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149 – King Offa Ascends the Throne

Today we’re starting a series on one of the most influential Mercian kings in history. King Offa. But before we start this story, I need to fess up to a couple things. First, for the last several hundred years, this period has often been described in terms of Mercian Supremacy. And it’s easy to see why that is, AEthelbald was… Read more →

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147 – The Twelve Days of Christmas

This year for our Christmas special, I thought I would give you an idea of what Christmas was like for some of the people in Middle Ages Britain.  Now, Christmas in the middle ages was quite different from our modern experience in many ways.  And like with everything else, it would have varied from location to location.  However, in general… Read more →

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146 – King AEthelbald: A Whirlpool of Perdition

When we last left off, King AEthelbald of Mercia was supreme in the south. Most of the rival kingdoms of Mercia have been dealing with internal issues and civil war, and in the vacuum AEthelbald has lead Mercia into becoming the dominant force in the south… and possibly the most powerful Kingdom in Britain. And as further reinforcement of his… Read more →

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145 – The Rise of King AEthelbald of Mercia

Ok, so we ended our last episode with the death of King Ceolred at a banquet. And he went out swinging… or at least gibbering and cursing the heavens. Let’s face it, Ceolred was a colorful character and really brought his A game right until the end. I mean, you really have to work hard to completely destroy Penda’s dynasty.… Read more →

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144 – King Ceolred: A Lunatic Running the Asylum

Ok, so recently we’ve chatted about some cultural matters and I’ve also given you a broad overview of the failed dynastic politics of Northumbria and where this is all headed. But we really didn’t cover too much of what was going on elsewhere. We hinted at it, but I’m sure you’re curious about the other heavy hitter in England. Mercia.… Read more →

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142 – The Failed Dynastic Politics of Mercia and Northumbria

As you might remember, Queen Osthryth has recently been murdered by the Mercian nobility and was buried at Bardney. And the murder might have happened because she was working to detach the Hwicce off from Mercian domination. And while we talked a little about that, I got a few questions about it so I thought we might talk a little… Read more →