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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.

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MATTHEW OF WESTMINSTER
The flowers of history, especially such as relate to the affairs of Britain. Vol. I. B.C. 4004 to A.D. 1066.
page 520



A.D . 1016. EDMUHD MARCHES AGATJTST THE DANES. 51 1 at that time sick at Coti) am, Edmund, the king's son, undertook to encounter him. But when the two armies were about to meet in a hostile manner, that traitor, the duke Edric, laid every kind of plot against Edmund, in hopes to slay him by treachery. And when Edmund found this out, he withdrew from the battle, and yielded the field to the enemy for a time. And, not long afterwards, Eadric, to prove himself a complete traitor, seduced forty ships of the king's fleet, and went to the assistance of Canute, and did him homage for his own dominions. And allWessex did the same, and gave hostages, and furnished horses and arms for the Danish army. The Mercians offered their aid in making resistance ; but owing to the inactivity of the king, the war was protracted. The same year, Ethelwold, bishop of Winchester, died, and JEllffy succeeded him. A.D. 1016. Canute, king of the Danes, and the wicked duke Eadric crossed the river Thames, at firutttlaUt, with a numerous body of cavalry, and before the day of the Epiphany of the Lord, they entered Mercia, in a hostile manner, burning many towns in Warwickshire, and carrying off booty, and murdering all the men who came in their way. And when Clito Edmund heard this, he collected an army. But, as the men of Mercia would not fight without king Ethelred and the citizens of London, he dismissed the expedition, and every one returned to his own home. Then Canute led his army to the city of London, and surrounded it with a blockade ; but, as he found the city almost impregnable, he raised the siege, and, invading Mercia a second time, occupied himself in plundering that province. And Edmund assembled an army against him, sending messengers to his father, who was at that time sojourning in London, and entreating him to collect all his forces, and to march with all speed against Canute. Accordingly he made a vigorous effort, and joined his son ; but, when they were on the point of engaging in battle with Canute, it was intimated to the lung, that unless he took great care of himself, he would be betrayed to the enemy by his own nation. And, when the king heard this, he returned to London ; and Edmund, his son, went to Northumberland. And when he had arrived there with count Uthred,he ravaged Staffordshire, Shropshire, and many other provinces, because they refused to go forth with him to battle against the Danes. In the meantime, Canute, after pillaging several provinces, at last


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