King Ethelwulf WESSEX
(Abt 801-857)
Queen Osburgh WESSEX
(Abt 803-Bef 855)
Ealdorman Ethelred Mucil GAINAI
(Abt 805-)
(Abt 830-)
King Alfred Wessex ENGLAND
(Abt 848-899)
Queen Ealhswyth ENGLAND
(Abt 851-Abt 904)
Lady Ethelfleda MERCIA
(Abt 869-918)


Family Links

Duke Ethelred MERCIA

Lady Ethelfleda MERCIA

  • Born: Abt 869, , Wessex, England
  • Died: 12 Jun 918, Tamworth, Staffordshire, England
  • Buried: Church, St Peters, Gloucestershire, England

   Other names for Ethelfleda were Aethelflaed and MERCIA Lady.

   Ancestral File Number: FLGQ-66. User ID: 19365134819.

   General Notes:

Duke of MERCIA.

Kings and Queens of Great Britain, Genealogical Chart, Anne Taute and Romilly Squire, Taute, 1990: "Aethelflaed The Lady of Mercia,Mar Aethelred Ealdorman of Mercia, Died 918."

A History of the English Speaking People Winston S Churchill Vol I The Birth of Britain Dodd Mead & Co 1956 p128: "Edward's sister had been, as we have seen, married to Earl Ethelred of Mercia. Ethelred died in 911, and his widow, Ethelfleda, succeeded and supassed him. In those savage times the mergence of a woman ruler was enough to betoken her possession of extraordinary qualities. Edward the Elder, as he was afterwards called, and his sister, `the Lady of the Mercians,' conducted the national war in common, and carried its success to heights which Alred never knew. The policy of the two kingdoms, thus knit by blood and need, marched in perfect harmony, and the next onslaught of Danes was met with confident alacrity and soon broken. The victors then set themselves deliberately to the complete conquest of the Danelaw and its Five Boroughs. This task occupied the next ten years, brother and sister advancing in concert upon their respective lines, and fortifying towns they took at every stage. In 918, when Edward stormed Tempsford, near Bedford, and King Guthrum was killed, the whole resistance of East Anglia collapsed, and all the Danish leaders submitted to Edward as their protector and lord. They were granted in return their estates and the right to live according to their Danish customs. At the same time `the Lady of the Mercians' conquered Leicester, and received even from York offers ofsubmission. In this hour of success Ethelfleda died, and Edward, hastening to Tamworth, was invited by the nobles of Mercia to occupy the vacant throne."

Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1981, Micropaedia, Vol III, p799, Edward the Elder: "[Edward's]sister, the Mercian ruler Aethelflaed, constructed a complementary series of fortresses in the northwest Midlands. In 917 Edward and Aethelflaed launched a massive offensive, quickly overwhelming the entire Danish army of East Anglia. Upon Aethelflaed's death in June 918, Edward assumed control of Mercia..."

Vol I, p116, Aethelflaed: "also Ethelfleda, called Lady of the Mercians, Died 12 Jun 918 Tamworth (now in Staffordshire), Anglo-Saxon ruler of Mercia in England. The daughter of Alfred the Great,...Aethelflaed became the effective ruler of Mercia some years before the death (911) of her husband, Aethelred, Ealdorman of the Mercians...captured Derby occupied Leicester but died before the campaign was successfully completed. Edward then claimed his sister's kingdom and completed the subjugation of the Danes. Because Aethelflaed had extended her influence into Wales and Northumbria, Edward was able to assert his authority over these regions as well. Thus, almost all of England came under his control."

The New Columbia Encyclopedia, 1975, p175, Athelstan: "...As a youth he lived in the household of his aunt, Aethelflaed, Lady of the Mercians..."

From Alfred to Henry III 871-1272, Christopher Brooke, 1961, Norton Library History of England, p43: "...In 886 [Alfred] captured London, and put it in charge of his close ally, Ethelred, Ealdorman of the Mercians, who shortly after married Alfred's daughter, Aethelflaed..."
p50: "...Ethelred,Ealdorman of Mercia, died in 911, but co-operation did not cease with his death. His place was filled by his wife, Edward's sister, Aethelflaed, `Lady of the Mercians', who continued her husband's work in close association with her brother until her own death in 918; from then on Wessex and Mercia were united..."
"...After the Ealdorman Ethelred's death in 911, Edward took over London and the south-east Midlands, leaving the rest of English Mercia to Aethelflaed. The building offortresses and the advance east and north went on steadily through the following years. In 914 Aethelflaed built a fortress at Eddisbury (Cheshire) and at Warwick; in 917 she captured Derby; in 918 Leicester, and but for her death that year she might have received the submission of York. In 912 Edward built a burh at Herford, and prepared for campaigns to east and north. In 914 and 915 he received the submission of Bedford and Northampton; in 916 he built a burh at Maldon in Essex;in 917 he and his followers defeated a great counteroffensive mounted by the Danes, and occupied Essex and East Anglia, restoring the burh at Colchester. In 918 he was at Stamford and Nottingham. These places had been two of the crucial Danishcentres of power south of the Humber; it is likely that a third, Lincoln, also submitted to Edward in thsi year. By these surrenders he became lord of the Danelaw up to the line of the Humber; by his sister's death he was lord of Mercia; and inthe same year the kings of several leading Welsh kingdoms accepted his overlordship.
"The offer by the Danes of York to submit to Aethelflaed- an offer not repeated to Edward after her death- was partly inspired by the progress of anotherViking power, this time of Norse origin and leadership..."

