Wednesday, January 8, 2014

King Alfred "Wins His Spurs"

The youngest of five brothers, Alfred was an unlikely candidate to ever become king of Wessex. But when the Danish invaders kept leaving Wessex without a ruler, he assumed the crown at 22 years of age. That year, 871, was also the first year where he won a pitched battle, the Battle of Ashdown. 

Today at English Historical Fiction Authors I describe that battle and how Alfred won his spurs, so to speak, against the Viking hordes.
...Æthelred, being the king, was to engage the Danish kings. Alfred would engage the part of the Danish army led by the earls. Merkle notes that with Alfred’s lack of military experience and with the disaster at Reading fresh on everyone’s minds, “he had little to commend himself to the men of Wessex who were now expected to follow him up the soon-to-be-bloodied slope of Ashdown"... (read more)

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