cerdic of wessex

His depiction in the 2004 CE film King Arthur is emblematic of the problem in identifying who he actually was. Nothing more is heard of him until 508, when he defeated the Britons with great slaughter. by Metropolitan Museum of Art (Copyright). Even though the Anglo-Saxon Chronicles seem to present Cerdic as a Saxon war leader, it has been noted by a number of historians besides Morris or the Rudmins (such as Professor Johann P. Sommerville of the University of Wisconsin) that "Cerdic" is a British name, not Saxon. Although a narrative of Cerdic's life and reign can be constructed by this method, it does not mean that the generally accepted dates are the correct ones. Even the claim that all English monarchs descended from Cerdic is open to question since, as Collins notes, "Genealogical information is equally dubious. We have also been recommended for educational use by the following publications: Ancient History Encyclopedia Foundation is a non-profit organization registered in Canada. The confusion has a special cause. This same paradigm could hold true for the original name of the kingdom before it was known as "The Kingdom of the West Saxons" and then shortened to "Wessex". This took place at ‘Natanleaga’, generally identified today with Netley Marsh. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Early sources, traditional legends, and later novels claim he fought against King Arthur but also claim he was granted Wessex by that king.

In fact, this may be confirmed by the name of one of Arthur’s three main Saxon enemies in Geoffrey of Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britanniae:  Cheldric. Of course, we are not saying that he could not have been a Briton. In addition, the fact that Cerdic is described as an enemy to the Britons is not a fact that can just be dismissed. (See House of Wessexfamily tree). It is worth nothing that in Nennius, Chapter 37, Ceretic is the name of [King] Hengist's interpreter". His influence was so profound that later genealogies of the English monarchy would claim that all the sovereigns of Britain, save for Canute, Hardecanute, the Harolds, and William the Conqueror, were descended from him. [The later Saxon king] Ceawlin's relationship to Cerdic and Cynric is never specified in the Chronicle, though he is said in the entry for the year 560 to have succeeded to the kingdom of Wessex that they created" (178). The Anglo-Saxon Chronicles are manuscripts first begun in the late 9th century CE under the reign of Alfred the Great (849-899 CE). Thank you!

License. Other explanations for Wessex being originally known as The Kingdom of Gewisse make far less sense, such as the claim that it was named for Cerdic's mother. The easier ambiguities of the Kent and Sussex annals are the consequences of fading memory and of tradition ill-understood; but the Wessex entries are the deliberate contrivance of ninth-century scholars, devised to serve the political needs of their own day. All of these similarities, it is claimed, prove Arthur and Cerdic to be one historical figure whose exploits were so notable that they were mythologized by later writers as the Arthurian Legends, which were finally collected, edited, and substantially expanded upon by Sir Thomas Malory in the 15th century CE. It must be suspected that the place names preceded the persons referred to, rather than the reverse, and that the history of the latter was concocted to explain the existence of the former (178). In contrast, Cheldric was said to have died in the immediate aftermath of the Battle of Badon, which is generally placed in the first quarter of the sixth century. A Continental ealdorman who in 495 landed in Hampshire, Cerdic was attacked at once by the Britons. Additionally, although the chronology and pattern of events do not perfectly line up between the HRB and the ASC, Cheldric is nonetheless described as gaining control of Dorset and Wiltshire, which would place him very close to where the ASC places Cerdic. Finally, in 534, Cerdic’s death is recorded, and the kingdom passed to his son Cynric. "Cerdic." When this situation is understood, there is really no reason to think it peculiar that Cerdic, this supposedly Saxon leader, had a British name. All the sovereigns of England except Canute, Hardecanute, the two Harolds, and William the Conqueror are said to be descended from him. This was also in Hampshire, quite near the coast, so apparently they had not yet progressed very far through the country by this point.

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