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

St Edmund and the Last of the Wuffings

St Edmund Icon [Original painting by Helen Macildowie-Jenkins, 1997]

with Dr Sam Newton

at Tranmer House, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday 21st November 2009

The day after the 1140th anniversary of the martyrdom of King Edmund, a reappraisal of the last days of the Wuffings in history and legend.

Our primary source is The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, wherein the entries concerning Edmund’s death on 20th November, 869, imply that he was killed in battle defending the kingdom of East Anglia against the Danish micel here, 'Great Army', led by Ivarr the Boneless and his brothers, the sons of Ragnarr Lothbrok.

We shall assess these entries in relation to the evidence of contemporary coinage and later legendary material, especially the stirring Old English version of Abbo’s Passio Sancti Edmundi. We shall also try to chart the history of Danish East Anglia and the rise of the cult of St Edmund.

Provisional Programme
  10.00 Coffee on arrival  
  10.15 The Wuffing Kingdom of East Anglia  
  11.15 Coffee  
  11.45 The Coming of the Ragnarrsons  
  12.45 Lunch break  
  14:00 The Martyrdom of St Edmund  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 The Cult of St Edmund  
  16:15 Close  

About Dr Sam Newton

Sam Newton was awarded his Ph.D at the University of East Anglia in 1991 and published his first book, The Origins of Beowulf and the pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia, in 1993 He has lectured widely around the country as a free-lance scholar and has contributed to many television and radio programmes. His latest book, The Reckoning of King Rædwald, was published in 2003. He is currently a Director of Wuffing Education, NADFAS lecturer, and Time Team historian.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

Hart, C., The Danelaw (Hambledon 1992).
Gransden, Antonia, "The legends and traditions concerning the origins of the Abbey of Bury St Edmunds" English Historical Review, 100 (1985), pp.1-14.
Gransden, A. (ed.), Bury St Edmunds: Medieval Art, Architecture, Archaeology and Economy, British Archaeological Association Conference Transactions, 20 (1998)
Keynes, S., & M. Lapidge (ed. & tr.), Alfred the Great: Asser’s Life of King Alfred and other contemporary sources (Penguin Classics 1983).
Magnusson, Magnus, The Vikings ( rev.ed. Tempus 2000)
Mitchell, B., & F.Robinson, A Guide to Old English (Blackwell 1986)
Newton, S., The Origins of Beowulf and the pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia (Brewer, 1993)
Scarfe, N., Suffolk in the Middle Ages (Boydell 1986)
Smyth, A., Scandinavian Kings in the British Isles 850-880 (Oxford 1977).
Smyth, A., King Alfred the Great (Oxford 1995).
Swanton, M., The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle (Phoenix 2000).
Whitelock, Dorothy, "Fact and Fiction in the Legend of St Edmund", Proceedings of the Suffolk Institute of Archaeology and History, 31 (1970), pp.217-233.


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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