MALE Eadweard "the Exile"

Anglo-Saxon prince, d. 1057.

In modern historical works, Eadweard is generally denoted "the Exile" in order to conveniently distinguish him from his uncle and namesake, king Eadweard "the Confessor" of England. After the death of Eadweard's father king Eadmund II Ironside in 1016, king Cnut sent Eadweard and his brother Eadmund to Sweden with the intention that they be killed, but they were spared and grew up in exile, probably in Sweden, Russia, and Hungary. (See the page of Eadweard's wife Agatha for more details on his exile.) In 1054, bishop Ealdred of Worcester was sent to Germany by king Eadweard the Confessor on an errand [ASC(C,D) s.a. 1054], which John of Worcester says was for the purpose of sending envoys to Hungary to bring the survivng brother Eadweard the Exile back to England. ["... Aldredus ... dein magnis cum xeniis regis fungitur legatione ad imperatorem; ... ut legatis Ungariam missis, inde fratruelem suum Eadwardum, regis videlicet Eadmundi Ferrei Lateris filium, reduceret, Angliam venire faceret." John Worc., s.a. 1054 (1: 212)]. Brought for the purpose of succeeding his uncle to the crown, Eadweard arrived in England in 1057, but died very soon after arriving ["Clito Eadwardus, regis Eadmundi Ferrei Lateris filius, ut ei mandarat suus patruus rex Eadwardus, de Ungaria, quo multo ante, ut prędiximus, in exilium missus fuerat, Angliam venit. Decreverat enim rex illum post se regni hęredem constituere; sed ex quo venit parvo post tempore vita decessit Lundonię." John Worc., s.a. 1057 (1: 215)]. There is no truth to the claim of Orderic Vitalis that he was king of Hungary [OV i, 24 (1: 178); iii, 14 (2: 154); viii, 22 (3: 398); x, 11 (4: 70); see also Gaimar 4642]. The most detailed accounts of Eadweard are Ronay's article [Ronay (1984)] and his later book [Ronay (1989)], which, however, lack adequate documentation and often present scenarios which are little more than guesswork.

Date of birth: 1016×7.
Place of birth:
His parents were married in 1015 and his father died in late 1016.

Date of death: 19 April 1057.
Place of death: London.
Place of burial: St. Paul's, London.
["Her on žisum geare com Ędward ęšeling Eadmundes sunu cynges hider to lande. & sona žęs gefor. & his lic is bebyrged innon scs. Paulus mynstre on Lundene." ASC(E) s.a. 1057 ("Here in this year came the ętheling Edward, King Edmund's son, here to land, and soon afterwards departed; and his body is buried in St. Paul's minster in London." ASC(Eng), 187-8)] John of Worcester gives London as the place of death [John Worc., s.a. 1057 (1: 215), see above]. An eleventh century addition to the Crowland Psalter gives the date as 19 April [Keynes (1985), 359-60].

Father: Eadmund II "Ironside", d. 30 November 1016, king of England, 1016.

Mother: Ealdgyth, living 1016.

Spouse: Agatha, living 1067.

["And žęs sumeres Eadgar cild for śt. mid his modor <Agatha> & his twam sweostran. Margareta. & Xpķna. & Męrlaswegen. & fela godra manna mid heom. & comon to Scotlande on Malcholomes cyninges gryš. & he hi ealle underfeng. Ša begann <se cyngc Malcholom> gyrnan his sweostor him to wife Margaretan." ASC(D) s.a. 1067 ("And that summer Prince Edgar went away, with his mother Agatha and his two sisters, Margaret and Christina, and Męrleswein and many good men with them, and came to Scotland under King Malcolm's protection and he received them all; then the king Malcolm began to desire his sister, Margaret, as wife, ..." ASC(Eng), 201); "Eadwardus vero Agatham, filiam germani imperatoris Heinrici, in matrimonium accepit, ex qua Margaretam Scottorum reginam, et Christinam sanctimonialem virginem, et clitonem Eadgarum suscepit." John Worc. s.a. 1017 (1: 181); similarly, ibid., 1: 275; "Ita venit Edwardus, sed continuo apud sanctum Paulum Londinię fato functus est, tribus liberis superstitibus; vir neque promptus manu, neque probus ingenio: Edgaro, qui post occisionem Haroldi a quibusdam in regem electus, et vario lusu fortunę rotatus, pene decrepitum diem ignobilis ruri agit; Christina, quę sanctimoniali habitu apud Ru-mesiam consenuit; Margareta, quam Malcolmus rex Scottorum legitimo matrimonio duxit." Wm. Malmes., Gesta Regum, c. 228 (1: 278); "Eduardus vero Dei nutu filiam regis in matrimonium accepit, et super Hunos regnavit. Edgarum vero Adelinum, et Margaritam reginam Scotorum, et Christianam sanctimonialem genuit; ..." OV, i (vol. 1, p. 178); "Et ipse Ędwardus accepit ibi uxorem ex nobili genere, de qua ortus est ei Eadgarus ašeling et Margareta regina Scotie et Cristina soror eius." Laws Edw. Conf., 35-35.1 (p. 664)]

