|Battle of Hatfield Chase|
Depiction of Edwin at St Mary, Sledmere, Yorkshire.
|Kingdom of Gwynedd Kingdom of Mercia||Kingdom of Northumbria Kingdom of Bernicia Kingdom of Deira|
|Commanders and leaders|
| Cadwallon ap Cadfan |
| Edwin † |
|Casualties and losses|
|700 killed or wounded||2,000 killed|
The Battle of Hatfield Chase (Old English :Hæðfeld; Old Welsh : Meigen) was fought on 12 October 633 at Hatfield Chase near Doncaster (today part of South Yorkshire, England). It pitted the Northumbrians against an alliance of Gwynedd and Mercia. The Northumbrians were led by Edwin and the Gwynedd-Mercian alliance was led by Cadwallon ap Cadfan and Penda. The site was a marshy area about 8 miles (13 km) northeast of Doncaster on the south bank of the River Don. It was a decisive victory for Gwynedd and the Mercians: Edwin was killed and his army defeated, leading to the temporary collapse of Northumbria.
Edwin, the most powerful ruler in Britain at the time, had seemingly defeated Cadwallon a few years before the battle. Bede refers to Edwin establishing his rule over what he called the Mevanian islands, one of which was Anglesey,and another source refers to Cadwallon being besieged on the island of Priestholm (AC: Glannauc), which is off the coast of Anglesey. Later, Cadwallon defeated and drove the Northumbrians from his territories and then allied with Penda (Cadwallon being the stronger member of the alliance). Penda's status in Mercia at this time is uncertain—Bede suggests he was not yet king, but became king soon after Hatfield; the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle , however, says that he became king in 626.
The battle was a disaster for Northumbria. With both Edwin and his son Osfrith killed, and his other son Eadfrith captured by Penda (and later killed), the kingdom was divided between its constituent kingdoms of Bernicia and Deira. Eanfrith, a son of the former king Æthelfrith, returned from exile to take power in Bernicia, while Edwin's cousin Osric took over Deira. Cadwallon continued to wage a war of ruthless slaughter against the Northumbrians, and was not stopped until he was defeated by Oswald at the Battle of Heavenfield (also known as Deniseburna, AC : Cantscaul) a year after Hatfield.
The historian D. P. Kirby suggested that the defeat of Edwin was the outcome of a wide-ranging alliance of interests opposed to him, including the deposed Bernician line of Æthelfrith; but considering the subsequent hostility between Cadwallon and Æthelfrith's sons, such an alliance must not have survived the battle for long.
Oswald was King of Northumbria from 634 until his death, and is venerated as a saint, of whom there was a particular cult in the Middle Ages.
Northumbria was an early medieval Anglo-Saxon kingdom in what is now Northern England and south-east Scotland.
Oswiu, also known as Oswy or Oswig, was King of Bernicia from 642 and of Northumbria from 654 until his death. He is notable for his role at the Synod of Whitby in 664, which ultimately brought the church in Northumbria into conformity with the wider Catholic Church.
Æthelred was king of Mercia from 675 until 704. He was the son of Penda of Mercia and came to the throne in 675, when his brother, Wulfhere of Mercia, died from an illness. Within a year of his accession he invaded Kent, where his armies destroyed the city of Rochester. In 679 he defeated his brother-in-law, Ecgfrith of Northumbria, at the Battle of the Trent: the battle was a major setback for the Northumbrians, and effectively ended their military involvement in English affairs south of the Humber. It also permanently returned the kingdom of Lindsey to Mercia's possession. However, Æthelred was unable to re-establish his predecessors' domination of southern Britain.
Penda was a 7th-century King of Mercia, the Anglo-Saxon kingdom in what is today the Midlands. A pagan at a time when Christianity was taking hold in many of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms, Penda took over the Severn Valley in 628 following the Battle of Cirencester before participating in the defeat of the powerful Northumbrian king Edwin at the Battle of Hatfield Chase in 633.
Edwin, also known as Eadwine or Æduinus, was the King of Deira and Bernicia – which later became known as Northumbria – from about 616 until his death. He converted to Christianity and was baptised in 627; after he fell at the Battle of Hatfield Chase, he was venerated as a saint.
