Massacre of the Danes

English History

Book 2,Chapter 9, Edward 975 AD to 1016 AD – Ethelred

Either at the command of the king, who, like most pusillanimous men, could be cruel to ferocity, or by a general impulse of indignation on the part of the people at wrong and injury suffered from the Danes, it was resolved to attack and destroy all of them who were found in the kingdom, and the festival of St. Brice, Nov. 13, 1002, was appointed for the massacre, which was carried out with all the fierceness of revenge and despair, men, women, and helpless children being involved in one common fate, and atrocities being perpetrated such as half civilized people delight in, but the particulars of which cannot be given.

Nothing can be advanced in justification of such a slaughter, but it must be remembered in extenuation, first, that the number of victims could not have been so…

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