[70] Several of the ealdormen who witnessed charters had Scandinavian names, and while the localities they came from cannot be identified, they were almost certainly the successors of the earls who led Danish armies in the time of Edward the Elder, and who were retained by Æthelstan as his representatives in local government. Pratt, "Written Law and the Communication of Authority", pp. [8], When Edward died in 924, he controlled all of England south of the Humber. [157] In his biography of Æthelred, Levi Roach commented: Memory of Æthelstan then declined until it was revived by William of Malmesbury, who took a special interest in him as the one king who had chosen to be buried in his own house. They come to a stop as the road is blocked with the bodies of dead men piked on large wooden sticks. 217–218; Sharp, "The West Saxon Tradition of Dynastic Marriage", p. 82, Zacher, "Multilingualism at the Court of King Æthelstan", p. 84, Zacher, "Multilingualism at the Court of King Æthelstan", p. 82, Maclean, "Britain, Ireland and Europe", pp. The following morning, they continue their journey to Ceaster, Eadith fears that Ælfwynn is getting sick. [120] Some historians take a similar view. By September, however, he was back in the south of England at Buckingham, where Constantine witnessed a charter as subregulus, thus acknowledging Æthelstan's overlordship. An entry in the Annals of Clonmacnoise, recording the death in 934 of a ruler who was possibly Ealdred of Bamburgh, suggests another possible explanation. A lieu alors une bataille où le roi de Bebbanburg est tué et son fils est kidnappé pour servir d'esclave dans le clan de Ragnar. Following Edmund's death York again switched back to Viking control, and it was only when the Northumbrians finally drove out their Norwegian Viking king Eric Bloodaxe in 954 and submitted to Eadred that Anglo-Saxon control of the whole of England was finally restored. The allies plundered English territory while Æthelstan took his time gathering a West Saxon and Mercian army. Nicholas Brooks sees the role of the bishops as marking an important stage in the increasing involvement of the church in the making and enforcement of law. These meetings were also attended by rulers from outside his territory, especially Welsh kings, who thus acknowledged his overlordship. Alive For all of Æthelstan's family, see below [139] An important source is the twelfth-century chronicle of William of Malmesbury, but historians are cautious about accepting his testimony, much of which cannot be verified from other sources. [142] Charters, law codes, and coins throw considerable light on Æthelstan's government. Brida determines that Stiorra is at least half Dane. Foreign contemporaries described him in panegyrical terms. A decade of peace led to control by other Vikings after Guthrum’s death, but their coins bearing the name of St Edmund reveal how they ‘bought into’ Anglo-Saxon politics. [35], Opposition seems to have continued even after the coronation. [5] Alfred and the Viking leader Guthrum agreed on a division that gave Alfred western Mercia, while eastern Mercia was incorporated into Viking East Anglia. [123] His "crowned bust" coinage of 933–938 was the first Anglo-Saxon coinage to show the king crowned, following Carolingian iconography. His reasons are unclear, and historians give alternative explanations. By August 937 Olaf had defeated his rivals for control of the Viking part of Ireland, and he promptly launched a bid for the former Norse kingdom of York. At first Æthelstan behaved as a Mercian king. Last Appearance [86] His reign saw the first introduction of the system of tithing, sworn groups of ten or more men who were jointly responsible for peace-keeping (later known as frankpledge). Uhtred is aware, but tells Eadith to simply reassure her. When Edward died Athelstan quickly became King of Mercia but he was not immediately accepted as King of England. The law code of Alfred the Great, from the end of the ninth century, was also written in the vernacular, and he expected his ealdormen to learn it. [56], Æthelstan set out on his campaign in May 934, accompanied by four Welsh kings: Hywel Dda of Deheubarth, Idwal Foel of Gwynedd, Morgan ap Owain of Gwent, and Tewdwr ap Griffri of Brycheiniog. [c] Edwin might have fled England after an unsuccessful rebellion against his brother's rule, and his death probably helped put an end to Winchester's opposition. WessexMercia (formerly) Uhtred then picks up Æthelred’s ring off the ground. As Ælswith is being taken away, she claims that Stiorra and