Shopping Cart -

Your cart is currently empty.
Continue Shopping
This website use cookies and similar technologies to improve the site and to provide customised content and advertising. By using this site, you agree to this use. To learn more, including how to change your cookie settings, please view our Cookie Policy
Pocketmags Digital Magazines
US
Pocketmags Digital Magazines

The Lady of the Mercians

She was a queen in all but name, but Æthelflæd, the daughter of Alfred the Great, is barely mentioned in contemporary chronicles of the Anglo-Saxon era. Jonny Wilkes wonders whether England owes more to her than to her famous father
Æthelflæd led the Kingdom of Mercia and had several victories over the Vikings

When her for of old, Wessex. greatness, father Æthelflæd she was Alfred, At married around became was destined a baby to 16 King the years Lord of the Mercians and so placed next to the seat of power of a neighbouring Anglo-Saxon kingdom. In her 20s, she helped to build a string of fortifications and patronise churches; in her 30s, she took up the mantle of ruling in place of her indisposed husband and defeated the Vikings in battle; and in her 40s, on her husband’s death, Æthelflæd was chosen to lead above all male contenders.

Vikings were the biggest threat to the Anglo-Saxons in Æthelflæd’s lifetime
GETTY IMAGES X1, STAINED GLASS WINDOW IMAGE COURTSEY OF ST ANDREWS CHURCH/CHURCHDOWN X1

She became known as the Lady of the Mercians. She strengthened the economy improved education and intensified her campaign to build towns and defences across her kingdom. She restored Mercian lands by force or negotiation and plunged into enemy territory to throw out the invaders once and for all. She was to die at the height of her power before she reached 50. As a wife, patron and warlord, Æthelflæd helped establish a united England, but as a woman, her place in the histories was reduced, undermined, almost forgotten.

READ MORE
Purchase options below
Find the complete article and many more in this issue of BBC History Revealed - April 2019
If you own the issue, Login to read the full article now.
Single Issue - April 2019
$4.99
Or 499 points
Monthly Digital Subscription
Only $ 2.76 per issue
SAVE
70%
$2.99
Or 299 points
Annual Digital Subscription
Only $ 2.77 per issue
SAVE
45%
$35.99
Or 3599 points
6 Month Digital Subscription
Only $ 2.77 per issue
SAVE
40%
$17.99
Or 1799 points

View Issues

About BBC History Revealed

William Shakespeare had humble beginnings – how did he transform into England’s greatest playwright? We explore how the ‘upstart crow’ became so widely celebrated. Plus: The mysterious assassins of the medieval Muslim world are explored, we dig into the diaries of Samuel Pepys and take a look at the life of Æthelflæd, Lady of the Mercians.