Uchtred the Bold

Uchtred (or Uhtred), called the Bold, was the earl of Northumbria from 995 to 1016, when he was assassinated. He was the son of Waltheof I, earl of Bernicia, whose ancient family had ruled from Bamburgh north of the Tees since the late ninth century. By 1013, when Sweyn Forkbeard landed in England, the Bernician family, now no longer under Norse control from York, had succeeded in extending its power south of the Tees and becoming earls of all Northumbria.

In 1006, while his father was alive but far too aged, Uhtred defeated Malcolm II of Scotland at the siege of Durham. However, probably in 1016, Malcolm returned with Owen the Bald, king of Strathclyde, and defeated Uhtred at the Battle of Carham. The situation at the Scottish border then changed considerably.

When Sweyn's son, Canute the Great, took up his father's fight against King Ethelred II of England (a fight he eventually won) and went to harry the Great North Road, Uhtred did homage to him as king of England.

In 1016, invited to a meeting with Canute, Uhtred was murdered by Thurbrand the Hold. He was succeeded by his son Eadulf II, but only in Bernicia. Over all Northumbria, Canute placed Eric of Hlathir. Uhtred's son Ealdred killed Thurbrand and Thurbrand's son Carl killed Ealdred. Nonetheless, Uhtred's dynasty continued to reign until 1041, and briefly a scion ruled in 1067.


Preceded by:
Waltheof I
Earl of Northumbria
Succeeded by:
Eric of Hlathir

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