Article in History Today: ‘St Edmund the Viking Saint’

This month’s edition of History Today features my article entitled ‘St Edmund the Viking Saint’, which makes a case that it was the Danes (or ‘Vikings’) who settled in East Anglia in the late ninth century who were responsible for the early development of the cult of St Edmund. This argument runs counter to the traditional view that the cult of St Edmund was developed by Anglo-Saxons under Danish rule as a focus of resistance to Scandinavian invaders. My argument in this article is part of the broader case I make in my book Edmund: In Search of England’s Lost King that the cult of St Edmund was foundational to the construction of the English nation. The figure of St Edmund became a rallying point for Anglo-Saxons, Danes and Normans alike, making possible the formation of a composite Anglo-Danish identity for people living in the east of England.

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