The most famous of these rebels is Hereward the Wake (also known as Hereward the Outlaw or Hereward the Exile), a brave Anglo-Saxon leader who some say was the influence behind the stories of Robin Hood. In addition, there may be some partisan bias in the early writers: the notice of Hereward in the Peterborough Chronicle, for instance, was written in a monastery which he was said to have sacked, some fifty years after the date of the raid. [14] However, the Peterborough Chronicle says that the treasure was carried off to Denmark.[18]. In 1070, expecting a conquest of England by King Sweyn II … His alleged genealogy is given in the Gesta and the later Historia Croylandensis, though with some variations. The news of the defeat of King during the reign of William Rufus. lands back and reference to his lands are made in the Charles Kingsley’s 1865 novel Hereward the Wake: the Last of the English elevated Hereward to the position of a national hero. centred in Cambridge. [26] Hereward nevertheless remained a minor figure until the Victorian period, when the idea of native Anglo-Saxon heroism became popular. Articles incorporating text from Wikipedia, The Least We Can Do Is Wave to Each Other, http://marcuspitcaithly.wix.com/marcus-pitcaithly#!books/cnec, http://www.comedy.co.uk/guide/tv/horrible_histories/episodes/4/10/, https://military.wikia.org/wiki/Hereward_the_Wake?oldid=5186388, There is a long-distance footpath through the Cambridgeshire fenland from Peterborough to Ely called the, From 1980 to 2009, a local radio station broadcasting from Peterborough was called, Hampstead has a preparatory school for boys called, Hereward the Wake makes a significant appearance in, Hereward is portrayed as a prototype Robin Hood, but also as a drug-taking, psychopathic arsonist, in, Marcus Pitcaithly's epic Hereward trilogy, The 1985 Doctor Who Annual included a short story entitled "The Real Hereward". is betrayed The Gesta Herewardi is a Middle Latin text, probably written around 1109–31. Peterborough Abbey, in the five or six years after the 1116 library fire there. Only two Saxon The Gesta says that he discovered that his family's lands had been taken over by the Normans and his brother killed with his head then placed on a spike at the gate to his house. the Wake and a handful of his men managed to escape. Instead many Anglo-Saxons continue to rebel rather than accept defeat and a lifetime of subjugation. Hereward returned to England in late 1069 or 1070. rebels including Hereward the Wake and Earl Morcar. Hereward was then joined by a small army led by Morcar, the former Saxon Earl of Northumbria who had been ousted by William. Hereward the Wake exacted revenge on as many Normans as he could Several primary sources exist for Hereward's life, though the accuracy of their information is difficult to evaluate. Another rebellion in the North also resulted in Hereward escorts Alftruda, illustration by Henry Courtney Selous, There are conflicting accounts about Hereward's life after the fall of Ely. In 1069 or 1070 the Danish king Sweyn Estrithson sent a small army to try to establish a camp on the Isle of Ely. Short Biography about the life of Hereward the Wake of England Hugh M Thomas argues that the Gesta is intended to be an entertaining story about an English hero, creating a fantasy of successful resistance to the Normans. Historian Elizabeth van Houts considers this aspect of the story to be consistent with evidence concerning expeditions of Count Robert of Frisia at the time. lived as outlaws in the forests of the Fens. To a small extent, they are sometimes mutually contradictory. Since Hereward's killing of Frederick is also attested in the independent Hyde Chronicle, this event is regarded as "almost certainly" true. Accomplishments or why Hereward the Wake was famous: He led the final major rebellion against William the Conqueror and the Normans ; Hereward the Wake was seen as an English hero and as a symbol of resistance to oppression. open to an invasion from both the Normans and the Vikings. The Boydell Press. "Hereward" redirects here. Hereward the Wake had The prologue also reports that the earlier, Old English version was badly damaged, though not destroyed: the author of the Gesta Herewardi had been instructed by his superior to seek out the remains of Leofric's work and to translate it into Latin. [18], Geoffrey Gaimar, in his Estoire des Engleis, says instead that Hereward lived for some time as an outlaw in the Fens, but that as he was on the verge of making peace with William, he was set upon and killed by a group of Norman knights. William sent an army to deal with the rebels. his father's estates. prior to the Norman invasion. His place of birth is supposed to be in or near Bourne in Lincolnshire. [21] Ogger ("Oger the Breton"), either the person Hereward is supposed to have fought or an heir, appears to have taken over his lands. The feudal system imported by the The Gesta claims that William de Warenne's brother-in-law Frederick swore to kill Hereward, but Hereward outwitted him and killed him. Hereward's birth is conventionally dated as 1035/6 because the Gesta Herewardi indicates that he was first exiled in 1054 in his 18th year. In those times it was a boggy and marshy area. The been a hot-headed young man who argued with his father, became involved in Medieval Times. Both novels helped create the image of a romantic Anglo-Saxon England violated by Norman tyranny. 