Egbert Wessex
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Ecgberht Wessex (0784 - 0838)

Ecgberht (Egbert) "Bretwalda, King of England, King of Wessex" Wessex
Born in Wessex, Englandmap
Ancestors ancestors
[sibling(s) unknown]
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in Winchester, Hampshire, Wessex, Englandmap
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Ecgberht [Egbert] (d. 839), king of the West Saxons, became king in 802 and ruled Wessex for thirty-seven years and seven months. During the latter part of his reign he extended the territory under his authority to include Kent, Surrey, Essex, and Sussex...[1]


Aka: Egbert. Egbert King of England: Egbert was born 775. Egbert died ca. 11/19/838 at 63 years of age. [citation needed]

aka Ecgberht (King) of WESSEX (& Kent & Essex & Sussex & East Anglia); 18th BRETWALDA; reigned 37 winters; (Egbert was the last `Bretwalda', a title subsumed by King of England) [citation needed]


Ecgberht was born in the time frame 769-780.[2]


Ecgberht was the son of Ealhmund, the Under-king of Kent. [2]

Father: Ealhmund Under-King of Kent, born 0758, died 0788

Mother: UNKNOWN (father: Æthelbert II King of Kent)

802 Reign

The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that "Egbert succeeded to the kingdom of Wessex" after the death of Beorhtric in 802, in a later passage describing him as Ecgberht as son of Ealhmund, and in another passage which setting out his complete ancestry from his son Æthelwulf King of Wessex. [2]

Egbert (775?-839), king of Wessex (802-39), and the first Saxon king recognized as sovereign of all England (828-39). He was the son of a Kenti noble but claimed descent from Cerdic (reigned 519-34), founder of Wessex, the kingdom of the West Saxons in southern England. [citation needed]

789 Expulsion from England

According to the Chronicle, Ecgberht was expelled from England in 789 by King Beorhtric after he unsuccessfully challenged Beorhtric's succession. It may be significant that "England" rather than "Wessex" is specified in this passage of the Chronicle. Ecgberht's father was king of Kent around this time, and it is possible that the expulsion was from Kent, maybe a consequence of his father being deposed as Kentish king. According to William of Malmesbury, Beorhtric was allied with Offa King of Mercia at this time. He explains that Ecgberht had sought refuge with King Offa after his expulsion by King Beorhtric, but that the latter bribed Offa for Ecgberht's surrender and was offered Offa's daughter in marriage in return. Ecgberht sought refuge at the Frankish court until [792]. [2]

During the late 8th century, when King Offa of Mercia (reigned 757-96) ruled most of England, Egbert lived in exile at the court of Charlemagne. Egbert regained his kingdom in 802. [citation needed]

789 Marriage to Redburga

In 789-792 he married Redburga. Her parents and the primary source which confirms her marriage has not yet been identified. According to Weir, she is said to have been "sister of the king of the Franks", who at the time was Charles I, later Emperor "Charlemagne", but her identity is uncertain. The primary source on which this is based has not been identified. If her origin was Frankish, King Ecgberht presumably married her during his exile at the Frankish court between [789/792]. [2]

m. Redburga of Wessex (b. abt 0788)[3]

796 Under-king in Kent

Ecgberht was under-King in Kent in 796.. [2]

On Beorhtric's death, he established himself in 802 as Ecgberht King of Wessex, rebelling against Mercian overlordship. [2]

800 Reign

"Meccia finally came under Egbert, their last king and the first king of all England, who reigned from 800-837. 

The reign of King Ecgberht (802-39): Ecgberht had spent three years in exile in Frankia (789-92), and succeeded Beorhtric in 802. For charters in the name of King Ecgberht, see Edwards (E111). In 825 Ecgberht defeated Beornwulf, king of the Mercians, at the battle of Ellendun (Wroughton, Wiltshire), precipitating major political upheavals in the east and south-east. For Ecgberht and Kent, see Keynes (F6), pp. 121-4. 

In 829 Ecgberht 'conquered the kingdom of the Mercians, and everything south of the Humber; and he was the eighth king who was "Brytenwealda" (ASC); later on in the same year, Egbert 'led an army to Dore [north Derbyshire], against the Northumbrians, and they offered him submission and peace there' (ASC). On the significance of the term 'Bretwalda', see Wormald (D180), Keynes (D181), Dumville (D183b), etc. 

