Ælfflæd Ælfgaresdohtor Persona Notes

Here are my persona notes for Ælfflæd Ælfgaresdohtor based on handouts from Duchess Lao’s persona class.  I have several binders with each section below as a cover page followed by copies of articles I found useful in my research.  It makes it very easy to refresh my memory on a certain subject.


  • Born in Liða (July) 570 at Cantwaraburg (Canterbury)
  • Married to: a Frankish gesið of the king. member of the fyrd
  • Year, Place: 595, Cantwaraburg
  • Children: one child who died young.
  • Gods: Thunor (warrior), Woden (father), Tir (glory & honor) Goddesses: Nerðus (earth), Frea (love), Eostre (dawn), Rheda (winter)
  • Education: Educated at home in household skills – textiles, food preparation & preservation, brewing, herb-craft, read runes, royal & family genealogy
  • Trade: Raise sheep & weaving,
  • Titles, Lands, and Holdings: Hlafdige (noblewoman) holding lands in Kent. Our estate is south west of Cantwaraburg, up the Stour river.
  • The king’s notables were “leode”, ministers were “referendarius” & ‘graf”. Kent is divided into “laðes”, each with a royal vill – collecting center for the king.
  • Obligations: In return for the gift of land for his lifetime my husband must go to war with the fyrd when the king calls. If our children also serve the king well, they may also be granted these same lands.

Family Tree


  • Name: Ælfgar
  • Birth: 550
  • Place: Cantwaraburg
  • Married: 569
  • Died:
  • Buried:
  • Occupation:


  • Name: Wynflæd
  • Birth: 555
  • Place: Cantwaraburg
  • Married: 569
  • Died:
  • Buried:
  • Occupation:


  • Name: Ælfflæd Ælfgaresdohtor
  • Birth: 570
  • Place: Cantwaraburg
  • Married:
  • Died:
  • Buried:


  • Name: Ælfgyð Ælfgaresdohtor
  • Birth: 576
  • Place:
  • Married: 595
  • Died:
  • Buried:


  • Name: Ælfwine Ælfgaresdohtor
  • Birth: 574
  • Place: Cantwaraburg
  • Married:
  • Died:
  • Buried:


  • Name: Ædgar Ælfgaressunu
  • Birth: 578
  • Place:
  • Married:
  • Died:
  • Buried:

As recorded in the year 600 AD.


The World

  • Brittanina transmarina inhabited by the Angleisc
  • Monarchs: Æðelbert of Kent (560-616)
  • Bertha daugher of Caribert, King of the Paris (d. 567)
  • children Eadbald & Æðelburga
  • Allies: Merovingian dynasty in the Kingdom of the Franks, South Saxons
  • Wars: West Saxons are still fighting with the Britons
  • Crusades: St. Augustine was sent to England in 597 by pope Gregory from Rome & lived on the island of Thanet for a year
  • Inquisitions: none, but religion is not homogenous. Celtic, Roman, Gothic Christians & Germanic Pagans
  • Disasters: famine in 590 due to tempest & flood,in 592 due to drought & locusts
  • Laws: First Saxon laws written by Æðelbert after arrival of Augustine about 602-603. All penalties are in fines (shillings & sceattas) even for murder. In divorce, the woman keeps half the goods if she keeps custody of children.
  • Trade: Exporting wool & slaves to the Franks in return for oil & wine from Italy, Pottery & wine from the Rhineland, indirect trade with the Mediterranean brings in glass, bronze, gold & garnets.

