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St. Alfreda

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Feastday: August 2
Death: 795

Virgin and hermit, also known as Afreda, Alfritha, Aelfnryth, and Etheldreda. She was the daughter of King Offa of Mercia, in England, and was either betrothed to or loved by St. Ethelbert, the king of the East Angles. Ethelbert went to Offa's court to ask for Alfreda but was murdered by Offa's queen, Cynethritha. Horrified by the deed, Alfreda departed the court and retired to the marshes of Crowland. There she lived as a hermitess until her death. Her sister, Aelfreda, also lost a husband to the political intrigue of Offa and his queen.


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