ALDBOROUGH ROMAN SITE
9.8 miles from Spofforth Castle
12.5 miles from Spofforth Castle
Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden
Way past the time OUR Websters had left
13.5 miles from Spofforth Castle
9000 BC Victoria Cave Human activity It was discovered by chance in 1837 and since then has been completely excavated. Within the cave’s thick clay deposits, scientists found an amazing record of climate change in the Dales over thousands of years. Some of our Websters might have been aware of the 1837 discovery. [~ 45 miles from Spofforth]
3500 BC Thornborough Henges West Tanfield, Ripon, Yorkshire "the most important prehistoric site between Stonehenge and the Orkneys". ... Thornborough is unusual in that its stones are aligned with the three stars of Orion's belt. Thornborough is part of a larger ritual landscape including the standing stones at nearby Boroughbridge. "The henges were first recorded on the Ordnance maps of the 1840s and 1850s, but were not "noticed" as such until 1864, when a local antiquary, the Reverend William Lukis, embarked one of those campaigns of excavation that is emblematic of the period (see Harding, 2013). The henges escaped further attention until the mid 1950s"... link [ 27 mi N of Spofforth] It is very unlikely any Websters were aware of this site.
1600 BC Rudston Monolith at over 7.6 metres (25 ft) is the tallest megalith (standing stone) in the United Kingdom. It is situated in the churchyard in the village of Rudston (grid reference TA098678) in the East Riding of Yorkshire. [5 mi west of Bridlington]. the monolith and several henges and mounds follow the valley of the stream known as the Gypsey Race. Genuki Rudston article indicates it was mentioned at least by the 1820s. All Saints church in Rudston is a lovely early Norman church built around the year 1100 by William Peverel, lord of the manor. Of that Norman church the tower remains, and you can still trace the original west entrance in the stonework at the west end of the church. http://www.britainexpress.com/attractions.htm?attraction=4571. With visits to Bridlington, it would be very hard for our recent Websters to miss such a large megalith so close by.
500s BC Yorkshire become the home of the The Brigantes tribe.
70s AD Romans defeat the Brigantes
71 AD Eboracum (York) is founded bt the Roman ninth Legion, It becomes the capital of Northern Britain.
80s Yorkshire is pacified and becomes part of Roman Britain
214 York becomes the capital of Brigantium Inferior, (Lower Britain)
293 York becomes the capital of Brigantium Secunda, (Lesser Britain)
306 Constantine [The Great] declared Emperor in York
The first Roman emperor to claim conversion to Christianity, Constantine played an influential role in the proclamation of the Edict of Milan in 313, which decreed tolerance for Christianity in the empire
After his promotion to emperor, Constantine remained in Britain, driving back the tribes of the Picts and secured his control in the northwestern dioceses. He completed the reconstruction of military bases begun under his father's rule, and ordered the repair of the region's roadways. wiki
410 - Emperor Honorius of Rome tells Britain to attend to its own affairs. Zosmius reports Roman officials expelled and native government establishes "independence".
413 - The spread of the Pelagian heresy is said to have begun, by Prosper (Tiro) of Aquitaine in his "Chronicle".
418 - The Pelagian heresy is outlawed in Rome.
413 opposed the idea of predestination and asserted a strong version of the doctrine of free will.
c.423 - Birth of St. Patrick in Banna Venta Burniae, thought to be near Birdoswald.
420 on -- Kingdoms make efforts to consolidate and defend positions and power include Irish and requests from the church to send assistance to fight the Pelagian heresy.
425 - Vortigern usurps Imperial power in Britain, possibly as High-King.
c.445-50 - A period of Civil War and famine in Britain, caused by the ruling council's weakness and inability to deal with Pictish invasions. The situation is aggravated by tensions between the Pelagian and Roman factions. Semi-desertion of many towns. Migration of pro-Roman citizens toward the West. The country begins to be become divided, geographically, along factional lines.
c.448 - Civil war and plague ravage Britain.
450s Start of Anglian kingdom of Deira East Yorkshire
c.451 - During the consulship of Marcian and Valentinian (450-7), Hengest arrives on the shores of Britain with '3 keels' of warriors, and are welcomed by Vortigern. This event later becomes known as the Adventus Saxonum - "the coming of the Saxons".
c.452 - There is increasing Saxon settlement in Britain. Vortigern marries Hengest's daughter, Rowenna, and supposedly offers the Jutish leader the kingdom of Kent. Hengest invites his son, Octha, from Germany with "16 keels" of warriors, who occupy the northern lands, to defend against the Picts. Pictish invasions cease soon afterward.
c.453 - Raids on British towns and cities becoming more frequent. Increasing Saxon unrest.
455 - Prince Vortimer apparently rebels against the pro-Saxon policies of his father, Vortigern, and fights Hengest at the Battle of Derguentid (Crayford). Hengest is victorious and the British army flees back to London.
456 - The indecisve Battle of Rithergabail (Aylesford) in which the rebellious sons of Vortigern, Vortimer and Cadeyrn, defeat Hengest for the first time. Cadeyrn is killed in the fighting.
c.456 - St. Patrick leaves Britain once more to evangelise Ireland. The Saxons call the British nobles to a peace conference at Stonehenge, then turn on them and massacre almost everyone. This is the original 'Night of the Long Knives'.
c.458 - The Saxon uprising is in full-swing. Hengest finally conquers Kent.
c.458-60 - Full-scale migration of British aristocrats and city-dwellers across the English Channel to Armorica, in north-western Gaul. The British contingent may have been led by one Riothamus.
c.459 - Vortigern is burnt to death while being besieged by Ambrosius Aurelianus at Ganarew.
c.460 - Death of King Vortimer Fendigaid of Gwerthefyriwg. He is succeeded by his son-in-law, Ynyr, a minor prince of the House of Dyfed. He changes the Kingdom's name to Gwent, after its capital city of Caer-Gwent (Caerwent).
c.460-70 - Ambrosius Aurelianus, from the pro-Roman faction, takes full control of Britain, leading the Britons in years of back-and-forth fighting with Saxons. The British strategy seems to have been to allow Saxon landings and to then contain them there.
464 - Supposed death of the legendary King Aldrien of Brittany.
465 - Battle of Lapis Tituli (Richborough alias Wippedsfleet), in which the Britons defeat the Saxons, but with great slaughter on both sides. The latter are confined to the Isle of Thanet and there is a respite from fighting "for a long time."
c.465 - High-King Arthur probably born around this time. Birth of St. Dyfrig also.
c.466-73 - A period of minimal Saxon activity. Re-fortification of ancient hillforts and construction of the Wansdyke possibly take place during this time.
c.469 - The Roman Emperor, Anthemius, appeals to the Britons for military help against the Visigoths. Reliable accounts, by Sidonius Apolonaris and Jordanes, name the leader of the 12,000 man Breton force as Riothamus. The bulk of the British force is wiped out in battle against Euric, the Visigothic King, and the survivors, including Riothamus, vanish and are never heard from again.
c.471 - The army of King Ceretic of Strathclyde raids the Irish Coast and carries off some of St. Patrick's new flock and sells them into slavery. The King receives a written reprimand from the Irish Evangelist.
473 - The men of Kent, under Hengest, move westward, driving the Britons back before them "as one flees fire."
c.475 - Death of King Gwrast Ledlwm of Rheged. His kingdom is divided between his sons: Meirchion Gul retains the central Rheged homeland and Masgwid Gloff becomes King of Elmet. The death of King Mor of Greater Ebrauc occurs around the same time. He is succeeded by his son, Arthwys, who probably takes the opportunity to seize the Peak District from Elmet.
477 - The Saxon chieftain, Aelle, lands on the Sussex coast with his sons. The Britons engage him upon landing but his superior force besieges them at Caer-Anderida (Pevensey) and drives them into the Weald.
477-486 - Saxon coastal holdings are gradually expanded in Sussex.
c.480 - Traditional ascendancy of Arthur to the High-Kingship of Britain. King Erbin of Dumnonia abdicates in favour of his son, King Gerren Llygesoc. Death of King Glywys of Glywysing. His kingdom is divided into Gwynllwg, Penychen, Gorfynedd, Edeligion and others.
c.485 - Birth of St. Samson.
c.485-96 - Period of King Arthur's "twelve battles" during which he gains a reputation for invincibility.
