One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A prince or lord in Anglo-Saxon England.
- ‘They provide the basis on which it is possible, in conjunction with other sources, to reconstruct the individual careers of kings, queens, athelings, archbishops, bishops, abbots, royal priests, and thegns.’
- ‘A council called the Witan elected who they considered the best from a group of powerful men (the athelings).’
- ‘The lust for vengeance would be strong indeed, for Gyric was not only the son of a powerful Lord but an atheling to the King.’
Old English ætheling, of West Germanic origin, from a base meaning ‘race, family’.
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