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Translation of the Staunton-on-Arrow Anglo-Saxon Charter of AD 958

"Almighty [lit: 'the whole power'] father, sitting in the heavenly citadel and observing the declining fragility of the human race, he sent to us his only begotten [son], through him he arranged the ages with ineffable redemption, for the erasing of our sins. For the will of the same pious creator resolved and his compassion conceded that anyone could buy with the lowest things the highest things, with the things of the earth the things of the heavens, and to obtain the things that perish those which last forever.

"Therefore I, Edgar, obtaining by the favour of the divine goodwill the monarchy of the whole of the kingdom of Mercia, allot and freely grant to my faithful thegn Eahlstan for his acceptable money, that is 40 mancuses of pure gold, the lands in the district of the Magonsæte, that is 6 hides, in the place which is called by the inhabitants the place of Stanton [Staunton].

"That he might have it and possess it eternally, with all the benefits and rights relating to that land and thereafter he might have the power to do with it what he wants to do.

"And this land is surrounded by these boundaries:

"From the mill ford of the Arrow, then to Washford: from Washford along the top of Holneig, from the top of Holneig to the top of oak edge then along the top of the oak edge, then to the front part of the snaed way, from the snaed way round Hanley to Æcna-bridge, up along the brook, then to the dyke, along the dyke to Tanesbaec, from Tanesbaec along the boundary fence, then to the boundary of the community of Lene, along the boundary of the community of the Lene, then to Æthelwold's hedge, from Æthelwold's hedge to Heanoldan, from Heanoldan to the boundary thorn, then from the boundary thorn along the fence to the swing-gate, from the swing-gate along the paved road to the dyke gate, from the dyke gate to the third gate, then along the paved road back to Milford.

"And King Edgar grants by charter to his thegn Eahlstan a house in Hereford, in eternal inheritance forever.

(The section in italics is written in Old English, and the translation is taken from a piece translated by Margaret Gelling.)

"This land is to be free from all tribute/tax, great and small, and from royal service except bridge construction, fortress building and expeditions against the enemy.

"If, however, anyone shall wish to break or lessen my gift and concession may Almighty God lessen his days in this race and may he incur the wrath of God, unless he has made satisfactory amends with compensation previously. This deed is my gift in the year of our Lord incarnate 958. I declare this true in the ... Second year of my reign.

"These witnesses attended and are in agreement with this and write below and confirm it with the insignia symbol of the holy cross.

"I, Edgar king of the Britons of Mercia and Northumberland agree and order the insignia symbol of the holy cross to be written down."

(There then follows a list of other men who bear witness to this charter)

 

 Cynesige (bishop)  Athelwold (ealdorman)
 Oscytel (bishop)  Byrhtnoth
 Dunstan (bishop)  Ælfwine (thegn)
 Wulfric (bishop)  Wulfhelm (thegn)
 Athulf (bishop)  Æthelsige (thegn)
 Leofwine (bishop)  Wærstan (thegn)
 Ælfhere (ealdorman)  Wulfgar (thegn)
 Æthelstan (ealdorman)  Wulfstan (thegn)
 Uthred (ealdorman)