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Edward the Martyr

St. Edward the Martyr
Rank: 14th
Ruled: July 8, 975-March 18, 978
Predecessor: Edgar
Date of Birth: 962
Place of Birth: Wessex, England[?]
Wife: Never married
Buried: Brookwood Cementery[?]
Date of Death: March 18, 978
Parents: Edgar and Ethelfleda

King Edward the Martyr (circa 962 - March 18, 978) succeeded his father Edgar as King of England in 975, but was murdered, hence the epithet, "the Martyr". While hunting one day, Edward was murdered. He had been calling his half-brother Ethelred the Unready and his step-mother Elfrida. Elfrida offered Edward wine and while he was drinking it, two servants stabbed him on the back. Ethelred was only ten years old then, so he clearly was not implicated in the murder. He was buried in Dorset, and was canonised in 1001.

History of his relics

In 1001, his relics were removed from his grave and placed in an elaborate shrine in Shaftesbury Abbey[?]. Witnesses at the time reported that the relics were fragrant. During the sixteenth century, under King Henry VIII, monasteries were dissolved and many holy places were demolished, but St. Edward's remains were hidden so as to avoid desecration. In 1931, the relics were recovered by Mr. Wilson-Claridge during an archaelogical excavation; their identity was confirmed by Dr. T.E.A. Stowell, an osteologist. In about 1982, Mr. Wilson-Claridge donated the relics to the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia[?], which placed them in a church in Brookwood Cementery[?], in Woking[?], Surrey. The St. Edward Brotherhood of monks was organized there as well. The church is now named St. Edward the Martyr Orthodox Church[?].

Preceded by:
List of British monarchs Succeeded by:
Ethelred II

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