486 - Aelle and his sons overreach their normal territory and are engaged by the Britons at battle of Mercredesburne. The Battle is bloody, but indecisive, and ends with both sides pledging friendship.
c.487 - Birth of St. David.
c.490 - Hengest dies. His son, Aesc, takes over and rules for 34 years. Death of Einion Yrth of Gwynedd. His kingdom is divided into Gwynedd and Rhos. St. Cybi Felyn is born in Callington in Cerniw. Death of King Cinuit of Strathclyde. The major portion of his kingdom is inherited by his eldest son, Dumnagual Hen. Galwyddel & Ynys Manaw, however, become independent under the rule of his younger son, Tutgual.
493 - Death of St. Patrick, in Glastonbury according to local legend. Down Patrick seems more likely.
c.495 - The Germanic King Cerdic and his son, Cynric, land somewhere on the south coast, probably near the Hampshire-Dorset border. Their followers establish the beginnings of the Kingdom of Wessex. King Gwynllyw of Gwynllwg carries off Princess Gwladys of Brycheiniog. War between the two kingdoms is narrowly avoided by the intercession of the legendary King Arthur. The couple marry.
Part 2: AD 496 -599
c.496 - The Siege of Mount Badon. The Britons, under the command of the "war leader" Arthur, defeat the Saxons, under King Esla of Bernicia and probably Cerdic of Wessex. Probable expulsion of King Mark of Cerniw. He flees to his Principality of Poher in Brittany. King Gerren Llyngesoc of Dumnonia give Cerniw to his younger brother, Salom.
c.496-537 - Following the victory at Mount Badon, the Saxon advance is halted with the invaders returning to their own enclaves. A generation of peace ensues. Corrupt leadership, more civil turmoil, public forgetfulness and individual apathy further erode Romano-British culture over the next fifty years, making Britain ripe for the final Saxon "picking."
497 - Birth of St. Cadog. Death of former King Erbin of Dumnonia.
c.500-17 - King Cadwallon Lawhir expels the Irish from Anglesey.
c.500 - Death of King Arthwys of Ebrauc. His kingdom is divided amongst his sons: Eliffer takes Ebrauc and Pabo takes the Pennines. The others may have held smaller areas.
c.505 - Death of St. Paulinus of Wales.
c.507 - A pestilence strikes Cerniw and its Royal family flee the ensuing famine. King Fracan settles in Ploufragan in Brittany and does not return. Birth of his son, St. Winwaloe. Cerniw probably falls back under the control of Dumnonia.
508 - King Cerdic of Wessex begins to move inland and defeats British king, Nudd-Lludd (Natanleod), at the Battle of Netley.
c.510 - The Battle of Llongborth (possibly Langport or Portsmouth), where King Gerren Llyngesoc of Dumnonia, was killed. Prince Riwal of Brittany murders his brother, King Meliau, and usurps the Breton throne. Many of the Breton Royal family flee to Britain, including Prince Budic who seeks refuge at the court of King Aircol Lawhir in Dyfed.
517 - Death of King Cadwallon Lawhir of Gwynedd. His son, Maelgwn takes the throne, murders his uncle, probably King Owain Danwyn of Rhos, and re-unites the two kingdoms.
517-49 - King Maelgwn flourishes in Gwynedd. Invades Dyfed and generally tries to assert himself as High-King of Britain.
519 - The Kingdom of the Wessex is founded with Cerdic, a leader probably of mixed Saxo-Celtic birth.
c.520 - King Pabo Post Prydain of the Pennines abdicates his throne in order to retire to a hermitage on Ynys Mon (Anglesey). He divides his kingdom between his two sons: Dunaut Bwr and Sawyl Penuchel. The former founds Dunoting in the North while the latter holds the Peak District in the South. Their cousin, Cynwyd, is probably forced to seek land elsewhere and establishes his own Kingdom of Cynwydion, around the Chiltern Hills. Death of King Riwal Mawr Marchou of Domnonée. King Budic II of Brittany returns to Cornouaille to claim the Breton throne.
521 - St. Samson is consecrated a bishop by St. Dyfrig, Archbishop of Glywysing & Gwent.
523 - Death of King Gwynllyw of Gwynllwg. Gwnllywg and Penychen are united under his son, St. Cadog
c.525 -St. Samson founds the Monastery of Dol and becomes its first Abbot.
c.528 - King & Saint Cadog of Glywysing abdicates in favour of King Meurig of Gwent, who is joined in marriage to Cadog's aunt. Banishment of Princess Thaney of Gododdin. Birth of her son, St. Kentigern.
530 - Saint Pabo Post Prydain, former King of the Pennines dies at Llanbabo. The British of the Isle of Wight are defeated by King Cerdic of Wessex at the Battle of Carisbrooke.
c.530 - St. Ninian founds the cathedral at Whithorn. He is opposed by King Tutgual Tutclyd of Strathclyde.
c.535 - Kings Sawyl Penuchel of the Southern Pennines is expelled from his kingdom (enemy uncertain) and flees to Powys. The Saxons of Mercia probably move into the area. Death of King Meirchion Gul of Rheged. The kingdom is divided into North and South. Death of St. Illtud, Abbot of Llanilltud Fawr.
537 - Battle of Camlann (according to the Annales Cambriae which may record the event up to twenty years late), fought between the forces of Arthur and the rebellious Medrod. Death od both. Saint and King Constantine, ruling in Dumnonia, takes on the High-Kingship.
c.538 - King Cynlas Goch of Rhos abandons his wife in favour of his sister-in-law, a nun who he drags from her convent. Civil War between Cynlas and his cousin, King Maelgwn of Gwynedd. Maelgwn enters a monastery, but soon returns to secular life and murders his nephew in order to marry his widow! Civil War also in Powys due to the tyranny of King Cyngen Glodrydd.
540 - King Jonas of Domnonée is murdered by King Cono-Mark of Cerniw and Poher. Cono-Mark marries Jonas' widow and rules Domnonée.
c.540 - Probable writing of Gildas' "De Excidio Britanniae." King Caradog Freichfras of Gwent gives Caerwent to St. Tathyw and moves the Royal court to Portskewett. Death of King Cedic of Strathclyde. His kingdom is divided between at least two of his sons: Tutgual Tutclyd retains central Strathclyde, while Senyllt receives the area around Selkirk.
545 - Death of the joint-Kings Budic II and his son Hoel I Mawr of Brittany. King Tewdwr Mawr succeeds to the throne, but is quickly ousted from Cornouaille by King Macliau of the Vannetais. Tewdwr flees to Cerniw and sets himself up as King of the Penwith region.
c.545 - The Synod of Brefi is held at Llandewi Brefi to condemn the Pelagian heresy. St. Dyfrig, Archbishop of South Wales resigns his position in favour of St. David. David moves the Archdiocese from Caerleon to St. Davids. Death of St. Dyfrig. He is succeeded as Bishop of Glywysing & Gwent by St. Teilo. Death of King Cynwyd of Cynwydion. He is succeeded by his son, Cadrod, who renames the Kingdom Calchfynedd after its chalk hills. Prince Judwal of Domnonée flees from his murderous step-father to the court of King Childebert of the Franks.
546 - St. Cadog returns to Brittany.
547 - The King of Bryneich is expelled from his fortress of Bamburgh by King Ida of Bernicia. Apparent death of the, probably joint-king, Hoel II Fychan of Brittany.
c.548 - King Cono-Mark of Cerniw, Poher and Domnonée marries Princess Triphine of Broërec.
549 - A 'Yellow' Plague hits the British territories, causing many deaths, including King Maelgwn of Gwynedd. Ireland is also affected. The Saxons in the south and east seem to be unaffected by it.
c.550 - Death of St. Ninian, Bishop of Whithorn. King Senyllt of Galwyddel is expelled from the mainland portion of his kingdom by the forces of King Tutgual Tutclyd of Strathclyde. He flees with his family to Ynys Manaw. In the confusion, Prince Gwenddoleu of Ebrauc seizes the area around Caer-Wenddoleu (Carwinley). A probable land shortage in Strathclyde forces Prince Clydno to invade Gododdin and take control of Din-Eidyn (Edinburgh). The Birth of St. Tremeur. Murder of his mother, Triphine, by his father, King Cono-Mark of Cerniw, Poher and Domnonée. Prince Judwal of Domnonée retakes his throne. Cono-Mark flees to Cornwall. The semi-legendary Kingdom of Lyonesse possibly inundated by the sea.
