Aelfthryth, Queen of England

The Freelance History Writer

In researching medieval queens, I came across the story of a queen having all the elements of a fairy tale. Her name is Aelfthryth, the wife of King Edgar the Peaceable who was the great-grandson of Alfred the Great. Her son by Edgar was Aethelred the Unready so she was also the mother- in- law of our Queen Emma.

Aelfthryth was born c. 945, the daughter of Ordgar who held numerous properties in southwest England. Her mother was a member of the royal family of Wessex and her brother Ordulf founded the abbey of Tavistock. Edgar was born c. 943 and became King in 959. He married a childhood friend, Aethelflaed when very young and had a son named Edward by this wife who appears to have died soon afterward. There is some confusion over whether he married his second wife or not. Her name was Wulfthryth and…

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