This is page 129 of An Anglo-Saxon Dictionary by Bosworth and Toller (1898)

This online edition was created by the Germanic Lexicon Project.

Click here to go to the main page about Bosworth/Toller. (You can download the entire dictionary from that page.)
Click here to volunteer to correct a page of this dictionary.
Click here to search the dictionary.

This page was generated on 13 Mar 2021. The individual pages are regenerated once a week to reflect the previous week's worth of corrections, which are performed and uploaded by volunteers.

The copyright on this dictionary is expired. You are welcome to copy the data below, post it on other web sites, create derived works, or use the data in any other way you please. As a courtesy, please credit the Germanic Lexicon Project.


the undisputed king over all England [Engla land, q. v.] -- The locality of Brunanburh has not yet been determined. It appears to me, it must be north of Beverley, as Athelstan is reported by Ingulf to have visited the tomb of St. John at Beverley, and to have placed his dagger on the altar, making a vow that if victory was granted to him, he would redeem it at a worthy price. The credibility of this story has been questioned; but, whatever doubt may remain, it proves that in the time of Ingulf, A. D. 1109, there was a general impression that Athelstan marched north of Beverley to oppose his invaders, and that, after the victory in the north, on returning to the south, he redeemed his pledge at Beverley by granting many privileges. Anlaf, collecting the remnant of his conquered army, could have no difficulty in returning to his ships in the Humber, as he had to pass through the country of the Anglo-Danes, his friends, and subjects of his late father. -- Now all this history indicates that Anlaf marched north to unite his army with that of his father-in-law, Constantine, king of the Scots. Athelstan followed him, and their forces met about Brunanburh. I think it was on the west of Durham. I am led to this conclusion by these facts relating to the battle, and by the Feodarium Prioratus Dunelmensis, published by the Surtees Society, vol. lviii, in 1872. There is a plain between the rivers Wear and Browney [Brunan eá], and west of Durham, well adapted for a great battle. We find, in the present day, east and west Brandon [Brunan dún] and Brandon castle, the property of Viscount Boyne. There is still the river Browney [Brunan eá]. In the Feod. Dunelmen. compiled about A. D. 1430, we find the name of a river, of persons, and of places mentioned on the west of Durham. We have 'Ultra aquam de Wer usque ad aquam de Brun,' pref. p. lv: p. 192, note. 'De Brune,' 192, 193, note: 194, note. 'Petro de Brandone,' p. 180, note. 'Petrus de Brandone,' 200, note. On looking at the map of the learned Bishop Gibson, in his Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, 4to. 1692, I find he is of my opinion, that Brunanburh was north of Beverley. I cannot, however, discover why he places it to the north of Northumbria. For the reasons I have stated, I believe it was to the south-west of Lurham. -- Dr. Guest, Master of Caius College, Cambridge, in his excellent work, A History of English Rhythms, 8vo. 1838, gives the following account of this battle, -- 'In the year 937, was fought the battle of Brunanburh -- a battle, that involved more important interests than any, that has ever yet been fought within this Island. It was indeed a battle between races. . . . Round the banner of Athelstan were ranged one hundred thousand Englishmen, and before them was the whole power of Scotland, of Wales, of Cumberland, and of Ireland under Anlaf, king of Dublin, led on by sixty thousand Northmen. The song, which celebrated the victory, is worthy of the effort that gained it. This song is found in all the copies of the Chronicle, but with considerable variations. Price collated three of them: The Dunstan MS. Tib. A. VI; the Abingdon, Tib. B. I; and the Worcester, Tib. B. IV. I have taken copies from all these MSS, and also from the Plegmund MS. in Ben'et Library. The Dunstan MS. appears to be by far the most correct transcript of the four. Price formed a text, so as best to suit the convenience of translation. The result might have been foreseen, and is such as little encourages imitation. I shall rather give the text, as it is found in one of these copies -- the Dunstan MS. v. Chr. 937; Th. 200, col. 2. Not a word need be altered, to form either good sense or good poetry,' vol. ii. pp. 60, 61. In Mr. Earle's Chronicle, 8vo. 1865, p. 113, note x, are some excellent remarks on this song. -- Dr. Guest has arranged the lines according to his system of Rhythm. I have arranged them according to the Anglo-Saxon punctuation, as in the article Beówulf. Dr. Guest's text is given within brackets, when the general orthography, or the word, seemed to require alteration :--


