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King Aethelwulf (839 - 856)

Name: King Aethelwulf
Born: 795 at Aachen
Parents: Egbert and Redburh
Relation to Charles III: 34th great-grandfather
House of: Wessex
Became King: 839
Crowned: 839 at Kingston-upon-Thames
Married: (1) c 830, Osburh, dau. Oslac of Hampshire (2) Judith, dau. Charles the Bald, king of the Franks
Children: 6 children including Aethelbald, Aethelbert, Aethelred, and Alfred
Died: January 13, 858 at Steyning, Sussex
Buried at: Winchester
Succeeded by: his son Aethelbald

Aethelwulf was the son of Egbert and a sub-king of Kent. He assumed the throne of Wessex upon his father's death in 839. His reign is characterized by Viking invasions and repulsions common to all English rulers of the time, but the making of war was not his chief claim to fame. Aethelwulf is remembered, however dimly, as a highly religious man who cared about the establishment and preservation of the church. He was also a wealthy man and controlled vast resources. Out of these resources, he gave generously, to Rome and to religious houses that were in need.

Timeline for King Aethelwulf

Year Event
839Aethelwulf succeeds his father Egbert as King of Wessex
841Vikings raid Kent and East Anglia, and establish a settlement at Dublin
842Many die in London and Rochester during Viking raids
844Kenneth MacAlpine, King of the Scots, conquers the Picts; founds a unified Scotland
845Vikings are defeated by a Saxon force at the River Parrett
851Vikings forces enter Thames estuary and march on Canterbury
855Aethelwulf goes on a pilgrimage to Rome accompanied by his son Alfred
858Aethelwulf returns but finds his son Aethelbald has taken control of Wessex
858Aethelwulf dies at Steyning in Sussex. His son Aelthelbald becomes king.