Æthelfrith was King of Bernicia from c. 593 until his death. Around 604 he became the first Bernician king to also rule the neighboring land of Deira, giving him an important place in the development of the later kingdom of Northumbria. He was especially notable for his successes against the Britons and his victory over the Gaels of Dál Riata. Although he was defeated and killed in battle and replaced by a dynastic rival, his line was eventually restored to power in the 630s.
Bernicia was an Anglo-Saxon kingdom established by Anglian settlers of the 6th century in what is now southeastern Scotland and North East England.
Osric was a King of Deira in northern England. He was a cousin of king Edwin of Northumbria, being the son of Edwin's uncle Æthelric of Deira. Osric was also the father of Oswine.
The Battle of the Winwaed was fought on 15 November 655 between King Penda of Mercia and Oswiu of Bernicia, ending in the Mercians' defeat and Penda's death. According to Bede, the battle marked the effective demise of Anglo-Saxon paganism.
The Battle of Maserfield was fought on 5 August 641 or 642 between the Anglo-Saxon kings Oswald of Northumbria and Penda of Mercia, ending in Oswald's defeat, death, and dismemberment. The location was also known as Cogwy in Welsh, with Welshmen from Pengwern participating in the battle, probably as allies of the Mercians. Bede reports the commonly accepted date given above; the Welsh Annales Cambriae is generally considered incorrect in giving the year of the battle as 644. The site of the battle is traditionally identified with Oswestry; arguments have been made for and against the accuracy of this identification.
Cadwallon ap Cadfan was the King of Gwynedd from around 625 until his death in battle. The son and successor of Cadfan ap Iago, he is best remembered as the King of the Britons who invaded and conquered the Kingdom of Northumbria, defeating and killing its king, Edwin, prior to his own death in battle against Oswald of Bernicia. His conquest of Northumbria, which he held for a year or two after Edwin died, making him one of the last recorded culturally traditional Celtic Britons to hold substantial territory in eastern Britain until the rise of the Welsh House of Tudor. He was thereafter remembered as a national hero by the Britons and as a tyrant by the Anglo-Saxons of Northumbria.
Eanfrith (590–634) was briefly King of Bernicia from 633 to 634. His father was Æthelfrith, a Bernician king who had also ruled Deira to the south before being killed in battle around 616 against Raedwald of East Anglia, who had given refuge to Edwin, an exiled prince of Deira. His mother was Acha of Deira.
The Battle of Heavenfield was fought in 633 or 634 between a Northumbrian army under Oswald of Bernicia and a Welsh army under Cadwallon ap Cadfan of Gwynedd. The battle resulted in a decisive Northumbrian victory. The Annales Cambriae record the battle as Bellum Cantscaul in 631. Bede referred to it as the Battle of Deniseburna near Hefenfelth.
Cadafael ap Cynfeddw was King of Gwynedd. He came to the throne when his predecessor, King Cadwallon ap Cadfan, was killed in battle, and his primary notability is in having gained the disrespectful sobriquet Cadafael Cadomedd.
Cearl was an early king of Mercia who ruled during the early part of the 7th century, until about 626. He is the first Mercian king mentioned by Bede in his Historia ecclesiastica gentis Anglorum. Bede was a Northumbrian who was hostile to Mercia, and historian Robin Fleming speculates that as "ceorl" means "rustic" in Old English, his name may have been a joke.
Hereswith or Hereswitha, also spelt Hereswithe, Hereswyde or Haeresvid, was a 7th-century Northumbrian saint. She married into the East Anglian royal dynasty and afterwards retired to Gaul to lead a religious life. Hereswith's sister was Saint Hilda, founder of the monastery at Whitby. Details of her life and identity come from Bede's Historia Ecclesiastica, the Anglian collection and the Lives of Edwin of Northumbria and Hilda of Whitby.
Events from the 7th century in England.
Urbs Iudeu was a city besieged in 655 AD by Penda, King of Mercia, and Cadafael, King of Gwynedd. The siege was an important episode in a long-running war between Mercia and Northumbria in the years 616–679. This war was fought in the area north of the River Trent, in particular in and around the Peak District (Wirksworth) also around Heathfield (Doncaster), Elmet (Aberford) and Lindsey (Lincoln), as these were provinces of Northumbria at the time.