552 - King Cynric of Wessex lays siege to the British at Old Sarum and put them to flight.
c.553 - St. Kentigern Garthwys founds Glasgow Cathedral, adjoining a Christian cemetery established by St. Ninian at the request of the local monarch, possibly Prince Riderch Hael of Strathclyde.
c.554 - Death of King Tutgual Tutclyd of Strathclyde. The kingdom is probably divided between his sons, Morcant Mwynfawr & Riderch Hael.
555 - St. Cybi Felyn, Abbot of Holyhead, dies at his monastery. Murder of St. Tremeur. Death of his father, King Cono-Mark of Cerniw and Poher.
c.555 - Death of King Erb of Gwent. The kingdom is divided into Gwent and Ergyng. St. Kentigern Garthwys, Bishop of Glasgow, tours his diocese and is opposed by King Morcant Mwynfawr of Lesser Strathclyde.
556 - King Cynric of Wessex lays siege to the British at Barbury Castle and is victorious.
558 - Broërec is attacked by King Childebert of the Franks. King Canao II leads resistance.
c.560 - Prince Elidyr of Strathclyde invades Gwynedd in right of his wife. He tries to expel his brother-in-law, King Rhun Hir of Gwynedd, at the Battle of the Cadnant Brook, but is killed in the process. Due to heightened persecution by King Morcant Mwynfawr of Lesser Strathclyde, St. Kentigern Garthwys flees his Glasgow diocese for the safety of South Wales, before moving Northwards to Llanelwy (St. Asaphs).
564 - Death of St. Tugdual, Bishop of Tréguier.
c.564 - St. Cadog settles in Weedon in Calchfynedd and is made Bishop there. St. Samson attends the Council of Paris and witnesses several Royal decrees.
c.565 - King Riderch Hael of Strathclyde mounts an unsuccessful revenge attack on King Rhun Hir of Gwynedd. Rhun marches on Strathclyde and reinforces the armies of his half-brother, Brudei, in Pictland. Death of St. Samson. St. Gildas retuns to Ireland for a while and then retires to Llantokay (Street) in Glastening.
569 - St. David holds the Synod of Victoria to denounce the Pelagian heresy once more.
570 - Death of St. Gildas at Llantokay (Street). He is buried at Glastonbury Abbey.
c.570-75 - The Northern British Alliance is forged between the kingdoms of North Rheged, Strathclyde, Bryneich and Elmet. They fight the Northumbrians at the Battles of Gwen Ystrad and the Cells of Berwyn
571 - King Cuthwulf of Wessex invades Midland Britain and conquers the British, probably under King Cadrod of Calchfynedd, at the Battle of Bedford.
573 - Kings Peredur and Gwrgi of Ebrauc ally themselves with Kings Dunaut Bwr of the Northern Pennines and Riderch Hael of Strathclyde. They march north to claim the fort at Caer-Laverock from King Gwenddoleu of Caer-Wenddoleu. The latter was killed in the Battle of Arderydd (Arthuret) and his bard, Myrddin, is forced to flee into the Caledonian Forest.
574 - St. Kentigern Garthwys leaves his Northern Welsh diocese of Llanelwy (St. Asaphs) in the hands of St. Asaph and returns to Strathclyde to reclaim the Bishopric of Glasgow.
c.574 - After defeating King Gwenddoleu, the security of Strathclyde is at a low ebb. King Urien of North Rheged takes advantage of the situation and conquers Galwyddel.
575 - Prince Owein of North Rheged kills King Theodoric of Bernicia at the Battle of Leeming Lane.
577 - Wessex invades the lower Severn Valley. Kings Ffernfael of Caer-Baddan (Bath), Cyndyddan of Caer-Ceri (Cirencester) and Cynfael of Caer-Gloui (Gloucester) are killed at the Battle of Dyrham. Wessex overuns the Cirencester area. King Tewdwr Mawr of Brittany returns to Cornouaille, reclaims his throne and kills King Macliau of the Vannetais in battle.
580 - The army of Kings Peredur and Gwrgi of Ebrauc march north to fight the Anglians of Bernicia. Both are killed by King Adda's forces at Caer Greu. The Deirans rise up, under King Aelle, and move on the City of Ebrauc. King Peredur's son is forced to flee the Kingdom. St. Cadog is martyred in Calchfynedd by invading Mercians.
584 - Death of St. Deiniol Gwyn, Bishop of Bangor Fawr. The British are victorious over King Ceawlin of Wessex at the Battle of Fethanleigh and kill his brother, Cuthwine. Ceawlin ravages the surrounding countryside in revenge.
585 - Death of King Alain I of Brittany.
586 - Death of King Rhun Hir of Gwynedd. Death of King Judwal of Domnonée.
588 - King Edwin of Deira is ousted from his Kingdom by the Bernicians and seeks refuge at the court of King Iago of Gwynedd.
589 - Death of Saint and King Constantine of Dumnonia. Death of St. David, Archbishop of St. Davids.
590 - The Siege of Ynys Metcaut (Lindisfarne). The Northern British Alliance (North Rheged, Strathclyde, Bryneich and Elmet) lays siege to King Hussa of Bernicia and almost exterminates the Northumbrians from Northern Britain. King Urien of North Rheged is assassinated at the behest of his jealous ally King Morcant Bulc of Bryneich. The Northumbrians recover while internal squabbles tear the British Alliance apart.
c.591 - King Dunaut Bwr of the Northern Pennines mounts an invasion of North Rheged, but is repulsed by its King, Owein, and his brother, Prince Pasgen. Prince Elffin of North Rheged is simultaneously attacked by King Gwallawc Marchawc Trin of Elmet.
c.593 - King Morcant Bulc of Bryneich invades North Rheged and kills King Owein in battle. Prince Pasgen of North Rheged flees to the Gower Peninsula. A greatly diminished North Rheged probably continues under the rule of their brother, Rhun.
595 - The aging King Dunaut Bwr of the Northern Pennines dies fighting off a Bernician invasion. His kingdom is overrun and his family flee to join his grandson in Gwynedd.
598 - King Mynyddog Mwynfawr & Prince Cynan of Din-Eidyn ride south to fight Saxon Bernicia against enormous odds at the Battle of Catraeth (Catterick). The British are victorious, though King Gerren of Dumnonia is killed in the fighting. He is buried at Dingerein. Probable expansion of North & South Rheged to fill the vacuum left in North Yorkshire. Din-Eidyn (Edinburgh) possibly falls back under Gododdin control.
Part 3: AD 600-699
c.600 - Welsh bard, Prince Aneirin of the Northern Pennines, writes the poem, Y Gododdin, recording the events of the Battle of Catterick.
601 - The Synod of Chester. Death of St. Asaph, Bishop of Llanelwy.
602 - St. Augustine of Canterbury meets with the Welsh Bishops at Aust near Chepstow. He accuses them of acting contrary to Church teachings, failing to keep Easter at the prescribed Roman time and not administering baptism according to the Roman rite. He also insists that they help in the conversion of their enemy, the Saxons, and look to Canterbury as their spiritual centre. The Welsh tactfully decline.
604 - The Welsh Bishops meet for a second time with St. Augustine of Canterbury. He neglects to rise to greet them, lectures them again and insists they submit to him. The Welsh send him packing. They refuse to recognise the authority of a church within their enemies' territory under such a disrespectful bishop.
607 - Death of King Judhael of Domnonée. His son, Haelioc takes the throne and attempts to exterminate his brothers.
c.610 - King Aethelfrith of Bernicia overruns most of British Bryneich. King Coledauc probably withdraws to the Northern parts of the kingdom. Probable reunification of Strathclyde, probably due to Northumbrian pressures in the border regions.
612 - Death of St. Kentigern, Bishop of Glasgow. Death of King Hoel III of Brittany.
613 - King Aethelfrith of Bernicia invades Gwynedd in order to route out his old enemy, King Edwin of Deira. A united British force (Gwynedd, Powys, Pengwern and Dumnonian warriors) clashes with his army at the Battle of Chester. Kings Iago of Gwynedd and Selyf Sarffgadau of Powys and Prince Cadwal Cryshalog of Rhos are all killed but the victor is unclear. The Battle of Bangor-is-Coed follows in quick succession. King Bledric of Dumnonia is killed in the fighting and 1000 monks are massacred by the Northumbrians.
