963-71
A.D. 963 . This year died Wulfstan, the deacon, on Childermass-
day; (42) and afterwards died Gyric, the mass-priest. In the
same year took Abbot Athelwold to the bishopric of Winchester;
and he was consecrated on the vigil of St. Andrew, which happened
on a Sunday. On the second year after he was consecrated, he
made many minsters; and drove out the clerks (43) from the
bishopric, because they would hold no rule, and set monks
therein. He made there two abbacies; one of monks, another of
nuns. That was all within Winchester. Then came he afterwards
to King Edgar, and requested that he would give him all the
minsters that heathen men had before destroyed; for that he would
renew them. This the king cheerfully granted; and the bishop
came then first to Ely, where St. Etheldritha lies, and ordered
the minster to be repaired; which he gave to a monk of his, whose
name was Britnoth, whom he consecrated abbot: and there he set
monks to serve God, where formerly were nuns. He then bought
many villages of the king, and made it very rich. Afterwards
came Bishop Athelwold to the minster called Medhamsted, which was
formerly ruined by heathen folk; but he found there nothing but
old walls, and wild woods. In the old walls at length he found
hid writings which Abbot Hedda had formerly written; -- how King
Wulfhere and Ethelred his brother had wrought it, and how they
freed it against king and against bishop, and against all worldly
service; and how Pope Agatho confirmed it with his writ, as also
Archbishop Deusdedit. He then ordered the minster to be rebuilt;
and set there an abbot, who was called Aldulf; and made monks,
where before was nothing. He then came to the king, and let him
look at the writings which before were found; and the king then
answered and said: "I Edgar grant and give to-day, before God and
before Archbishop Dunstan, freedom to St. Peter's minster at
Medhamsted, from king and from bishop; and all the thorps that
thereto lie; that is, Eastfield, and Dodthorp, and Eye, and
Paston. And so I free it, that no bishop have any jurisdiction
there, but the abbot of the minster alone. And I give the town
called Oundle, with all that thereto lieth, called Eyot-hundred,
with market and toll; so freely, that neither king, nor bishop,
nor earl, nor sheriff, have there any jurisdiction; nor any man
but the abbot alone, and whom he may set thereto. And I give to
Christ and St. Peter, and that too with the advice of Bishop
Athelwold, these lands; -- that is, Barrow, Warmington, Ashton,
Kettering, Castor, Eylesworth, Walton, Witherington, Eye, Thorp,
and a minster at Stamford. These lands and al the others that
belong to the minster I bequeath clear; that is, with sack and
sock, toll and team, and infangthief; these privileges and all
others bequeath I clear to Christ and St. Peter. And I give the
two parts of Whittlesey-mere, with waters and with wears and
fens; and so through Meerlade along to the water that is called
Nen; and so eastward to Kingsdelf. And I will that there be a
market in the town itself, and that no other be betwixt Stamford
and Huntingdon. And I will that thus be given the toll; --
first, from Whittlesey-mere to the king's toll of Norman-cross
hundred; then backward again from Whittlesey-mere through
Meerlade along to the Nen, and as that river runs to Crowland;
and from Crowland to Must, and from Must to Kingsdelf and to
Whittlesey-mere. And I will that all the freedom, and all the
privileges, that my predecessors gave, should remain; and I write
and confirm this with the rood-token of Christ." (+) -- Then
answered Dunstan, the Archbishop of Canterbury, and said: "I
grant, that all the things that here are given and spoken, and
all the things that thy predecessors and mine have given, shall
remain firm; and whosoever breaketh it, then give I him God's
curse, and that of all saints, and of all hooded heads, and mine,
unless he come to repentance. And I give expressly to St. Peter
my mass-hackle, and my stole, and my reef, to serve Christ." "I
Oswald, Archbishop of York, confirm all these words through the
holy rood on which Christ was crucified." (+) "I Bishop
Athelwold bless all that maintain this, and I excommunicate all
that break it, unless they come to repentance." -- Here was
Bishop Ellstan, Bishop Athulf, and Abbot Eskwy, and Abbot Osgar,
and Abbot Ethelgar, and Alderman Elfere; .Alderman Ethelwin,
Britnoth and Oslac aldermen, and many other rich men; and all
confirmed it and subscribed it with the cross of Christ. (+)
This was done in the year after our Lord's Nativity 972, the
sixteenth year of this king. Then bought the Abbot Aldulf lands
rich and many, and much endowed the minster withal; and was there
until Oswald, Archbishop of York, was dead; and then he was
chosen to be archbishop. Soon after another abbot was chosen of
the same monastery, whose name was Kenulf, who was afterwards
Bishop of Winchester. He first made the wall about the minster,
and gave it then the name of Peterborough, which before was
Medhamsted. He was there till he was appointed Bishop of
Winchester, when another abbot was chosen of the same monastery,
whose name was Elfsy, who continued abbot fifty winters
afterwards. It was he who took up St. Kyneburga and St.
Kyneswitha, that lay at Castor, and St. Tibba, that lay at
Ryhall; and brought them to Peterborough, and offered them all to
St. Peter in one day, and preserved them all the while he was
there.

((A.D. 963 . This year, by King Edgar, St. Ethelwold was chosen
to the bishoprick at Winchester. And the Archbishop of
Canterbury, St. Dunstan, consecrated him bishop on the first
Sunday of Advent; that was on the third before the kalends of
December.))

A.D. 964 . This year drove King Edgar the priests of Winchester
out of the old minster, and also out of the new minster; and from
Chertsey; and from Milton; and replaced them with monks. And he
appointed Ethelgar abbot to the new minster, and Ordbert to
Chertsey, and Cyneward to Milton.

((A.D. 964 . This year were the canons driven out of the Old-
minster by King Edgar, and also from the New-minster, and from
Chertsey and from Milton; and he appointed thereto monks and
abbots: to the New-minster Ethelgar, to Chertsey Ordbert, to
Milton Cyneward.))

A.D. 965 . This year King Edgar took Elfrida for his queen, who
was daughter of Alderman Ordgar.

A.D. 966 . This year Thored, the son of Gunner, plundered
Westmorland; and the same year Oslac took to the aldermanship.

A.D. 969 . This year King Edgar ordered all Thanet-land to be
plundered.

A.D. 971 . This year died Archbishop Oskytel; who was first
consecrated diocesan bishop at Dorchester, and afterwards it was
by the consent of King Edred and all his council that he was
consecrated Archbishop of York. He was bishop two and twenty
winters; and he died on Alhallow-mas night, ten nights before
Martinmas, at Thame. Abbot Thurkytel, his relative, carried the
bishop's body to Bedford, because he was the abbot there at that
time.

A.D. 972 . This year died Edmund Atheling, and his body lies at
Ramsey.

Notes:

42) i.e. the feast of the Holy Innocents; a festival of great
antiquity.
(43) i.e. the secular clergy, who observed no rule; opposed to
the regulars, or monks.

Chronicle Years: 941-61
Chronicle Years: 973-79


CONTENTS DIRECTORY
History | Monarchs | Prime Ministers | Travel | London | Wales | Earth Mysteries
Church | News | People | Science | Arts | State | Catalog | Sports | Panorama | Links

Comments: e-mail us at history@britannia.com
© 1995, 1996, 1997 Britannia Internet Magazine, LLC