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Edward the Elder - 899-924

As his predecessors before him, Edward the Elder was crowned at Kingston upon Thames, son of Alfred the Great and Elswitha he was well-trained by Alfred, and was a bold soldier who defeated the Danes in Northumbria at Tettenhall in 910 and was acknowledged by the Viking kingdom of York. The kings of Strathclyde and the Scots submitted to Edward in 921. By military success and patient planning, Edward spread English influence and control. Much of this was due to his alliance with his formidable sister Aethelflaed, who was married to the ruler of Mercia and seems to have governed that kingdom after her husband's death.

Edward was able to establish an administration for the kingdom of England, whilst obtaining the allegiance of Danes, Scots and Britons. Edward died in 924, and he was buried in the New Minster which he had had completed at Winchester. Edward was twice married, but it is possible that his eldest son Athelstan was the son of a mistress.

Edward the Elder probably holds the paternity record among English kings for legitimate children, fathering two sons by Egwina, ten children by Elfleda, and five more (including two future kings, Edmund I and Edred) by Edgifu.

He died in Farndon-on-Dee, Cheshire, and was buried in Winchester. He was succeeded by his eldest son, Athelstan.



 
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