614 - King Cynegils of Wessex invades the old tribal territory of the Durotoges and defeats the local army (probably under the British aristocracy based in Wareham) at the Battle of Bindon.
c.614 - Proposed annexation of Powys by the Dogfeiling Prince, Eluan Powys, with the help of his brother, King Cynddylan of Pengwern, "oppressor of the Cadelling". The sons of the Cadelling king, Selyf Sarffgadau of Powys, are later described as "landless oafs". The Tarvin-Macefen boundary between Powys and Mercia is delineated.
616 - Prince Hereric of Deira id poisnoned at the court of King Ceretic of Elmet.
617 - King Edwin of Deira invades and conquers Elmet. King Ceretic of Elmet is killed in the fighting.
c.620 - King Tewdrig Fendigaid of Glywysing & Gwent abdicates in favour of his son, Meurig. King Llywarch Hen is expelled from South Rheged, probably by King Edwin of Deira. Llywarch flees to Powys and becomes a famous bard.
c.623 - King Edwin of Deira is baptised by Prince Rhun of North Rheged, according to the Historia Brittonum. This may have been at the old Royal Court of South Rheged.
625 - King Cadfan of Gwynedd dies and is buried at Llangadwaladr where his memorial stone can still be seen. His son, King Cadwallon, succeeds to the throne. St. Tysilio re-founds the Monastery of Meifod.
c.625 - Death of King Haelioc of Domnonée. His brother, Judicael, succeeds to the throne.
c.626 - The rivalry between King Cadwallon of Gwynedd and King Edwin of Deira reaches a climax. Edwin invades the Ynys Manaw (Isle of Man) and then Ynys Mon (Anglesey). Cadwallon is defeated in battle and is besieged on Puffin Island. He eventually flees to Brittany.
629 - St. Paulinus meets Blecca, the Praefectus Civitatis of Lincoln, and converts him to Christianity.
630 - The West Saxons invade Gwent. King Meurig defeats them, with the help of his aging father, at the Battle of Pont-y-Saeson. Death of King Neithon of Strathclyde.
c.630 - King Penda of Mercia besieges Exeter (possibly held by King Clemen of Dumnonia). King Cadwallon of Gwynedd lands nearby, from his Deiran imposed exile in Brittany. He negotiates an alliance with King Penda of Mercia and a united British and Saxon force moves north to re-take Gwynedd. The Deirans are defeated at the Battle of the Long Mountain and Cadwallon chases them back to Northumbria. The British ransack Northumbria and bring the kingdom to its knees.
632 - King Idris of Meirionydd is killed fighting the West Saxons on the Severn.
633 - The British, under King Cadwallon of Gwynedd, meet the Northumbrians in the Battle of Hatfield Chase. King Edwin of Deira is killed in the fighting and Cadwallon is victorious. Cadwallon is later besieged at York by Edwin's cousin and successor, Osric. The former is again victorious.
634 - King Cadwallon of Gwynedd slays both Kings Eanfrith of Bernicia and Osric of Deira rather than negotiate peace with them. Eanfrith's half-brother, Oswald succeeds to a united Northumbria. He gathers a force and clashes with King Cadwallon of Gwynedd at the Battle of Heavenfield. Cadwallon is killed and Oswald victorius. Cadafael Cadomedd usurps the Gwynedd throne and ousts Prince Cadwaladr. Civil War ensues in the kingdom. Death of the great poet, King Llywarch Hen of South Rheged, supposedly aged one hundred.
635 - King Judicael of Domnonée submits to the overlordship of King Dagobert of the Franks. An alliance is drawn up and the borders of the Breton kingdom agreed.
c.635 - King Meurig of Glywysing & Gwent invades Ergyng and re-unites the two kingdoms in the right of his wife. Probable extinction of the House of Bryneich. King Morcant the Last looses his last Cheviot outposts to the Northumbrians.
636 - King Judicael of Domnonée abdicates in order to enter the Monastery of St. Meven at Gaël. His brother, St. Judoc, declines the throne and flees to Ponthieu.
637 - Death of the retired King Judicael of Domnonée.
638 - Din-Eidyn (Edinburgh) is besieged by the Angles of Northumbria and they almost certainly conquer Gododdin. Probable death of King Rhun of Gododdin. Princess Rhiainfelt, heiress of North Rheged, marries Prince Oswiu of Northumbria. Northumbria embraces North Rheged in a peaceful takeover.
640 - Death of St. Tysilio, Abbot of Meifod.
642 - King Penda of Mercia commands a united British and Mercian force against King Oswald of Northumbria at the Battle of Maes Cogwy (Oswestry). The British contingent includes the army of Kings Cadafael Cadomedd of Gwynedd, Eluan of Powys and Cynddylan of Pengwern. Oswald is killed, and possibly Eluan also. The Mercians become dominant in Midland Britain. King Owen of Strathclyde halts Scottish expansion by killing King Domnal Brecc of Dalriada at the Battle of Strathcarron.
c.645 - Gwynedd and much of Wales is in the grasp of famine. Would be King Cadwaladr Fendigaid of Gwynedd flees to Brittany. Civil War continues in his kingdom.
c.650 - King Cloten of Dyfed marries Princess Ceindrech of Brycheiniog and unites the two kingdoms.
655 - King Cadafael Cadomedd of Gwynedd and his army join King Penda of Mercia and march on the Northumbrians. Penda clashes with King Oswiu at the Battle of Gai Campus (Winwaed), but Cadafael withdraws before the battle begins.
c.655 - King Morfael of Pengwern (re-)takes Wall (Staffs).
656 - King of Oswiu of Northumbria invades Pengwern and kills King Cynddylan in battle. His brother, King Morfael, and the remains of the family flee to Glastening. Mercians take control of Pengwern and may have invaded Powys at this time.
658 - King Cenwalh and the Wessex Saxons make a push against Dumnonia (possibly under a King Culmin). They are victorious at the Battle of Penselwood and the Dumnonia-Wessex border is set at the River Parrett. Death of King Judicael of Brittany.
661 - King Cenwalh of Wessex invades Dumnonia. He is victorious at the Battle of Posbury. Saxon settlers found Somerset in Eastern Dumnonia.
662 - Death of King Brochfael of Meirionydd
664 - Plague devastates Gwynedd. Probable death of King Cadafael Cadomedd there. King Cadwaladr Fendigaid of Gwynedd reasserts himself in his kingdom by sending his son, Ifwr, from Brittany to be regent. The Synod of Whitby determines that the Northern British should comply with the doctrines of Rome.
665 - The Second Battle of Badon
675 - Death of St. Judoc.
c.680 - St. Boniface educated at a Celtic Christian Monastery in Exeter.
682 - The West Saxons "drove the British [of Dumnonia] as far as the Sea" (possibly around Bideford). King Cadwaladr Fendigaid of Gwynedd dies on, or just after, a pilgrimage to Rome.
685 - St. Cuthbert visits Carlisle. King Ecgfrith of Northumbria marches his army north to engage the Picts at the Battle of Nechtansmere. The Scots and Strathclyde Britons probably join the Picts in a thorough defeat of the Saxon forces. The latter withdraw and lose much land south of the Forth to King Dumnagual of Strathclyde in the process.
690 - Death of King Alain II Hir of Brittany.
Part 4: AD 700-804
700 - King Gerren of Dumnonia receives a letter from St. Aldhelm, Abbot of Malmesbury, during his attendance at a Church Synod in Wessex. He insists that the Celtic Church of Dumnonia comply with the doctrines of Rome, as agreed with the Northern Celtic Church thirty-six years previously at the Synod of Whitby.
703 - Death of King Daniel Dremrudd of Brittany.
c.705 - King Gerren of Dumnonia grants land at Maker to Sherborne Abbey in an attempt to strengthen his position in the disputed regions of Dorset.
710 - King Gerren of Dumnonia clashes with King Ine of Wessex who manages to establish a fortress at Taunton.
c.710 - King Seisyll of Ceredigion invades Dyfed and conquers Ystrad Towi to create the greater kingdom of Seisyllwg. A reduced Dyfed and Brycheiniog both appear to have taken on the name of Rhainwg: King Rhain's kingdom now sliced in two.
712 - Death of King Idwal Iwrch of Gwynedd
717 - Death of St.Winnoc, Abbot of Wormhout.
c.720 - Contact between the Welsh Church and Yvi of Brittany is the last known link between the two Celtic countries. After this, each nation goes its own separate way. Death of King Rhain of Rhainwg. His kingdom, already physically divided, is now politically split between his sons, Tewdos (who takes Dyfed) and Tewdr (who takes Brycheiniog). Prince Sandde moves the exiled Royal House of South Rheged from Powys to Ynys Manaw when he married the island kingdom's heiress, Princess Celemion.
