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Ethelfleda

(fl. c. 960)


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(fl. c.960),

abbess of Romsey. Daughter of Ethelwold of Wessex who founded Romsey, Ethelfleda joined the community at an early age under Merewenna and eventually became abbess.

Her Legend tells that she was brought to the notice of the king and queen and stayed at court, where her habit, for ascetical reasons, of bathing in the nude at night-time was the occasion of the queen's nervous illness, caused by her indiscreet curiosity when she followed her to see where she went. The queen was afterwards cured by the abbess's intercession. Ethelfleda died at an advanced age. Feast: 23 October.

AA.SS. Oct. XII (1867), 925–6; N.L.A., i. 379–81.

Subjects: Christianity.


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