Most of the entries in the 'Chronicle' are bare and brief, but sometimes, especially in the accounts of Alfred's own splendid exploits, a writer is roused to spirited narrative, occasionally in verse; and in the tenth century two great battles against invading Northmen, at Brunanburh
and Maldon, produced the only important extant pieces of Anglo-Saxon poetry which certainly belong to the West Saxon period.
Further, she argues that AEthelstan, with his victory at Brunanburh
, could claim to rule not just the English, but England as well.
They clashed at Brunanburh
which most historians are now convinced is present day Bromborough.
In subsequent chapters, which deal in turn with the Cynewulf and Cyneheard episode from the Chronicle, with The Battle of Brunanburh
and other `political' verse in the employ of the later West Saxon state, and with The Battle of Maldon, the warrior `ethic' is seen increasingly to solidify into doctrine in the service of political propaganda: these texts develop thematic interests in such issues as the authority of kings (including the repercussions of their deposition) and the legitimization of royal power by genealogical and martial means; the sanction here rests ultimately with the preeminent role of the (just) lord, in whose service retainers are expected unswervingly to define themselves even, in the case of Maldon and the apotheosis of the ideal, unto death.
I READ this week that an expert in Viking history, Professor Harding of Nottingham University, has brought new arguments to prove that the battle of Brunanburh
in AD937 in fact took place on what is now Brackenwood golf course in Wirral, Brunanburh
perhaps being an old name for nearby Bromborough.
There have also been treasure hoards and weaponry found in the area, and there is compelling evidence that one of the most important battles of the era - the Battle of Brunanburh
in 937 - actually took place in what we now know as Bromborough.