Hér, DCCCCXXXVII, Æðelstán cing, eorla drihten, beorna beág-gifa, and his bróðor eác, Eádmund æðeling, ealdor langne tír geslógan æt sæcce [sake], sweorda ecggum, embe Brunan burh.

Gst. Rthm. ii. 60, 26-62, 3.

Ðæ-acute;r læg secg manig, gárum forgrunden, -- guman norþerne, ofer scyld sceoten, swylce Scyttisc eác wérig wígges sæ-acute;.

Gst. Rthm. ii. 64, 1-4.

Fífe lágon on ðæm campstede -- cinningas geonge sweordum aswefede; swilce seofone eác eorlas Ánláfes, unrím herges -- flotan and Scotta.

Gst. Rthm. ii. 64, 14-18.

Gewitan him ðá Norþmen nægled-cnearrum -- [dreórig daroða láf on dynges mere] ofer deóp wæter, Dyflen sécean eft Iraland.

Gst. Rthm. ii. 66, 19-22.

Ne wearþ wæl máre on ðísum [ðys] églande æ-acute;fre gyta, . . . syððan eástan, hider Engle and Sexan upp becóman.

Gst. Rthm. ii. 68, 10-15.

Now, A. D. 937, Athelstan king, of earls the lord, of barons the bracelet-[beigh-] giver, and his brother also [eke], Edmund the prince [etheling], elders a long train [tire] slew in battle, round Brunanburh.

There lay many a soldier, by the darts brought low, -- northern men, over shield shot, so also [eke] the Scotchman's wretched war-spear

Five lay on that battle-field [war-stead] -- youthful kings sword-silenced; so also seven earls of Anlaf, a host of the robber-band -- shipmen and Scots.

Went [gan] then the Northmen in their nailed barks -- [the darts' sad leavings on the noisy sea] over deep water, Dublin [Dyflen] Ireland [the land of the Ire] to seek once more.

Was no greater carnage ever yet, within this island, . . . since from the east, hither up came Angles and Saxons [Engle and Sexe].


Hér, A. D. 937, Æðelstán cyning læ-acute;dde fyrde to Brunan byrig in this year, A. D. 937, king Athelstan led an army to Brunanburh, Chr. 937; Th. 201, 25-27, col. 2. Hér, A. D. 937, Æðelstán [Æðestan MS.] cing and Eádmund his bróðer læ-acute;dde fyrde to Brunan byrig [MS. Brunan byri]; and ðár gefeht wið Ánláfe [MS. Anelaf]; and, Criste fultumegende, sige hæfde in this year, A. D. 937, king Athelstan and Edmund his brother led an army to Brunanburh: and there fought against Anlaf; and, Christ aiding, they had victory, Chr. 937; Erl. 113, 2-4.

brún-basu, -baso; adj. [brún brown, basu purple] Dark-purple, purple, purple-red, scarlet; purpureus, ostriger, coccineus, puniceus :-- Brúnbasere reádnysse purpureo ostro, Mone B. 6102. Brúnbasum [MS. -bæsewum], reádum purpureis, 2087. Brúnbasum purpureis, 189. Brúnbaso ostriger, Cot. 145. Brúnbasne coccineum, Mone B. 6153. Ðý brúnan oððe ðý brúnbasewan puniceo, Cot. 183.

