Reign of Edward the Elder (1171 words)

Historical Context Essay

  • Robert Gallagher (University of Cambridge)
Download PDF Save to Bookshelf Share on Facebook Tweet Report an Error


Edward the Elder reigned for a quarter of a century, during which time he achieved considerable military success, yet he remains a poorly understood figure. The relative obscurity of this king is undoubtedly due to the paucity of surviving evidence and, indeed, the absence of a rich contemporary narrative comparable with Asser’s Vita Æ;lfredi, a biography of Edward’s father. Instead, Edward’s reign must be assessed primarily through the laconic entries in the varying recensions of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, through the analysis of contemporary charters and coinage, and through the insights of archaeological excavations. Later medieval writers offer additional information that needs to be treated with caution. As …

We have have no profile for this entry. If you are a qualified scholar and you wish to write for The Literary Encyclopedia, please click here to contact us.

Gallagher, Robert. "Reign of Edward the Elder". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 July 2015
[, accessed 17 October 2017.]

Save this article

If you need to create a new bookshelf to save this article in, please make sure that you are logged in, then go to your 'Account' here.