This timeline gives a chronological listing of the main events in English History for the years 950 – 959
The kings of England for this period were:
Eadred to 955
Eadwig 955 – 959
Edgar from 959
Eric Bloodaxe succeeded in taking Northumbria from Olaf Sihtricson.
captured and imprisoned Archbishop Wulfstan of York who had supported the Vikings.
The Northumbrians forced Eric Bloodaxe out of Northumbria and he was killed. The people of Northumbria gave their allegiance to Eadred.
955 (23rd November)
Eadred suffered from a digestive disorder that prevented him from properly digesting food and he died at the age of 32 years at Frome, Somerset. He was succeeded by his nephew Eadwig also known as Edwy the Fair.
955 (after 23rd November)
King Eadwig upset Dunstan, abbot of Glastonbury and a large number of nobles when he disappeared during his coronation feast. He was found in a compromising position with a young woman and her mother. Legend states that Dunstan had to drag him back to the coronation feast setting up a feud between the two that would last until Eadwig’s death.
955 (After 23rd November)
Eadwig married Aelfgifu
, the young woman he had been with on his coronation day.
Eadwig removed many experienced nobles from his council.
The abbot Dunstan was exiled or exiled himself to Flanders.
England was divided when Mercia and Northumbria refused to accept Eadwig’s rule. King Eadwig retained rule of Wessex while his brother Edgar ruled Mercia and Northumbria. Despite the division Eadwig continued to be referred to as King of the English.
As ruler of Mercia and Northumbria Edgar re-called the exiled Dunstan and made him Bishop of Worcester.
The marriage of Eadwig and Aelfgifu was dissolved by Archbishop Oda of Canterbury on the grounds that they were too closely related.
958 (2nd June)
Archbishop Oda of Canterbury died. Eadwig appointed Aelfsige of Winchester to the position.
958 or 959
Aelfsige of Winchester, Archbishop of Canterbury
died on his way to Rome to collect his pallium. Eadwig appointed Byrhthelm, the Bishop of Wells as the new Archbishop of Canterbury.
959 (1st October)
Eadwig died at the age of 18 years. The cause of his death is unknown. He was succeeded by his brother Edgar.
Edgar proclaimed that Byrhthelm was not fit to be Archbishop of Canterbury and appointed Dunstan as the new Archbishop of Canterbury.
First published 2016, updated and republished Apr 13 2021 @ 10:28 am – Updated – [last-modified]
Harvard Reference for this page:
Heather Y Wheeler. (2016 – 2020). English History 950 – 959.