Will of Aethelflaed 975 x 991
The reference number S 1494 refers to P. H. Sawyer's catalogue of Anglo-Saxon charters dated 1968.
A.D. 962 x 991, probably after 975. Will of Æthelflæd, including bequest of land at Lambourn, Cholsey and Reading, Berks., to the king; at Damerham, Hants., to Glastonbury; at Hamme to Christ Church, Canterbury; at Woodham, Essex, to Ealdorman Brihtnoth and her sister for life, with reversion to St Mary's, Barking; at Hadham, Herts., to the same, for life, with reversion to St Paul's, London; at Fen Ditton, Cambs., to Ely Abbey; at Cockfield and Chelsworth, Suffolk, to the same for life, with reversion to St Edmunds, Bedericesworth (Bury); at Fingringhoe, Essex, to the same for life, with reversion to St Peter's, Mersea; at Polstead, Suffolk, to the same for life, with reversion to Stoke (? Stoke-by-Nayland, Suffolk); at Withermarsh, Suffolk, to Stoke; at Stratford St Mary, Lavenham, Balsdon, Suffolk, and at Peldon, Mersea and Greenstead (near Colchester), Essex, to Ealdorman Brihtnoth and her sister for life, with reversion to Stoke; at Elmsett, Suffolk, to the same for life, with reversion to Edmund; at Thorpe (? Morieux, Suffolk), to Hadleigh, Suffolk; at Wickford, Essex, to Sibriht, her kinsman; at Hadham, Herts., to Ecgwine, her reeve; at Donyland, Essex, to Brihtwold, her servant, to Ælfwold and Æthelmær, her priests, and to Ælfgeat, her kinsman; and at Waldingfield, Suffolk, to Crawe, her kinswoman. English.
MSS: 1. BL Harley Ch. 43. C 4 (s. xi; BM Facs., iii. 35)
2. Cambridge, U.L., Ff. 2. 33, 46v-47r (s. xiii2)
Printed: Wotton 1737, pp. 95-6; K 685; Thorpe, pp. 519-22, with translation; Sweet, Reader, pp. 206-7; Sweet, Second Reader, pp. 231-3 (no. 44); B 1288 ex MS 1; B 1354 ex MS 2; Earle, pp. 364-6; Whitelock, Wills, no. 14 (pp. 34-7), with translation.
Comments: Bond 1878, p. 7, MS 1 is s. xi; Sweet, Reader, p. 289; Whitelock, Wills, pp. 137-41; Darlington 1955, p. 95; Hart, ECEE, no. 58, authentic; Stenton 1970, p. 35, on the reversion to St Paul's; Hart, ECE, no. 18, authentic, discusses descent of Essex estates; PN Berks., i. 162, 170, ii. 333; Gem 1978, p. 105, on Cholsey; Gelling, ECTV, no. 122 (pp. 62, 84), authentic, with addendum, p. 188; Dumville 1992, pp. 110-11 n. 263; Dumville 1993, pp. 36, 81, cited; Keynes 1993/2, p. 306 n. 26, on Hadham; Pelteret 1995, pp. 123-4, 130; Abrams 1996, pp. 104-7, on bequest of Damerham; cf. S 1486.
Notes: MS 1 contains copies of S 1494 and S 1486, written by the same scribe.
Þis is Æþelflæde cwyde þæt is ærest þæt ic gean minum hlaforde þes landes æt Lamburnan 7 þæs æt Ceolsige 7 æt Readingan. 7 feower beagas on twam hund mancys goldes. 7 .IIII. pellas. 7 .IIII. cuppan. 7 .IIII. bleda. 7 .IIII. hors. 7 ic bidde minne leouan hlaford for godes lufun. þæt min cwyde Standan mote. 7 ic nan oðer nebbe geworht on godes gewitnesse. 7 ic gean þæs landes æt Domarhame into Glestingabyrig. for Ædmundes cinges sawle. 7 for Æadgares cinges. 7 for mire sawle. 7 ic gean þes landes æt Hamme into Cristes cyrcan. æt Cantwarebyrig for Eadmundæs cinges sawle. 7 for mire sawle. 7 ic gean þes landes. æt Wudaham Bæorhtnoðe. æaldormen. 7 mire swustær hyre dæg. 7 ofer hire deg into sancta Marian cyrcan. æt Byorcingan. 7 ic gean þes landes. æt Hedham Bæorhtnoðæ ealdormen. 7 mire swuster hæora dæg. 7 æfter hæora dæge into Paulusbyrig. æt Lundænæ. to bisceophamæ. 7 ic gean þæs landæs. æt Dictunæ into Ylig to sanctæ Æþælðryð. 7 to hire geswustran. 7 ic gean þara twegra landa æt Cohhanfeldæa 7 æt Cæorlesweorþe Bæorhtnoðæ æaldormen. 7 miræ swuster hire dæg. 7 ofer hire dæg into sanctæ Eadmundes stowe to Bydericeswyrðe. 7 ic 'ge'an þæs landes æt Fingringaho Bæorhtnoðe æaldermen. 7 mire swuster hiræ deg 7 ofer hire dæg into sanctæ Pætres cyrcan æt Myresigæ. 7 ic gæan þæs landes æt Polstede Bæorhtnoðe æaldormæn. 7 mire swuster hire deg. 7 ofor hira dæg into Stocy. 7 ic gæan þæs landæs æt Hwifersce into Stocy ofer minnæ deg 7 ic gæan Bæorhtnoðæ æaldermen. 