The Northern Way

The Complete Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Poetry

The Battle of Brunanburh
Verse Indeterminate Saxon


Her æþelstan cyning,      eorla dryhten,
beorna beahgifa,      and his broþor eac,
Eadmund æþeling,      ealdorlangne tir
geslogon æt sæcce      sweorda ecgum

5

ymbe Brunanburh.      Bordweal clufan,
heowan heaþolinde      hamora lafan,
afaran Eadweardes,      swa him geæþele wæs
from cneomægum,      þæt hi æt campe oft
wiþ laþra gehwæne      land ealgodon,

10

hord and hamas.      Hettend crungun,
Sceotta leoda      and scipflotan
fæge feollan,      feld dænnede
secga swate,      siðþan sunne up
on morgentid,      mære tungol,

15

glad ofer grundas,      godes condel beorht,
eces drihtnes,      oð sio æþele gesceaft
sah to setle.      þær læg secg mænig
garum ageted,      guma norþerna
ofer scild scoten,      swilce Scittisc eac,

20

werig, wiges sæd.      Wesseaxe forð
ondlongne dæg      eorodcistum
on last legdun      laþum þeodum,
heowan herefleman      hindan þearle
mecum mylenscearpan.      Myrce ne wyrndon

25

heardes hondplegan      hæleþa nanum
þæra þe mid Anlafe      ofer æra gebland
on lides bosme      land gesohtun,
fæge to gefeohte.      Fife lægun
on þam campstede      cyningas giunge,

30

sweordum aswefede,      swilce seofene eac
eorlas Anlafes,      unrim heriges,
flotan and Sceotta.      þær geflemed wearð
Norðmanna bregu,      nede gebeded,
to lides stefne      litle weorode;

35

cread cnear on flot,      cyning ut gewat
on fealene flod,      feorh generede.
Swilce þær eac se froda      mid fleame com
on his cyþþe norð,      Costontinus,
har hilderinc,      hreman ne þorfte

40

mæca gemanan;      he wæs his mæga sceard,
freonda gefylled      on folcstede,
beslagen æt sæcce,      and his sunu forlet
on wælstowe      wundun forgrunden,
giungne æt guðe.      Gelpan ne þorfte

45

beorn blandenfeax      bilgeslehtes,
eald inwidda,      ne Anlaf þy ma;
mid heora herelafum      hlehhan ne þorftun
þæt heo beaduweorca      beteran wurdun
on campstede      cumbolgehnastes,

50

garmittinge,      gumena gemotes,
wæpengewrixles,      þæs hi on wælfelda
wiþ Eadweardes      afaran plegodan.
Gewitan him þa Norþmen      negledcnearrum,
dreorig daraða laf,      on Dinges mere

55

ofer deop wæter      Difelin secan,
eft Iraland,      æwiscmode.
Swilce þa gebroþer      begen ætsamne,
cyning and æþeling,      cyþþe sohton,
Wesseaxena land,      wiges hremige.

60

Letan him behindan      hræw bryttian
saluwigpadan,      þone sweartan hræfn,
hyrnednebban,      and þane hasewanpadan,
earn æftan hwit,      æses brucan,
grædigne guðhafoc      and þæt græge deor,

65

wulf on wealde.      Ne wearð wæl mare
on þis eiglande      æfre gieta
folces gefylled      beforan þissum
sweordes ecgum,      þæs þe us secgað bec,
ealde uðwitan,      siþþan eastan hider

70

Engle and Seaxe      up becoman,
ofer brad brimu      Brytene sohtan,
wlance wigsmiþas,      Wealas ofercoman,
eorlas arhwate      eard begeatan.

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