King Ine of Wessex 688-726

King Ine of Wessex – a summary of his reign and rule.

He extended the grip of the Kings of Wessex over Southern England, as far as the still-independent kingdom of Dumnonia, a process begun a century earlier by his predecessor Caedwalla.

  • 2nd cousin of King Caedwalla of Wessex
  • 692 – installs his kinsman, Nothelm, as King of Sussex.
  • circa 693 1st King of Wessex to issue a Law Code. This was the start  of a rudimentary structure of local administration and that payments to the Church including ‘church-scot’ were regarded as compulsory, as the precursor of Tithes.
  • 694 – attacks Kent, demands 30,000 pence from Kentish people, in recompense for the murder of its late king, Mul.
  • 695 – his daughter Princess Cuthburh, marries King Aeldfrith of Northumbria
  • circa 700 begins to dispense with Wessex sub-kings and replace them with ealdormen, part of his administrative organisation
  • 705 becomes estranged from the Kings Swaefred and Sigeheard of Essex who are sheltering exiled rivals to the Wessex throne.
  • 710 clashes with Nunna of Sussex against King Gerren of Dumnonia and establish a fortress at Taunton.
  • 710 St. Boniface becomes King Ine’s envoy to the Archbishop of Canterbury.
  • 715 Cash with Coelred of Mercia at the Battle of Wodensbarrow.
  • 715 faces rebellion in his own kingdom of Wessex
  • circa 720 builds a stone church at Glastonbury Abbey
  • 721 slays Prince Cynewulf, an unknown relation who was staking a claim to Wessex
  • 722 attempts a takeover of Dumnonia.
  • 725 on death of King Nunna of Sussex, the exiled Prince Ealdberht, possibly a nephew of King Ine looking seeks appointment as heir to King Ine.  His response is to attacks the South Saxons (Sussex) and kills Ealdberht. Death of King Wihtred of Kent.
  • 726 abdicates as King of Wessex, travels on a pilgrimage to Rome. Succeeded by his brother-in-law (and probably distant cousin), Aethelheard, but this is disputed by another distant cousin, Oswald.
  • 727 founds a hospice for English pilgrims in Rome.
  • 728 Dies in Rome, buried in the Church of San-Spirito-in-Sassia in the district of Borgo and later revered by some as a saint.

King Ine’s 1st Law Code, earliest surviving written record is contained within the Peterborough Chronicle believed to have been authored when appended by King Alfred to his own laws, the document is held by Corpus Christi College Cambridge.


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