Æthelwulf King of Wessex, son of Egbert and father of Alfred the Great. Æthelwulf’s reign lasted from 839 to 856. Æthelwulf left his son in charge of the kingdom while he traveled to fight in battles. Upon his arrival back home his son, Æthelbald, refused to step down as king so Æthelwulf divided the kingdom. Æthelwulf took the East and left the west for Æthelbald. When Æthelwulf died in 858 he left Wessex to Æthelbald and Kent to his other son Æthelberht.