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Ælfric: His Life And Works

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Chapter Summary

Dietrich's achievement lay in demonstrating that the homilist was not to be identified with any of the other historical figures called Ælfric; and that, using the evidence from the corpus of Ælfrician writings alongside other information from the historical record, it was possible to determine the stages in his career, successively at Winchester, Cerne Abbas and Eynsham. This chapter examines various stages in Ælfric's life together with the evidence for the dates that are usually assigned for his moves from Winchester to Cerne, and from Cerne to Eynsham, but a brief summary may be helpful here. He was a monk in the Old Minster Winchester during the episcopacy of Æthelwold, and round about 987 was sent by Æthelwold's successor Ælfheah to Cerne Abbas at the request of a powerful layman who, as described in the chapter, was to have a major impact on Ælfric's career.

Keywords: Ælfric's life; Cerne Abbas; Eynsham; Winchester



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