722 - King Ine of Wessex attempts a takeover of Dumnonia. His armies are crushed and have to withdraw. Death of King Bili of Strathclyde. King Teudebur succeeds to the throne.
c.730 - Civil War between King Tewdr of Brycheiniog and a rival claimant to his throne, his cousin, Awst. The latter is slain. Tewdr is persuaded to live in peace with Awst's son, Elwystl.
c.731 - King Elisedd of Powys expels the Mercians from his kingdom.
c.740 - Death of King Iudgual of Ynys Manaw. He is succeeded by his nephew, Prince Elidyr, the heir of the dispossessed House of South Rheged.
743 - Kings Aethelbald of Mercia and Ceolred of Wessex join forces to attack Gwent and Powys.
c.744 - Construction of Wat's Dyke. The border between Mercia and Powys is set here.
750 - The Strathclyde Britons under King Teudebur defeat Prince Talorgen of the Picts at the Battle of Mugdock. Decline of the power of King Angus I of the Picts.
c.750 - King Tewdr of Brycheiniog breaks the peace with his cousin, Elwystl, and murders him.
752 - Death of King Teudebur of Strathclyde. His son, Dumnagual, succeeds to the throne and promptly loses Kyle to King Eadberht of Northumbria.
754 - Death of King Rhodri Molwynog of Gwynedd. His son, King Cynan Dindaethwy, nominally succeeds to the throne, but he is very young and Caradog ap Meirion (of the House of Rhos) soon usurps the throne of Gwynedd
756 - Kings Angus I of the the Picts and Eadberht of Northumbria attack King Dumnagual of Strathclyde at Dumbarton. However, Eadberht's entire force is subsequently wiped out, probably by the Britons, at the Battle of Newburgh-on-Tyne.
760 - The Battle of Hereford is fought probably between the Mercians and the Kingdom of Brycheiniog under King Nowy Hen. Death of King Dumnagual of Strathclyde.
768 - Archbishop Elfoddw of Gwynedd persuades the Welsh Church to accept the Roman dating of Easter as agreed by the Northern British Church at the Synod of Whitby.
784 - Construction of Offa's Dyke, the artificial bank and ditch boundary between England and Wales, is begun at the command of King Offa of Mercia.
797 - Welsh forces, including those of Powys and Dyfed, clash with the Mercians at the Battle of Rhuddlan, when King Coenwulf tries to re-assert his domination of North-East Wales. King Maredydd of Dyfed is killed in the fighting. The Mercians push on westward.
798 - King Caradog of Gwynedd is killed fighting the Mercians of King Coenwulf in Snowdonia. King Cynan Dindaethwy retakes the throne, much to the disappointment of Caradog's son, Hywel Farf-Fehinog.
Part 5: AD 805-937
c.805 - King Egbert of Wessex formally establishes kingship over the people of Devon after a gradual integration over many years. Dumnonia is reduced to cover only the Cornish in Cerniw.
807 - Death of of King Arthwyr of Ceredigion.
808 - Death of Kings Rhain of Dyfed and Cadell of Powys.
809 - Death of Archbishop Elfoddw of Gwynedd.
810 - St. Davids is burnt.
811 - Death of King Owain of Dyfed. His son-in-law, Hyfaidd takes the throne.
812 - Degannwy, the capital of Gwynedd, is struck by lighning and burnt to the ground.
813 - King Cynan Dindaethwy of Gwynedd meets Hywel Farf-Fehinog in battle. Hywel is defeated.
814 - Prince Gryffydd of Powys is slain through the treachery of his brother Elisedd. Hywel Farf-Fehinog invades Anglesey and attacks his rival, King Cynan Dindaethwy of Gwynedd. Hywel is victorious, proclaims himself King and drives Cynan from the Gwynedd shores.
815 - The Kingdom of Cerniw is raided by King Egbert of Wessex and his Saxon armies from East to West.
816 - King Hywel Farf-Fehinog of Gwynedd is attacked by his rival, King Cynan Dindaethwy, on Anglesey. Cynan is killed. The English successfully invade Rhufoniog and also ravage the Snowdonia Mountains.
818 - King Coenwulf of Mercia raids Dyfed.
821 - King Coenwulf of Mercia dies in Basingwerk while preparing for another assault on Powys.
823 - The Mercians invade Powys, but are beaten back by King Cyngen. They also destroy the Gwynedd capital, Degannwy.
825 - Death of King Hywel Farf-Fehinog of Gwynedd. The kingdom is seized by King Merfyn Frych of Ynys Manaw (and South Rheged), grandson of his old rival, Kinf Cynan Dindaethwy. The men of Cerniw make a push into Saxon Devon and the two armies clash at the Battle of Gafelford (Camelford or Galford). The Cornish are probably victorious.
c.830 - Nynniaw, Abbot of Bangor Fawr, compiles the Historia Brittonum.
831 - Death of Bishop Sadyrnfyw of St. Davids.
836 - With King Merfyn Frych of Ynys Manaw absent in his newly acquired Kingdom of Gwynedd, Irish Viking invaders manage to take over the island.
838 - The British of Cerniw join forces with the Vikings and attack Saxon Wessex. King Egbert defeats them at the Battle of Hingston Down.
840 - Nobis becomes Bishop of St. Davids.
844 - Death of King Merfyn Frych of Gwynedd. His son, Rhodri Mawr, succeeds to the throne.
848 - The armies of Brycheiniog and Gwent clash at the Battle of Ffinnant. King Ithel of Gwent is killed in the fighting.
c.850 - "Eliseg's Pillar" is erected in Llantysilio-yn-Ial by King Cyngen of Powys as a memorial to his great grandfather King Elisedd (or Eliseg) and the power of the Powysian dynasty. Bishop Censteg of Dingerein (Cerniw) accepts the authority of Archbishop Ceolnoth of Canterbury. King Rhodri Mawr of Gwynedd develops Llanbedrgoch, and possibly other sites, as fortified settlements to protect the Welsh against Viking raids.
853 - Mercia and Wessex attack Powys.
854 - King Cyngen of Powys dies on a pilgrimage to Rome. His throne is seized by his nephew, King Rhodri Mawr of Gwynedd, and his sons expelled.
855 - Anglesey is ravaged by Dublin Vikings.
856 - King Rhodri Mawr of Gwynedd & Powys repels a major Viking invasion of Wales and kills their king, Gorm.
871 - Dumbarton, capital of King Artgal of Strathclyde, is destroyed by King Olaf of Norse Dublin and his Viking warriors.
872 - Death of King Gwrgon of Seisyllwg by drowning. The throne is taken by his son-in-law, King Rhodri Mawr of Gwynedd & Powys. King Artgal of Strathclyde is slain through the connivance of King Constantine I of Alba and his Viking allies. Artgal's son, Run, succeeds to the Strathclyde throne.
874 - Death of Bishop Nobis of St. Davids.
876 - Death of Dungarth, the last King of Cerniw. He was drowned during a hunting accident and buried at St. Cleer.
877 - The Vikings invade Wales once more and King Rhodri Mawr of Gwynedd, Powys & Seisyllwg is forced to flee to Ireland.
878 - King Rhodri Mawr of Gwynedd, Powys and Seisyllwg returns to his kingdoms, but is killed fighting the Mercians of King Ceolwulf II. His kingdoms are divided amongst his three sons, Anarawd, Merfyn and Cadell respectively. The Vikings winter in Dyfed. Death of King Run of Strathclyde. His son, Eochaid, succeeds to the throne and allies himself with his mother's cousin, King Giric of Alba. The two rule all Scotland together as joint-monarchs.
880 - King Anarawd of Gwynedd initiates a revenge attack on the Mercian armies and defeats them on the River Conwy.
c.881 - King Anarawd of Gwynedd and his brothers begin extensive military campaigns to quell resistance in Powys and Seisyllwg.
885 - Asser, a relative of Nobis, Bishop of St. Davids, is summoned to the court of King Alfred of England. He agrees to spend six months of the year in the King's service. Asser helps to enhance the literary status of the English Court and also to negotiate the recognition of Alfred as overlord of the South Welsh Kings.
c.885 - Kings Hyfaidd of Dyfed, Elisedd of Brycheiniog and Hywel of Glywysing are harassed by the armies of King Anarawd of Gwynedd. They seek the protection of King Alfred of England and submit to his overlordship. Anarawd seeks an alliance with the Norse Kings of York.
