King Æthelwulf visited Rome. He returned a year late having taken as his second wife the Carolingian King Charles the Bald's thirteen-year-old daughter Judith. During Æthelwulf's absence there may have been a plot hatched to prevent the king's return either by Æthelbald, or by Ealhstan, Bishop of Sherborne and Eanwulf, Ealdorman of Somerset, or by all three. It is probable that Æthelbald was involved in such a plot due to hearing about his father's marriage to Judith. The marriage to a Frankish princess who had her own royal lineage could have produced heirs more throne-worthy than Æthelbald.
To avoid a civil war, Æthelwulf allowed Æthelbald to continue to rule Wessex itself (or the western part of Wessex) while he took Kent and the other eastern parts of the kingdom. Æthelbald became ruler of the whole of Wessex when Æthelwulf died in 858.
King Æthelwulf (left) and his son King Æthelbald
Edited by TheLastLazyGun, 13 March 2013 - 10:58 AM.