Æthelstan are Dane slaves and that if Brida values her people, she would take care of them. ("Episode 4.7"), Edward asks Ælswith if it is wise to bring the child there. [55], In 934 Æthelstan invaded Scotland. In the early sixteenth century William Tyndale justified his English translation of the Bible by stating that he had read that King Æthelstan had caused the Holy Scriptures to be translated into Anglo-Saxon. He had been crowned as king of both the Saxons of Wessex and the Anglians of Mercia – as king of the Anglo-Saxons. [133] According to Frank Stenton in his history of the period, Anglo-Saxon England, "Between Offa and Cnut there is no English king who played so prominent or so sustained a part in the general affairs of Europe. When he marched north, the Welsh did not join him, and they did not fight on either side. After the king's death, he became so powerful that he was known as Æthelstan Half-King. When Edward died in July 924, Æthelstan was accepted by the Mercians as king. Edward had several daughters, perhaps as many as nine. "[115], Historians frequently comment on Æthelstan's grand and extravagant titles. Æthelstan sent two of his half-sisters, and Otto chose Eadgyth. Wales was divided into a number of small kingdoms, including Deheubarth in the southwest, Gwent in the southeast, Brycheiniog immediately north of Gwent, and Gwynedd in the north. [50], According to William of Malmesbury, after the Hereford meeting Æthelstan went on to expel the Cornish from Exeter, fortify its walls, and fix the Cornish boundary at the River Tamar. Male Æthelstan claims that he’s a good king, like Edward. Æthelstan might describe his visit to Eoferwic as a friendly visitation, but there had still been fighting in the city because in truth it had been a conquest, a lightning fast invasion and, reluctant as I was to give Æthelstan any credit, I had to admire what he had achieved. After the Danes, led by Sigtryggr (Eysteinn Sigurðarson) and Brida … The twelfth-century chronicler Symeon of Durham said that Æthelstan ordered Edwin to be drowned, but this is generally dismissed by historians. 339–347; Foot, Keynes, "Royal government and the written word in late Anglo-Saxon England", p. 237; Keynes, "England, c. 900–1016", p. 471, Pratt, "Written Law and the Communication of Authority", p. 349, Wood, "A Carolingian Scholar in the Court of King Æthelstan", pp. [37], In 933 Edwin was drowned in a shipwreck in the North Sea. He was especially devoted to the cult of St. Cuthbert in Chester-le-Street, and his gifts to the community there included Bede's Lives of Cuthbert. 211–215; Foot, Sharp, "England, Europe and the Celtic World", p. 198, Ortenberg, "The King from Overseas", pp. Alfred (Ælfrēd en vieil anglais), né en 848 ou 849 et mort le 26 octobre 899, est roi du Wessex de 871 à sa mort, et roi de tous les Anglo-Saxons à partir de 878, sans jamais contrôler la totalité du territoire anglais. In the view of historian John Blair, the reputation is probably well-founded, but "These waters are muddied by Æthelstan's almost folkloric reputation as a founder, which made him a favourite hero of later origin-myths. Alors que la saison 4 de "The Last Kingdom" est disponible depuis le 26 avril sur Netflix, les fans espèrent déjà retrouver Uhtred et Brida très prochainement pour de nouveaux épisodes. In January 926, Æthelstan arranged for one of his sisters to marry Sihtric. [89] David Pratt describes his legislation as "a deep and far-reaching reform of legal structures, no less important than developments under King Alfred two generations earlier". [4] In the eighth century, Mercia had been the most powerful kingdom in southern England, but in the early ninth, Wessex became dominant under Æthelstan's great-great-grandfather, Egbert. [160], According to Michael Wood: "Among all the great rulers of British history, Æthelstan today is the forgotten man",[161] and in medieval historian Ann Williams's view: "If Æthelstan has not had the reputation which accrued to his grandfather, the fault lies in the surviving sources; Æthelstan had no biographer, and the Chronicle for his reign is scanty. The purple blooms, when dissolved in water, are tasteless and effective, especially in children. Stiorra opens the front gate and asks Cenric and his men if they are lost. Hæsten orders his men to tie Uhtred and his men to trees so that they may die slowly. He’s holed up in Dunholm (Durham) with his snivelling one-eyed son Sven and poor Thyra, who is living half-mad with wild hounds, dreaming of death. After his death in 939 the Vikings seized back