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King Alfred
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    (circa 849-October 26, 899)
    Fifth son of King Aethelwulf of the West Saxons
    King of the Saxons (871-899)
    Defeated the Danish at the Battle of Edington (878)
    Rebuilt England after years of Vikings raids
    Also known as 'Alfred the Great'
    He drew up a peace treaty with the Danes after realizing he couldn't drive them out of the rest of England.
    One of the provisions of this peace treaty was that King Guthrum, leader of the Viking raiders of Denmark, was to be baptized as a Christian.
    He then became Guthrum's godfather.
    He used marriage to secure an alliance with the strong naval power of Flanders.
    He defeated the Danes, a highly organized and efficient military machine.
    He reorganized the defenses of Wessex, which prevented Danish raiders from attacking and spurred economic prosperity.
    He rebuilt his army to serve on a rota basis, allowing himself to maintain a constant attack while the peasants could still tend their farms.
    Noticing that the Viking raids had left England without much culture or education, he emphasized the need for literacy and books.
    He established a definitive body of Anglo-Saxon law that merged many of the laws of his predecessors.
    He set up the unification of Anglo-Saxon England by stopping the Viking advance and consolidating his territorial gains.
    He was a rare literate monarch.
    He invented a candle-lantern.
    He is considered one of the greatest kings ever.
    He is the only English monarch to be called 'The Great.'

Credit: Captain Howdy

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