‘Vikings’: Why Judith Makes a Choice That Changes Wessex Forever

Judith (Jennie Jacques) is the wife of Aethelwulf (Moe Dunford) in History’s Vikings. She becomes her husband’s father’s lover and her choices become skewed. Read on to learn about a decision Judith makes that changes Wessex forever. There are spoilers ahead for Vikings.

The mistress of the King of Wessex

Jennie Jacques
Jennie Jacques | Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Judith finds her place by the King of Wessex’s side, King Ecbert (Linus Roache). When Ecbert asks Judith to be his mistress, she doesn’t immediately consent, but she does eventually. Judith clearly grows to care for Ecbert and she will do anything to protect him.

Ecbert has been scheming to take over the entirety of England. Thanks to a special set of circumstances, Ecbert makes himself King of both Wessex and Mercia. This doesn’t make Queen Kwenthrith (Amy Bailey) very happy, as she is the puppet ruler of Mercia. Kwenthrith immediately tries to find a way to escape and get to safety, but it doesn’t go well for her.

Queen Kwenthrith takes action

When Kwenthrith’s escape doesn’t go well, she decides to confront Ecbert head-on. She goes to Ecbert’s room at night to kill him. She holds a knife to his throat as she starts to explain how easier life would be had she been born a man.

When it seems like Ecbert is going to die, Judith enters the scene and makes a choice. She stabs Kwenthrith to death. What makes the matter so much worse is that Kwenthrith is pregnant at the time with Judith’s husband’s child. Talk about some drama.

“Judith, you have killed twice over,” Kwenthrith says as she dies from her injury on Ecbert’s bed.

How Judith’s choice changes Wessex

Judith is clearly shaken by her choice and she blames it all on Ecbert. His influence pushed her to kill Kwenthrith and keep Ecbert safe in the end. Judith makes a split-second decision and she chose the man she loved.

Judith could have sat back and let Ecbert die. Her husband would then be King of Wessex instead, but she chose love and Ecbert was then able to heavily influence both Judith and his grandsons in numerous ways.

Even after Ecbert’s death, his influence continues. Judith gives him more time by killing Kwenthrith and allowing him to live a little while longer. Love won Judith over and she has to save Ecbert from certain death.

King Ecbert was a master manipulator

Judith learns a lot from Ecbert and she cherishes his wise advice long after he’s gone. He heavily influenced the fortunes of Wessex and by letting him live, Judith did as well. She saved him from death and it brings them even closer together.

Ecbert was able manipulate everyone around him, even Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel) in some ways. His influence over Judith saved his life in the end and changed Wessex forever.