail and labour so at length it fell, that the Emperour was constrained to leaue the company of his wife, till hee had purchased a licence of the bishop of Rome, to retaine her again, who then forgaue the said bishop all that was past. But the woman hired two knights that slew him in hys vestimentes, when he had ended his masse. Ranulphus, and Guliel. Libro de pontificib, geue forth this story in his great

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