Anglesey is an island off the north coast of Wales with an area of 276 square miles. Anglesey is by the seventh largest in the British Isles. Anglesey is the largest island in the Irish Sea by area, the second most populous island; the ferry port of Holyhead handles more than 2 million passengers each year. The Menai Suspension Bridge, designed by Thomas Telford in 1826, the Britannia Bridge span the Menai Strait to connect Anglesey with the mainland. Anglesey, one of the historic counties of Wales, was administered as part of Gwynedd, but along with Holy Island and other smaller islands, it is now governed by the Isle of Anglesey County Council. Much of this article covers the whole of this administrative area; the majority of Anglesey's inhabitants are Welsh speakers and Ynys Môn, the Welsh name for the island, is used for the UK Parliament and National Assembly constituencies. The population at the 2011 census was 69,751; the island falls within the LL postcode area, covering LL58 to LL78. The name of the island may be derived from the Old Norse.
No record of such an Ǫngli survives, but the place name was used in the Viking raiders as early as the 10th century and was adopted by the Normans during their invasions of Gwynedd. The traditional folk etymology reading the name as the "Island of the Angles" may account for its Norman use but has no merit, although the Angles' name itself is a cognate reference to the shape of the Angeln peninsula. All of these derive from the proposed Proto-Indo-European root *ank-. Through the 18th and 19th centuries and into the 20th, it was spelt Anglesea in documents. Ynys Môn, the island's Welsh name, was first recorded as Latin Mona by various Roman sources, it was known to the Saxons as Monez. The Brittonic original was in the past taken to have meant "Island of the Cow"; this view is untenable, according to modern scientific philology, the etymology remains a mystery. Poetic names for Anglesey include the Old Welsh Ynys Dywyll for its former groves and Ynys y Cedairn for its royal courts. There are numerous megalithic monuments and menhirs on Anglesey, testifying to the presence of humans in prehistory.
Plas Newydd is near one of 28 cromlechs. The Welsh Triads claim. Anglesey has long been associated with the druids. In AD 60 the Roman general Gaius Suetonius Paulinus, determined to break the power of the druids, attacked the island using his amphibious Batavian contingent as a surprise vanguard assault and destroying the shrine and the nemeta. News of Boudica's revolt reached him just after his victory, causing him to withdraw his army before consolidating his conquest; the island was brought into the Roman Empire by Gnaeus Julius Agricola, the Roman governor of Britain, in AD 78. During the Roman occupation, the area was notable for the mining of copper; the foundations of Caer Gybi, a fort in Holyhead, are Roman, the present road from Holyhead to Llanfairpwllgwyngyll was a Roman road. The island was grouped by Ptolemy with Ireland rather than with Britain. British Iron Age and Roman sites have been excavated and coins and ornaments discovered by the 19th century antiquarian William Owen Stanley.
After the Roman departure from Britain in the early 5th century, pirates from Ireland colonised Anglesey and the nearby Llŷn Peninsula. In response to this, Cunedda ap Edern, a Gododdin warlord from Scotland, came to the area and began to drive the Irish out; this was continued by grandson Cadwallon Lawhir ap Einion. As an island, Anglesey was in a good defensive position, so Aberffraw became the site of the court, or Llys, of the Kingdom of Gwynedd. Apart from a devastating Danish raid in 853 it remained the capital until the 13th century, when improvements to the English navy made the location indefensible. Anglesey was briefly the most southerly possession of the Norwegian Empire. After the Irish, the island was invaded by Vikings — some of these raids were noted in famous sagas — and by Saxons, Normans, before falling to Edward I of England in the 13th century. Anglesey is one of the thirteen historic counties of Wales. In medieval times, before the conquest of Wales in 1283, Môn had periods of temporary independence, as it was bequeathed to the heirs of kings as a sub-kingdom of Gwynedd.
