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Alfred the Great and the Kingdom of the Anglo-Saxons

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Chapter Summary

From his accession in 871 to his death in 899 Alfred was known as king "of the West Saxons". In the 880s he came to be known, in certain quarters, as king "of the Anglo-Saxons", and it is a reflection of the esteem in which he had come to be held, by the early 890s, that he was described by a Welsh admirer, in 893, as ruler "of all the Christians of the island of Britain". For the first ten years of his reign, he struggled hard against the invaders, known to the English of his day as "the heathens", "the Danes", or "the Vikings". In the aftermath of Alfred's victory over the Vikings at the battle of Edington, and the demise of Ceolwulf, circumstances began to change. The coinage of King Alfred, bears on the nature of royal involvement in commerce, and on wider political developments.

Keywords: Anglo-Saxons; battle of Edington; Britain; Ceolwulf; Christians; King Alfred; Vikings



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