AEthelstan: The First King of England

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Yale University Press, Jul 12, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 283 pages
The powerful and innovative King ∆thelstan reigned only briefly (924-939), yet his achievements during those eventful fifteen years changed the course of English history. He won spectacular military victories (most notably at Brunanburh), forged unprecedented political connections across Europe, and succeeded in creating the first unified kingdom of the English. To claim for him the title of "first English monarch" is no exaggeration.

In this nuanced portrait of ∆thelstan, Sarah Foot offers the first full account of the king ever written. She traces his life through the various spheres in which he lived and worked, beginning with the intimate context of his family, then extending outward to his unusual multiethnic royal court, the Church and his kingdom, the wars he conducted, and finally his death and legacy. Foot describes a sophisticated man who was not only a great military leader but also a worthy king. He governed brilliantly, developed creative ways to project his image as a ruler, and devised strategic marriage treaties and gift exchanges to cement alliances with the leading royal and ducal houses of Europe. ∆thelstan’s legacy, seen in the new light of this masterful biography, is inextricably connected to the very forging of England and early English identity.
 

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User Review  - Medievalgirl - LibraryThing

Why is it that us Brits remember our defeat at the hands of the Normans, but seem to have largely forgotten the West Saxon ruling dynasty who effectively made England? Alfred is at best remembered for ... Read full review

Contents

3404_00a_Prologue
1
3404_01_CH01
10
3404_02_CH02
29
3404_03_CH03
63
3404_04_CH04
94
3404_05_CH05
127
3404_06_CH06
158
3404_07_CH07
186
3404_08_CH08
212
3404_09_epi
227
3404_10_app1
251
3404_11_app2
259
3404_12_bib
267
3404_13_Index
277
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

divdivSarah Foot is Regius Professor of Ecclesiastical History at Christ Church, Oxford, and a foremost scholar of tenth-century history. She lives in Oxford, UK./DIV/DIV

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