control of York, and it was not finally reconquered until 954. Æthelhelm finished the last of the water. Ælswith warns them that her son will burn them all to the ground before he concedes any of Wessex land. As night falls, the group settles down to sleep. Eadith has proof off his crime. No plan has been made for the succession, so Æthelflæd is eager to speak with him and the Ealdormen. If Edward had intended his realms to be divided after his death, his deposition of Ælfwynn in Mercia in 918 may have been intended to prepare the way for Æthelstan's succession as king of Mercia. ("Episode 4.9"), Ælswith, Æthelstan, Æthelhelm, Ælflæd, and Ælfweard remain locked up. Notice Ælswith tells him to pray they offer more. [27] Ælfweard, Edward's eldest son by Ælfflæd, had ranked above Æthelstan in attesting a charter in 901, and Edward may have intended Ælfweard to be his successor as king, either of Wessex only or of the whole kingdom. [84] His religious outlook is shown in a wider sacralization of the law in his reign.[85]. ("Episode 4.6"), Aegelesburg, Mercia; While the town is distracted by King Æthelred’s funeral, Pyrlig sneaks Uhtred, Finan, Stiorra, and Æthelstan inside. Æthelstan is regarded as the first King of England by some modern historians. In the 910s Gwent acknowledged the lordship of Wessex, and Deheubarth and Gwynedd accepted that of Æthelflæd of Mercia; following Edward's takeover of Mercia, they transferred their allegiance to him. The French chronicler Flodoard described him as "the king from overseas", and the Annals of Ulster as the "pillar of the dignity of the western world". According to William of Malmesbury, the gifts Adelolf brought included spices, jewels, many swift horses, a crown of solid gold, the sword of Constantine the Great, Charlemagne's lance, and a piece of the Crown of Thorns. Charles Dickens had only one paragraph on Æthelstan in his Child's History of England, and although Anglo-Saxon history was a popular subject for nineteenth-century artists, and Alfred was frequently depicted in paintings at the Royal Academy between 1769 and 1904, there was not one picture of Æthelstan. But the extant results are, frankly, a mess. Later in the century, Æthelweard praised him as a very mighty king worthy of honour, and Æthelred the Unready, who named his eight sons after his predecessors, put Æthelstan first as the name of his eldest son. [104], He also sought to build ties with continental churches. [100] Æthelstan was also a generous donor of manuscripts and relics to churches and monasteries. [24] Eadgifu also had two sons, the future kings Edmund and Eadred. Simon Keynes and Richard Abels believe that leading figures in Wessex were unwilling to accept Æthelstan as king in 924 partly because his mother had been Edward the Elder's concubine. The group then run off into the woods. [31] However, Sarah Foot ascribes his decision to remain unmarried to "a religiously motivated determination on chastity as a way of life". In ninth-century Wessex they each ruled a single shire, but by the middle of the tenth they had authority over a much wider area, a change probably introduced by Æthelstan to deal with the problems of governing his extended realm. Ælswith retorts that if not for his actions, Cnut and Sigtryggr would’ve joined forces and they would be facing a bigger threat. In 935 a charter was attested by Constantine, Owain of Strathclyde, Hywel Dda, Idwal Foel, and Morgan ap Owain. William did not know her name, but traditions first recorded at. To the south, King Æthelstan has unified the three kingdoms of Wessex, Mercia and East Anglia – and now eyes a bigger prize. Uhtred orders Stiorra to get Ælfwynn out the sun, but she’s tired of mothering her. According to Sarah Foot, "He found acclaim in his own day not only as a successful military leader and effective monarch but also as a man of devotion, committed to the promotion of religion and the patronage of learning." Medieval campaigning was normally conducted in the summer, and Æthelstan could hardly have expected an invasion on such a large scale so late in the year. [30] In the view of historians David Dumville and Janet Nelson he may have agreed not to marry or have heirs in order to gain acceptance. Uhtred arrives soon thereafter to find that everyone is safe. Ælfwynn goes following behind a crow, chasing it through the woods on her own. According to a transcript dating from 1304, in 925 Æthelstan gave a charter of privileges to St Oswald's Priory, Gloucester, where his aunt and uncle were buried, "according to a pact of paternal