adapted from a design by George Bain based on the Book of Kells home Programme Bookings Shop The Wuffings .
Wuffing Education

Sutton Hoo and the Old English Heroic Age

Detail of a sixth-century  silver plate from Verona

with Dr Sam Newton

at Tranmer House, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday 9th June 2007

Rediscover the almost lost continent of legend behind Sutton Hoo through an exploration of Old English and related Germanic and Norse heroic literature.

We begin with a look at some of the finds from Sutton Hoo and a consideration of what light they might cast on the pre-history of the Wuffings. We shall then explore how aspects of this prehistory appear to be amplifed by some of the surviving Old English heroic verse, especially the catalogue poem Widsith. Through this and related texts, such as Beowulf, we can glimpse the richness of the great word-hoard of legend in early England and its historical and geographical scope.
We can begin to partly map some these almost forgotten legends, moreover, through a consideration of comparative texts in related Germanic and Norse languages. We shall attempt thus to chart something of the lost legends of the Old English Heroic Age that formed part of the world of the Wuffings.

Provisional Programme
  10.00 Coffee on arrival  
  10.15 Sutton Hoo and the pre-History of the Wuffings  
  11.15 Coffee  
  11.30 The Old English Heroic Age  
  12.30 Lunch break  
  14:00 Legends of Goths and Langobards  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 The Forgotten Verse of the Wuffings  
  16:15 Close  

About Dr Sam Newton

After early experiences in archaeology, Sam Newton graduated from the University of East Anglia with a first in English Literature in 1983. He was awarded his Ph.D. in 1991 and published his first book, The Origins of Beowulf and the pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia, in 1993. Since then he has worked as an independent scholar in Wuffing and Early Medieval Studies. His latest book, The Reckoning of King Rædwald, was published in 2003. He is also now a Director of Wuffing Education and Time Team historian.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

Alexander, M. (tr.), The Earliest English Poems (Penguin Classics 1966)
Alexander, M. (ed.), Beowulf (Penguin Classics 2003)
Bjork, R.E., & J.D.Niles (eds), A Beowulf Handbook (Nebraska University 1997, 1998)
Bruce-Mitford, R., Aspects of Anglo-Saxon Archaeology (Gollancz 1974)
Fulk, R. (ed.), Interpretations of Beowulf: A Critical Anthology (Indiana University 1991)
Garmonsway, G., and J.Simpson, Beowulf and Its Analogues (Dent 1968, 1980)
Heaney, S. (tr.), Beowulf (Faber & Faber 1999)
Hyams, E.R., & S.T.Samples, Heroic Legends of the North: An Introduction to the Nibelung and Dietrich Cycles (Garland 1996)
Lee, S.D., & E.Solopova, The Keys of Middle-earth: Discovering Medieval Literature through the Fiction of J. R. R. Tolkien (Palgrave Macmillan, 2005)
Mitchell, B., & F.Robinson, (eds), Beowulf (Blackwell 1998)
Newton, S., The Origins of Beowulf and the pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia (Brewer 1993, 1994, 1999, 2004)
Newton, S. The Reckoning of King Rædwald (Redbird 2003)
Shippey, T.A., The Road to Middle-earth (Allen and Unwin, 1982; rev. edn HarperCollins, 2003)
Wilson, R.M., The Lost Literature of Medieval England (Methuen 1970)


Please phone or email to check the availability of places and then send the application form and a cheque for £38, payable to Wuffing Education to:

Wuffing Education,
4 Hilly Fields,
Woodbridge, Suffolk IP12 4DX
(tel : 01394 386498)

Email cliff AT
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We have learnt of the fame of the Wuffing folk-lords of long ago, of how those wolf-kings held the ancestral land of East Anglia....
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