889 - Kings Eochaid and Giric of Alba, Strathclyde & the Picts are deposed by Viking invaders. The former's cousin takes the throne as King Donald II. The end of independent Strathclyde rule.
890 - King Donald II of Alba expels the British aristorcracy of Strathclyde. They flee south to North Wales.
893 - Death of King Hyfaidd of Dyfed. Battle of Buttington at which the Welsh under King Merfyn of Powys, and the English under King Alfred the Great, besiege and defeat the Danish army of Prince Hastein.
c.893 - Asser, the Welshman, is made Bishop of Sherborne.
894 - King Anarawd of Gwynedd's shaky alliance with the Vikings collapses. His kingdom is ravaged by the Norsemen. Anarawd is forced to ask for help from King Alfred of England and submits to his overlordship. Alfred imposes oppressive terms and forces Anarawd to confirmation in the Christian Church with Alfred as godfather. Bishop Asser of Sherborne, writes his "Life of King Alfred"
895 - King Anarawd of Gwynedd is supplied with English troops to assist in his reconquest of Seisyllwg. He is successful and his brother, King Cadell, is finally able to take his rightful place on the Seisyllwg throne.
896 - Brycheiniog and Gwent are ravaged by Haesten and his Viking pirate army.
c.900 - King Tewdr of Brycheiniog establishes his court on a crannog in the middle of Llangorse Lake. Llanbedrgoch transforms from a fortified settlement into a trading centre.
902 - The Norsemen are expelled from Dublin. They attempt to settle in Seisyllwg, but are driven off northwards.
903 - The Dublin Vikings, under Prince Ingimund, capture Osfeilion in Anglesey, but are quickly repulsed by Prince Clydog and settle in the Wirral and around Kelston & Axton in Flintshire instead.
904 - Marriage of Prince Hywel Dda of Seisyllwg to Princess Elen of Dyfed. Death of the latter's father, King Llywarch. The throne of Dyfed is claimed by Llywarch's brother, Rhodri, but he is probably forced to flee from Hywel's armies.
905 - Rhodri, nominally King of Dyfed, is caught and executed, at Arwystli, probably by his neice's husband, Hywel Dda. Hywel claims the throne of Dyfed. Norse settlers from Flintshire and the Wirral attack the city of Chester, but are beaten off.
909 - Death of Asser, the Welsh Bishop of Sherborne.
c.910 - Death of King Cadell of Seisyllwg. His son, King Hywel Dda unites Seisyllwg and Dyfed to form the Kingdom of Deheubarth.
914 - A Vikings fleet from Brittany harries the South Welsh Coast and moves up the Severn. They capture Bishop Cyfeilliog of Ergyng, but are driven out by Saxon levies from Hereford and Gloucester.
916 - Death of King Anarawd of Gwynedd. English raiders attack the court of King Tewdr of Brycheiniog at Llangorse and make off with the Queen and thirty-three of her courtiers.
917 - Brycheiniog is ravaged by the armies of Lady Aethelflaed of the Mercians in revenge for the killing of the, now unknown, Abbot Ecgberht.
918 - King Idwal Foel of Gwynedd and King Hywel Dda and Prince Clydog of Deheubarth submit to the overlordship of King Edward the Elder of England. The Vikings raid Anglesey.
921 - Foundation of Cledemutha.
927 - Kings Hywel Dda of Deheubarth and Owain of Glywysing & Gwent submit to the overlordship of King Athelstan of England at Hereford. The border between England and Wales is set at the River Wye.
928 - King Hywel Dda of Deheubarth, Gwynedd & Powys begins the codification of Welsh customary law.
929 - King Hywel Dda of Deheubarth goes on a pilgrimage to Rome.
931 - King Morgan Hen of Glywysing & Gwent submits to the overlordship of King Athelstan of England and attends his court with Kings Hywel Dda of Deheubarth and Idwal Foel of Gwynedd.
934 - King Tewdr of Brycheiniog attends the court of King Athelstan of England and signs English Land Charters. Kings Hywel Dda of Deheubarth, Idwal Foel of Gwynedd and Morgan Mwynfawr of Morgannwg are compelled to accompany Athelstan on his campaign against King Constantine II of the Scots.
937 - King Athelstan of England defeats a combined Northern Army under Kings Olaf of Dublin, Constantine II of Scots and Owain of Strathclyde at the Battle of Brunanbury. Though none of the British monarchs appear to have taken part, the people of Strathclyde were a major contingent under their Scottish King. The battle finally ends all British hope of driving the Saxons from their shores.
c.937 - King Idwal Foel of Gwynedd distances himself from his English overlord. The British begin to use the term "Cyrmry" to speak of themselves.
Arthurian locations yorkshire
Dewsbury in Yorkshire
Probably Leaventhorpe in Yorkshire.Thornton Bradford
The Grail kingdom. The name indicates a castle rather than a larger region and probably derives from the Franco-Welsh 'Llys-yn-Nord' meaning Court in the North. Usually identified as modern Northumberland, one might suggest Bamburgh or Yeavering. However, considering the Grail Kings possible associations with the city, York might be a better alternative.
The Early British Kings of what is now Northern England, descend from one of two dynasties commonly known as the Gwyr-y-Gogledd, a Welsh phrase meaning the "Men of the North". They were a P-Celtic people, like the Cymri, who retained their independence from Saxon oppression for a number of centuries, in the relative remote Northern regions of Britain.
Welsh tradition holds that they all had a common ancestor in Old King Cole of nursery rhyme fame. He appears in ancient records as Coel Hen (the Old) and his name seems to ultimately derive from the Roman, Coellius. This fits in well with the time period in which it has been calculated that he lived: right at the end of the Roman administration (very late 4th century).
Considering the regions over which Coel's supposed descendants ruled, his own sphere of influence must have covered a vast area from Hadrian's Wall to the Southern Pennines. In fact, the exact area that would have been governed at this time by the Dux Britanniarum, a Roman official in charge of the military defence of Northern Britain. With his headquarters at York, he would have been in an ideal position to extend some semblance of Roman-type authority into the 5th century, long after the army and administration had returned to Italy.
Traditional Celtic law insists upon the division of land amongst sons upon the death of the landowner and this situation can certainly be traced amongst the kingdoms which emerged from Coel's domain. However, whether these men were really sons and grandsons of this powerful dux or merely early founders, attached to the great man by later generations is unknown.
According to tradition and early records, the North thus split into many different kingdoms. Ebrauc or British York was centred on that city. Bryneich became the later Saxon kingdom of Bernicia. There were little known kingdoms in the Pennines and the oft-quoted Elmet, around Leeds, whose name is retained today in places like Sherburn-in-Elmet. Others moved further south to establish Calchfynedd. Most powerful was perhaps the kingdom of Rheged, later divided into North and South. Its Kings, such as Urien and Owein, were long celebrated in Welsh poetry and, in medieval times, found their way into the Arthurian tradition. The area they ruled is still called Cumbria today, a name meaning 'Land of the Welsh'.
By the mid-7th century, however, the local Germanic settlers had completely overrun the North. Internal squabbles had weakened the British position in the region and the relatively few Saxons warriors were easily able to take advantage of the situation. Eventually only Rheged was left and a dynastic marriage brought this too into the English fold.
old kinh cole
402 AD the Roman garrison was recalled from York because of military threats in other parts of the Roman empire. Their most abiding legacy in this area is the road system which they left behind. Many modern main roads in Yorkshire, including parts of the A1, A59, A166 and A1079, still follow the routes of Roman roads.
5th century - the end of Roman rule, Northern Britain may have come under the rule of Romano-British Coel Hen, the last of the Roman-style Duces Brittanniarum (Dukes of the Britons). However, the Romano-British kingdom rapidly broke up into smaller kingdoms and York became the capital of the British kingdom of Ebrauc. Most of what became Yorkshire fell under the rule of the kingdom of Ebrauc but Yorkshire also included territory in the kingdoms of Elmet and an unnamed region ruled by Dunod Fawr, which formed at around this time as did Craven
Late 5th century - early 6th century Angles from the Schleswig-Holstein peninsula began colonising the Wolds, North Sea and Humber coastal areas. This was followed by the subjugation of the whole of east Yorkshire and the British kingdom of Ebruac in about 560.
