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King Æthelbert of East Anglia (martyred 20th May 794)

Silver penny of King Æthelbert of East Anglia showing the prominent she-wolf-and-twins emblem (British Museum - EMC number 1016.0105)

with Dr Sam Newton

in The Old Court, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday, 19th May, 2012

On the eve of his festival day, an exploration of what we can see of the history of East Anglia’s less well-known king and martyr, Æthelbert. We begin with a look at the state of England and East Anglia in the latter part of the eighth century.
We shall assess what can be deduced of the events surrounding King Æthelbert’s martyrdom near Hereford on 20th May 794, and the part played by the Mercian king Offa and his formidable wife Cynethryth.. We shall then consider the later history and extent of the cult of St Æthelbert.

Provisional Programme
  10.00 Coffee on arrival  
  10.15 The Kingdom of the Eastern Angles in the Eighth Century  
  11.15 Coffee  
  11.45 The Martyrdom of King Æthelbert  
  12.45 Lunch break (bring picnic or eat in NT restaurant)  
  14:00 A Tale of Two Offas  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 The Cult of St Æthelbert, King and Martyr  
  c.16:20 Close  

About Dr Sam Newton

Sam Newton was awarded his Ph.D at UEA in 1991 and is the author of The Origins of Beowulf and the pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia (1993) and The Reckoning of King Rædwald, (2003). He has lectured widely around the country as an independent scholar and has contributed to many radio and television programmes. He is also a Director of Wuffing Education, NADFAS lecturer, and Time Team historian.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

Alexander, M., The First Poems in English (Penguin Classics 2008)
Arnold-Forster, F., Studies in Church Dedications or England’s Patron Saints, vol.2 (London 1899)
Blair, J., The Church in Anglo-Saxon Society (Oxford 2005)
Chaney, W.A., The Cult of Kingship in Anglo-Saxon England (Manchester 1970)
Farmer, D.H., The Oxford Dictionary of Saints (Oxford University Press, 1978).
Garmonsway, G., & J.Simpson, Beowulf and Its Analogues (Dent 1968, 1980)
Heaney, Seamus (tr.) Beowulf: An Illustrated Edition, ed. J.Niles (Norton 2007)
Newton, S., The Origins of Beowulf and the pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia (Brewer 1993, 1994, 1999, 2004)
Plunkett, S.J., Suffolk in Anglo-Saxon Times (Tempus 2005)
Webster, L., & J.Backhouse, The Making of England: Anglo-Saxon Art and Culture AD 600-900 (British Museum 1991)
Wilson, R., The Lost Literature of Medieval England (Methuen 1952, 1970)


Please phone or email to check the availability of places. Study Days are 38 per person, which includes a full day of lectures, access to the NT site, parking, coffee and tea throughout the day, and access to the NT exhibition. Once you have reserved your place please send a cheque to confirm the booking. For your first booking please complete the application form to ensure that we have recorded your contact details correctly.

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

Email cliff AT wuffingeducation.co.uk
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Website www.wuffingeducation.co.uk

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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....
Updated 13 December, 2012
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