In 655 he was attacked by Penda, and, after an unsuccessful attempt to buy him off, defeated and slew the Mercian king at the battle of the Winwaed.
In 868 the Mercian king appealed to Ã†thelred and Alfred for assistance against the Danes, who were in possession of Nottingham.
His position was assured, at least temporarily, in 617, when he decided to espouse the cause of the Northumbrian prince Edwin, then a fugitive at his court, and defeated zEthelfrith of Northumbria on the banks of the Idle, a tributary of the Trent, in Mercian territory.
In 654 Anna was slain by Penda of Mercia, and was succeeded by his brother 2Ethelhere, who was killed in 655 at the Winwaed, fighting for the Mercian king against Oswio of Northumbria.
East Anglia was subject to the supremacy of the Mercian kings until 825, when its people slew Beornwulf of Mercia, and with their king acknowledged Ecgberht (Egbert) of Wessex as their lord.
In 907 they fortified Chester, and in 909 and 910 either Ã†thelflaed or her husband must have led the Mercian host at the battles of Tettenhall and Wednesfield (or Tettenhall-Wednesfield, if these battles are one and the same).
(especially the Mercian register in MSS.
Later the district formed the northern division of Mercia, and in 848 the Mercian witenagemot assembled at Repton.
Hence the Mercian king must then have been the overlord of London.
Here was a residence of the Mercian kings, and, after being bestowed on the Marmions by William the Conqueror, the castle remained for many years an important fortress.
In 743 or 745 lEthelbald of Mercia is found granting privileges at the port of London, and perhaps the western portion of the kingdom had already been annexed, for henceforward London is frequently the meeting-place of the Mercian council.
The violent death of Selred, king of Essex, is mentioned in the Saxon Chronicle under the year 746; but we have no more information of historical importance until the defeat of the Mercian king Beornwulf in 825, when Essex, together with Kent, Sussex and Surrey, passed into the hands of Ecgbert, king of Wessex.
Skeat, The Holy Gospels in Anglo-Saxon, Northumbrian and Old Mercian Versions (Cambridge, 1871-1887).
The dialect of the translation of St Matthew is Mercian.'
In the same year Wulfstan was liberated and appointed to the Mercian bishopric of Dorchester.
- The earliest coins which can be identified with certainty are some silver pieces which bear in Runic letters the name of the Mercian king 'Ethelred (675-704).
It was, however, a variable unit, for the Kentish shilling contained twenty sceattas (pence), while the Mercian contained only four.
The West Saxon shilling seems originally to have been identical with the Mercian, but later it contained five pence.
Holy Cross is a remnant of a mitred abbey of Benedictines, said to have been founded about 970 by King Edgar, on the site of a Mercian religious settlement.
These kings are also said'to have conie into collision with the Mercian king Penda, and it is possible that the province of the Hwicce was lost in their time.
On the resignation of Ine, in 726, the throne was obtained by iEthelheard, apparently his brotherin-law, who had to submit to the Mercian king iEthelbald, by whom he seems to have been attacked in 733.
Cynewulf was succeeded in 786 by Berhtric, who married Eadburg, daughter of the Mercian king Offa.
Berhtric was succeeded by Ecgberht (q.v.), the chief event of whose reign was the overthrow of the Mercian king Beornwulf in 825, which led to the establishment of West Saxon supremacy and to the annexation by Wessex of Sussex, Surrey, Kent and Essex.
After 915 B, C insert as a separate document a short register of Mercian affairs during the same period (902-924), which might be called the acts of Ã†thelflaed, the famous "Lady of the Mercians," while D has incorporated it, not very skilfully, with the official continuation.
From the middle of the 8th century to the loth, Brycheiniog proper often bore the brunt of Mercian attacks, and many of the castles on its eastern border had their origin in that period.
In later times, however, the kingdom of the Hwicce appears to have been always subject to Mercian supremacy, and possibly it was separated from Wessex in the time of Edwin.
A Northumbrian or Mercian) original; and this conclusion is supported by the fact that while the poem contains one important episode relating to the Angles, the name of the Saxons does not occur in it at all.
It was during these disastrous Mercian wars that there first appeared on the Welsh coasts the Norse and Danish pirates, who harried and burnt the small towns and flourishing monasteries on the shores of Cardigan Bay and the Bristol Channel.
With the division of the Mercian diocese in 679 Bedfordshire fell naturally to the new see of Dorchester.
The church that they founded struck root, as that of Paulinus and Edwin had failed to do, and was not wrecked even by Oswalds deatn in battle at the hands of Penda the Mercian, the one strong champion of heathenism that England produced.
And Mercian first learnt to work together as brothers.
The first Mercian king of whom we have any record was Cearl, who apparently reigned about the beginning of the 7th century, and whose daughter Coenburg married Edwin, king of Deira.
Its first prominent appearance in English history may be dated in the year 633, when the Mercian prince Penda joined the Welsh king Ceadwalla in overthrowing Edwin.
In the Mercian regnal tables, however, he is assigned a reign of only twenty-one years, which, as his death took place in 654 or 655, would give 634 as the date of his accession, presumably on the overthrow of Edwin, or perhaps on that of Ceadwalla.
Peada had embraced Christianity on his marriage with a daughter of Oswio, and under him the first Mercian bishopric was founded.
After this, however, we hear little of Mercian interference with the other kingdoms for some time; and since it is clear that during the last 15 years of the 7th century Wessex, Essex, Sussex and Kent were frequently involved in strife, it seems likely that the Mercian king had somewhat lost hold over the south of England.
On his death in the following year Ã†thelbald, a distant relative, came to the throne, and under him Mercian supremacy was fully restored over all the kingdom south of the Humber.
After his murder in 757 the Mercian throne was held for a short time by Beornred.
Lincolnshire was originally included in the Mercian diocese of Lichfield, but, on the subdivision of the latter by Theodore in 680, the fen-district was included in the diocese of Lichfield, while the see for the northern parts of the county was placed at "Sidnacester," generally identified with Stow.
Freemans bias was peculiar; he is really a West Saxon of Godwines time reincarnated, and his Somerset hatred of French, Scots and Mercian foreigners sets off his robust loyalty to the house of Wessex.
After that their visits came fast and furious on the shore-line of every English kingdom, and by the end of Ecgberts reign it was they, and not his former Welsh and Mercian enemies, who were the old monarchs main source of trouble.
He must have known, from the experience of Mercian, Northumbrian and Frankish kings, that such blackmail only bought a short respite, but the condition of his realm was such that even a moderate time for reorganization might prove valuable.