202ff. The family claimed descent from Hereward's daughter by his second wife, Alftruda. This probably indicates, as the preface to the Gesta suggests, that conflicting oral legends about Hereward were already current in the Fenland in the late 11th and early 12th centuries. He shared the but were ambushed by Hereward the Wake and his followers and failed to Earl Morcar was captured. There is extant evidence for an ancient earthwork south of Aldreth at the junction of the old fen causeway and Iram Drove. It is improbable that if Hereward were a member of this prominent family, his parentage would not be a matter of record. Doomsday Book. Normans in the forests of the Fens. [27] After its publication Hereward appears in numerous popular historical works. Wake were later incorporated into the legends about Robin Hood. Hereward the Wake left England in disarray with various claims to the English throne and Hereward the Wake (also known as Hereward the Outlaw or Hereward the Exile, c. 1035 – c.1072) was an 11th-century leader of local resistance to the Norman conquest of England. It is traditionally believed that he was be the son of an Anglo Saxon lord, Earl Leofric, and that the place he was born and grew up was in or near Bournein Lincolnshire. The earliest references to his parentage are found in the Gesta Herewardi, which records he was the son of Edith, a descendant of Oslac of York. Fens are an area of former wetlands in the counties of Cambridgeshire, reach the rebels base. He then gathered followers and went to Peterborough Abbey to be knighted by his uncle Abbot Brand. It is possible that some of the stories about Hereward mutated into tales about Robin Hood or influenced them. There is no evidence for this, and Abbot Brand of Peterborough, stated to have been Hereward's uncle, does not appear to have been related to either Leofric or Godiva. and then nailed the Norman heads above the door of the family house - he is said to have killed 14 Normans single-handed. [17] His justification is said to have been that he wished to save the Abbey's treasures and relics from the rapacious Normans led by the new Norman abbot who had ousted his uncle Brand. Many historians consider these tales to be largely fictions. He was certainly in contact with the [15] She is said in the Gesta to have fallen in love with him before she met him, having heard of his heroic exploits. The Normans then tried to intimidate the English with a witch, who cursed them from a wooden tower, but Hereward managed to set a fire that toppled the tower with the witch in it. BBC TV Series "Horrible Histories", series 4, episode 10, features the Siege of Ely including the deployment of a witch as a weapon against the Saxons. It has been argued that the author of Gesta Herewardi was Richard of Ely, and that his superior was Bishop Hervey of Ely, who held that office from 1109 to 1131. Hereward the Wake but had also slain his brother, whose head was set above the door of the gold he had taken with the Danes, who then deserted Hereward the Wake (transcription) and Sweeting, W. D. (translation). This circular feature, known as Belsar's Hill,[19] is a potential site for a fort, built by William, from which to attack Ely and Hereward. Hereward the Wake At the time of the Norman invasion of England, he was still in exile in Europe, working as a successful mercenary for the Count of Flanders, Baldwin V. According to the Gesta he took part in tournaments in Cambrai. According to the Gesta he returned the treasures looted from the abbey after having a vision of Saint Peter. The historical consensus is that the Chronicle's account is most accurate. [14] She is said have been called Alftruda and was the widow of Earl Dolfin. Interesting facts and information with a short biography about the Medieval Life, Times and history of Hereward the Wake. Famous English hero who led a [5] therefore not surprising that some of the legends about Hereward the Biography [25], The existence of Hereward is not generally disputed, though the story of his life, especially as recounted in the Gesta, almost certainly contains exaggerations of his deeds and some outright fictions. Hereward the Wake, also known as Hereward the Exile and Hereward the Outlaw was an 11th century leader of local resistance to the Norman conquest of England. Hereward the Wake In 1070, four years after the Battle England and the Normans owned England. Normans was based on an Oath of Fealty and military support in exchange The earliest surviving copy of the Gesta Herewardi is in a manuscript produced around the middle of the 13th century at Peterborough Abbey, along with other materials relating to the abbey. Isle of Ely across causeways at Stuntney, Little Thetford and Aldreth [22] There are two main theories as to the origin of the tag. It is difficult to separate fact from legend. Harold brought Hereward the Wake back to England. For example, Gesta Chapter XXVIII places Hereward's attack on Peterborough Abbey afte… But he apparently held out Alternatively, it has also been argued that Leofric, Earl of Mercia and his wife Lady Godiva were Hereward's real parents. For example, Gesta Chapter XXVIII places Hereward's attack on Peterborough Abbey after the Siege of Ely whereas the Peterborough Chronicle (1070) has it immediately before. The Normans had seized subsequently exiled to Europe at the age of 14. leads the Final English Rebellion against the Normans Hereward the Wake was seen as an In 1071, Hereward and Morcar were forced to retreat to their stronghold and made a desperate stand on the Isle of Ely against the Conqueror's rule. no alternative but to leave his lands and rebel against the Normans. They are the version of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle written at Peterborough Abbey (the "E manuscript" or Peterborough Chronicle), the Domesday Book (DB), the Liber Eliensis (Book of Ely) and, much the most detailed, the Gesta Herewardi (Gesta). Hereward took revenge on the Normans who killed his brother while they were ridiculing the English at a drunken feast. The usual interpretation is that it means "the watchful". defeated by the Normans. 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