brún-ecg; adj. [brún brown, ecg an edge] Brown-edged; nigra acie præditus :-- Byrhtnóþ bræd bill of scéðe, brád and brúnecg Byrhtnoth drew his battle-axe from its sheath, broad and brown of edge, Byrht. Th. 136, 38; By. 163: Beo. Th. 3096; B. 1546.

brúnéða, an; m. A disease called brunella or pruna; morbus quidam, idem forte, qui Belgis bruyne, id est, Erysipelas [=GREEK] cerebri. Oris vitium, cum linguæ tumore, exasperatione, siccitate, et nigredine, vulgo, inquit Kilianus, brunella, Som :-- Ðæt biþ strang sealf and gód wið swelcre abláwunge and brúnéðan, and wið ðara ceácna geswelle, oððe asmorunge that is a strong salve and good for such inflation and brunella, and for swelling of the jaws, or smothering, L. M. l, 4; Lchdm. ii. 48, 10-12.

brún-fág; adj. [brún brown, fág coloured, dyed] Of a brown colour, brown-hued; fulvi coloris :-- Ætbær brúnfágne helm he bore away the brown-hued helmet, Beo. Th. 5223; B. 2615.

brunge, pl. brungon; pp. brungen broughtest, brought, Cd. 30; Th. 41, 4; Gen. 651; p. and pp. of bringan.

brún-wann; adj. [brún fuscus, wan, wann ater] Dark-brown, dusky; fusco-ater :-- Niht helmade brúnwann beorgas steápe dusky night covered over the steep mountains, Andr. Kmbl. 2613; An. 1308.

brún-wyrt, brúne-wyrt, e; f. I. BROWNWORT or water-betony; scrofularia aquatica :-- Genim bánwyrt and brúnwyrt take banewort and brownwort, L. M. 1, 25; Lchdm. ii. 66, 18. Brúne wyrt, 1, 61; Lchdm. ii. 132, 7. Genim brúne wyrt take brownwort, 2, 51; Lchdm. ii. 268, 9, 13: 1, 39; Lchdm. ii. 100, 5: 1, 48; Lchdm. ii. 122, 16. II. wood-betony or brownwort; scrofularia nodosa :-- [Genim] ða brúnan wyrt brádleáfan, sió weaxeþ on wuda take the broad-leafed brownwort, which grows in woods, L. M. 1, 38; Lchdm. ii. 92, 23.

brute; pl. bruton bruisedst, broke; p. of breótan.

brúwa brows, eye-brows, Wrt. Voc. 64, 35, = brúa; pl. nom. of brú.

bryc a bridge; pons :-- Ðæt he dó bryc-geweorc that he do bridge-work, L. R. S. 1; Th. i. 432, 2. v. brycg.

bryce a violation, infraction, L. Alf. pol. 3; Th. i. 62, 9. v. brice.

bryce; adj. [brycþ, pres. of brecan to break] Breakable, worthless, frail, fleeting; fragilis, futilis, caducus :-- Mín bigengea gewát bryce on feorweg incolatus meus prolongatus est, Ps. Th. 119, 5. DER. un-bryce.

BRÝCE, bríce, es; m. [brýcst, brícst, pres. of brúcan to use, enjoy] Use, service, the occupation or exercise of a thing, profit, advantage, fruit; usus, ministerium, commodum :-- Gif ðæt ówiht brýce wæs if that was any use; si hoc aliquid prodesset, Bd. 5, 14; S. 634, 8, note. Láfe on hwylc hugu fatu gehiwade wæ-acute;ron mennisces brýces recisuræ in vasa quælibet humani usus formarentur, 3, 22; S. 552, 14. Bríce oððe gewuna usus, Ælfc. Gr. 11; Som. 15, 16. Ealle werþeóde lifgaþ bí ðám lissum, ðe éce Dryhten gesette sínum bearnum to bríce all tribes of men live by the blessings, which the eternal Lord bestowed on his children for their use, Exon. 54 b; Th. 193, 3; Az. 116. We sceoldon ða hwílendlícan þing to úrum brícum habban we should have transitory things for