The first king of England was Egbert, who reigned from 827 to 839. He was the first monarch to create a stable rule over Anglo-Saxon England, some 25 years after he regained his kingdom of Wessex. He controlled the portion of England south of the Humber after conquering Mercia.
Egbert's son, Aethelwulf, took over as king when Egbert died at the age of 70. This was a year after Egbert was officially recognized as "Bretwalda," an Anglo-Saxon term meaning "Ruler of the British." Aethelwulf was the father of Alfred the Great and Althelstan, who fought the world's first naval battle against the Danes.