The last times this occurred were a few years after 1171, following the death of Owain Gwynedd, when the island was inherited by Rhodri ab Owain Gwynedd, between 1246 and c. 1255, when it was granted to Owain Goch as his share of the kingdom. Following the conquest of Wales by Edward I, Anglesey was created a county under the terms of the Statute of Rhuddlan of 1284. Prior to this it had been divided into the cantrefi of Aberffraw and Cemaes. During the First World War, the Presbyterian minister and celebrity preacher John Williams toured the island as part of an effort to recruit young men to volunteer for a “just war”. German POWs were kept on the island. By the end of the war, some 1,000 of the island's men had died while on active service. In 1936 the NSPCC opened its first branch on Anglesey. During the Second World War, Anglesey received Italian POWs; the isla
The Irish Sea separates the islands of Ireland and Great Britain. Anglesey, Wales, is the largest island in the Irish Sea; the second in size is the Isle of Man and the sea may but be referred to as the Manx Sea. The Irish Sea is of significant economic importance to regional trade and transport, power generation in the form of wind power and nuclear power plants. Annual traffic between Great Britain and Ireland amounts to over 12 million passengers and 17 million tonnes of traded goods; the Irish Sea is connected to the North Atlantic at both its southern ends. To the north, the connection is through the North Channel between Scotland and Northern Ireland and the Malin Sea; the southern end is linked to the Atlantic through the St George's Channel between Ireland and Pembrokeshire, the Celtic Sea. It is composed of a deeper channel about 190 miles long and 20–30 miles wide on its western side and shallower bays to the east; the western channel's depth ranges from 80 metres up to 275 m in the Beaufort's Dyke in the North Channel.
Cardigan Bay in the south, the waters to the east of the Isle of Man, are less than 50 m deep. With a total water volume of 2,430 km3 and a surface area of 47,000 km2, 80% is to the west of the Isle of Man; the largest sandbanks are the Bahama and King William Banks to the east and north of the Isle of Man and the Kish Bank, Codling Bank, Arklow Bank and Blackwater Bank near the coast of Ireland. The Irish Sea, at its greatest width, narrows to 47 miles; the International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Irish Sea as follows, On the North. The Southern limit of the Inner Seas off the West Coast of Scotland, defined as a line joining the South extreme of the Mull of Galloway in Scotland and Ballyquintin Point in Northern Ireland. On the South. A line joining St. David's Head in Wales to Carnsore Point in Ireland; the Irish Sea has undergone a series of dramatic changes over the last 20,000 years as the last glacial period ended and was replaced by warmer conditions. At the height of the glaciation, the central part of the modern sea was a long freshwater lake.
As the ice retreated 10,000 years ago, the lake reconnected to the sea. Ireland has no bridge connection to Great Britain. Northern Ireland ports handle 10 million tonnes of goods trade with the rest of the United Kingdom annually; the Port of Liverpool handles 734 thousand passengers a year. Holyhead port handles most of the passenger traffic from Dublin and Dún Laoghaire ports, as well as 3.3 million tonnes of freight. Ports in the Republic handle 3,600,000 travellers crossing the sea each year, amounting to 92% of all Irish Sea travel. Ferry connections from Wales to Ireland across the Irish Sea include Fishguard Harbour and Pembroke to Rosslare, Holyhead to Dún Laoghaire and Holyhead to Dublin. From Scotland, Cairnryan connects with both Larne. There is a connection between Liverpool and Belfast via the Isle of Man or direct from Birkenhead; the world's largest car ferry, Ulysses, is operated by Irish Ferries on the Dublin Port–Holyhead route. "Irish Sea" is the name of one of the BBC's Shipping Forecast areas defined by the coordinates: 54°50′N 05°05′W 54°45′N 05°45′W 52°30′N 06°15′W 52°00′N 05°05′WTransport for Wales Rail, Iarnród Éireann, Irish Ferries, Stena Line, Northern Ireland Railways, Stena Line and Abellio ScotRail promote SailRail with through rail tickets for the train and the ferry.
