Facts and Events
Æthelwold or Æthelwald (died 902 or 903) was the younger of two known sons of Æthelred I, King of Wessex from 865 to 871. Æthelred ended his reign fighting a Danish Viking invasion. His sons were infants when he died, and he was succeeded by his younger brother, Alfred the Great, who carried on the war against the Vikings and won a crucial victory at the Battle of Edington in 878.
After Alfred's death in 899, Æthelwold disputed the throne with Alfred's son, Edward the Elder. As senior ætheling (prince of the royal dynasty eligible for kingship), Æthelwold had a strong claim to the throne. He attempted to raise an army to support his claim, but was unable to get sufficient support to meet Edward in battle and fled to Viking-controlled Northumbria, where he was accepted as king. In 901 or 902 he sailed with a fleet to Essex, where he was also accepted as king.
The following year Æthelwold persuaded the East Anglian Danes to launch an attack on Edward's territory in Wessex and Mercia. Edward retaliated with a raid on East Anglia, and when he retreated the men of Kent lingered and met the East Anglian Danes at the Battle of the Holme. The Danes were victorious but suffered heavy losses, including the death of Æthelwold, ending the challenge to Edward's rule.