MALE Eadgar "the Atheling", living 1125, claimant to the English throne in 1066.
Eadgar Ętheling was said by Orderic Vitalis to have been the same age as Robert of Normandy ["... ducemque sibi coęvum ..." OV x, 11 (vol. 4, p. 70)], born probably between 1050 and 1054, and such a birthdate would fit well for Eadgar, whom the contemporary Guillaume de Poitiers calls a "puer" in referring to events of 1066 ["Regem statuerant Edgarum Athelinum, ex Edwardi Regis nobilitate annis puerum." Guillaume de Poitiers, ii, 28 (pp. 146-7); see also ibid., ii, 35 (pp. 162-3)], making it unlikely that Eadgar was born before 1050. In 1066, archbishop Ealdred and the garrison in London wanted to make Eadgar king ["Aldred arceb. & seo burh waru on Lundene. wolden habban ža Eadgar cild to kynge, eall swa him wel gecynde węs; & Eadwine. & Morkere. him beheton ž. hi mid him feohtan woldon." ASC(D) s.a. 1066 (p. 199) ("Archbishop Aldred and the garrison in London wanted to have Prince Edgar for king, just as was his natural right; and Edwin and Morcar promised him that they would fight for him, ..." ASC(Eng), 199)], but William the Conqueror was too strong, and Eadgar submitted to William at Berkhamstead later in the same year ["& žęr him com ongean. Ealdred arce b. & Eadgar cild. & Eadwine eorl. & Morkere eorl. & ealle ža betstan men of Lundene. & bugon ža for neode, ža męst węs to hearme gedon." ASC(D) s.a. 1066 (p. 200) ("And there came to meet him Archbishop Aldred, and Prince Edgar, and Earl Edwin, and Earl Morcar, and all the best men from London; and they submitted from necessity when the most harm was done - ..." ASC(Eng), 200)]. Eadgar lived for many more years, but he was never again a serious contender for the throne. He was still living at the time William of Malmesbury was writing the first edition of his Gesta Regum Anglorum in 1125 ["Edgaro, qui ... pene decrepitum diem ignobilis ruri agit" Wm. Malmes., Gesta Regum, c. 228 (1: 278); "Edgarus ... nunc remotus et tacitus canos suos in agro consumit." ibid., c. 251 (2: 310)]. Hooper's article is a good modern account of his life [Hooper (1985)].

FEMALE St. Margaret, d. 16(?) November 1093;
m. 1070×1,
Mįel Coluim mac Donnchada (Malcolm III), d. 13 November 1093, king of Scotland.

FEMALE Christina, living 1086, nun at Romsey, prob. d. 1095×1100.
["& Cristina žęs ęšelinges swuster beah into mynstre to Rumesege. & underfeng halig reft." ASC(E) s.a. 1085(=1086) ("And Christina, the ętheling's sister, retired into the minster at Romsey and took the veil." ASC(Eng), 217; see Plummer's note, ASC 2: 273); for approximate date of death, see Liebermann (1896), 11 n. 8-9, 12 n. 1; Eadmer, 121-5]


ASC = Charles Plummer, Two of the Saxon Chronicles parallel, based on the earlier edition by John Earle, 2 vols. (Oxford, 1892-9). ASC(A) indicates the "A" manuscript of the chronicle, and similarly for the other manuscripts.

ASC(Eng) = Michael Swanton, ed. & trans., The Anglo-Saxon Chronicles (London, 2000).

Eadmer = Martin Rule, ed., Eadmeri Historia Novorum in Anglia, et opuscula duo, de Vita Sancti Anselmi et quibusdam miraculis ejus (Rolls Series 81, London, 1884).

Gaimar = Thomas Duffus Hardy & Charles Trice Martin, ed. & trans., Lestorie des Engles solum la translacion Maistre Geffrei Gaimar, 2 vols. (London 1888-9). Cited by line number, which is the same in both text (volume 1) and translation (volume 2).

Hooper (1985) = Nicholas Hooper, "Edgar the Aetheling: Anglo-Saxon Prince, Rebel and Crusader", Anglo-Saxon England 14 (1985): 197-214.

John Worc. = Benjamin Thorpe, ed., Florentii Wigorniensis monachi chronicon ex chronicis, 2 vols., (London, 1848-9). (The work formerly attributed to Florence of Worcester is now generally attributed to John of Worcester.)

Keynes (1985) = Simon Keynes, "The Crowland Psalter and the Sons of King Edmund Ironside", Bodleian Library Record 11 (1985): 359-70.

Laws Edw. Conf. = Leges Edwardi Confessoris, in Liebermann (1903), 1: 627-672.

Liebermann (1896) = F. Liebermann, Über die Leges Edwardi Confrssoris (Max Niemeyer, 1896).

Liebermann (1903) = F. Liebermann, Die Gesetze der Angelsachsen (vol. 1, Max Niemeyer, 1903).

OV = Augustus le Prevost, ed. Orderici Vitalis Historię Ecclesiasticę, 5 vols. (Paris, 1838-55); also available in Marjorie Chibnall, ed. & trans., The Ecclesiastical History of Orderic Vitalis, 6 vols. (Oxford, 1969-80). As I do not have easy access to all volumes of Chibnall's edition, citations here are given from Prevost's edition.

Ronay (1984) = Gabriel Ronay, "Edward Aetheling, Anglo-Saxon England's Last Hope", History Today 34.1 (Jan. 1984): 43-51.

Ronay (1989) = Gabriel Ronay, The Lost King of England: The East European Adventures of Edward the Exile (Woodbridge, 1989).

Wm. Malmes., Gesta Regum = William Stubbs, ed., Willelmi Malmesbiriensis Monachi De gestis regum Anglorum. libri quinque; Historię Novellę libri tres, 2 vols. (Rolls series 90, 1887-9). [I lack easy access to the more recent edition of William of Malmesbury's work edited by Mynors, Thomson, & Winterbottom.]

Compiled by Stewart Baldwin

First uploaded 20 June 2010.

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