Long before the Masonic brotherhood had called each other by the name Bro.’, they would greet one Broanother by the Old English name of “Feolagan Wed Brodra” A name meaning pledge brothers and or Brother of Odin.

The predominant language up until about the 13th century was Old English; and it eventually evolved into the modern English that we speak today.

The various Old English words that I have found related to the modern Bro.’ through my research, are as follows; “wurdon feolagan or fiolagan, wed brodra,  wed Broders meaning fellows, sworn brothers, pledge-brothers or Brother of Woden.

Today of course they would simply call one another Brother or Bro.’

Below are some examples of these historical Feolagan Wed Brodra events I have discovered that are mainly from around the 6th-11th centuries .

* Aethelbald and Offa: two eighth-century kings of Mercia made 7 wurdon feolagan 7 wedbrodra’ (‘the two kings came together at Ola’s Island near Deerhurst. and they became partners and pledged brothers’)

* King Oswy, in 656 is spoken of as a web broder of Mercian King Wulfhere

Anglo Saxon Chronicle of the Traey between Knutr and Edmunds become Feolagan Wed Brodra (feolagan and pledge brothers)

* Hengist (Of Hengist and Horsa) calls Ebissa the Wed Broder of his son Oeta

* In the Laud Manuscript of King Horn which was written in 1300, Ayol (Athulf) is called Horn’s “wed broeder”

* In the shipmans Tales where he says of the merchant of st dennis and the monk, the broper hedge of Arthur’s court to which is made sir gawayne and the green night

* In Shakespeare: Richard II, the king says, I am sworn brother, sweet, to grim necessity and he and i will keep a league till death

Anglo-Saxon Chronicles 1016- reports that kings Eadmund and Cnut met near Deerhurst and wurdon fiolagan and wedbrodra “became felagar and sworn brothers”


Englische studien: Organ für englische philologie unter …, Volume 36
 By Eugen Kölbing, Johannes Hoops, Arthur Kölbing, Albert Wagner

An Anglo-Saxon dictionary: based on the manuscript collections of … – Page 1181

Joseph Bosworth, Thomas Northcote Toller – 1882 – 1302 pages – Free Google eBook – Read
… swide for his broder luuen Peada, and for his wedbroderes luuen Oswi, Chr. 656 ; Erl. 30, I. Coman begL-n da cyningas togaedre and wurdon feolagan and wedbrodra, and daet gefasstnadau aegder mid wedde and edc mid iidan, 1016;

Aethelbald and Offa: two eighth-century kings of Mercia : papers …

David Hill, Margaret Worthington – 2005 – 138 pages – Snippet view
… in the annal for 1016: ‘comanbegen pa cyningastogcedre


King Horn: Floriz and Blaunchefleur ; The Assumption of Our Lady – Page 13

Joseph Rawson Lumby, George Harley McKnight – 1901 – 171 pages – Free Google eBook – Read
He tok wit him anoper, Jjat was hornes wed broper. 300 ” Ayol,” he seyde, ” ryt anon Jjou shalt wit me to boure gon, To speke wit reymyld stille And witen al hire wille. 304 In hornes ylyche Jjou schalt hire bi swike.

Ships and men in the late Viking Age: the vocabulary of runic … – Page 235

Judith Jesch – 2001 – 330 pages – Preview
The account in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle of the treaty of Olney between Knutr and Edmund notes that, as a result of their settlement, they became feolagan j wed brodra ‘feolagan and pledge-brothers’ (ASC 101 6D).

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