The Formation of England 550-1042, HPR Finberg, 1977, Paladin, p127: "...In 885 the Danes in East Anglia broke the peace. Alfred reacted strongly, and in the following year took London by storm. London had long been a Mercian town, and Alfred refrained from annexing it to his own kingdom. Ceolwulf II, the last English king of Mercia, being now presumably dead, the part of Mercia not under Danish rule was governed by an ealdorman named Ethelred. Alfred entrusted the government of London to him and gave him his daughter Aethelflaed in marriage. Thus far Mercian independence was respected, but Ethelred never assumed the kingly title, and was content to reign as Alfred's viceroy...
p145: "The possibility that [the Norwegian immigrants crossing from Ireland and settling in the north-west] might make common cause with the independent Danish forces in eastern England naturally alarmed the government of English Mercia. The ealsorman Ethelred, as loyal to King Edward as he had been to Edward's father, was now a sick man, and responsibility devolved upon his wife, Alfred's daughter Aethelflaed. In 907 she repaired the walls of Chester and placed a garrison there to control disaffection in Wirral..."
"In 911 Ethelred of Mercia died, and Aethelflaed acquiesced when Edward annexed London and Oxford to his own kingdom. The doughty princess, half Mercian by descent on her mother's side, was known as the Lady of the Mercians. For the rest of her life she collaborated loyally and effectively with her brother in a campaign to subdue the independent Danish armies in England.
"The key to their strategy was the extension of the system devised by Alfred, of building fortresses, `boroughs', to protect English territory from Danish inroads and to serve as bases for operations against the enemy... Meanwhile Aethelflaed fortified Sceargeat, a place as yet unidentified, and Bridgenorth on the Severn, a favourite crossing place of Danish war-bands. In 913 she built fortresses at Tamworth to protect the Mercian border from attack by the Danes of Leicester, and at Stafford to bar entry into the valley of the Trent. Next year she repaired a prehistoric camp at Eddisbury from which a garrison could intercept raiders landing from the Mersey. She also fortified Warwick...In 915 Aethelflaed secured her frontier with mid-Wales by a fort at Chirbury and guarded the head of the Mersey with one at Runcorn. By 916 a line of fortresses from Essex to the Mersey, eleven of them built or repaired by Aethelflaed, sixteen by Edward, menaced the Danes, who hurled themselves against them in vain. The last known Danish king of East Anglia perished in battle. Within a year the army of Northampton surrendered, Huntingdon was occupied, the armies of Cambridge and East Anglia submitted to Edward, and Derby, the first of the five principal Danish boroughs, was taken by Aethelflaed. There remained Leicester, Nottingham, Stamford, and Lincoln. In 918 Edward advanced to Stamford and overawed the Danes there into submission, while Aethelflaed made her entry unopposed into Leicester. Before the end of the year Nottingham had surrendered and all England south of the Humber acknowledged Edward as its master.
"Throughout this masterly campaign, brilliantly conceived and prosecuted with unwavering determination, the Lady of the Mercians acted in perfect accord with her brother. Both of them displayed generalship of the highest order. By contrast, the lack of cohesion between the various Danish armies weakened their resistance to the victorious pair. But Aethelflaed did not live to see the final triumph. She died on 12 June 918, leaving one child, a daughter Aelfwynn. To forestall any separatist tendency, Edward promptly occupied Tamworth, received the submission of the Mercians, and took command of their levies. Then he completed Aethelflaed's defences of her northern frontier by building a new fortress at Thelwall, and repairing the Roman fortifications of Manchester, meanwhile allowing Aelfwynn to exercise nominal authority in her mother's place. But the arrangement lasted less than a twelvemonth. In the winter of 919 Edward deported his niece into Wessex, where she presumably ended her days in a convent. This masterful act may or may not have been welcome to the Mercians, but it swept away thelast vestige of their independence."

Ancestral File Ver 4.10 FLGQ-66 Ethelfleda Princess of ENGLAND Born Abt 869 Wessex England Mar Ethelred Duke of MERCIA (AFN:GXQD-R9) Died 12 Jun 918 St Peters Gloucestershire England, HESP Ethelfleda, EBMicro Aethelflaed.

   Marriage Information:

Ethelfleda married Duke Ethelred MERCIA. (Duke Ethelred MERCIA was born about 865 in , Wessex, England and died about 911-912 in , Mercia, England.)

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