King of the East Angles and Bretwalda

Raedwald was the son of Tyttla who at the dawn of the seventh century became ruler of that portion of the tribe of Angles that dwelt in the eastern extremities of England and was thus known as East Anglia.

This Raedwald was baptised a Christian under the influence of Aelthelberht the king of Kent but did not fully renounce the old pagan gods and allowed both the old and new religions to exist side by side within his domains.

He provided sanctuary for the young prince Edwin who came to him seeking protection from the wrath of Aethelfrith who had killed his father and driven him from Deira. When Aethelfrith sought to bribe Raedwald to deliver Edwin to him, he refused to dishonour himself by acceding to such a request. Rather he gathered his forces and with Edwin at his side rode north and brought Aethelfrith's life to an end at the Battle of Idle in 616. So Edwin was restored to his rightful place as ruler of the Angles north of the River Humber and Raedwald showed all that he was the greatest king of his age.

Raedwald died in the year 625 and was followed as king by his son Eorpwald and became the fourth king to be named by the great Bede as Bretwalda.

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