Athelstan, King of England

Athelstan, the son of Edward the Elder and Egwina of Wessex, was born in about 895.

Athelstan succeeded his father, Edward the Elder, as King of Wessex in 925. On September 5 the year he was crowned King at Kingston-on-Thames,Surrey, by Archbishop Wulfstan. In 927 he became King of all England - the first monarch to unite the country.

In 928 he received an emissary who came to his court seeking a bride for the German Prince, Otto (later Otto I the Great King of Germany). Athelstan sent two of his half-sisters for approval. Eadgyth, the elder sister, was chosen to become Otto's wife.

The crowning event of Athelstan's reign occurred on the battle field at Brunanburh in 937. He was confronted by a combination of enemies, Norse from Ireland whom he had driven out of York, and Scots and Britons from Strathclyde who had been humiliated by an English force that had ravaged Scotland. The day ended in a decisive victory for Athelstan.

Athelstan died unmarried at Gloucester October 27 939 and was buried in Malmesbury Abbey, Wiltshire. He was succeeded in Wessex by half-brother, Edmund.

Malmsbury Abbey, Wiltshire, burial place of Athelstan.