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Humber the Hun was a legendary king of certain ancient "Huns" (probably Cimmerians or Hibernians) dated to the early 1st millennium BC as accounted by Geoffrey of Monmouth. The name may be a confusion of Ebor with Īweriū and Híomhair.



According to Geoffrey, following the division of Britain amongst Locrinus, Kamber, and Albanactus, Humber invaded Albany which was re-named after the Scoti', and killed Albanactus in open battle. The remaining Albians fled south where Locrinus allied with Kamber and defeated Humber near a river in which Humber was drowned. The river was thereafter known as the Humber which marked the southern border of the Kingdom of Northumbria and is one of the main rivers of England.[1]

When Locrinus raided Humber's ships after his death, he found Humber's consort Estrildis, the daughter of the King of Germany there. Thus Humber's Huns were able to settle Britain with their Queen Estrildis eventually marrying Locrinus. The River Severn was named after her daughter Hafren.


"Hun" is an early Germanic word for "warrior", in this case from Scythia and through this legend Geoffrey alludes to the arrival of warriors of the earliest Germanic peoples in the British Isles from Himberland. The venerable Bede mentioned the Scythian origin of the Picts and the sixteenth century British chronicler Raphael Holinshed also mentioned the Agathyrsi Scyth origin of the Picts, and their tradition of painting their bodies blue. The legendary ancient alliance between Scythian Huns and the Celts is recalled again as the wife of Míl Espáine (Golam) and the wife of Goídel Glas were both called Scota.

However, in typical legendary fashion, Geoffrey's account may be mixed up considerably with other events especially the legend of Ivar Vidfamne whose Dublin Uí Ímair Dynasty was still ruling the Kingdom of the Isles when Geoffrey was writing.

In Pop-cultureEdit

In modern Welsh culture, North Welsh language Speakers often refer to South Welsh speakers as Huns (hwntw) who in turn refer to the North Welsh Speakers as Gogs (gogledd). Moreover, Scots protestants are still referred to as Huns by Gaels.[2][3][4]


  1. ^ Michelle R. Warren (2000). History on the Edge: Excalibur and the Borders of Britain, 1100-1300. U of Minnesota Press. pp. 36–37. ISBN 978-0-8166-3491-0.
  2. ^ "What does the word 'hun' mean and what is its place in today's society?". Irish Post. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
  3. ^ Cooney, Darren. "Rangers fans group Club 1872 wants Celtic supporters banned from Ibrox". Daily Record. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
  4. ^ "'Kill all huns' painted on small Orange hall". Belfast News Letter. Retrieved 13 July 2017.