Friday, October 29, 2010

Thorkel the Tall, -- ab. 1024, ~Eadgytha - and their son Harald Thorkilsson, --1042, ~Gunhild

Dansk Biografisk Lexicon
Carl Fr. Bricka
Project Runeberg
Thorkel the Tall, --o.1024, Jarl, was the son of
Strut-Harald, Jarl in Skåne. At the magnificent
wake for his father, which T.'s brother, Sigvald,
the Jomsborg-chief, let celebrate, Sigvald swore
on his Brage-cup to go on an expedition to Norway
to overthrow Hakon Jarl, and T. swore that he
would accompany his brother. The expedition took
place shortly after, but in the unlucky battle at
Hjørungavaag the two brothers were both the first
to take flight; in the famous battle at Svold
(1000) T. is said to have given Erik Jarl, Hakon
Jarl's son, the useful advice to put logs from
his ship up to Olaf Tryggvasson's ship «Ormen hin
Lange», so the ship began to lean and they could
enter it. In the Danish expeditions to England
during the next years took T. part together with
the Jomsborg-vikings (1009). After having
conquered Canterbury (1012),when the Vikings
assailed the captured archbishop Aelfheah to
force him to pay ransom, T. tried in vain to
save the archbishop's life by offering a big
reward to the warriors. Shortly after had T.
an agreement with king Aethelred;with a crew
of 45 ships he went to serve him and undertook
to defend the country, if he was paid living
and clothes for himself and his warriors. T.
met his duty in the following years; he defended
London with endurance and courage , when king
Svend attacked the town, (1013), and Aehtelred
seeked refuge with T. on his fleet; T. and his
warriors were paid 21.000 pounds.

Shortly after came a change. After king Svend's
death ( February 1014) the Anglo Saxons made an
attempt to surprise the Danes in their castles;
T.'s brother Hemming was killed with all his crew.
And T. left Aethelred and his case, he sailed with
9 ships to Denmark and urged king Knud to attack
England. With a large fleet Knud went to England
(1015) and subjected large parts of the country
during several struggles, in which T. took part,
like at Ashington. At king Edmund's death the same
year Knud was elected king by all the people, and
T. was given the rule of one of the 4 large parts
of the country, East Angel.

AFter king Knud not long after had Eadric Streona
killed, T. was for some years Knud's first advisor
and right hand. Upon the battle-field of Ashington
Knud and T. built together a church, and the church
Bury St. Edmunds had a warm protector in T.; he
appointed monks to do service instead of priests.
T. had married Eadric Streona's widow Eadgytha,a
daughter of king Aethelred, and this made Knud
suspicious. Since the king had planned to let
England rule by the English only, he banished
Denmark(1021). A few years later he reconciled with
his old war comrade and turned over the management
of Denmark to T. as a guardian for Harald, Knud's
and Aelfgifu's son, (1023), but shortly after T.
died, according an unreliable English chronicle he
was let down by the Danish chiefs and killed by the
peasants. His son Harald was then by Knud appointed
regent in Denmark.

Munch, Det norske Folks Historie III.
Freeman, The Norman conquest I.
Steenstrup, Normannerne III.
Stephen, Dictionary of national biography LVI.

Johannes C. H. R. Steenstrup.

Harald (Thorkilsson), --1042, Jarl, son of Thorkil
the Tall, was married to Cnut the Great's sister's
daughter Gunhild. Knud appointed in 1028 H. as
regent in Denmark and the Wendic possessions. When
Magnus the Good efter Hardicanute's death (June 1042)
won Denmark's throne, was H. regarded as a dangerous
rival, and the Saxon duke's son Ordulf - who was
married to Magnus' sister, let H. kill 13. November
1042, when he after a pilgrimage to Rome went through

Johannes C. H. R. Steenstrup.
Dansk Biografisk Lexicon
Carl Fr. Bricka
Project Runeberg
translation grethe bachmann  ©copyright 

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