The Caernarfon Bay basin contains up to 7 cubic kilometres of Permian and Triassic syn-rift sediments in an asymmetrical graben, bounded to the north and south by Lower Paleozoic massifs. Only two exploration wells have been drilled so far, there remain numerous undrilled targets in tilted fault block plays; as in the East Irish Sea Basin, the principal target reservoir is the Lower Triassic, Sherwood Sandstone, top-sealed by younger Triassic mudstones and evaporites. Wells in the Irish Sector to the west have demonstrated that pre-rift, Westphalian coal measures are excellent hydrocarbon source rocks, are at peak maturity for gas generation. Seismic profiles image these strata continuing beneath a basal Permian unconformity into at least the western part of the Caernarfon Bay Basin; the timing of gas generation presents the greatest exploration risk. Maximum burial of, primary gas migration from, the source rocks could have terminated as early as the Jurassic, whereas many of the tilted fault blocks were reactivated or created during Paleogene inversion of the basin.
However, it is possible that a secondary gas charge occurred during regional heating associated with intrusion of Paleogene dykes, such as those that crop out nearby on the coastline of north Wales. (Floodpage et al
House of Tudor
The House of Tudor was an English royal house of Welsh origin, descended in the male line from the Tudors of Penmynydd. Tudor monarchs ruled the Kingdom of England and its realms, including their ancestral Wales and the Lordship of Ireland from 1485 until 1603, with five monarchs in that period; the Tudors succeeded the House of Plantagenet as rulers of the Kingdom of England, were succeeded by the House of Stuart. The first Tudor monarch, Henry VII of England, descended through his mother from a legitimised branch of the English royal House of Lancaster; the Tudor family rose to power in the wake of the Wars of the Roses, which left the House of Lancaster, to which the Tudors were aligned, extinct. Henry Tudor was able to establish himself as a candidate not only for traditional Lancastrian supporters, but for the discontented supporters of their rival House of York, he rose to the throne by the right of conquest, his victory at the Battle of Bosworth Field was reinforced by his marriage to the English princess Elizabeth of York, daughter of Edward IV, symbolically uniting the former warring factions under a new dynasty.
The Tudors extended their power beyond modern England, achieving the full union of England and the Principality of Wales in 1542, asserting English authority over the Kingdom of Ireland. They maintained the nominal English claim to the Kingdom of France. After him, his daughter Mary I lost control of all territory in France permanently with the fall of Calais in 1558. In total, five Tudor monarchs ruled their domains for just over a century. Henry VIII was the only son of Henry VII to live to the age of maturity. Issues around the royal succession became major political themes during the Tudor era. In 1603 when Elizabeth I died without heir, the Scottish House of Stuart supplanted the Tudors as England's royal family through the Union of the Crowns; the first Stuart to be King of England, James VI and I, descended from Henry VII's daughter Margaret Tudor, who in 1503 married James IV as part of the Treaty of Perpetual Peace. For analysis of politics and social history, see Tudor period; the Tudors descended on Henry VII's mother's side from John Beaufort, 1st Earl of Somerset, one of the illegitimate children of the 14th century English prince John of Gaunt by Gaunt's long-term mistress Katherine Swynford.
The descendants of an illegitimate child of English royalty would have no claim on the throne, but the situation became complicated when Gaunt and Swynford married in 1396, when John Beaufort was 25. The church retroactively declared the Beauforts legitimate by way of a papal bull the same year, confirmed by an Act of Parliament in 1397. A subsequent proclamation by John of Gaunt's legitimate son, Henry IV recognised the Beauforts' legitimacy but declared them ineligible to inherit the throne; the Beauforts remained allied with Gaunt's legitimate descendants from his first marriage, the House of Lancaster. However the descent from the Beauforts, despite the above, did not render Henry of Richmond a legitimate heir to the throne nor did the fact that his father's mother had been a Queen of England make him an heir; the legitimate heir, or, in this case, was the Countess of Salisbury, descended from the second son of Edward III, Duke of Clarence and his fourth son, the Duke of York. This is verified by the Tudor family tree which appears in this article.
