Definition of Ethelred in English:


proper noun

  • 1The name of two English kings.

    1. 1.1Ethelred I(d.871), king of Wessex and Kent 865–71, elder brother of Alfred. His reign was marked by the continuing struggle against the invading Danes. Alfred joined Ethelred's campaigns and succeeded him on his death.
    2. 1.2Ethelred II(c.969–1016), king of England 978–1016; known as Ethelred the Unready. Ethelred's inability to confront the Danes after he succeeded his murdered half-brother St Edward the Martyr led to his payment of tribute to prevent their attacks. In 1013 he briefly lost his throne to the Danish king Sweyn I.