piety which he formerly pledged with Æthelred, ealdorman of the people of the Mercians". His bones were lost during the Reformation, but he is commemorated by an empty fifteenth-century tomb. Alfred and Ælswith tells him that they will be cared for. Four legal codes were adopted at Royal Councils in the early 930s at Grately in Hampshire, Exeter, Faversham in Kent, and Thunderfield in Surrey. [124], Like his father, Æthelstan was unwilling to marry his female relatives to his own subjects, so his sisters either entered nunneries or married foreign husbands. An exception is George Molyneaux, who states that "There are, however, grounds to suspect that Æthelstan may have had a hand in the death of Ælfweard's full brother Edwin in 933". Æthelstan defeated them at the Battle of Brunanburh, a victory which gave him great prestige both in the British Isles and on the Continent. However, they come up empty handed. A charter relating to land in Derbyshire, which appears to have been issued at a time in 925 when his authority had not yet been recognised outside Mercia, was witnessed only by Mercian bishops. He was succeeded by his half-brother, Edmund. They’ve come to take Ælfwynn to Aegelesburg. More legal texts survive from his reign than from any other 10th-century English king. [144] By contrast with this extensive source of information, no charters survive from 910 to 924, a gap which historians struggle to explain, and which makes it difficult to assess the degree of continuity in personnel and the operation of government between the reigns of Edward and Æthelstan. Patrick Wormald's verdict was harsh: "The hallmark of Æthelstan's law-making is the gulf dividing its exalted aspirations from his spasmodic impact." [57], No battles are recorded during the campaign, and chronicles do not record its outcome. [129], In early medieval Europe, it was common for kings to act as foster-fathers for the sons of other kings. ©2020 Bernard Cornwell (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers Limited . Israel and "a certain Frank" drew a board game called "Gospel Dice" for an Irish bishop, Dub Innse, who took it home to Bangor. [131], Æthelstan's court was perhaps the most cosmopolitan of the Anglo-Saxon period. 257–258; Foot, Hart, "Sihtric"; Thacker, "Dynastic Monasteries and Family Cults", p. 257, Nelson, "Rulers and government", pp. Sigtryggr agrees to make the exchange. William's account kept his memory alive, and he was praised by other medieval chroniclers. Æthelhelm realizes who Æthelstan is and confronts Ælswith. [22] However, Sarah Foot argues that the acrostic poem makes better sense if it is dated to the beginning of Æthelstan's reign. The small and intimate meetings that had been adequate until the enlargement of the kingdom under Edward the Elder gave way to large bodies attended by bishops, ealdormen, thegns, magnates from distant areas, and independent rulers who had submitted to his authority. Æthelstan sent his half-sister Eadhild to be Hugh's wife. ("Episode 4.9"), Ælflæd blames Edward for not being in Winchester to protect them. Notice She reports to Finan, Osferth, and Sihtric of their arrival and tells them that she has a plan. Residence William of Malmesbury's report of the Hereford meeting is not mentioned in the first volume of the Oxford History of Wales. However, she is grateful the screaming has stopped. 7 novels (see below) Residence According to William of Malmesbury, an otherwise unknown nobleman called Alfred plotted to blind Æthelstan on account of his supposed illegitimacy, although it is unknown whether he aimed to make himself king or was acting on behalf of Edwin, Ælfweard's younger brother. [73] Previously, some charters had been produced by royal priests and others by members of religious houses, but between 928 and 935 they were produced exclusively by a scribe known to historians as "Æthelstan A", showing an unprecedented degree of royal control over an important activity. She explains that it was Edward’s wish for them to go to Bedwyn. While she doesn’t like Uhtred, it may be the only compromise. Father Pyrlig takes Æthelstan to hide with the other villagers he’s brought in. However, Eardwulf then reveals that she’s in fact Uhtred’s daughter. The first series of eight episodes premiered on 10 October 2015 on BBC America, and on BBC Two in the UK on 22 October 2015. He won spectacular military victories (most notably at Brunanburh), forged unprecedented political connections across Europe, and succeeded in creating the first unified kingdom of the English. The West Saxons