Henry Tudor had, one thing that the others did not. He had an army which had defeated and killed the last Yorkist King, Richard III and therefore the support of powerful nobles, his son Henry VIII made sure there were no other claimants to the Throne when he wiped out all the remaining Plantagenet heirs including the Countess of Salisbury and her family the Poles. One Pole alone survived, he became Archbishop of Canterbury under the Catholic Mary I. On 1 November 1455, John Beaufort's granddaughter, Margaret Beaufort, Countess of Richmond and Derby, married Henry VI's maternal half-brother Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond, it was his father, Owen Tudor, who abandoned the Welsh patronymic naming practice and adopted a fixed surname. When he did, he did not choose, as was the custom, his father's name, but chose that of his grandfather, Tudur ap Goronwy, instead; this name is sometimes given as Tewdwr, the Welsh form of Theodore, but Modern Welsh Tudur, Old Welsh Tutir is not a variant but a different and unrelated name, etymologically identical with Gaulish Toutorix, from Proto-Celtic *toutā "people, tribe" and *rīxs "king", corresponding to Germanic Theodoric.
Owen Tudor was one of the bodyguards for the queen dowager Catherine of Valois, whose husband, Henry V, had died in 1422. Evidence suggests that the two were secretly married in 1429; the two sons born of the marriage and Jasper, were among the most loyal supporters of the House of Lancaster in its struggle against the House of York. Henry VI ennobled his half-brothers: Edmund became Earl of Richmond on 15 December 1449 and was married to Lady Margaret Beaufort, the great-granddaughter of John of Gaunt, the progenitor of the house of Lancaster. Edmund died on 3 November 1456. On 28 January 1457, his widow Margaret, who had just attained her fourte
Maelgwn Gwynedd was king of Gwynedd during the early 6th century. Surviving records suggest he held a pre-eminent position among the Brythonic kings in Wales and their allies in the "Old North" along the Scottish coast. Maelgwn was a generous supporter of Christianity, funding the foundation of churches throughout Wales and far beyond the bounds of his own kingdom. Nonetheless, his principal legacy today is the scathing account of his behavior recorded in De excidio et conquestu Britanniae by Gildas, who considered Maelgwn a usurper and reprobate; the son of Cadwallon Lawhir and great grandson of Cunedda, Maelgwn was buried on Ynys Seiriol, off the eastern tip of Anglesey, having died of the "yellow plague". Maelgwn in Welsh means "Princely Hound" and is composed of the elements mael "prince" and cwn, the old oblique case form of ci "hound, dog"; as "hound" was sometimes used as a kenning for a warrior in early Welsh poetry, the name may be translated as "Princely Warrior". After the collapse of Roman authority in Britain, north Wales was invaded and colonized by Gaelic tribes from Ireland.
The kingdom of Gwynedd began with the reconquest of the coast by northern Britons under the command of Maelgwn's great-grandfather Cunedda Wledig. Generations Maelgwn's father Cadwallon Long-Hand completed the process by destroying the last Irish settlements on Anglesey. Maelgwn was the first king to enjoy the fruits of his family's conquest and he is considered the founder of the medieval kingdom's royal family, he is thus most referenced by appending the name of the kingdom to his own: Maelgwn Gwynedd. By tradition, his llys was located in the Creuddyn peninsula of Rhos. Tradition holds that he died at nearby Llanrhos, was buried there. Other traditions say. There are no historical records to deny these traditions. Historical records of this early era are scant. Maelgwn appears in the royal genealogies of the Harleian genealogies, Jesus College MS. 20, Hengwrt MS. 202. His death in a "great mortality" of 547 is noted in the Annales Cambriae. Tradition holds that he died of the'Yellow Plague' of Rhos, but this is based on one of the Triads, written much later.
