100px|Egbert's name from a 9th-century manuscript
Egbert (ca. 769 or 771 – 839) was King of Wessex from 802 until his
death in 839. Little is known of the first 20 years of Egbert's reign,
but it is thought that he was able to maintain Wessex's independence
against the kingdom of Mercia, which at that time dominated the other
southern English kingdoms. In 825 Egbert defeated Beornwulf of Mercia
and ended Mercia's supremacy at the Battle of Ellandun, and proceeded
to take control of the Mercian dependencies in southeastern England. In
829 Egbert defeated Wiglaf of Mercia and drove him out of his kingdom,
temporarily ruling Mercia directly. Later that year Egbert received the
submission of the Northumbrian king at Dore, near Sheffield. The
Anglo-Saxon Chronicle subsequently described Egbert as a bretwalda, or
"Ruler of Britain". Egbert was unable to maintain this dominant
position, and within a year Wiglaf regained the throne of Mercia.
However, Wessex did retain control of Kent, Sussex and Surrey; these
territories were given to Egbert's son Æthelwulf to rule as a subking
under Egbert. When Egbert died in 839, Æthelwulf succeeded him; the
southeastern kingdoms were finally absorbed into the kingdom of Wessex
after Æthelwulf's death in 858. (more...)
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Today's selected anniversaries:
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, a novella about the miser
Ebenezer Scrooge and his conversion after being visited by three
Christmas ghosts, was first published.
World War II: Three Italian Royal Navy manned torpedoes detonated
limpet mines on British Royal Navy ships, sinking two battleships.
The First Indochina War began when Viet Minh operatives attacked French
military positions and homes in Hanoi.
Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev released dissident Andrei Sakharov
after six years of internal exile in Gorky.
The U.S. House of Representatives impeached President Bill Clinton
following the Lewinsky scandal.
Wiktionary's word of the day:
Wikiquote quote of the day:
And I won't be laughing at the lies when I'm gone
And I can't question how or when or why when I'm gone
Can't live proud
enough to die when I'm gone
So I guess I'll have to do it while I'm here.
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