Battle of Bensington

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Battle of Bensington
Date 779[1]
Location Possibly the village of Benson in present-day Oxfordshire, England
Result Decisive Mercian victory
Mercia Wessex
Commanders and leaders
Offa of Mercia Cynewulf of Wessex

The Battle of Bensington was a major battle fought between Mercia, led by King Offa, and the West Saxons led by Cynewulf of Wessex. It ended with a victory for the Mercians, and the West Saxons recognizing Mercian overlordship.

Nearly nothing is known about the battle except that the Mercians defeated the West Saxons.

The reference in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle is succinct. It simply reads:

"777 [actually 779] Her Cynewulf & Offa gefuhton ymb Benesingtun & Offa nam þone tuun".

(This year Cynewulf and Offa fought near Bensington and Offa took the town.)

After the battle, Cynewulf ruled his Kingdom for the next seven years until he was killed in 786, but the successor to his Kingdom, Beorhtric, accepted Offa as his overlord after he helped him gain the throne of Wessex and after Offa's death he mainly kept his word, only minting his own coinage. He died in 802 AD.


  1. ^ Kohn, George (2006). Dictionary of Wars. Infobase. p. 380.