Capitulum sextum decimum.
THE Danes segede the cite of Cawnterbery, abowte the feste of seynte Mathewe; whiche cite was taken in xxti day of the segynge of hit, and was brente by treason of Almarus the [folio 316b] diacon, whom seynte Elphegus delyverede from dethe but fewe dayes afore. Thabbot of the monastery of Seynte Austyn was suffrede to departe, and the flocke of Criste was tythede, ix. of theyme sleyne, and the xthe reservede; somme of whom were sleyne by the swerde, and somme hongede by theire mem|bres, Page 91, vol.7 and somme diede drawen by the heire of theire hedde. Amonge whom, Elphegus the bischop was taken and im|prisonede vij. monethes, and illuded with diverse peynes; wherefore the vengeaunce of God entrede amonge those mansleers, that a infirmite reignynge amonge theyme destroyede nowe x., nowe xxti, untille that þe hoste was consumpte moche. Wherefore the Danes were movede by Cristen peple that thei scholde make satisfaccion to the bischoppe; but thei wolde not: whiche takynge hym in the vigille of Ester, ȝafe choyce to hym other to pay iij. mlli. for his redempcion, or to loose his lyfe. The bischoppe commaundid his men that thei scholde not pay oon peny for hym. The Danes movede moche þerat, and made drunke thro ryette, brouȝhte furthe þe bischop in the Seturday folowynge, and did slee hym with stones and with boones of bestes, þe xiijthe kalendes of Maii. And sepulture*. [Of þe dethe of Seynte Elphegus.] was denyede unto hym untille that the nexte day folowynge a wedrede tree intincte with his bloode wexede grene. The body of whom brouȝte to London, was beriede in the churche of Seynte Paule: neverthelesse that body was translate holly to Cawnterbery afterwarde by licence of Canutus kynge of Danes. Willclmus de Pontificibus, libro secundo. This Elphegus induede with the habite of a monke, lyvede as an ankre at Bathe, Page 93, vol.7 and gedrede a nowmbre of monkes þer aftirwarde, of whom*. [Of the vertuous lyfe of the seide seynte.] somme drawede to grete ryette; for, Elphegus not knowenge, somme of theym usede festes and ryette from the begynnynge of the nyȝhte unto the morowe. But the chiefe maister of that ryettous life dyede sodenly in the tyme of theire myrthe. Seynte Elphegus herynge a grete noyce, and goynge to þe wyndowe of his chambre, see too develles betynge that body. But that wrecche desirenge helpe, the develles ansueryde and seide, "þow was not obedient to God, and þerfore we wille not obbey the." And so at the laste seynte Elphegus was made bischop of Wynchestre, thro the suasion off blissede Andrewe, apperynge to seynte Dunstan; whiche ȝafe never attendaunce to the eitenge [folio 317a] of flesche, but if he were seke; deceyvynge his kepers in the nyȝhte, stondynge in water unto the knees, and ȝiffenge lawde to allemyȝhty God, contynuynge soe unto the morowe. And after that he hade bene bischop of Wynchestre xxijti yere, he was made metropolitan of Ynglonde ageyne his wylle; whiche goynge to Rome, was spoylede of his goodes in a towne by the weye, and after that the towne was in pereschynge thro fire. Then the wrecchide men confessynge theire trespasse preiede the servaunte of God of forȝiffenesse, and his goodes restorede the men see the fyre to be extincte thro his preyers. Martinus. Benedicte the viijthe succedid Sergius the pope xij. yere; of whom Petrus Damianus rehersethe that a bischop see hym syttenge on a blacke horse, and to be peynede soore. Where|fore he preiede that bischop that see the siȝhte, to goe to Iohn þe xxti his successour, and that he wolde pray hym to distribute into almes a certeyne summe of goode, assignenge the place where the treasure was, seyenge that the goodes distribute by hym profite not, for thei were of rape; that doen, the bischop Page 95, vol.7 entrede a monastery. A grete inundacion of the see en|creasede in this yere in the thrydde kalends of October, more then hit was wonte, in so moche that hit drownede townes, and moche peple. Henricus, libro sexto. Suanus kynge of the Danes, compassenge Este Ynglonde with a grete navy of schippes, entrede into the water of Humbre, goynge by the water of Trente unto Geynesburgh; to whom men inha|bitynge the northe partes of Watlyngestrete promysed fidelite, ȝiffenge to hym certeyne plegges; takynge oon hoste to his sonne Canutus to kepe that cuntre, whiles he did waste the sowthe marches, sleynge men, and reservynge women to the pleasure of theire flesche. After that he toke Oxenforde and Wynchestre; whiche goynge to London, and inquirynge noo brigge, loste mony men in the water of Thamys; and put from London by the presence of the kynge, subduede to hym þe West saxons; men of London seenge that submitte theim to hym also, sendynge to hym plegges þerfore. The kynge trowblede gretely þerwith, sende Emma his wife, with his ij. sonnes and the bischop of London, unto Richarde the secunde duke of Normandy, broþer to his wife, and he kepede a poore Criste|masse at the yle of Wyȝhte. Whiche beynge at the laste as [folio 317b] in desperacion, saylede to Normandy also. Suanus the kynge of Danes, inflate with pride þerwith to his destruccion and Page 97, vol.7 dampnacion, askede a grete tribute of that towne callede Seynte Edmundbery, manassenge to brenne the cite withowte thei wolde pay the seide tribute, and to sle the peple inhabitynge hit. Also he revilede moche and detracte seynte Edmunde, wherefore he was sleyne in the myddes of his men, in the begynnynge of the nyȝhte, folowynge that detraccion, with the swerde of seynte Edmund, at the towne of Geynesburgh, and so he diede the thrydde nones of February. Willelmus de Pontificibus, libro secundo. Canutus his sonne, herynge þerof, began to do moore mekely with seynte Edmund, and made a diche abowte the grownde of the seide martir, and grawntenge fre liberte and immunite to the towne, made a monastery on the body of the martir, and putte monkes into hit, induynge that place with noble possessions. From whiche tyme a con|suetude is usede in Englonde, kynges to sende the crownes whom they wylle not were to seynte Edmund, whom thei redeme by a grete pryce.