The Encomium Emmae reginae is a narrative history centered on the praise of Queen Emma, widow of both Æthelred and Cnut. After the death of Cnut, Emma commissioned the Encomium while she ruled England jointly with her sons Edward and Harthacnut.1 The frontispiece of the earliest extant manuscript portrays Emma enthroned in state with her two sons standing at her side (London, British Library Additional MS 33241, f.1v, henceforward BL Additional 33241; see Figure 1). This manuscript appears to have been produced either in 1041 or 1042, before the death of Harthacnut in 1042 when Edward became king, banishing Emma to Winchester and seizing her property.2 The Encomium text diverges from other contemporary sources, placing Emma and her two sons by different fathers as the natural heirs to a Danish dynasty and celebrating Emma's role as a bringer of peace.3 The Encomium Emmae reginae frontispiece validates...

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