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  • #16
    Originally posted by DOR View Post
    Amateurs. I'm surrounded by a bunch of amateurs.

    You want old?
    Are you sure, because I don't think you can handle old.


    I can read, and write ... cursively.

    wait for it

    wait for it

    By hand.

    *mike drop*
    Oh, really. So when you sign your name it is possible to read each and every letter in your name clearly?

    I was taught by nuns so you know what that means.


    • #17
      Originally posted by Bigfella View Post

      I'm not sure I can be much help with your book, but as it will obviously include a fair bit around 1066 I would urge you to find a place in the narrative for some detail on Harald Hardrara, who met his end at Stamford Bridge that year. A Viking who fought for the Kievan Rus as well as Byzantine Emperors, he is easily the most interesting figure in that whole drama, William included. He could have his own book, but at the very least offers scope for some interesting chapters.
      Yea got his family in near the start in the shape of his half brother Olaf Haraldsson who it is said was in Normandy in early 1014 and then visited/attacked London (according to an Icelandic saga) with Ethelred the Unready when he returned in March/April 1014. Nothing of this sort is mentioned in the Anglo Saxon chronicle though some moorish records speak of 'viking attacks' in Spain just before this time which are thought to have been Olaf (later St Olaf having been 'converted' in Normandy. So it's a matter of choosing which account to go with or trying to fuse two or more accounts.

      Olaf and Harald, as well as the Norman Duke at that time (Richard ll) who's sister was married to Ethelred of Wessex/England who had been driven out of England at the end of 1013 (and others in modern day Sweden) were pretty much an 'anti Sweyn 'Forkbeard' - and his successor Cnut - club. When Sweyn dies in February 1014 Ethelred returns to England and Olaf returns to Norway where he becomes King in 1015. I think basically what happened is that when Sweyn died there must have been some question as to who should succeed - Cnut who was with the army in England or his brother Harald who was then regent of Denmark and during this temporary indecision the 'opposition' to the Danish hegemony seek to strike back so at Christmas 1013 (and of course they used the Julian calendar) Sweyn had his son Harald managing Denmark for him, ruled most of Norway and had driven the Anglo Saxon King abroad to Normandy. One year later Ethelred is back in England, Olaf is King in Norway and Cnut is negotiating with his brother Harald in Denmark. If you'd have bet on a winning side at Christmas 1014 Cnut looked the weaker.

      The other thing about Olaf Haraldsson (who Cnut eventually forced out of Norway in 1028) is his marriage to Astrid Olofsdatter who was the daughter of Olaf Skotkonung of Sweden. Olaf S- had before fought with Sweyn Forkbeard, his step father in Norway and split it between them. Olaf S- was also a half brother of Cnut's by their Mother Sigrid 'the Haughty' (who may have been Polish). After Sweyn dies he along with the others sees a chance so when Olaf Haralsson returns and regains Norway they make an alliance by Olaf's marriage to Olof's daughter (Astrid). But Astrid's sister (Ingegerd or 'Saint Anna' or Irene) is married to Yaroslav of Novgorod (who later becomes Yaroslav 'the Wise' of all Kyivan Rus. So when Olaf Haraldsson, with his half brother Harald (later 'Hardrada') and son Magnus attempt to make a come back in Norway in 1030 but are defeated (Olaf dies in the attempt) the half brother and son naturally flee east as obviously the son's (Magnus's) aunt the wife of the ruler of Kyivan Rus and that is why Harald Hardrada finds his way to Constantinople. Harald later married a daughter of Yaroslav and 'Saint Anna' called Elisiv of Kyiv and it is possible that one of her sisters was the mysterious Agatha who married Edward the Exile. But certainly the sons of Edmund Ironside (Ethelred's son) followed the same 'escape route' to escape from Cnut while he lived and must all have met at one time or another in Kyiv.

      Another interesting (to me at least) thing to note which perhaps says something about how much Anglo Saxons could understand the changing dialects of the Norwegian, Danish, Swedish and Varangians (who became the rulers of Kyivan Rus and formed the Guard of the Emperor) is to compare names - even to today.

      So take Ethelred 'the Unready', (Harald) Hardrada and the name of the Ukrainian 'parliament' today; the Verkhovna Rada.

      So Ethelred is a modern formulation of 'aethel' and 'rede'. 'Aethel' means something like 'noble' or 'royal' so a Prince is an 'Aetheling' as in "Edgar the Aetheling" and 'red(e)' means 'counsel' as you can still say in English "My rede would be to delay/act now whatever' meaning my 'advice'/counsel. The 'Unready' that we use today to describe this particular King is derived from the same 'rede'/'rada' base but was Ethelred's nickname as it were which in previous times would have spelled more like 'unredy'. It is essentially a contradiction of his real name and so Ethelred the Unready would translate in modern terms as "Noble counsel no counsel" or something along those lines.

      With Harald 'Hardrada/r' the same 'rada/r' root is in the nickname so while 'Hard' probably has a similar meaning; 'stern' or something the 'rade/r' is the same as the 'rede' in Ethel -red meaning 'counsel'.

      Both give rise the name of todays Ukrainian Parliament the "Verkhovna Rada" which means "Supreme Council" and this again speaks of the old Anglo Saxon, Norse and Varangian common heritage.

      So yes - don't worry about your guy Harald; his lineage and motivations is part of the story though it follows principally the line of Edmund Ironside who's sons followed the same 'escape route' to Kyiv when Harald and his nephew Magnus were there. It is possible that Harald 'Hardrada' who married Elisiv of Kyiv (the daughter of Yaroslav 'the Wise' and Ingegerd Olofdottir) may have been related by marriage to Edward 'the Exile' (Edmund Ironside's son) but we do not know who Edward's Wife 'Agatha' was for sure. But IF their wives were sisters when Harald invaded Englang in 1066 Harald's daughter (another Ingegerd presumably named for the Grandmother) would have been cousins with the Queen of Scotland Margaret.

      Complicated but kind of makes sense.
      Last edited by snapper; 30 May 20,, 09:43.


      • #18
        Originally posted by DOR View Post
        I can read, ... cursively.


        By hand.
        Well, senaility is a sign of old age.