Wuffingas

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The kingdom of the East Angles during the period it was ruled by the Wuffingas, bordered by the North Sea, the River Stour, the Devil's Dyke and the Fens

The Wuffingas, Uffingas or Wuffings were the ruling dynasty of East Anglia, the long-lived Anglo-Saxon kingdom which today includes the English counties of Norfolk and Suffolk. The Wuffingas took their name from Wuffa, an early East Anglian king. Nothing is known of the members of the dynasty before Rædwald, who ruled from about 599 to c. 624. The Viking invasions of the ninth century destroyed the monasteries in East Anglia where many documents relating to the rule of the Wuffingas would have been kept.

The last of the Wuffingas kings was Ælfwald, who died in 749 and who was succeeded by kings whose lineage is unknown.

Family tree

The following family tree includes the Wuffingas kings from Wehha to Ælfwald. They are numbered in order of ruling.[1] Ecgric of East Anglia was also a member of the Wuffingas house, but his exact descent is not decided. He may have been Sigebert's brother, or his step-brother.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Wehha1
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Wuffa2
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Tytila3
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
?
 
Rædwald4
 
?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Eni
 
?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Eorpwald5
 
Rægenhere
 
Sigeberht6
 
 
 
Anna7
 
Saewara
 
Æthelhere8
 
Æthelwold9
 
Æthelric
 
Hereswitha
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Seaxburh
 
Æthelthryth
 
Æthelburh
 
Jurmin
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ealdwulf10
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Ælfwald11

The kingdom of East Anglia was invaded by peoples from northern Europe during the 5th and 6th centuries. Historical sources relating to the genealogy of the East Anglian kings include the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and Bede's Ecclesiastical History, both compiled many years after the kingdom was formed, as well as a pedigree of Ælfwald contained in the Anglian collection that dates from the 9th century. In the pedigree, Ælfwald is claimed to descend from the god Wōden.[2]

East Anglian tally (Textus Roffensis).png
Ancestor
Ælfwald (Alfwold Aldwulfing)
Ealdwulf (Aldwulf Æðelricing)
Ethelric (Æþelric Ening)
Eni (Eni Tytling)
Tytla (Tytla Wuffing)
Wuffa (Wuffa Wehhing)
Wehha (Wehh Wilhelming)
Wilhelm (Wilhelm Hrypping)
Hryth (Hryp Hroðmunding)
Hrothmund (Hroðmund Trigling)
Trygil (Trygil Tytimaning)
Tytiman (Tytiman Casericg)
Caesar (Caser Wodning)
Wōden (Woden Frealafing)
Pedigree of Ælfwald from the Anglian collection,
preserved in the Textus Roffensis

After 749, East Anglia was ruled either by the Mercians or by kings whose genealogy is not known.

Cultural associations

Sam Newton has claimed that the poem Beowulf may have been composed during the reign of Ælfwald of East Anglia. Before the end of his rule, Ælfwald's kingdom contained a group of ecclesiastical centres, all of which had strong associations with the Wuffingas dynasty. These included the sees at Dommoc and Helmham, St. Botulph's monastery at Icanho, the religious foundations at Ely and Dereham founded by daughters of Anna, the minster at Blythburgh and the monastery founded by Sigeberht prior to his abdication and subsequent death in battle.[3]

After comparing Sutton Hoo with archaeological sites in Sweden, Sune Lindqvist suggested in 1948 that the Wuffingas may have been related to the Royal House of Uppsala descended from Wiglaf.[4][5]

References

  1. ^ Yorke, Kings and Kingdoms of Early Anglo-Saxon England, p. 68
  2. ^ Newton, The Origins of Beowulf and the Pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia, p. 77
  3. ^ Newton, The Origins of Beowulf and the Pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia, p 133–134
  4. ^ Osbert Guy Stanhope Crawford (1948). "Sutton Hoo and Beowulf" by Sune Lindqvist in Antiquity, Volume 42, Page 140. Antiquity Publications. Retrieved 30 November 2012.
  5. ^ Colin Chase; University of Toronto. Centre for Medieval Studies, p. 6 (1997). The Dating of Beowulf. University of Toronto Press. pp. 7–. ISBN 978-0-8020-7879-7. Retrieved 30 November 2012.

Bibliography

  • Newton, Sam (1993). The Origins of Beowulf and the Pre-Viking Kingdom of East Anglia. Cambridge: D. S. Brewer. ISBN 0-85991-472-0.
  • Palgrave, Francis (1832). The Rise and Rrogress of the English Commonwealth: Anglo-Saxon period. Containing the Anglo-Saxon policy, and the institutions arising out of laws and usages which prevailed before the Conquest. J. Murray. Retrieved 29 November 2012.
  • Yorke, Barbara (2002). Kings and Kingdoms of Early Anglo-Saxon England. London and New York: Routledge. ISBN 0-415-16639-X.

External links

  • Dr Sam Newton's Wuffing Website
  • William of Malmesbury's Chronicle of the Kings of England from the earliest period to the reign of King Stephen, Book 1, "Of the kings of the East Angles" in English and in Latin
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