Born in 795
Died in 855
Ethelwulf was born in 795, the eldest son of Saxon King Egbert, he was destined to become King of Wessex, his mother was Redburga. He battled on behalf of his father, and conquered Kent, he was then made a sub king of Kent, Surrey, and Essex by his father, and when King Egburt died in 839 Ethelwulf ascended to the throne and ruled the kingdom of Wessex, aged thirty years. His Coronation took place in Kingston-Upon-Thames in 839. However, it was not long before he was embroiled in many battles and conflicts, one of which took place in Carhampton in 840, where a bloody ensued against the Danes. He had married his first wife Osburga in 830, and she produced four sons, Athelstan who was handed the sub kingdom, Ethelbald, Ethelbert, Ethelred, and the youngest son was Alfred. All four sons were destined to become kings, one of which, Alfred was to become a great king. Their only daughter Aethelswith was married to the King of Mercia to form an alliance at which time the King of Mercia asked for Ethelwulf's support with battles against the Welsh. When Osburga died, Ethelwulf came to a decision, he divided his kingdom and as Athelstan had died, he left his next eldest son Ethelbald to reign Wessex, and his other son Ethelbert to reign the south east, whilst he took his youngest son Alfred on a journey of pilgrimage to Rome
During the absence of Ethelwulf, Ethelbald seized his opportunity and took the crown as he feared that Alfred, a favourite of his father would inherit the kingdom of Wessex. On their return journey Ethelwulf agreed to an alliance with Charles the Bald, and married his young daughter Judith. They were married in 856 and bypassing usual West Saxon tradition and custom she was crowned Queen of Wessex. Ethelwulf took his son Ethelbald to task, who eventually agreed to hand back the crown to his father and continue as Sub King of Wessex. However Ethelbald did not have long to wait as his father died in 855 aged 63. He was buried at Steyning in Sussex, although was later moved to Winchester Cathedral. Ethelbald succeeded his father and ruled the kingdom of Wessex, he then married his step mother Judith, which was frowned upon, his reign was not destined to last for long and he died a few years later in 860.
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