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E05866: A probably authentic Anglo-Saxon charter records a grant by Oswine, king of the people of Kent (south-east Britain), of land on which iron is mined, to the monastery outside Canterbury dedicated to *Peter (the Apostle, S00036). Written in Latin, probably in Kent, July 689.

online resource
posted on 2018-06-22, 00:00 authored by bsavill
Charter of King Oswine (Sawyer 12, excerpted)

In nomine Domini Dei et saluatoris Iesu Christi. Ego Oswynus rex Cantie pro absolutione meorum peccatorum de terra iuris mei [...] unum aratrum in quo mina ferri haberi cognoscitur [...] a presenti die et tempore monasterio beati Petri apostoli, in quo preesse Adrianus dinoscitur qui a Romana urbe directus est, inperpetuum contuli possidendum [...] Actum in mense Iulio, indictione secunda [...]

'In the name of the Lord God and Saviour Jesus Christ. I, Oswine, king of Kent, for the absolution of my sins, have granted to be possessed forever one sulung from my land, which is known to have an iron mine, from the present time and day to the monastery of blessed Peter the apostle, in which Hadrian (who was sent from the city of Rome) is known to preside ... Enacted in the month of July, in the second indiction ...'

Text: Kelly 1995, no. 8, 33-4. Translation: B. Savill.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Peter the Apostle : S00036

Saint Name in Source


Type of Evidence

Documentary texts - Donation document Documentary texts - Charter or diploma


  • Latin

Evidence not before


Evidence not after


Activity not before


Activity not after


Place of Evidence - Region

Britain and Ireland

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc


Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Canterbury St Albans St Albans Verulamium

Cult activities - Places

Cult building - monastic

Cult activities - Places Named after Saint

  • Monastery

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Bequests, donations, gifts and offerings

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Ecclesiastics - abbots Monarchs and their family


This charter survives only in much later copies, in manuscripts of the 13th century onwards. Its most recent editor argues for its essential authenticity (Kelly 1995, 34-6). For further details, see this charter's entry on the Electronic Sawyer:


This monastery at Canterbury would later become known as St Augustine's, after its founder Augustine, first bishop of Canterbury (597-?609). Although the house was apparently established as a monastery dedicated to both Peter and Paul (c.f. Bede, Ecclesiastical History 1.33), this early charter only records a dedication to Peter.


Edition: Kelly, S.E., Charters of St Augustine's Abbey, Canterbury, and Minster-in-Thanet (Oxford, 1995). Further reading: Sawyer, P.H., Anglo-Saxon Charters: an Annotated List and Bibliography (London, 1968); revd. S.E. Kelly and R. Rushforth et al. online at

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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