ASC 830: 'And that same year King Ecgberht led an army among the Welsh, and he reduced them all to humble submission to him.' It is not likely to be a coincidence that the Historia Brittonum (B11, C30) originated in Wales at precisely this time, in 829/830: 

Charter recording settlement between Archbishop Ceolnoth and King Ecgberht with King Athelwulf, in a council at Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey, in 838; with confirmation at AEstran 839. The charter is S 1438: text in Birch (B341, no. 421; facsimilies in B335. Discussion: Stenton (A1), p. 234 n.2; Brooks (Q16), pp. 197-203; Wormald (F5), p. 140; Keynes (F10), pp. 1112-14; Crick (F13)." 

"Egbert is son of King Ealhmund of Wessex who descends from Cerdic, King of the West Saxons (reigned 519-34) - see AEM Charts. Cerdic led the Saxon conquest of Britain from the Briton tribes. Egbert is known as the first king of all England. He succeeded to the throne in 802 and "overthrew the Mercian king Beornwulf in 825. This led to the annexation by Wessex of Sussex, Surrey, Kent and Essex and the temporary recognition of West Saxon supremacy by Mercia." {-Encycl.Brit.,`56,23:520} His wife, Raedburh, is said to be a sister of the King of Franks. Egbert's later years saw many Danish Viking raids on England. {Ref. Harold W. Smith, "Saxon England," gens. 9-13. Also: "The Earliest English Kings," D. P. Kirby (London: Routledge, 1992), pp. 189-95.}" 

815 Ravaged Cornwall

The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that he ravaged the Britons of Dumnonia (Cornwall) 815]. [2]

825 Defeated Beornwulf, King of Mercia

He defeated Beornwulf King of Mercia in 825 at Ellendun [=Wroughton, Wiltshire], which marked the end of Mercian ascendancy. King Ecgberht immediately sent his son Æthelwulf with a large army into Kent, which submitted to him along with Surrey, Sussex and Essex. East Anglia, in revolt against Mercia, turned to Ecgberht for protection. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that Ecgberht conquered Mercia in 829, taking the title rex Merciorum, from evidence provided by a limited number of coins, but lost control of Mercia again in 830. He exacted tribute from Eanred King of Northumbria in 829. [2]

In 829, the Northumbrians accepted his overlordship and he was proclaimed "Bretwalda" or sole ruler of Britain.[4][5]

He conquered the neighboring kingdoms of Kent, Cornwall, and Mercia, and by 830 he was the acknowledged sovereign of East Anglia, Sussex, Surrey, and Northumbria; and was titled Bretwalda (Anglo-Saxon, "ruler of the British").

835 Conflict with Danes and Vikings

During succeeding years Egbert led expeditions against the Welsh and the Vikings. The year before his death he defeated a combined force of Danes and Welsh at Hingston Down in Cornwall

The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that the first Danish raiders landed at Sheppey in 835 and King Ecgberht was defeated by Viking invaders at Carhampton in 836[1475], but defeated the Vikings at Hingston Down, Cornwall in 838[1476], which is probably when Cornwall was integrated into Wessex. "Ægberhtus rex occidentalium Saxonum" granted land at Canterbury to "Ciaba clericus", jointly with "Æthelwulfi regis filii mei", by charter dated 836[1477]. "Æthelwulf rex Cancie" was co-grantor of land in Kent with "Egberthus rex occident Saxonum pater meus" by charters dated [833/39] and 838 respectively. Despite his successes, he does not seem to have claimed overlordship over all the southern English or referred to himself as king of England. He is listed as eighth bretwalda in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle[1479], supplementing the original list given by Bede. [2]

839 Death

Ecgberht died February (or June) 839 and was buried at Winchester Cathedral. [2]

He was originally buried at Old Minster, Winchester, bones now at Winchester Cathedral. [6]

William of Malmesbury records that King Ecgberht died "after a reign of thirty-seven years" and was buried at Winchester. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle records that Ecgberht died in 839. [2]



King Ecgberht had two children: [2]

  1. Æthelwulf of Wessex, born 795, Wantage, Berkshire. #Æthelwulf ([795/810]-13 Jan 858, bur Winchester). The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle names Æthelwulf as son of Ecgberht[1483]. He succeeded his father 839 as ÆTHELWULF King of Wessex. [2] Æthelwulf King of England (806 - 13 Jan 0858)[7]
  2. Eadgyth of Wessex. born 808, Wessex. Eadgyth died at Polesworth Abbey and is buried there. A manuscript of Polesworth Monastery records that “sancta Editha sorore regis Athulphi” was a nun at the abbey. Another manuscript which narrates the foundation of Polesworth Monastery in more detail, but is stated in Dugdale’s Monasticon to date from 1640, records that “Egbrycht the king had on son…Arnulfe and a dowhtur…Edith”, and that the latter was made abbess. [2] Edith of Wessex[8]

Not Verified

  1. Ceowulf Manneson, born 800, Cheshire. This would possibly be royalty from Mercia. The name has a large presence in popular genealogy but without any sourcing.

