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Medieval and Classical Library

The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle

Online Medieval and Classical Library Release #17

Originally compiled on the orders of King Alfred the Great, approximately A.D. 890, and subsequently maintained and added to by generations of anonymous scribes until the middle of the 12th Century. The original language is Anglo-Saxon (Old English), but later entries are essentially Middle English in tone.

Translation by Rev. James Ingram (London, 1823), with additional readings from the translation of Dr. J.A. Giles (London, 1847).

The text of this edition is based on that published as "The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle" (Everyman Press, London, 1912). This edition is in the PUBLIC DOMAIN in the United States.

This electronic edition was edited, proofed, and prepared by Douglas B. Killings (DeTroyes@AOL.COM), July 1996.

[ Preparer's Note ]

An Index to this Work is Available

CONTENTS



PREPARER'S NOTE:

At present there are nine known versions or fragments of the "Anglo-Saxon Chronicle" in existence, all of which vary (sometimes greatly) in content and quality. The translation that follows is not a translation of any one Chronicle; rather, it is a collation of readings from many different versions.

The nine known "Anglo-Saxon Chronicle" MS. are the following:

A-Prime   The Parker Chronicle (Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, MS. 
173)

A         Cottonian Fragment (British Museum, Cotton MS. Otho B xi, 2)

B         The Abingdon Chronicle I (British Museum, Cotton MS. Tiberius 
A 
vi.)

C         The Abingdon Chronicle II (British Museum, Cotton MS. Tiberius 
B 
i.)

D         The Worcester Chronicle (British Museum, Cotton MS.Tiberius B 
iv.)

E         The Laud (or "Peterborough") Chronicle (Bodleian, MS.Laud 636)

F         The Bilingual Canterbury Epitome (British Museum, Cotton MS. 
Domitian A viii.)
          NOTE: Entries in English and Latin.

H         Cottonian Fragment (British Museum, Cotton MS. Domitian A ix.)

I         An Easter Table Chronicle (British Museum, Cotton MS.Caligula 
A 
xv.)

This electronic edition contains primarily the translation of Rev. James Ingram, as published in the Everyman edition of this text. Excerpts from the translation of Dr. J.A. Giles were included as an appendix in the Everyman edition; the preparer of this edition has elected to collate these entries into the main text of the translation. Where these collations have occurred I have marked the entry with a double parenthesis (()).

WARNING:
While I have elected to include the footnotes of Rev. Ingram in this edition, please note that they should be used with extreme care. In many cases the views expressed by Rev. Ingram are severally out of date, having been superseded by almost 175 years of active scholarship. At best, these notes will provide a starting point for inquiry. They should not, however, be treated as absolute.

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY:

  • ORIGINAL TEXT --

    • Classen, E. and Harmer, F.E. (eds.): "An Anglo-Saxon Chronicle from British Museum, Cotton MS. Tiberius B iv." (Manchester, 1926)

    • Flower, Robin and Smith, Hugh (eds.): "The Peterborough Chronicle and Laws" (Early English Text Society, Original Series 208, Oxford, 1941).

    • Taylor, S. (ed.): "The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle: MS B" (Cambridge, 1983)


  • OTHER TRANSLATIONS --

    • Garmonsway, G.N.: "The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle" (Everyman Press, London, 1953, 1972). HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. Contains side-by-side translations of all nine known texts.


  • RECOMMENDED READING --

    • Bede: "A History of the English Church and People" , translated by Leo Sherley-Price (Penguin Classics, London, 1955, 1968).

    • Poole, A.L.: "Domesday Book to Magna Carta" (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1951, 1953)

    • Stenton, Sir Frank W.: "Anglo-Saxon England" (Oxford University Press, Oxford, 1943, 1947, 1971)

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