The record says only that it was a "great mortality", which followed the outbreak of the great Plague of Justinian in Constantinople by a few years. Maelgwn was a generous contributor to the cause of Christianity throughout Wales, he made donations to support Saint Brynach in Dyfed, Saint Cadoc in Gwynllwg, Saint Cybi in Anglesey, Saint Padarn in Ceredigion, Saint Tydecho in Powys. He is associated with the foundation of Bangor, but hard evidence of this is lacking. In his 1723 Mona Antiqua Restaurata, Henry Rowlands asserts that Bangor was raised to an episcopal see by Maelgwn in 550, but he provides no source for the assertion; the only contemporary information about the person is provided by Gildas, who includes Maelgwn among the five British kings whom he condemns in allegorical terms in his De Excidio et Conquestu Britanniae. He says Maelgwn held a regional pre-eminence among the other four kings, going on to say that he overthrew his paternal uncle to gain the throne; the evidence suggests that Maelgwn held a pre-eminent position over the regions ruled by the descendants of Cunedda in the sense of a regional high king.
There is nothing to suggest. Gildas says as much in his condemnation, saying he held a pre-eminence over the other four kings condemned, describing him as the "dragon of the island", where the Isle of Anglesey is the ancient stronghold of the kings of Gwynedd; the fact that Maelgwn's donations to religious foundations are not restricted to the Kingdom of Gwynedd but are spread throughout northern and southern Wales in the regions where the descendants of Cunedda held sway implies that Maelgwn had a responsibility to those regions beyond the responsibilities of a king to his own kingdom. While the context is not definitive, Taliesin implies it, in his Marwnad Rhun that laments the death of Maelgwn's son Rhun, where he says that Rhun's death is "the fall of the court and girdle of Cunedda". In his work On the Ruin and Conquest of Britain written c. 540, Gildas makes an allegorical condemnation of five British kings by likening them to the beasts of the Book of Revelation, 13-2: the lion, leopard and dragon, with the dragon supreme among them.
He says that Maelgwn is the "dragon of the island", goes on with a litany of moral accusations, in the process describing him as a regional high king over the other kings. The Isle of Anglesey was the base of power of the kings of Gwynedd, so describing Maelgwn as the "dragon of the island" is appropriate. Gildas restricts his attention to the kings of Gwynedd, Penllyn, Damnonia/Alt Clud, the unknown region associated with Caninus; the Welsh kingdoms are all associated with the conquest of the Gaels by Cunedda, while Alt Clud had a long and ongoing relationshi
Dumnonia is the Latinised name for the Brythonic kingdom in Sub-Roman Britain between the late 4th and late 8th centuries, in what is now the more westerly parts of South West England. It was centred in the area called Devon, but included modern Cornwall and part of Somerset, with its eastern boundary changing over time as the gradual westward expansion of the neighbouring Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Wessex encroached on its territory; the spelling Damnonia is sometimes encountered, but is used for the land of the Damnonii part of the Kingdom of Strathclyde, in what is today southern Scotland. Domnonia occurs and shares a linguistic relationship with the Breton region of Domnonée, Breton: Domnonea; the kingdom is named after the Dumnonii, a British Celtic tribe living in the southwest at the time of the Roman invasion of Britain, according to Ptolemy's Geography. Variants of the name Dumnonia include Domnonia and Damnonia, the latter being used by Gildas in the 6th century as a pun on "damnation" to deprecate the area's contemporary ruler Constantine.
The name has etymological origins in the proto-Celtic root word *dubno-, meaning both "deep" and "world". Groups with similar names existed in Ireland; the area became known to the English of neighbouring Wessex as the kingdom of West Wales, its inhabitants were known to them as Defnas. In Welsh, in the Southwestern Brythonic languages, it was Dyfneint and this is the form which survives today in the name of the county of Devon. There is evidence, based on an entry in the Ravenna Cosmography, that there may have been a sub-tribe in the western part of the territory known as the Cornovii from whose name the first element of the present-day name of Cornwall is derived. Following a period of emigration from southwestern Britain to northwestern Gaul in the 5th and 6th centuries, a sister kingdom, was established on the north-facing Atlantic coast of the continent in the region, to become known as Brittany. Historian Barbara Yorke has speculated that the Dumnonii may have seen the end of the Roman empire as an opportunity to establish control in new areas.
