King Offa of Mercia has died after a surprisingly long and productive reign. The degree of power he had gathered for himself was truly something to behold. While his reach didn’t stretch into Mercia’s ancient enemies beyond the Humber, Northumbria, he had a stunning degree of influence over the English Kingdoms in the south. Throughout the history of Britain, Offa will continue to stand out as one of the great island rulers. Really, the only southern English kingdom that appears to have had any degree of independence at the end of Offa’s reign was Wessex. But even Wessex was closely tied and allied to Offa, as it’s current king held the throne thanks in no small part to Offa’s intervention in their civil war.