Alfred the Great is thought to be the most prominent ruler of the Anglo-Saxons. He was king of the West Saxons in Wessex, England, from 871 to 899. Amazingly, Alfred acquired the crown at the young age of 21 because all four of his brothers, who were king before him, died. He was foremost in virtue, so he was the only English ruler to be called “the Great.” Alfred was resolved in his fight against the tenacious Vikings. In fact, it is said that when he was once fleeing these raiders, a woman took him in, asking him to watch her the food she was cooking.
“Why have you burned my cakes, you imbecile?” rebuked the perturbed woman.
“I am sorry. I am King Alfred, and I was distracted because I am planning an attack on the heathen Vikings,” disclosed the contrite and cunning king.
Triumphantly, Alfred did defeat and make peace with them, even converting a Viking king to Christianity. He made education reforms by creating schools and monasteries throughout the land. Extolled by a myriad of historians as “perfect,” Alfred was without a doubt a great and prominent ruler.