7 mire swuster þæs landes æt Strætforda hire dæg. 7 ofer hire dæg. Ic his gæan into Stocy. 7 ic willæ þæt Lauanham ga into Stoce ofær þes æaldermannes dæg. 7 mire swuster. 7 ic gean þæs landes æt Byligesdynæ into Stocy ofer þæs æaldermanes dæg. 7 mire swuster 7 ic gean þara landa æt Peltandune. 7 et Myresige. 7 æt Grenstede into Stocy ofer minnæ dæg. 7 ofer Bæorhtnoðes æaldormannæs. 7 ofær mire swuster. 7 ic gean þes landes æt Ylmesæton Beorhtnoðe æaldormen. 7 mire swuster hira dæg. 7 ofær hira dæg. ic his gæan Æadmundæ. 7 ic an þæræ. aræ hide æt Þorpæ into Hedlæge. for mire sawle. 7 for mira eldrena ofer [minne dæg] 7 ic gean ðæra .X. hida æt Wicforda Sibrihte minum mægæ ofer minne dæg. 7 ic gean Ægwinæ minum geræfan. þara .IIII. hida æt Hedham. ofer miminne deg. swa hit on æalddagum gestod. 7 ic gæan Brihtwolde minum cnihtæ þara twegra hida. on Dunninclande ofer minnæ dæg. 7 ic an Alfwolde minum preoste twægra hida on Dunninglande ofer minne dæg. 7 ic gean Æþælmære minum præoste twægra hida on Dunninglandæ ofæ[r] minne dæg. 7 ic gæan Ælfgæate minum megæ. twegra hida on Dunninglande ofar minnæ dæg. 7 ic gæan ðæs landæs æt Wæaldingafælda Crawa mira magan ouær minnæ dæg. 7 ic wille þæt man frigæ hæalue mine men on elcum tune for mine sawlæ. 7 þæt man dele æal healf þæt yrue þæt ic hæbbæ on ælcum tune for mire sawle.
This is Æthelflæd?s will. First, I grant to my lord the estate at Lambourn and those at Cholsey and at Reading, and four armlets of two hundred mancuses of gold, and four robes and four cups and four bowls and four horses. And I pray my dear lord for the love of God that my will may stand, and I have made no other, by God's witness.
And I grant the estate at Damerham to Glastonbury for King Edmund's soul and for King Edgar's and for mine. And I grant the estate at Ham to Christchurch at Canterbury for King Edmund's soul and for my soul. And I grant the estate at Woodham to the Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister for their lifetime, and after their death to St Paul's in London as episcopal property. And I grant the estate at Ditton to Ely, to St Etheldreda and her sisters. And I grant the two estates, Cockfield and Chelsworth, to the Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister for her life; and after her death to St Edmund's foundation at Bedericesworth. And I grant the estate at Fingringhoe to the Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister for her life; and after her death to St Peter's church at Mersea. And I grant the estate at Polstead to Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister for her life; and after her death to Stoke. And I grant the estate at Withermarsh to Stoke after my death, and I grant to the Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister for their lifetime the estate at Stratford; and after their death I grant it to Stoke. And it is my wish that Lavenham should go to Stoke after the ealdorman's death and my sister's. And I grant the estate at Balsdon to Stoke after the ealdorman's death and my sister's. And I grant the estates at Peldon and at Mersea and at Greenstead to Stoke after my death, and after the death of the Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister. And I grant the estate at Elmsett to the Ealdorman Brihtnoth and my sister for their lifetime, and after their death I grant it to Edmund. And I grant the one hide at Thorpe to Hadleigh after my death, for my soul and the souls of my ancestors.
And I grant the ten hides at Wickford to my kinsman Sibriht after my death. And to my reeve Ecgwine I grant the four hides at Hadham after my death, as it was settled in former times. And I grant to my servant Brihtwold two hides in Donyland after my death. And I grant to Æthelmær my priest two hides in Donyland after my death. And I grant the estate at Waldingfield to my kinswoman Crawe after my death.
And I wish that half my men in every village be freed for my soul; and that half the stock which I have be distributed in each village for my soul.