Rise of Statesmen

Book 2, Chapter 7, Alfred’s Children from 901 AD to 955 – Edred

During Edred’s reign, which only lasted nine years, he dying in 955, two men came into prominence, who are remarkable for their personal character and influence, and remarkable as being the first of a long series of statesmen whose advice has been of great weight in the guidance of public affairs, and who have gradually come to wield a power greater in reality, though sometimes inferior in name, to that of royalty itself. Of necessity, most of the early English statesmen were ecclesiastics and the power and influence which some of them acquired appear incredible to modern readers, accustomed to the workings of a Constitution, with so many mutual checks and safeguards, the gradual accretion of many generations.

The period of English history now under review borders upon a time when a set conflict took place between the powers civil and ecclesiastical, a conflict, which was to be the precursor of many more, waged often by unequal combatants, and with fluctuating issues, for nearly six hundred years.

Chapter 7, Alfred’s Children

Edward Becomes King

The Succession Disputed by Ethelwald

Partial Annexation of East Anglia and Northumbria

Mercia Added

Chapter 7, Athelstan

Athelstan, the First Monarch of England

Intrigue Against Him

Conflicts with the Anglo-Danes

Formidable Invasion

Decisive Battle of Brunanburh

The Anglo-Danes Revolt, and are Subdued

Chapter 7, Renown of Athelstan

Renown of Athelstan

Death and Character

Chapter 7, Edmund


Reign of Edmund

Murder of the King

Chapter 7, Edred

Edred Succeeds

A Strong Mind in a Frail Body

Outbreak in Northumbria

Rise of Statesmen

Dunstan and Turketul


Categories: Book 2

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