Ceolred's surviving reputation is overwhelmingly a negative one: he is seen as a king who wrongly appropriated monastic resources and cruelly persecuted AEthelbald
Bonifacii." (32) A passage at the end of this chapter, moreover, occurs almost verbatim in Boniface's letter to King AEthelbald
So too were King Aethelbald
(716-57) and then King Offa (757-96), the most powerful Anglo-Saxon king before Alfred the Great of Wessex.
Although her first suitor, Prince Aethelbald
, seems honest and kind, Una is bored by him, and quickly rejects him.
For a very brief moment, the kingdom of Mercia, ruled from the royal settlement of Tamworth by warriors such as Offa and Aethelbald
, emerged from the shadows of Alfred's Wessex, perhaps to inspire a new generation of early medieval scholars.
In his epic narration of the history of the Anglo-Saxons, Bueno skips the so-called 'settlement period' (mid-5th to early 7th century) and starts with a section (11-17) on the rise of Mercia during the reigns of Penda (632-655) and AEthelbald
Unlike Martin, who was a reluctant soldier and already "monkish" by disposition (73), Guthlac had been a willing warrior, and he must undergo a total spiritual transformation to understand the value of a Christian life as monk, hermit, and advisor to King Aethelbald
. His literally martial traits are converted to metaphorically martial deeds of the fight against spiritual foes.
There are Beorhtwulf and Ecfrith, Aethelbald
, Berhtwald and Ceolred.
It is understood that Wat's was built by King Aethelbald
to mark the north-west frontier of Mercia.
An item of some substance in this very personal book is his speculation that Beowulf was composed in the second quarter of the eighth century at the court of AEthelbald
Charter evidence is minutely examined to track the development of early monastic life in the area, its links with the world outside, and the influence of the church under the rule of the two strong kings of Mercia in the eighth century, AEthelbald
The same conception appears in a charter of AEthelbald
of Mercia, dated 736.