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From: taf <>
Subject: Re: Erroneous claims of descent from King Alfred
Date: Sun, 2 May 2010 20:04:00 -0700 (PDT)
References: <mailman.753.1272838155.20086.gen-medieval@rootsweb.com>


On May 2, 3:09 pm, "Jenny Joyce" <> wrote:
> A friend of mine excitedly showed me a chart which shows part of his descent
> from Alfred the Great.  Sadly, I think there are major errors in his chart.

Yes.

> An Ahnentafel chart of the information he gave me follows:
>
> 1.  Thorlongus of the Merse
>
> 2.  Leofwine of Mercia

There is supposedly a charter at Durham made by Thor Longus, which
names his father as Leofwine. However, given that the charter dates
from the reign of Edgar of Scotland, it is impossible that his father
Leofwine was the Ealdorman of Mercia, who was at least two generations
earlier.

>
> 3.  Alwara Countess of Mercia
>
> 4.  Edulf of East Anglia

The Liber Eliensis (The Book of Ely): "There was a very wealthy man
called Leofwine, the son of AEthulf" who was known for charity, but
got angry with his mother, smacking her with a log and killing her.
This Leofwine made numerous donations to Ely between 1002 and 1019.
His lands were in Suffolk, Essex and Cambridge. There is no reason to
believe that this man was either the Ealdorman of Mercia, or the
father of Thor Longus.

> 6.  Athelstan Manneson
>
> 7.  a daughter of King Athelstan
>
> 8.  Ordgar of East Anglia

I assume the father-in-law of king Edgar is meant, but no other child
is documented.

> 5.  Elwina
>
> 10.  Aethelred II Duke of Mercia
>
> 11.  Aethelfleda
>
> 22.  Alfred the Great

As you indicated in your post, Elwina was sent to a convent by her
uncle, and nothing more is heard of her. Any marriage is fantasy, and
likewise she is here made granddaughter of Alfred and grandmother of
Thor Longus, a contemporary of Edgar of Scotland, son of Margaret, son
of Edward the Exile, son of Edmund Ironside, son of AEthelred, son of
Edgar, son of Edmund, son of Edward, son of Alfred - 7 generations vs
4. Not likely.

>
> 14.  Aethelstan King of England

As you pointed out, the King had no children. This should be the Half-
king, who again is much younger. The chronology is again off.


> So, in summary, Burkes is probably the "source" of most of the errors, but
> no where can I find information that Thor Longus was the son of Leofwine.
>
> Now, I'm more than happy to believe that Burke's has made mistakes, but what
> bothers me is that since these 2 publications date from 1838 and 1847, I
> would have expected that plenty of time has elapsed for scholars etc to
> refute the claims in Burke.  But I can't find any such information.

The problem is that this material is so ridiculous that most scholars
simply can't be bothered to do a point by point refutation.


> Or, perhaps I am wrong in thinking that Burke is wrong...

No, you're right.

taf



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