fought back under Alfred the Great, and achieved a decisive victory at the Battle of Edington. [95] According to Æthelwold's biographer, Wulfstan, "Æthelwold spent a long period in the royal palace in the king's inseparable companionship and learned much from the king's wise men that was useful and profitable to him". Hild is right to assume that Ælswith wishes to see the two, and to do it in secret. Their courts were peripatetic, and their councils were held at varying locations around their realms. Caspar Griffiths However, Stiorra refuses as she’s not Christian. The first of these later codes, issued at Grately, prescribed harsh penalties, including the death penalty for anyone over twelve years old caught in the act of stealing goods worth more than eight pence. The English also suffered heavy losses, including two of Æthelstan's cousins, sons of Edward the Elder's younger brother, Æthelweard.[60]. [6], Little is known of warfare between the English and the Danes over the next few years, but in 909, Edward sent a West Saxon and Mercian army to ravage Northumbria. Uhtred carries Ælfwynn as Finan carries Æthelstan. [16] Medieval Latin scholar Michael Lapidge and historian Michael Wood see this as designating Æthelstan as a potential heir at a time when the claim of Alfred's nephew, Æthelwold, to the throne represented a threat to the succession of Alfred's direct line,[17] but historian Janet Nelson suggests that it should be seen in the context of conflict between Alfred and Edward in the 890s, and might reflect an intention to divide the realm between his son and his grandson after his death. Welsh kings attended Æthelstan's court between 928 and 935 and witnessed charters at the head of the list of laity (apart from the kings of Scotland and Strathclyde), showing that their position was regarded as superior to that of the other great men present. He also purchased the vast territory of Amounderness in Lancashire, and gave it to the Archbishop of York, his most important lieutenant in the region. Lisez « Æthelstan » de Sarah Foot disponible chez Rakuten Kobo. In Keynes's view he "has long been regarded, with good reason, as a towering figure in the landscape of the tenth century ... he has also been hailed as the first king of England, as a statesman of international standing". Ælswith sent the boy to a monastery in order to guarantee a wedding between Edward and Ælflæd. [156] Æthelstan's reign built upon his grandfather's ecclesiastical programme, consolidating the local ecclesiastical revival and laying the foundation for the monastic reform movement later in the century.[139]. [66] Alfred Smyth describes it as "the greatest battle in Anglo-Saxon history", but he also states that its consequences beyond Æthelstan's reign have been overstated. By Æthelstan's time the connection was well established, and his coronation was performed with the Carolingian ceremony of anointment, probably to draw a deliberate parallel between his rule and Carolingian tradition. Ælswith asks Æthelstan what he is reading. Because of him, their family now sits on the throne of Wessex and Mercia. However, that’s likely due to the fact that everyone is dead. Bishop Erkenwald states that Edward’s wife has chosen to enter a nunnery, and therefore, the marriage is dismissed. The battle was reported in the Annals of Ulster: A generation later, the chronicler Æthelweard reported that it was popularly remembered as "the great battle", and it sealed Æthelstan's posthumous reputation as "victorious because of God" (in the words of the homilist Ælfric of Eynsham). [118] But according to George Molyneaux "this is to apply an anachronistic standard: tenth-century kings had a loose but real hegemony throughout the island, and their titles only appear inflated if one assumes that kingship ought to involve domination of an intensity like that seen within the English kingdom of the eleventh and later centuries."