Athelstan Wessex, born 810, Wessex. Æthelstan Wessex King of Kent - Alternate sp. Athelstan. Aethelstan was considered by some sources to be a son of Eckberht, but is now considered to be a grandson of Eckberht, with Aethelwulf as his father.


  1. Dictionary of National Biography
  2. 2.00 2.01 2.02 2.03 2.04 2.05 2.06 2.07 2.08 2.09 2.10 2.11 2.12 2.13 2.14 Charles Cawley. Foundation for Medieval Genealogy. Medeival Lands Database. Ecgberht Accessed May 26, 2018 jhd
  3. Redburga is referred to as a "sister of the Frankish King" (George Andrews Moriarty: The Plantagenet Ancestry of King Edward III and Queen Philippa, Salt Lake City, 1985, page 16) However, this is unlikely because at the time of their marriage, Ecgbert was an Under-King of a small part of what is now England. There would have been a huge gap in status between Ecgbert's family and that of the rulers of Western Europe. Perhaps she was an illegitimate relative of Charlemagne
  4. Eula Maria McKeaig II - 061204.FTW
  5. 1. Only one of the above sources (Gen. Hist. 25) shows Edith as a child in this family claiming her as a founder of a cloister. On 18 July 1941 another child by the name of Alice was sealed to this couple, it being claimed she was the wife of Louis III, King of France. None of the above sources indicate a child by that name in this family, but even if there was she could not have been the wife of Louis III, since he was born in 860 and died 22 years of age. It is not likely he would have married a woman some 45 to 50 years his senior. Even if she had been born right after her father's death, she would still be 21 years older than Louis III.
  6. Wikipedia: Burial_places_of_British_royalty
  7. alia: Aethelwulf; Birth 0800; Death 13 Jan 0858. m.1 Osburga; Marriage 0830; Divorce 0853; m2 Judith Of France; Marriage Oct 0856, Verberie sur Oise, France. Alternate info: i. KING AETHELWULF13 OF WESSEX of Wessex, England, b. circa 795/800, d. on 13 Jan. 858; m. (1) (UI-2) OSBURGA; m. (2) (JU-38) JUDITH OF FRANCE in 856. (listed as only child with this bio.)
  8.  : alias: Editha

See also:

Royal Line, The. Albert F Schmuhl
Manuscript: Orig. March, 1929 NYC, NY - Rev. March 1980
1. Anglo-Saxon Bishops, Kings & Nobles, Eng. 104, p. 342-43
2. The Royal Line of Succession, A16A225, p. 5-6
3. Keiser und Koenig Hist., Gen. Hist. 25, pt 1, p. 96-97
4. Hist. of the anglo-Saxons, Eng. 36, v. 1, p. 362-71

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Heather Edwards, ‘Ecgberht (d. 839)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004 accessed 30 Sept 2017
posted by C. Mackinnon
Wessex-3 and Of Wessex-266 appear to represent the same person because: These are the same person, as almost all if the info is the same. The dates are astrew.
posted by Ken Wise
Atheling-101 and Wessex-412 appear to represent the same person because: These seem to be the same person, confusion arises through choice of surname.
posted by Tim Perry
I have some information to add some sources as well. In addition, it looks like you could merge with Wessex-3. Also have Redburga's name and ancestry.
posted by Diane (Leroux) Depatie
ECGBERHT, son of EALHMUND Under-King of Kent & his wife --- ([769/80]-4 Feb or [Jun] 839, bur Winchester Cathedral)
posted by Maggie N.,%20AngloSaxon%20&%20Danish%20Kings.htm.

Can I remove one or perhaps there is a source for the third child?

posted by Maggie N.
King Ecgberht had two children:

1. ÆTHELWULF ([795/810]-13 Jan 858, bur Winchester). The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle names Æthelwulf as son of Ecgberht[1481]. He succeeded his father 839 as ÆTHELWULF King of Wessex. - see below. 2. EADGYTH (-Polesworth Abbey ----, bur Polesworth Abbey). A manuscript of Polesworth Monastery records that “sancta Editha sorore regis Athulphi” was a nun at the abbey[1482]. Another manuscript which narrates the foundation of Polesworth Monastery in more detail, but is stated in Dugdale´s Monasticon to date from 1640, records that “Egbrycht the king had on son…Arnulfe and a dowhtur…Edith”, and that the latter was made abbess[1483].

posted by Maggie N.
This profile should be open according to the WikiTree Honor code.

Thanks !

posted by Maggie N.

Egbert is 37 degrees from Mary McCauley, 39 degrees from B. W. J. Molier and 21 degrees from Henry VIII of England on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.