The name the Angles gave to the territory was Dewyr, or Deira. Early rulers of Deira extended the territory north to the River Wear and about 600, Æthelfrith was able to unite Deira with the northern kingdom of Bernicia, forming the kingdom of Northumbria, whose capital was at Eoforwic, modern day York. A later ruler, Edwin of Northumbria completed the conquest of the area by his conquest of the kingdom of Elmet, including Hallamshire and Leeds, in 617.
627 Edwin of Northumbria converted to the Christian religion, along with his nobles and many of his subjects, in and was baptised at Eoforwic. His defeat at the Battle of Hatfield Chase by Penda of Mercia in 633 was followed by continuing struggles between Mercia and Northumbria for supremacy over Deira.
Edwin's successor, Oswald, was sympathetic to the Celtic church and around 634 he invited Aidan from Iona to found a monastery at Lindisfarne as a base for converting Northumbria to Celtic Christianity. Aidan soon established a monastery on the cliffs above Whitby with Hilda as abbess.
For the kingdom of Northumbria the Viking era opened in 793 with an attack on the monastery at Lindisfarne. Danish Vikings crossed the North Sea to plunder the coast of Northumbria whilst Norwegians raided Orkney, the Western Isles and Ireland. Yngling King Ragnar Lodbrok led a Danish Leidang into Northumbria during the mid-9th century, but was captured and executed in a snake pit at the Anglian court. The Danes embarked on a mission of vengeance, but were also part of the greater Scandinavian imperialist movement. In 865 his eldest son Ivar the Boneless led younger sons in control of the army into landing at East Anglia, where they slew King Edmund the Martyr. After their landing in East Anglia, the Danes headed north and took York in 866, eventually conquering the whole of Northumbria and Kingdom of Strathclyde.
Early Middle Ages
After the Danish subjugation of the region, in 875 Guthrum became leader of the Danes and he apportioned lands to his followers; however most of the English population were allowed to retain their lands under the lordship of their Scandinavian conquerors. Ivar the Boneless became "King of all Scandinavians in the British Isles". The Danes changed the Old English name for York from Eoforwic, to Jorvik. The Vikings destroyed all the early monasteries in the area and took the monastic estates for themselves.
Some of the minster churches survived the plundering and eventually the Danish leaders were converted to Christianity. In the late 9th century Jorvik was ruled by the Christian king Guthfrith. It was under the Danes that the ridings and wapentakes of Yorkshire and the Five Burghs were established. The ridings were arranged so that their boundaries met at Jorvik, which was the administrative and commercial centre of the region. The Swedish Munsö dynasty became overlords of Jorvik because the Danes in Britain had promised loyalty to the Munsö Kings of Dublin, but this dynasty was focused on the Baltic Sea economy and quarrelled with the native Danish Jelling dynasty (which originated in the Danelaw with Guthrum). The Norse-Gaels, Ostmen or Gallgaidhill became Kings of Jorvik after long contests with the Danes over controlling the Isle of Man, which prompted the Battle of Brunanburh. Then, in 954, King Eric I of Norway of the Fairhair dynasty was slain at the Battle of Stainmore by Anglo-Saxons and Edred of England began overlordship.
Jorvik was the direct predecessor to the shire of York and received further Danish royal aids after the invasion and takeover of Jorvik by England, from the Munsö descendants, Sweyn II of Denmark right down to Canute IV of Denmark's martyrdom. Saint Olave's Church in York is a testament to the Norwegian influence in the area.
In 1066, after the death of King Edward the Confessor, Yorkshire became the stage for two major battles that would help decide who would succeed to the throne. Harold Godwinson was declared King by the English but this was disputed by Harold Hardrada King of Norway and William Duke of Normandy. In the late summer of 1066 Harold Hardrada, accompanied by Tostig Godwinson, took a large Norwegian fleet and army up the Humber towards York. They were met by the army of the northern earls Edwin of Mercia and Morcar of Northumbria who they defeated at the Battle of Fulford. Harold Hardrada occupied York and the Norwegian Army encamped at Stamford Bridge. Harold Godwinson had to travel from London gathering his army as he went to face the invasion. Within five days, on 25 September 1066, Harold Godwinson had reached Stamford Bridge and defeated the Norwegian Army in a battle in which both Harold Hardrada and Tostig Godwinson were killed. The battle at Stamford Bridge can be seen as one of the pivotal battles in English history, it was the last time a Scandinavian army was able to seriously threaten England. On 28 September William Duke of Normandy landed on the south coast of England forcing Harold Godwinson to rush south from Yorkshire with his army. They met at the Battle of Hastings where the English army was defeated and Harold Godwinson killed, allowing William to become King of England.
Richmond castle walls and towers seen from the Keep
King William I and the Normans did not immediately gain control over the whole of the country, and rebellions in the north of England, including Yorkshire, led to the Harrying of the North. The Anglo-Norman chronicler Orderic Vitalis condemned William the Conqueror for his cruelty in conducting a scorched earth campaign during the winter of 1069-70. Those who escaped initially hid in Yorkshire's woodland but many (some sources say 100,000) then died of famine or exposure when William salted the ground so nothing would grow. By 1071 the last native-led rebellion against Norman authority in Yorkshire had been suppressed. The severity of the Norman campaign is shown by the fall of land values in Yorkshire by two-thirds between 1069 and 1086. Domesday Book records that 25 continental magnates introduced into Yorkshire by the Conqueror held over 90% of the county's manors. The families who had previously held land were either deprived of their holdings or reduced to subtenants. Scholarship on the "harrying" does contain some dissent from this history. For instance the use of land value data does not confirm a specific policy of harrying. The difficulty experienced by kings administering the North compared to the South, produces a slanted view of land values and Domesday information.
In the early years of Norman rule the new rulers built ringwork castles. These were circular defensive enclosures formed by the construction of a bank and a ditch. Examples of which are Kippax, near Leeds and Castleton on the North York Moors. Yorkshire at this time was frontier country. It was vulnerable to attack from the north by the Scots and from across the North Sea by the Danes. Soon more complex motte and bailey castles were being built as the ruthless and ambitious barons appointed by King William to rule Yorkshire gained a hold on their territories. The parcels of land bestowed by William to his followers in Yorkshire were fewer and much larger than in more southern counties. Each was able to support a sizeable garrison in a strong castle. Large castles were established at Conisbrough, Tickhill, Pontefract, Richmond, Middleham and Skipsea and two in York. At this time also was established the chain of castles across the southern edge of the North York Moors which included Scarborough, Pickering and Helmsley.
Fountains abbey from the west
When the Normans arrived in Yorkshire there were no monastic foundations.The old Northumbrian clifftop abbey of Whitby lay in ruins. In the centuries following the Conquest splendid abbeys and priories were built in Yorkshire. The first of these was Selby Abbey, founded in 1069 and the birthplace of Henry I of England. There followed the abbeys of St Mary’s, York, Rievaulx, Fountains, Whitby, Byland, Jervaulx, Kirkstall, Roche, Meaux and many other smaller establishments. During the succeeding 70 years religious orders flourished, particularly after the promotion of Thurstan of Bayeux to the archbishopric of York in 1114. Between 1114 and 1135 at least 14 were established.
The Norman landowners were keen to increase their revenues by establishing new towns and planned villages. Among others, the boroughs of Richmond, Pontefract, Sheffield, Doncaster, Helmsley and Scarborough were established in this way as were the villages of Levisham and Appleton-le-Moors on the North York Moors and Wheldrake in the Vale of York. York was the pre-eminent centre of population before the conquest and was one of only four pre existing towns. The others included Bridlington and Pocklington.
The Danish invasions ceased at this time but the Scots continued their invasions throughout the medieval period. The Battle of the Standard was fought against the Scots near Northallerton in 1138.
During this period the majority of the Yorkshire population was engaged in small scale farming. A growing number of families were living on the margin of subsistence and some of these families turned to crafts and trade or industrial occupations. By 1300 Yorkshire farmers had reached the present day limits of cultivation on the Pennines. Both lay and monastic landowners exploited the minerals on their estates. There were forges producing iron, and lead was being mined and smelted in the northern dales. In the West Riding there were numerous small coal workings. Until the late 12th century the cloth industry was mostly urban, focussed on York and Beverley. By 1300 the towns of Hedon, Masham, Northallerton, Ripon, Selby, Whitby and Yarm were also involved in cloth manufacture. Around this time the balance of cloth manufacturing was changing in favour of the West Riding rural communities where it was a cottage industry and free of the restrictions of town guilds.