[119]. Alex Woolf describes it as a "pyrrhic victory" for Æthelstan: the campaign seems to have ended in a stalemate, his power appears to have declined, and after he died Olaf acceded to the kingdom of Northumbria without resistance. He never married and had no children. "[88] In the view of Simon Keynes, however, "Without any doubt the most impressive aspect of King Æthelstan's government is the vitality of his law-making", which shows him driving his officials to do their duties and insisting on respect for the law, but also demonstrates the difficulty he had in controlling a troublesome people. So, she asks for Edward’s forgiveness. Centric isn’t convinced and proceeds to search the grounds while young Uhtred, Finan, Osferth, Sihtric, Ælfwynn, and Æthelstan hide. ("Episode 4.6"), Wollerton, Mercia; Sihtric asks for his blade back from Æthelstan. Finan suggests that they return to Aegelesburg. The historian W. H. Stevenson commented in 1898: However, Michael Lapidge argues that however unpalatable the hermeneutic style seems to modern taste, it was an important part of late Anglo-Saxon culture, and deserves more sympathetic attention than it has received from modern historians. He has a twin sister, Ædgyth, but they were separated soon after birth. "[134], Æthelstan died at Gloucester on 27 October 939. The two reunite in the garden as Ælswith watches from the window. Wood also suggests that Æthelstan may have been the first English king to be groomed from childhood as an intellectual, and that John was probably his tutor. In 927 he conquered the last remaining Viking kingdom, York, making him the first Anglo-Saxon ruler of the whole of England. Yorke, "Edward as Ætheling", pp. However, I knew that it had to end one day. "Æthelstan A" may have been Bishop Ælfwine of Lichfield, who was close to the king. [46] His triumph led to seven years of peace in the north. [116] Some historians are not impressed. 335–336, 345–346; Foot. To the north, King Constantine and other Scottish and Irish leaders seek to extend their borders and expand their dominion. Quatrième fils du roi Æthelwulf, il succède à son frère Æthelred en tant que roi du Wessex en 871. ("Episode 4.8"), Eadith watches over Ælfwynn and Æthelstan as they play on the swings and in the yard. Æthelstan admits that he’s the elder brother, and Sigtryggr decides to take both. ("Episode 4.10"), Edward reveals to Uhtred that his mother is ill and that she can no longer care for Æthelstan. He suspects there may even be bodies laying in the fields. She demands that he show her the child. log in sign up. Sin embargo, en la cuarta temporada, Ælswith rastreó al niño para que pudiera conocer a su madre. Some historians believe that Sihtric renounced his wife soon after the marriage and reverted to paganism. This was one reason for his close relations with European courts, and he married several of his half-sisters to European nobles[125] in what historian Sheila Sharp called "a flurry of dynastic bridal activity unequalled again until Queen Victoria's time". The following year the Northumbrian Danes attacked Mercia, but suffered a decisive defeat at the Battle of Tettenhall. [98], Æthelstan was a noted collector of relics, and while this was a common practice at the time, he was marked out by the scale of his collection and the refinement of its contents. Sarah Foot even made a case that Beowulf may have been composed in Æthelstan's circle. War Lord (The Last Kingdom, Book 13 – the epic conclusion) IN THE FINAL RECKONING, CHOOSE YOUR SIDE CAREFULLY… After years fighting to reclaim his rightful home, Uhtred of Bebbanburg has returned to Northumbria. His reputation was so great that some monastic scribes later falsely claimed that their institutions had been beneficiaries of his largesse. [78] His reign predates the sophisticated state of the later Anglo-Saxon period, but his creation of the most centralised government England had yet seen, with the king and his council working strategically to ensure acceptance of his authority and laws, laid the foundations on which his brothers and nephews would create one of the wealthiest and most advanced systems of government in Europe. [92], In the early 930s a new coinage was issued, the "crowned bust" type, with the king shown for the first time wearing a crown with three stalks. After evading capture, they proceed to pack their belongings and head for Ceaster. One of the central plot points of The Last Kingdom 's fourth season was the dilemma of Edward's eldest son, Æthelstan. Guthrum or Guthrum the Unlucky (later known as Æthelstan of East Anglia) was a main character and former antagonist in both The Saxon Stories novel series, and The Last Kingdom television series. He made a confraternity agreement with the clergy of Dol Cathedral in Brittany, who were then in exile in central France, and they sent him the relics of Breton saints, apparently hoping for his patronage. Le roi de Bebbanburg décide de rennomer son plus jeune fils Uhtred, nom de son fils ainé. Athelstan, also spelled Aethelstan or Ethelstan, (died October 27, 939), first West Saxon king to have effective rule over the whole of England.

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