King Athelstan - 924 ~ 2024

Succession in 924 and the significance of 927

Athelstan’s father, Edward the Elder, died on 17 July 924. Athelstan’s accession to the throne was not straightforward. It seems that he was immediately acclaimed as king in Mercia but his half-brother Aelfweard, the son of Edward and Ælfflæd, succeeded to the throne of Wessex. However, Aelfweard died a few weeks later and Athelstan became ruler of the combined kingdom of Wessex and Mercia. According to William of Malmesbury there was some opposition to the accession of Athelstan in Winchester. A man called Alfred tried to overthrow and blind Athelstan but this plot failed.  Athelstan’s coronation was delayed, for reasons that are not clear, to 4 September 925 and took place at Kingston upon Thames, Surrey. Athelstan was initially king of Wessex and Mercia. From 927 he could claim to be king of England following his seizure of Northumbria.