Skip to main content


Æthelfryth (d. c.616), king of Northumbria (c.593–c.616), was said by Bede to be the cruellest enemy of the Britons, slaughtering, enslaving, and opening the way for further Anglo-Saxon settlement. It was probably Æthelfryth who defeated the British at Catterick (north Yorks.), lamented in the Welsh poem, Gododdin. His defeat of King Ædan at Degsastan in 603 effectively subdued the Irish in Scotland. His victory over the men of Powys at Chester c.616 was significant, separating Britons in Wales from their northern compatriots. But Æthelfryth's demise was at the hands of Anglo-Saxons. Threatened by Æthelfryth if he did not murder or hand over Edwin, claimant to the Northumbrian kingdom of Deira, who had taken refuge at his East Anglian court, Rædwald attacked, killing Æthelfryth in battle near the river Idle (Lincs.) c.616.

Audrey MacDonald

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Æthelfryth." The Oxford Companion to British History. . 23 Jun. 2019 <>.

"Æthelfryth." The Oxford Companion to British History. . (June 23, 2019).

"Æthelfryth." The Oxford Companion to British History. . Retrieved June 23, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.