Before the arrival of the Romans, the Dumnonii seem to have inhabited the southwest peninsula of Britain as far east as the River Parrett in Somerset and the River Axe in Dorset, judging by the coin distributions of the Dobunni and Durotriges. In the Roman period there was a provincial boundary between the area governed from Exeter and those governed from Dorchester and Ilchester. Julius Caesar's Comentarii de Bello Gallico, Book III notes the close trading and military relationship between the continental Veneti of Armorica and the southwestern insular British. In the post Roman period the kingdom of Dumnonia covered Cornwall and parts of west Somerset, it had close cultural and religious links with Brittany and Ireland. The cultural connections of the pre-Roman Dumnonii, as expressed in their ceramics, are thought to have been with the peninsula of Armorica across the Channel, with Wales and Ireland, rather than with the southeast of Britain; the people of Dumnonia would have spoken a Brythonic dialect, the ancestor of modern Cornish and Breton.
Irish immigrants, the Déisi, are evidenced by the inscribed stones they have left behind – sometimes written in Ogham, sometimes in Latin, sometimes in both and supplemented by place-name studies. Apart from fishing and agriculture, the main economic resource of the Dumnonii was tin mining, the tin having been exported since ancient times from the port of Ictis. Tin working continued throughout Roman occupation and appears to have reached a peak during the 3rd century AD; the area maintained trade links with Gaul and the Mediterranean after the Roman withdrawal, it is that tin played an important part in this trade. Post-Roman imported pottery has been excavated from many sites across the region. An apparent surge in late 5th century Mediterranean imports is thought to be related to the trade in metals from Cornwall and Wales to the Byzantine empire. Christianity seems to have survived in Dumnonia after the Roman departure from Britain, with a number of late Roman Christian cemeteries extending into the post-Roman period.
In the 5th and 6th centuries the area was evangelised by the children of Brychan and saints from Ireland, like Saint Piran. There were important monasteries at Glastonbury. Sporadically, Cornish bishops are named in various records until they submitted to the See of Canterbury in the mid-9th century. Parish organisation was a development of Normanised times. Around AD 55, the Romans established a legionary fortress at Isca Dumnoniorum, modern Exeter, but west of Exeter the area remained un-Romanized. Most of Dumnonia is notable for its lack of a villa system, though there were substantial numbers south of Bath and around Ilchester, for its many settlements that have survived from the Romano-British period; as in other Brythonic areas, Iron Age hillforts, such as Hembury and Cadbury Castle, were refortified in post-Roman times for the use of chieftains or kings, other high-status settlements such as Tintagel seem to have been reconstructed during the period. Local archaeology has revealed that the isolated enclosed farmsteads known locally as rounds seem to have survived the Roman departure from Britain.
Mercia was one of the kingdoms of the Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy. The name is a Latinisation of the Old English Mierce or Myrce, meaning "border people". Mercia dominated what would become England for three centuries, subsequently going into a gradual decline while Wessex conquered and united all the kingdoms into Kingdom of England; the kingdom was centred on the valley of the River Trent and its tributaries, in the region now known as the English Midlands. The kingdom did not have a single capital as such. In times before a sizable civil service the'capital' was wherever the king was at any given time. Early in its existence Repton seems to have been the location of an important royal estate. According to the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, it was from Repton in 873-4 that the Great Heathen Army deposed the King of Mercia. Earlier, King Offa seems to have favoured Tamworth, it was there where he was spent many a Christmas. For 300 years, having annexed or gained submissions from five of the other six kingdoms of the Heptarchy, Mercia dominated England south of the River Humber: this period is known as the Mercian Supremacy.