Sheffield, situated amongst a number of fast-flowing rivers and streams surrounded by hills containing raw materials such as coal, iron ore, ganister, and millstone grit for grindstones, made it an ideal place for water-powered industries to develop. Water wheels were often initially built for the milling of corn, but many were converted to the manufacture of blades. As early as the 14th century Sheffield was noted for the production of knives, as noted in Geoffrey Chaucer's The Reeve’s Tale from The Canterbury Tales
In the early decades of the 14th century Yorkshire suffered from a series of poor harvests, cattle disease and plundering Scottish armies. The Black Death reached Yorkshire in the spring of 1349. The population was reduced drastically by these misfortunes and consequently more land became available for the survivors. The following decades saw the rise of relatively wealthy farming families who founded dynasties of yeomen and minor gentlemen. The large Honours that were created in Yorkshire and the North of England by William I after the Conquest made them attractive for succeeding monarchs to give to their sons to support a royal lifestyle. These honours were, in some cases, combined to form Duchies, the most notable of which were the duchies of York and Lancaster.
- Wars of the Roses
When conflict arose between the two Dukes during the Wars of the Roses much of the fighting took place in Yorkshire, where their estates were interlocked and woven together.
The leading families in the East and West Ridings supported the House of Lancaster overwhelmingly, but in the North Riding loyalty was divided. The Nevilles of Sheriff Hutton and Middleham, the Scropes of Bolton, the Latimers of Danby and Snape, and the Mowbrays of Thirsk and Burton in Lonsdale supported the House of York. The Nevilles’ great rivals, the Percies, together with the Cliffords of Skipton, Ros of Helmsley, Greystock of Hinderskelfe, Stafford of Holderness and Talbot of Sheffield fought for the Lancastrians.
John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster had senior influence over many people in the North of England and consequently, Yorkshiremen fought under his command in the Hundred Years' War. King Richard III of England in the House of York held early office in the Council of the North, at Middleham Castle where Edward of Middleham, Prince of Wales was born. The last vestiges of feudal order remain to-date in the Duchy of Lancaster, founded by the House of Lancaster.
Both Yorkshire and Richmondshire had significant connections with Scotland and France through the personal connections of their feudal and titular Peers which may have been connected to the Auld Alliance. One must consider the historically Norse origins of Yorkshire's population, the local ties of Balliol, Bruce and Stewart monarchs of Scotland, including Scottish royal fiefdom of Northumbria at several times.(See Earl of Huntingdon)
When the Earl of Richmond became King of England in 1485 his dynasty began systematically to destroy or remove local resistance to their rule by confiscating their religious rights and economic livelihood.
The Yorkshire rebellion, 1489 occurred during the reign of Henry VII. Parliament wanted money to help defend Brittany, which was allied to England, in the war against France. Henry sent Percy, Earl of Northumberland to collect taxes to help raise some money. However, many of the people in Northumberland and Yorkshire claimed to have already paid their part through local taxes, and were unwilling to give more money to defend a country of no geographical threat to them, as Yorkshire and Northumberland are in Northern England, whereas Brittany is closer to Cornwall and London. Rebellion broke out in April 1489. The Earl met the rebels, but a scuffle broke out and he was killed. The rebels then asked for pardon but were denied it by the king who sent a large army to the north, led by the Earl of Surrey. The Rebel leader, John á Chambre was hanged for treason, so they found a new leader in Sir John Egremont (an illegitimate member of the Percy family). Unfortunately for the rebels, Egrement proved to be unreliable and so fled to the Court of Margaret of York, Duchess of Burgundy and a staunch opposer to Henry's rule. The results of this rebellion were that Henry was unable to get enough money to defend Brittany and he became aware of the lawless nature of the North of England.
The Humble Petition of The Gentry and Commons of the County of York, presented to His Majestie at York, 22 April 1642 : and His Majesties message sent to the Parliament, 24 April 1642 : concerning Sir John Hothams Refusall to give His Majestie entrance into Hull
. Printed at London, 1642
Between 1536 and 1540, the Dissolution of the Monasteries by Henry VIII of England had a profound and permanent effect on the Yorkshire landscape. Thousands of acres of monastic property was divided and sold to form the estates of the gentry and the newly rich industrial entrepreneurs. This happened right across the county from Guisborough Priory in the north through to Rievaulx Abbey on the North York Moors, Jervaulx Abbey and Fountains Abbey in the dales and Roche Abbey in the south.In all 120 religious institutions were closed in Yorkshire. The unpopularity of the Tudor royals resonated in the Pilgrimage of Grace and Rising of the North. During the reign of Queen Elizabeth Yorkshire saw a steady rise in population. New industries created employment and wealth, and improved farming methods and imports of corn stopped food shortages. The steady rise in population created pressure to enclose common land for agriculture and the farming communities turned increasingly to cottage industries to make a living.
The Gunpowder Plot of 1605 had Yorkshire associations, Guy Fawkes was born in York where he was educated at St Peters School. Nevertheless, a government inquiry of 1605-6 revealed that the plot lacked significant support in the county. The economy and character of many West Riding settlements became markedly different from the other areas of the county in the 17th century. Farmers combined mining, metal working, weaving, tanning and other crafts with agriculture in these towns which were not subject to the restrictive practices of guilds.By 1600 Sheffield was the main centre of cutlery production in England, and in 1624 The Company of Cutlers in Hallamshire was formed to oversee the trade. In Leeds in 1629 manufacturers were employing men full-time as clothiers.
Many local families were Cavaliers in the English Civil War and some fled to American colonies during the usurping Commonwealth of England or The Protectorate. Most were either neutral, divided or changed sides. At an early stage in the conflict King Charles attempted to establish a garrison at Kingston upon Hull but was denied entry. After some initial successes the Parliamentary forces were defeated across most of Yorkshire but they staged a comeback and in 1644 at the Battle of Marston Moor Oliver Cromwell's cavalry routed Prince Rupert's forces and during the next few months the remaining royalist garrisons in the north fell. At the end of the war many of the old castles of Yorkshire such as Helmsley and Pontefract were dismantled so that they could never again be fortified.
King James II of England was owner of colonial New York as the Duke of York, as well as governor of the Hudson's Bay Company and Royal African Company.
Some locals were closet Recusants, Tory or Jacobite in political orientation, not happy being used against their Scottish neighbours. National government conceded to their sensitivities by appointing a Council of the North and a Secretary of State for the Northern Department, but these were abolished upon the government suspecting its link with independent Northern influence on national affairs, especially in connection to the American War of Independence. Charles Lennox, 4th Duke of Richmond was Governor General of British North America, after his father had pioneered the peace settlement with the Americans and pressed for a "Union of Hearts" with the Irish. Irish Catholics dispossessed of their lands and experiencing discrimination at home, found a warm welcome from Yorkshiremen in the cities of the West Riding.
The 19th Century interior of Marshall's flax
The 19th century was a time of rapid urbanisation and industrialisation in Yorkshire. Yorkshire was already a centre of industry in textiles, concentrated in the West Riding. Steel continued to be concentrated around Sheffield, as was the production of coal. The worsted sector of the textile industry was the first to adapt the machinery developed by the Lancashire cotton industry and had become completely factory based by the 1860s including large horizontally integrated mills.
Steel production at this time involved long working hours, in unpleasant conditions that offered little or no safety protection. Friedrich Engels in his The Condition of the Working Class in England in 1844 described the conditions prevalent in Sheffield at that time. The city became one of the main centres for trade union organisation and agitation in the UK. By the 1860s, the growing conflict between capital and labour provoked the so-called 'Sheffield Outrages', which culminated in a series of explosions and murders carried out by union militants. The Sheffield Trades Council organised a meeting in Sheffield in 1866 at which the United Kingdom Alliance of Organised Trades — a forerunner of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) — was founded.
William Wilberforce, Member of Parliament for Hull, was a prominent abolitionist in the slave trade. The Edwardian period in Yorkshire brought the Labour Party (UK) into focus, as it tried to mobilise further reform. Robert Baden-Powell, 1st Baron Baden-Powell commanded the Northern Territorial Army at Richmond Castle until 1910.