People & Places:

  • Bishop Liudhard, Queen Bertha’s Frankish bishop
  • Gildas, Roman historian
  • Roman Emperors Justinian I & II
  • Pope Gregory I
  • Clothar King of the Franks (584 629)



  • Cloak – rectangular wool
  • Tunic – long close fitting, no gores or gussets, round neck hole, (Thorsbjerg)
  • Gown – hanging gown , tube shaped, may be folded over at waist (Huldremose, Marcus/Trajan columns)
  • Chemise – sleeveless version of tunic, shorter
  • Pants – men only, close fitting, pieced gussets at crotch, may have feet or belt loops (Thorsbjerg)
  • Shoe – 1 piece hide shoe (Hald, bogs)
  • Hose – stockings of nalebinding held up with garters
  • Belt – 1 or 2 may be worn (above & below gown pouched at waist) leather, tablet woven, beads for decorative over belt
  • Pouch – man’s pouch may have flat decorated purse lid.
  • Hat – rectangular cap, or scarf
  • Hair – knot or bun at the back of the head Kentish/Frankish nobles wore gold brocaded band
  • Jewelry – rings, bracelets, necklaces strung between pins at the shoulders of hanging gowns,. Pins to hold up hanging gown of regional design (cruciform, disc, saucer, etc.)
  • Makeup – small brushes with short metal cone for handle
  • Weapon – (women) knife, (men) knife, spear, sword, scramsax
  • Armor – mail, round shield w/ decorate boss, helmet
  • Fabrics – linen, ramie (nettle), or wool, tiny fragments of silk
  • Dyes – madder, woad, weld, tannin, lichens?
  • Embellishment – embroidery- stem stitch, herringbone stitch; woven patterns- tabby, checks, fancy twills, chevron or diamond twill; metal bits – garter hooks, strap ends, wrist clasps


Household Inventory

  • pavilion – geteld? 8th c illustrations
  • bed – wood box frame with leather strapwork to support mattress (bed burials)
  • bedding – linen sheets, wool blankets, sheepskins, down pillows (Sutton Hoo)
  • lighting – iron tripod table lamp with beeswax candle (Sutton Hoo)
  • luggage – boxes & bags in a boat or wagon
  • table – pair of 3 legged trestles w/ boards on top
  • chairs – long benches similar in construction to table , boxchair (Oseberg, female figure on Saxon Urn)
  • bowls – turned wood, may be ornamented at rim w/ bands of embossed silver, pottery
  • trenchers –
  • goblets – blown glass claw beakers or palm cups imported from Germany
  • cutlery – wooden or horn spoons, iron knives
  • linens –
  • cook pots – pottery roundish cooking pots with rope handles
  • fire – hearth in the house in a wooden box of sand
  • platters –
  • cushions – filled with down or wool
  • banner – war standard may be shaped like Viking “weathervane” flag (Bayeux Tapestry)
  • tools –
  • toiletries – (women) bronze toiletry kit on a ring – toothpick, nail cleaner, ear-spoon, makeup brush, (men) tweezers, (both) antler or bone combs
  • spices – garlic, thyme, sage, bay, mustard, caraway, coriander, hops, oregano,
  • meats – mutton, chicken, beef, pork, smoked meats, sausage
  • vegetables – onion, parsnip, carrot, turnip, celery, cabbage, peas, beans, mustard
  • fruits – cherry, plums, blackberry, strawberry, elderberry, sloe, grapes, imported figs
  • breads – round loaves & rolls – wheat, barley, hazelnuts
  • drink – beer/ale, mead, milk
  • sweets – honey, fruit preserved in honey, honeyed cakes, milksops with honey



  • Games: tafl, dice, morris, knucklebones
  • Dance?
  • Music: lyre (Sutton Hoo)
  • Stories: Beowulf, Hengest& Horsa, Weyland, genealogy, myths(similar to Norse)
  • Holidays:
    • Geola (Yule)-, feast of boar, oaths for the new year
    • Modranect (Mother’s Night) Winter solstice
    • Liða – Summer solstice, bonfires on the hills

Art & Craft

  • Textile: spinning with drop spindle, warp weighted loom, card weaving loom w/2 posts, embroidery w/ bone or bronze needle, sprang
  • Paper: not used, runes were carved into wood scraps
  • Wood: furnishings, houses, tools,etc.
  • Leather: oak tanned, shoes, belts, sheaths, straps, etc.
  • Stone: infrequently used, querns, sharpening stones
  • Metal: iron, bronze, silver, gold