The reign of King Offa, best remembered for his Dyke that designated the boundary between Mercia and the Welsh kingdoms, is sometimes known as the "Golden Age of Mercia". Nicholas Brooks noted that "the Mercians stand out as by far the most successful of the various early Anglo-Saxon peoples until the ninth century", some historians, such as Sir Frank Stenton, believe the unification of England south of the Humber estuary was achieved during the reign of Offa. Mercia was a pagan kingdom; the Diocese of Mercia was founded in 656, with the first bishop, based at Repton. After 13 years at Repton, in 669 the fifth bishop, Saint Chad, moved the bishopric to Lichfield, where it has been based since. In 691, the Diocese of Mercia became the Diocese of Lichfield. For a brief period between 787 and 799 the diocese was an archbishopric, although it was dissolved in 803; the current bishop, Michael Ipgrave, is the 99th. At the end of the 9th century, following the invasions of the Vikings and their Great Heathen Army, much of the former Mercian territory was absorbed into the Danelaw.
At its height, the Danelaw included all of East Anglia and most of the North of England. The final Mercian king, Ceolwulf II, died in 879, it was ruled by a lord or ealdorman under the overlordship of Alfred the Great, who styled himself "King of the Anglo-Saxons". The kingdom had a brief period of independence in the mid-10th century, again briefly in 1016. Mercia is still used as a geographic designation, the name is used by a wide range of organisations, including military units, public and voluntary bodies. Mercia's exact evolution at the start of the Anglo-Saxon era remains more obscure than that of Northumbria, Kent, or Wessex. Mercia developed an effective political structure and adopted Christianity than the other kingdoms. Archaeological surveys show that Angles settled the lands north of the River Thames by the 6th century; the name "Mercia" is Old English for "boundary folk", the traditional interpretation is that the kingdom originated along the frontier between the native Welsh and the Anglo-Saxon invaders.
However, P. Hunter Blair argued an alternative interpretation: that they emerged along the frontier between Northumbria and the inhabitants of the Trent river valley. While its earliest boundaries will never be known, there is general agreement that the territory, called "the first of the Mercians" in the Tribal Hidage covered much of south Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Northamptonshire and northern Warwickshire; the earliest person named in any records as a king of Mercia is Creoda, said to have been the great-grandson of Icel. Coming to power around 584, he built a fortress at Tamworth, his son Pybba succeeded him in 593. Cearl, a kinsman of Creoda, followed Pybba in 606; the Mercian kings were the only Anglo-Saxon Heptarchy ruling house known to claim a direct family link with a pre-migration Continental Germanic monarchy. The next Mercian king, ruled from about 626 or 633 until 655; some of what is known about Penda comes from the hostile account of Bede, who disliked him – both as an enemy to Bede's own Northumbria and as a pagan.
However, Bede admits that Penda allowed Christian missionaries from Lindisfarne into Mercia, did not restrain them from preaching. In 633 Penda and his ally Cadwallon of Gwynedd defeated and killed Edwin, who had become not only ruler of the newly unified Northumbria, but bretwalda, or high king, over the southern kingdoms; when another Northumbrian king, Oswald and again claimed overlordship of the south, he suffered defeat and death at the hands of Penda and his allies – in 642 at the Battle of Maserfield. In 655, after a period of confusion in Northumbria, Penda brought 30 sub-kings to fight the new Northumbrian king Oswiu at the Battle of Winwaed, in which Penda in turn lost the battle and his life; the battle led to a temporary collapse of Mercian power. Penda's son Peada, who had converted to Christianity a
A dynasty is a sequence of rulers from the same family in the context of a feudal or monarchical system, but sometimes appearing in elective republics. Alternative terms for "dynasty" may include "family" and "clan", among others; the longest-surviving dynasty in the world is the Imperial House of Japan, otherwise known as the Yamato dynasty, whose reign is traditionally dated to 660 BC. The dynastic family or lineage may be known as a "noble house", which may be styled as "royal", "princely", "ducal", "comital" etc. depending upon the chief or present title borne by its members. Historians periodize the histories of numerous nations and civilizations, such as Ancient Egypt and Imperial China, using a framework of successive dynasties; as such, the term "dynasty" may be used to delimit the era during which a family reigned, to describe events and artifacts of that period. The word "dynasty" itself is dropped from such adjectival references; until the 19th century, it was taken for granted that a legitimate function of a monarch was to aggrandize his dynasty: that is, to expand the wealth and power of his family members.
Prior to the 20th century, dynasties throughout the world have traditionally been reckoned patrilineally, such as under the Frankish Salic law. In nations where it was permitted, succession through a daughter established a new dynasty in her husband's ruling house; this has changed in some places in Europe, where succession law and convention have maintained dynasties de jure through a female. For instance, the House of Windsor will be maintained through the children of Queen Elizabeth II, as it did with the monarchy of the Netherlands, whose dynasty remained the House of Orange-Nassau through three successive queens regnant; the earliest such example among major European monarchies was in the Russian Empire in the 18th century, where the name of the House of Romanov was maintained through Grand Duchess Anna Petrovna. In Limpopo Province of South Africa, Balobedu determined descent matrilineally, while rulers have at other times adopted the name of their mother's dynasty when coming into her inheritance.
Less a monarchy has alternated or been rotated, in a multi-dynastic system – that is, the most senior living members of parallel dynasties, at any point in time, constitute the line of succession. Not all feudal states or monarchies were/are ruled by dynasties. Throughout history, there were monarchs. Dynasties ruling subnational monarchies do not possess sovereign rights; the word "dynasty" is sometimes used informally for people who are not rulers but are, for example, members of a family with influence and power in other areas, such as a series of successive owners of a major company. It is extended to unrelated people, such as major poets of the same school or various rosters of a single sports team; the word "dynasty" derives from Latin dynastia, which comes from Greek dynastéia, where it referred to "power", "dominion", "rule" itself. It was the abstract noun of dynástēs, the agent noun of dynamis, "power" or "ability", from dýnamai, "to be able". A ruler from a dynasty is sometimes referred to as a "dynast", but this term is used to describe any member of a reigning family who retains a right to succeed to a throne.
For example, King Edward VIII ceased to be a dynast of the House of Windsor following his abdication. In historical and monarchist references to reigning families, a "dynast" is a family member who would have had succession rights, were the monarchy's rules still in force. For example, after the 1914 assassinations of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his morganatic wife Duchess Sophie von Hohenberg, their son Duke Maximilian was bypassed for the Austro-Hungarian throne because he was not a Habsburg dynast. Since the abolition of the Austrian monarchy, Duke Maximilian and his descendants have not been considered the rightful pretenders by Austrian monarchists, nor have they claimed that position; the term "dynast" is sometimes used only to refer to agnatic descendants of a realm's monarchs, sometimes to include those who hold succession rights through cognatic royal descent. The term can therefore describe distinct sets of people. For example, David Armstrong-Jones, 2nd Earl of Snowdon, a nephew of Queen Elizabeth II through her sister Princess Margaret, is in the line of succession to the British crown.
On the other hand, the German aristocrat Prince Ernst August of Hanover, a male-line descendant of King George III of the United Kingdom, possesses no legal British name, titles or styles. He was born in the line of succession to the British throne and was bound by Britain's Royal Marriages Act 1772 until it was repealed when the Succession to the Crown Act 2013 took effect on 26 March 2015. Thus, he requested and obtained formal permission from Queen Elizabeth II to marry the Roman Catholic Princess Caroline of Monaco in 1999. Yet, a clause of the English Act of Settlement 1701 remained in effect at that time, stipulating that dynasts who